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The Girl Who Knew Too Much, 1963.
Directed by Mario Bava.
A young American witnesses a murder while visiting Rome and inadvertently stumbles upon a serial killer nicknamed the ABC murderer – and her name begins with a D!
Part of the considerable charm of this discerning Blu-ray release is that it shows exactly how two different releases of the same film can offer remarkably diverse experiences…
Bava’s original Italian release with the Hitchcockian inspired title takes in a far darker sense of impending dread and horror. After all, as the excellent extra features from various genre experts inform us, this title can in many senses be seen to be one of the first true giallo films, mixing elements of murder mystery with the modish cinematography and stylistic elements that would go on »
- Robert W Monk
Directed by Mario Bava.
A ruthless Roman gang conducts a violent kidnapping and car-jacking after a botched robbery leaves death and destruction in their wake…
Rabid Dogs, or Cani Arrabbiati in the original Italian, is a frenetic crime drama from a true master of acerbic nerve-shredding, Mario Bava. In something of a move away from the supernatural/Gothic elements of his earlier career of films such as Black Sabbath and Mask of Satan, this late period Bava creates a modern 70’s crime scenario captured in real time.
Pitched at the hard-boiled edge of the giallo world, this tougher than tough slice of gangsterism leaves you imagining it on repeat at Quentin Tarantino’s house. Indeed this is meant as a compliment, as the street smart codes of revisionist »
- Robert W Monk
The Girl Who Knew Too Much, 1963.
Directed by Mario Bava.
A young tourist becomes involved in a police investigation after witnessing a murder by a notorious serial killer.
His final black-and-white production, Mario Bava’s The Girl Who Knew Too Much sees the Italian director paying respect to Alfred Hitchcock – from the tongue-in-cheek title to certain elements of the film itself – whilst inadvertently setting a template for others to follow and creating the sub-genre known as the giallo (the Italian word for yellow, the colour of the pages of pulpy crime novels). Not bad for a mystery thriller that comes and goes in 86 minutes with barely any fat on it whatsoever.
- Gary Collinson
The appeal of Aussie writer/director Jennifer Kent's psychological horror The Babadook has little, if anything, to do with any chills it offers its viewers. Adapted from her 2005 short film (watch here), Kent explores love, loss, grief, motherhood and our ability to squash inner-demons, as well as our inability to ever let them go entirely in a fairy tale-esque thriller fans of Guillermo del Toro's Spanish-language features are sure to enjoy, though horror fans hoping for traditional cheap thrills may walk away disappointed. The story tells of Amelia (Essie Davis) and her six-year-old son Samuel (Noah Wiseman), six years after the sudden death of her husband. Amelia seems good natured enough when we first meet her, reading Samuel children's books to put him to sleep even though he rages throughout the day, screaming of a monster that haunts his dreams. This so-called monster is initially nameless until the »
- Brad Brevet
Top 100 horror movies of all time: Chicago Film Critics' choices (photo: Sigourney Weaver and Alien creature show us that life is less horrific if you don't hold grudges) See previous post: A look at the Chicago Film Critics Association's Scariest Movies Ever Made. Below is the list of the Chicago Film Critics's Top 100 Horror Movies of All Time, including their directors and key cast members. Note: this list was first published in October 2006. (See also: Fay Wray, Lee Patrick, and Mary Philbin among the "Top Ten Scream Queens.") 1. Psycho (1960) Alfred Hitchcock; with Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Martin Balsam. 2. The Exorcist (1973) William Friedkin; with Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair, Jason Miller, Max von Sydow (and the voice of Mercedes McCambridge). 3. Halloween (1978) John Carpenter; with Jamie Lee Curtis, Donald Pleasence, Tony Moran. 4. Alien (1979) Ridley Scott; with Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt. 5. Night of the Living Dead (1968) George A. Romero; with Marilyn Eastman, »
- Andre Soares
In today's roundup of news and views: Tom Paulus on Olivier Assayas’s Clouds of Sils Maria, the new issue of The Seventh Art, featuring video interviews with Joe Berlinger, Atom Egoyan, Ruben Östlund and Evan Calder Williams, Don Hertzfeldt's top ten Criterions, Film International's issue on independent Iranian cinema, Alexandre Aja on Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, Neil Marshall on Ridley Scott's Alien, Mike D'Angelo on John Carpenter's Halloween, Julien Allen on Mario Bava's Black Sunday, Michael Koresky on Jennifer Kent's The Babadook and more. » - David Hudson »
Back in April, for twelve weeks straight, I reviewed a different Werner Herzog movie as they came available on the streaming service Fandor.com . Now the site is preparing for Halloween with a very special release of Kino Lorber's new 4K restoration of Robert Wiene's classic horror thriller The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari exclusively on the site beginning Halloween. And on that day (October 31st), and for one day only, the film will be available to everyone, even if you do not have a Fandor subscription! However, I have a special gift for one (1) lucky reader, a one (1) year subscription to Fandor.com and beyond the Herzog titles and the release of Caligari there is a lot more to explore. For example, also in celebration of Halloween, the site has George A. Romero's 1698 zombie classic Night of the Living Dead as well as Romero's original 1973 feature The Crazies. »
- Brad Brevet
Horror directors these days seem to almost automatically genuflect before the altars of such '70s and '80s filmmakers as John Carpenter and Dario Argento. But writer-director Jennifer Kent sought inspiration from much older auteurs while crafting her debut film, the much-acclaimed, Sundance-screened, The Babadook. "I've watched everything, from Mario Bava to Dario Argento—all of those ‘70s guys, including John Carpenter, who I love," she says. "But I feel very drawn also to the early stuff. There were directors in the '20s and '30s—Carl Dreyer, Fritz Lang—who were making films that were art and »
- Clark Collis
Stars: Lea Lander, George Eastman, Riccardo Cucciolla, Don Backy, Maurice Poli, Maria Fabbri, Erika Dario, Luigi Antonio Guerra, Francesco Ferrini, Emilio Bonucci, Pino Manzari, Ettore Manni | Written by Alessandro Parenzo | Directed by Mario Bava
Mario Bava for me is a director I mostly know for horror films and his importance to not only Giallo but the slasher genre. Now that Arrow Video have released Rabid Dogs on Blu-ray I see a new side to him, one that may have come too late for movie fans to fully enjoy but one that showed how good a director he truly was.
