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You can’t always take a film director at his word. Herschell Gordon Lewis, the self-proclaimed “Wizard of Gore” who passed away, at the age of 90, on Sept. 26, was way far down on the totem pole of filmmaker respectability — in fact, he probably occupied its second-to-last rung, with Edward D. Wood Jr. on the very bottom. When it came to discussing the art of directing, Lewis made no claims for himself. At all. Next to him, even a low-budget exploitation mercenary like Roger Corman came off as a bohemian artiste. Lewis’ theory of filmmaking revolved around one thing and one thing only: He was in it for the money. He repeated this in countless interviews, like the one he gave to John Waters for Waters’ great first book, “Shock Value,” in 1981. Lewis, who invented the gore film, talked about movies in strictly utilitarian terms, and that became part of his legend. »
- Owen Gleiberman
There are few absolutes in life, let alone in the world of horror; but this I find to be true: Herschell Gordon Lewis was appreciated in his time. Beloved, actually. Sadly passing away on September 26th, 2016 at the age of 87, he left behind a slew of grindhouse classics encapsulating everything from biker flicks to sex ed pieces. But Hgl will be forever known for a string of unique and groundbreaking horror films including The Gore Gore Girls (1972), his last opus before he took a 30 year sabbatical from filmmaking. And on the Hgl spectrum, it’s one of his best.
If you’re familiar at all with “The Godfather of Gore” (a moniker he wore as a point of pride) but haven’t seen The Gore Gore Girls, the differences between this and say, Blood Feast (1963), his first splatter extravaganza, are minimal. Made for a pittance of 63 grand, Ggg has all »
- Scott Drebit
A goofy horror comedy that boasts some weirdly insane set pieces and a lot of lighthearted fun, Blood Diner is the vegetarian cannibalism movie I never knew I needed (but definitely do now). It’s a film I’ve heard about for a long time, but just never found the opportunity to rent, which is why I’m happy to see it resurrected in HD by Lionsgate as part of their new Vestron Video Collector’s Series. It may not be an experience for everyone, but considering my absolute love for balls-out, unabashedly weird horror comedies from the 1980s (like The Stuff or Saturday the 14th Strikes Back), Blood Diner is the perfect Blood Feast sequel we never officially got, and I had a blast with it.
Blood Diner’s story is anything but simple, so I’ll do my best here. The film opens with two kids, Michael and George Tutman, »
- Heather Wixson
Herschell Gordon Lewis, whose blood-drenched, over-the-top horror films built a loyal cult audience, has passed away at age 87. Lewis never achieved mainstream recognition but apparently took satisfaction that his bizarre, low-budget films had resonated with their intended audiences. Lewis, a former teacher, became involved in show business by producing and directing commercials, as well as voicing some of them. In 1963 he wrote and directed "Blood Feast", a horror flick on a tiny budget. The film became popular with the "so-bad-its-good" crowd and benefited from a creative marketing campaign. Over the decades, Lewis would continue to market his films to a growing fan base and found a particularly receptive audience in the rural drive-in markets that responded to his humorous approach to horror and sexploitation films. Among his productions: "Scum of the Earth", "Two Thousand Maniacs", "Monster-a-Go-Go", "Something Red" and "The Gruesome Twosome".
For more click here. (For Gordon's official web site, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Craig Lines Sep 26, 2016
A few words about H G Lewis, 'the godfather of gore', who died yesterday...
This week is a sad one for horror fans, as it marks the passing of Herschell Gordon Lewis (June 15, 1929 - September 26, 2016), a man whose pioneering splatter movies changed the genre forever. While even his most well-known work is perhaps still not widely seen outside of horror circles, this is part of what makes him one of the quintessential purveyors of it. Horror - especially at its extreme end - has always been an outsider's genre, offputting and disturbing to wider crowds. Sure, a lot of the tropes and extremities that Lewis introduced are commonplace now in major pictures but his work (although shot primarily to make money from the drive-in circuit in the early 60s) has remained on the fringes. A cult favourite for those in the know.
For me personally, he carved »
One of the most influential filmmakers of his generation, horror icon Herschell Gordon Lewis, passed away today at the age of 87. An advertising man who turned his talents to exploitation in the early Sixties and made a total of 49 films, progressing from nudie cuties to full on horror. He was known for his febrile imagination, his love of gratuitous gore and his habit of feeding his cast and crew members exclusively on Kentucky Fried Chicken until they were sick.
