Every October, my wife and partake in our usual horror movie fest in preparation for Halloween. Now we don't cram as many movies into our month as The October Horror Movie Challenge but we do gather quite a few.
Since we've seen many of the 'good' ones over and over again (and over and over and over…), we thought that this year we'd try all oldies (some good and some bad but always with some redeeming quality) many of which we haven't seen before or at least haven't seen in at least 10 years. Now by oldies, I think we draw the line somewhere in the 1970's (with a few exception) which is interesting because that brings us to the use of special effects.
As mentioned in Beyond the Black Gates post, CGI effects can and have actually detract from suspension of disbelief. Prior to this virtual explosion of cheap effect making, monsters, spaceships and gore and sets were all created with the actors. Whether it was a matte painting or a badly constructed set, the actors and effects were, for the most part, all there in reality. As quaint as some theses affects and stories may appear now, there is something truly entertaining about them. They've been a joy to watch.
So here's what we've caught up until today:
Rosemary's Baby: Classic creepy well directed (Polanski) psychological horror film with Mia Farrow, Satan, babies and old naked devil worshipers. All this in 1968 too!
Die, Monster, Die!: The first in our (loosely based) H.P. Lovecraft adaptations (1965) staring Boris Karloff. Not bad and very entertaining. Interesting take on a Lovecraft story (The Colour Out of Space). The ending kinda looks like a Dr. Who episode - not necessarily a bad thing!
The Dunwhich Horror: Sandra Dee and Dean Stockwell in a more cheesy take on a Lovecraft story. The Necronomicon and the raising of the 'old ones' take center stage. Again, interesting interpretation (for the time, 1971) on the Cthulhu Mythos.
Logan's Run: Pre-Star Wars Sci-Fi 70 flick with miniature city models. A bit long and dragging but a fun action movie. The fashions and hair-styles are quite retro in the 23rd century. No Grognards alive in this future!
The Brotherhood of Satan: More satanic film fun with this horrible devil-worshiping flick, again with old people killing children. Crazy devil worshiping temple set and Ahna (Enter the Dragon) Capri in a bikini!
Dawn of the Dead: A Romero Classic. 1978. Zombies. Machine Guns. Shopping Malls. Exploding Heads. Tom Savini. Nuff Said!
The Fall of the House of Usher: Vincent Price brings this 1960 horror classic to life in this adaption of the Poe story. Decent acting all around and great castle/dungeon sets. I'd have to say pretty creepy for it's time with Vincent burying his sister alive.
Dagon (2001): A newer flick (yes, we broke our own rules) and one worth checking out. I felt it was a good interpretation of the 'concept' of Lovecraft's Dagon. Human sacrifice, mutant fish-humans, and a beautiful Dagon Priestess played by Macarena Gomez. The lead character is a bit annoying but beyond that, a decent fun horror flick that doesn't hold back.
And on deck...
The Changeling (Yes, with George C. Scott)
The City of Lost Children
The Pit and the Pendulum (Another Vincent / Poe thriller)
The Blob (Steve Mcqueen)
Girly (mid-60's British horror)
The Legacy (Roger Daltry's in this one)
Deadringers (ah, yes, Cronenberg)
Let's Scare Jessica to Death (more 70's horror)
Good times ahead!