4 items from 2017
The City of the Dead, 1960.
Directed by John Llewellyn Moxey.
A student travels to a remote New England village to research a paper on witchcraft, only to discover that the old legends of sacrifice may not be as in the past as she would like.
By 1960 Christopher Lee had already played his most iconic role for Hammer Films in Dracula, as well as appearing as the creature in The Curse of Frankenstein and the titular monster in The Mummy, and although he would go on to become a huge box office star in various other genre outings it was in this period during the early ‘60s (i.e. before he was churning out Dracula sequels on a regular basis) that he made some quite interesting little movies, and The City of the Dead »
- Amie Cranswick
By Darren Allison
City of the Dead (Aka Horror Hotel) 1960 Directed by John Llewellyn Moxey, Starring Christopher Lee, Patricia Jessel, Venetia Stevenson, Betta St. John and Dennis Lotis. Arrow 2 disc Blu-ray and DVD released: 24th April 2017
When filming began on The City of the Dead, Christopher Lee was already established as a leading horror star. Hammer was paving the way with a new brand of horror and Lee had played a huge part in their success playing the Frankenstein monster, Dracula and the Mummy. The City of the Dead provided the perfect opportunity for Lee to spread his wings further within the genre by moving into the realms of witchcraft, the occult and American gothic.
Set in a small New England village (and hardly a city as the title suggests), Lee plays Professor Driscoll, an authority on the occult who persuades one of his students Nan Barlow (Venetia Stevenson) to research his hometown of Whitewood, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Anna Biller captures the colours, style and mores of the lurid 70s in this near-perfect pastiche
Stiletto-sharp and as precise as a stocking seam, Anna Biller’s terrific homage to campy 1960s and 70s sexploitation horror movies is a riot of synthetic hair and vampy overacting. Biller, who designed the costumes and sets as well as writing, directing, editing and producing, has immersed herself in the Beyond the Valley of the Dolls-meets-Hammer psychological-shocker aesthetic. Hers is a witty and playful approach, but as with her 2007 film Viva – a lascivious, early 70s B-movie take on the sexual revolution – Biller lovingly recreates the film-making of the era with a fan’s obsession to detail. As such, it reminded me of Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani’s giallo pastiche, Amer: both pictures are deliciously lurid but wholly serious in their appreciation of the genre they evoke.
Biller cites George Romero’s »
- Wendy Ide
Sometimes it’s hard to put a fresh coat of paint on an old house. The colors can bleed through no matter how many new layers are added, giving the house a look of desperation from a block away. But sometimes the right paint is used, the restoration is done with love and affection, and the new owners actually care about their surroundings. Such is the case with The Night Stalker (1972), the ABC TV movie that took the vampire out of his crumbling castle and transported him to the seedier side of the modern day Las Vegas strip; and in doing so created one of the most endearingly reluctant monster hunters of all time, Carl Kolchak.
Originally airing as the ABC Movie of the Week on Tuesday, January 11th, 1972, The Night Stalker slayed the competition in the ratings, including CBS’s successful Hawaii Five-o/Cannon lineup. And I mean destroyed »
- Scott Drebit
4 items from 2017