Lewis' most important film was 1963's Blood Feast, celebrated for its joyous ineptitude and widely hailed as the first ever splatter movie. Its impact on cinema was considerable, spawning literall hundreds of imitations, and it was recently remade by Marcel Walz. Other career highlights included Two Thousand Maniacs, Color Me Blood Red, The Gruesome Twosome and She-Devils On Wheels. Following his retirement from the industry, »
- Jennie Kermode
Herschell Gordon Lewis, the so-called "Godfather of Gore" who is widely credited with inventing the "splatter" sub-genre, has died. He was 87. During his brief career as a writer, director and producer of low-budget exploitation films, Lewis achieved infamy with titles like Blood Feast, Two Thousand Maniacs! and The Wizard of Gore, the first of which is generally considered the first "splatter" film and was so reviled by critics on release in 1963 that Variety deemed it "an insult even to the most puerile and salacious of audiences." Nonetheless, the film's boundary-pushing nature made it a huge hit with audiences, leading to a new acceptance of onscreen gore and paving the way for more artful filmmakers like Tobe Hooper, Sam Raimi and Peter Jackson. Born June 15, 1929 in Pittsburgh, Lewis earned a master's degree in Journalism at Northwestern University and had a varied early career, working alternately as a college professor, TV commercial director and voiceover artist. »
- Chris Eggertsen
Beloved horror director Herschell Gordon Lewis, who was affectionately known as the "Godfather of Gore," has passed away at the age of 87. Lisa Petrucci from Something Weird Video, the company that distributed his movies and was named after the filmmaker's 1967 film of the same name, broke the news in a Facebook post. Here's what she had to say about the filmmaker below.
"Sad news. I'm sorry to have to tell you that Herschell Gordon Lewis has passed away. Herschell was a dear friend to Mike and I. Like an uncle. I'm glad we got to spend time so much time with him over the years. Rip to the Godfather of Gore, I'll miss you..."
No cause of death has been reported at this time. The Facebook post announcing his death did not reveal any additional details about the filmmaker's passing. Herschell Gordon Lewis was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1929. After studying journalism in college, »
Herschell Gordon Lewis, a horror icon long known as the “Godfather of Gore,” has passed away of unspecified causes at 87. He was best known for innovating the “splatter” subgenre with 1963’s “Blood Feast,” which Lewis made on a $24,500 budget partly as a response to “Psycho” — he wanted to show the act of murder on film in graphic detail, not just the aftermath. Something Weird Video broke the news on Facebook.
Read More: ‘Tales From Beyond The Pale’: Film Society Of Lincoln Center Scares Up Special Live Event For Acclaimed Audio Drama
The filmmaker was highly prolific throughout the 1960s and early ’70s, and active in a number of sordid subgenres: nudie-cuties, juvenile-delinquent movies and other exemplars of exploitation cinema. Among his best-known — and most alluringly named — works are “The Wizard of Gore,” “She-Devils on Wheels,” “The Gruesome Twosome” and “Two Thousand Maniacs!”
Read More: ‘The Eyes Of My Mother »
- Michael Nordine
Horror filmmaker Herschell Gordon Lewis, known as the “Godfather of Gore” for his bloody exploitation movies that launched the splatter genre in the 1960s with films such as “Blood Feast” and “Two Thousand Maniacs,” died Monday at 87.
The Something Weird Video site announced his death.
“Blood Feast,” made in 1963 in Miami, was considered to be the horror genre’s first splatter film. Variety called it a “totally inept shocker” that was “an insult even to the most puerile and salacious of audiences,” with a “senseless” screenplay and “amateurish” acting.
Beginning in the 1960s, his early films with the late producer David F. Friedman were skewed toward soft-core erotica. Lewis’s other films also took on subjects that were taboo at the »
- Pat Saperstein
Begginning his career as a producer with 1959’s The Prime Time, Lewis then began directing, releasing a series of erotic “nudies” in the early 1960s before switching to horror for 1963’s Blood Feast, which is considered to be the first “gore” film and ushered in the splatter genre.
Lewis went on to produce a number of low-budget gore films catering to the drive-in market, releasing titles such as Two Thousand Maniacs!, Color Me Blood Red, A Taste of Blood, The Gruesome Twosome, The Wizard of Gore and The Gore Gore Girls, as well as venturing into other areas of exploitation film, and even children’s movies.
Having retired from the industry in the early 1970s, Lewis returns in 2002 with the sequel Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat, »
- Gary Collinson
Herschell Gordon Lewis, the filmmaker behind pioneering gore films such as 1963’s “Blood Feast” and 1964’s “Two Thousand Maniacs!” died Sunday at age 87, a spokesperson for the filmmaker told TheWrap. “It is my sad duty to report that my close friend and mentor Mr. Herschell Gordon Lewis passed away peacefully in his sleep last night. His family appreciate the outpouring of love that is coming in, but ask for privacy during this difficult time,” Lewis’ representative, James Saito, said. “Lewis was responsible for creating the ‘splatter’ film genre of horror, and his films are considered cult classics.” Saito added that. »
- Tim Kenneally
Some very upsetting news is circulating today, as it's being reported that Herschell Gordon Lewis, aka The Godfather of Gore, has passed away at the age of 87.
The news of Lewis' passing comes from Something Weird Video (via Bloody Disgusting). While the exact cause of death is unknown, there's no doubt that Lewis will be missed by countless people within the horror community, where he touched many lives with his unfiltered creativity both behind and in front of the camera.