When a robbery goes wrong a gang of crooks are forced to take a woman prisoner and end up hijacking a car taking the man inside and his sick son prisoner. Refusing to get out and allow the man to take his son to the hospital they force him to help them escape into the countryside. »
- Paul Metcalf
Exclusive: French sales company also set to launch new films by Leconte and Delpy at Afm.
“It’s a big budget, epic love story as only Mikhalkov knows how to deliver set just as the Russian revolution gains pace and the old Imperial era is destroyed forever,” said Wild Bunch sales chief Vincent Maraval.
The film revolves around a Tsarist soldier, awaiting his fate in a Bolsheviks-run prison camp, who recalls a short, passionate affair he once had with a beautiful and enigmatic married woman.
It is an adaptation of a 1927 novel by celebrated Nobel Prize-winning Russian novelist Ivan Bunin, written while he was living in exile in Paris.
Sunstroke was released in Russia at the beginning of October, after controversial premieres in the contested Crimean cities of Sevastopol and Simferopol in September »
Clive Barker fans, this is the week we’ve all been patiently waiting for as Scream Factory is set to release the highly anticipated Director’s Cut of Nightbreed onto Blu-ray, forever filling the void that most us of Cabal enthusiasts have felt for many, many years.
Also coming home this week is Scott Derrickson’s supernatural thriller Deliver Us From Evil, Axelle Carolyn’s indie horror project Soulmate and the cult classic Planet of the Vampires gets a much-needed HD overhaul as well.
Other titles to keep an eye out for this week include Free Fall, Grace: The Possession, Red Nights as well as HD presentations of two oddball 70’s classics- Squirm and Werewolf Woman.
Deliver Us From Evil (Sony Home Entertainment, Blu-ray /Digital HD & DVD)
- Heather Wixson
Popular in the 1960s and early 1970s with more rare appearances in the 1980s, 1990s and the 2000s, the anthology-style horror film has made a solid resurgence in recent years with such portmanteau releases as The ABCs of Death films and the V/H/S series.
With Mexico Barbaro, Fear Paris and other projects in various stages of completion, the anthology horror film looks to continue to be an important part of the horror cinema landscape.
Some anthology films employ a framing or wraparound sequence in an attempt to connect the segments that make up the film while others dispense with this classic Amicus-style approach entirely and simply present a collection of short films connected by genre.
Either way, a horror anthology film is ultimately about the quality of its individual segments and this article will take you on a tour of the greatest horror anthology segments of all time. »
- Terek Puckett
Look at those monsters! Look familiar? It’s the We Are Movie Geeks gang getting ready for Halloween courtesy of Geek/Artist Jim Batts!
Speaking of our favorite holiday, it’s that time of year to dust off the horror DVDs and watch your favorite horror films. But what if you don’t have a big DVD collection? Well, there’s always Netflix – watch them now! I went through the Netflix streaming list of horror flicks and here’s what I came up with for the ten best horror movies that you can watch tonight…without leaving the house!
10. “The Legend of Hell House” (1973): An effectively spooky thriller from 1973 about a team of paranormal experts confronting ghosts in a haunted mansion is a prime example of how what you don’t see is often much more unnerving than what you do.
9. “Nosferatu” (1922): If you think a movie over 90-years-old can’t be scary, »
- Tom Stockman
Here are two films from the Chicago International Film Festival that couldn’t be more different.
