An excellent and informative retrospective documentary
This brisk, but solid and engrossing retrospective documentary covers a lot of ground about the offbeat early 70's Hammer horror shocker "Vampire Circus." The folks interviewed are director Joe Dante, noted critic Tim Lucas, actor/bodybuilder David Prowse, Hammer historian Ted Newsom, and journalist Philip Nutman. Among the subjects discussed are the quality of Hammer fare diminishing in the early 70s, the involvement of several TV folks in the making of "Vampire Circus," the lengthy 12 minute pre-credits sequence, elements of Bergman and Fellini in the picture, the movie's very pronounced creepy and explicit sexuality with disturbing overtones of pedophilia, the fact that the film was heavily cut and barely released in theater in America, the picture was shot in six weeks, but still fell slightly behind schedule, the poster art by illustrator Vic Fair, the killing of children on screen, the use of real bats, and the movie eventually acquiring substantial cult status in the wake of its initial release. Prowse has a fun story to relate about how he walked into the Hammer offices and informed them that he would make a perfect monster in one of their productions. Essential viewing for fans of the film.
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