Lewis' uncompromising style will live on through »
- Derek Anderson
Horror film pioneer broke ground with films such as Blood Feast and Two Thousand Maniacs! before returning to advertising in the mid-1970s
Exploitation legend and “godfather of gore” Herschell Gordon Lewis has died aged 87. His longtime distributors Something Weird Video (named after Lewis’ 1967 feature) broke the news in a Facebook post.
With his 1963 film Blood Feast, Lewis is widely credited with pioneering the splatter genre, despite it being considered “an insult even to the most puerile and salacious of audiences” in a Variety review. A later critique described it as “one of the important releases in film history, ushering in a new acceptance of explicit violence that was obviously just waiting to be exploited”.
Continue reading »
- Andrew Pulver
Lewis began in the film industry by producing and directing exploitation movies featuring nudity, a profitable endeavor that nonetheless limited their ability to be marketed and distributed, thanks to censorship by the Motion Picture Production Code. However, he soon became known as “the godfather of gore” for his gruesome and sometimes silly outings released throughout the ’60s and ’70s. 1963’s Blood Feast (which featured some great ad copy for the movie) is arguably his best known film, showcasing gore effects that included an actual sheep’s tongue. As Lewis told Film Journal, “I’ve often compared Blood Feast to a Walt Whitman poem. It’s no good, but it was the first of its kind.”
Blood Feast kickstarted a run of cult classics, like Two Thousand ...
- Alex McCown-Levy, Mike Vanderbilt
Herschell Gordon Lewis’ masterpiece Blood Feast (1963) was the stomach churning movie by “The Godfather of Gore” that opened the floodgates to the countless blood and slasher movie that followed since its release over fifty years ago. Blood Feast was a midnight movie drive-In mainstay for years. No Punches were pulled and no organs left inside in Blood Feast. This film was a true classick in every sense of the word. Remember this was the mid 60’s folks. Sure the effects were cheap & fake, but the bad intentions were there from the get go. Gotta love that Mr. Lewis. 2,000 Maniacs, The Wizard Of Gore, The Gore-gore Girls, and Color Me Blood Red – he cranked ’em out with no shame. That crazy Egyptian Fuad Ramese and his fowl deeds kept gorehounds, »
- Tom Stockman
Bloodsuckers, the water-soaked paranormal, and a Herschell Gordon Lewis film collection are coming out on Blu-ray this October from Arrow Video, and the official special features lists and cover art for The Herschell Gordon Lewis Feast collection, Dark Water (2002), and 1986's Vamp tease plenty to enjoy on all three releases:
Dark Water [Blu-ray + DVD] (October 11th)
After terrifying audiences worldwide with the blockbuster J-horror classic Ring and its sequel, director Hideo Nakata returned to the genre for Dark Water, another highly atmospheric, and critically acclaimed, tale of the supernatural which took the common theme of the "dead wet girl" to new heights of suspense and drama.
- Derek Anderson
Over 65 films, the new and the classics, will screen at FEARnyc 2016 horror film festival, including Nosferatu, Hocus Pocus, Dead Awake, Night of the Living Dead (1968), Psycho, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and The Lost Boys, just to name a few. Continue reading for the full list of films in the FEARnyc lineup.
From FEARnyc: "FEARnyc will be presented this Halloween season at New York City’s Cinema Village. From October 21-27, 2016 the event will feature screenings of 65+ new and classic horror films, cast appearances, special events and a tribute to horror icon, Wes Craven.
Some of the highlights include:
A screening of The Exorcist which will begin with a seance with the audience led by a renowned psychic. »
- Tamika Jones
Terror Toons is one shocking, gore-filled, bloody epic that proves cartoons shouldn’t be trusted. In preparation for the release of the third installment in the trilogy, we sat down with director Joe Castro to learn more about Terror Toons, why he loves gore so much, and what it was like to work with the legendary director Herschell Gordon Lewis.
Shannon: Hi Joe! Thanks so much for speaking with me today! For those who are not familiar with the Terror Toons trilogy, can you tell us a little bit about them and your newest one, Terror Toons 3, is about?
Joe Castro: Absolutely! The Terror Toons trilogy, what is it all about. Basically, in a nutshell, Terror Toons are killer cartoons that have come from the cartoon convention into our physical world and they stalk and kill people in a cartoon-style fashion; however, when you die, you die for »
- Shannon McGrew
Blood Feast review
Blood Feast is a remake of the 1960 cult classic of the same name. It gained notoriety as the oldest film on the infamous UK video nasties list compiled by the Director of Public Prosecutions in the early 1980s. This remake arrives with very little fanfare and will be considered moderately tame. We’ve seen it all by now and Blood Feast 2016 does nothing to change that.
The film opens with a foreboding voice over telling us how shocking the film will be. It’s a nice nod to the producer of the original David F. Friedman, a man who generated publicity stunts including taking out injunctions against his own film in certain states to create buzz elsewhere in the Us. Shifting the action from Miami to Paris, we follow Faud Ramses (Robert Rusler), an American with Egyptian blood, who struggles to run his American diner and put »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
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