First up I was Miss Julie, based on the play of the same title by August Strindber, directed by Liv Ullmann and stars Jessica Chastain, Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton, and a pug. The general plot is simple, but the drama and themes, are rich and complex as it focuses on a single night where the daughter of a wealthy aristocrat seduces on of her servants. I’m not just saying this because of Ullmann’s legendary collaborations, but the film really does feel like a modern Ingmar Bergman film, particularly Through a Glass Darkly and Cries and Whispers. It is a highly emotional film about the dichotomy between sex and love and the pressures of class based societies. It is also an excellent actor’s showcase, with three powerful performances.
The next film I »
- Max Molinaro
Arrow Video has announced the UK Blu-ray and DVD release of Mario Bava’s cult classic Rabid Dogs, which arrives in the UK on 27th October. This new deluxe release will include both Rabid Dogs, Bava’s original version posthumously completed from his notes, and Kidnapped, the re-edited, re-dubbed and re-scored version, supervised by Bava’s son and assistant director Lamberto Bava, and producer Alfredo Leone. Mario Bava’s reputation as a filmmaker rests chiefly on his contribution to horror, particularly his baroque and beautiful Gothic chillers of the 1960s. All the more surprising that in the mid-1970s he should turn to the crime genre and create Cani arrabbiati (aka Rabid Dogs), an abrasive kidnap psychodrama that ranks alongside anything done by the better-known ‘tough guy’ directors of the day. Together with both versions of the film, this new disc will also feature a newly translated English subtitled track, »
Most female characters in film succumb to the Devil. They are used as vessels or conduits for the Anti-Christ, lesser demons or the grandiose ideas of an occult. More often than not- they are chased, seduced or beaten into submission by satanic happenings. But some of these women do display degrees of ingenuity, agency and physical prowess in their battle against coercion and the corruption of souls. Ranked from weakest characterization to strongest, the following list discusses the faculties that these women retain in the face of evil. (Minor spoilers ahead).
Lisa Reiner in Lisa and the Devil (1973)
Lisa (Elke Sommer) is overtaken by the spirit of a long deceased woman named Elena and the Devil all at once. Trapped deep in her mind, we hardly know Lisa outside of her light, carefree existence as an American tourist right before her possession. Purely »
- Lane Scarberry
Before he was the one-line-loving, crassly, campy class clown known as Freddy, Fred Krueger was the stuff of genuine nightmares. Scarred and grinning in his striped wool sweater, Fred prowls the dreamscape realm of the local high schoolers, the children upon whom he once preyed before their parents got smart and burned him alive. Years ago, Fred was a janitor at the elementary school; he lured children into the boiler room, where, it’s insinuated, he molested and maimed the kids. Now, years later, he returns to haunt the dreams of the children of Suburbia, America. Craven conjures the most surreal imagery of his wildly uneven career here, and Robert Englund instills Craven’s iconic creation with sharp, wry kind of terror, his playful delivery still ironic before the sequels declawed him. He wears his ratty old fedora like »
- Greg Cwik
From the director of the one-of-a-kind sonic horror Berberian Sound Studio comes the equally unpredictable Duke Of Burgundy...
British writer-director Peter Strickland’s previous film was the unique blast of sound and surrealism, Berbarian Sound Studio, a frighteningly weird period piece about the making of a lurid Italian horror film and its sound engineer’s gradual sinking into madness.
Strickland's debut saw him head to Transylvania to shoot Katalin Varga, a foreign-language revenge picture, with just £28,000 inherited from his uncle. With movies like those behind him, you can bet that what is ostensibly a drama about a commanding writer and butterfly collector, Cynthia (Sidse Babett Knudsen) and her kinky relationship with her maid, Evelyn (Chiara D'Anna) would have more going on than it first appears. Strickland’s previous fascination with the distinctive style of 60s and 70s Italian filmmaking continues here, with The Duke Of Burgundy’s fluid camerawork and »
While chatting with Fangoria at this past weekend’s New York Comic-Con about his role as The Master in FX’s The Strain (more on that soon), towering actor Robert Maillet revealed his role in Rabid Dogs, the recently wrapped remake of Mario Bava’s thriller a.k.a. Kidnapped. A French-Canadian co-production, the new Rabid Dogs (a.k.a. ENRAGÉS) was […] »
- Michael Gingold
“You have no reason to be afraid.”
Black Sabbath screens midnights this Friday and Saturday (October 10th and 11th) at The Hi-Pointe Theater (1005 McCausland Ave., St. Louis, Mo 63117)
A big round of applause to the gang at Destroy the Brain for reaching back in the vaults of time and choosing a midnight movie that terrified me as a child as this weekend’s monthly Late Night Grindhouse.
Although tripped out in LSD lights, Italian director Mario Bava’s Black Sabbath is a gem of a film, probably the scariest anthology ever made. Host Boris Karloff and company had in Mario Bava a director who knew how to address the real anxieties beneath the horror story, fear of death and the unknown. Even the clumsy re-arrangement of the American International version (the version that will be screened at the Hi-Pointe this weekend) could not rid this film of its impact.
The first, »
- Tom Stockman
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