3 items from 2017
By Hank Reineke
Though heavyweights Columbia and Universal produced as many serials as Republic Pictures from 1929-1956, the latter studio is generally best known for its exciting sound-era chapter-plays. Universal and the less widely known Mascot Pictures were in the game the earliest; both studios began releasing their sound serials in 1929. Mascot would only last six years or so. Universal – choosing to concentrate exclusively on the production of feature films – effectively got out of the serial business in 1946. Republic and Columbia hung on to the production of chapter-plays the longest; they released their final serials in 1955 and 1956, respectively.
Republic wasn’t only a serials factory. The studio was in the low budget feature filmmaking business as well, busily churning out a dizzying array of westerns, adventure pictures, and mysteries. They would test the box-office potentials of the horror film market during the 1940s with limited success. As a second-tier “Poverty Row” studio, »
- email@example.com (Cinema Retro)
The 2016 blu ray release of the Frankenstein and Wolf Man Legacy Collections was a moment of celebration for movie and monster lovers everywhere, bringing together all the golden age appearances of Frankenstein’s misbegotten creation and Larry Talbot’s hairy alter-ego. Universal Studios treated those dusty creature features to luminous restorations; from Bride of Frankenstein to She Wolf of London, these essential artifacts never looked less than impeccable and, at times, even ravishing. Colin Clive’s frenzied declaration, “It’s Alive!”, never felt more appropriate.
Now Universal has turned their attention to their other legendary franchise players, Dracula, the sharp-dressed but undead ladies’ man and Im-ho-tep, the cursed Egyptian priest who loved not wisely but too well.
Dracula: Complete Legacy Collection
1931, ’36, ’43, ’44, ’45, ’48 / 449 min. / B&W / 1:33 / Street Date May 16, 2017
Cinematography: Karl Freund, »
- Charlie Largent
Kl Studio Classics
1951 / Color / 1:37 flat Academy / 116 min. / Street Date January 10, 2017 / available through Kino Lorber / 29.95
Cinematography: Leon Shamroy
Film Editor: Barbara McLean
Original Music: Alfred Newman
Written by: Philip Dunne
Produced by: Darryl F. Zanuck
Directed by Henry King
Right in the middle of WW2, 20th Fox struck religious pay dirt with two respectful religion-themed movies, one about a miracle and another about the hard life of a priest. Each created a new Hollywood star. Five years later there began a regular Hollywood Bible War. In 1949 Cecil B. DeMille released his first Biblical epic in Technicolor, Samson and Delilah, throwing violence, sex and hammy acting at the screen in even measure. MGM bounced back with a tremendous production of »
- Glenn Erickson
3 items from 2017
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