A documentary examining the early days of horror films, particularly those crafted at Universal Studios during the 1930s.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Narrator (voice)
...
Himself
...
Herself
...
Himself
Carla Laemmle ...
Herself
Sara Karloff ...
Herself, daughter of Boris Karloff
Forrest J. Ackerman ...
Himself (as Forrest Ackerman)
David J. Skal ...
Himself
...
Herself
...
Herself
Carl Laemmle ...
Himself (archive footage)
Anne Carré ...
Herself, widow of Ben Carré
...
Himself
Nicholas Webster ...
Himself
Lupita Tovar ...
Herself
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A documentary examining the early days of horror films, particularly those crafted at Universal Studios during the 1930s.

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Release Date:

8 October 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Terror Universal  »

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1.33 : 1
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Features Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fantastic
9 December 2011 | by (Denmark) – See all my reviews

This documentary on classic horror is found on the DVD of the 1932 version of The Mummy. It consists of interviews with actors, crew, experts and those who have been inspired in various ways by the movies, clips of them(from different decades, silent and spoken alike, and you can see the evolution of film-making), behind-the-scenes footage and stills as well as narration(Branagh seldom lets us down, and this is no exception). The amount of journalism alone is impressive here, and the presentation is so smooth and compelling that you end up not able to take your eyes off it. I'm not used to being this captivated by something presented in this medium which is not fiction. They cover a massive amount in the well-paced 95 minutes that fly right by. The technical aspects, different language versions(some of them superior to the American originals!), Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, make-up, the connection to WWI(the popularity of the thrilling flicks was partially on account of grotesquely hurt and disfigured people(victims of the war) living on, because of medical advances), the accusation of these pictures causing real life crimes, European styles and look, Gothic, Bauhaus, expressionism, art, etc. They even give away how some of the FX were done(including an early version of blue-screen!), and you really understand why these were beloved. Editing is crisp, and this never dwells excessively on anything. There is a lot of disturbing content, gory and violence in this. I warmly recommend this to every single fan of the medium, not just of the period or the specific genre. 8/10


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