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  #3631  
Old 12-15-2017, 05:41 AM
FryeDwight FryeDwight is offline
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BRIDE OF THE MONSTER 91955). Like most Ed Wood films, this is bad, but also pretty good in parts, especially when Bela Lugosi is on. Really like his scene with Prof Strowski...You feel such empathy for him, then the little hairs standing up as He reveals what he plans to create. Probably Bela's last great Moment. **1/2
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  #3632  
Old 01-08-2018, 08:14 PM
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They Came From Beyond Space (1967)
6/10



Meteors fall in formation, causing government and scientists to investigate, but the scientists in contact with the meteors start acting strangely.

This film is sort of James Bond (more so 60's British espionage TV series "The Avengers") meets a sci-fi horror TV serial. The music, story and direction remind me of the Japanese TV sci-fi serials Space Giants (Ambassador Magma) and Ultraman (Urutoraman) which aired a year before the film.

The first few minutes start out a bit slow and clunky in direction, but then it really gets going, and it's always moving and entertaining in a fun way. It captured my interest really well. I'm afraid the last quarter of the film lacks the creativity of first three quarters and is a bit unsatisfying (although some may find the wacky ending the most creative part of all), but the film certainly stands out from other horror/sci-fi.
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  #3633  
Old 01-20-2018, 02:34 PM
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Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Alfred Hitchcock
8/10

If you like 'family horror', this is it. This is a very uncomfortable film, giving plenty of warm family moments, as contrived as they are, and then pouring the icy poison into its defenseless veins.

The story is of a warm small town suburban family who happily receives their mysterious rich Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotton). Carrying his namesake, the bright eldest daughter, Charlie, (Teresa Wright) idolizes her uncle with an irrepressible curiosity.

With all the contrivances and implausibilities, it's more of a visual film experience than an enticing story. In that regard, though the direction, cinematography and two leads are textbookly effective, the film isn't paced quite fast enough to sweep us off our mindful feet. By the end of the film, we're very ready to wrap it up, wishing there had been some quick twists and turns some time ago.
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  #3634  
Old 01-27-2018, 05:49 AM
FryeDwight FryeDwight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sculpt View Post
Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Alfred Hitchcock
8/10

If you like 'family horror', this is it. This is a very uncomfortable film, giving plenty of warm family moments, as contrived as they are, and then pouring the icy poison into its defenseless veins.

The story is of a warm small town suburban family who happily receives their mysterious rich Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotton). Carrying his namesake, the bright eldest daughter, Charlie, (Teresa Wright) idolizes her uncle with an irrepressible curiously.

With all the contrivances and implausibilities, it's more of a visual film experience than an enticing story. In that regard, though the direction, cinematography and two leads are textbookly effective, the film isn't paced quite fast enough to sweep us off our mindful feet. By the end of the film, we're very ready to wrap it up, wishing there had been some quick twists and turns some time ago.
I know what You mean...this really had Me and then just petered out. Sadly, a lot of Hitchcock these days does that...SPELLBOUND, SUSPICIOUS, THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH.

SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (1939). So many good points in here (Sets, Music, Splendid cast), but WAY too long, the Monster really doesn't have much to do and that Mushmouth Kid has GOT to go! Lionel Atwill is very good here and Bela is just fantastic...for Me, he really is the reason to watch this. Finally, I could not believe how hammy Basil Rathbone was in here...think LOVE FROM A STRANGER with a high dose of caffeine. Worth seeing, but too lethargic...even the HOUSE films had more zip. **1/2
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  #3635  
Old 01-27-2018, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FryeDwight View Post
I know what You mean...this really had Me and then just petered out. Sadly, a lot of Hitchcock these days does that...SPELLBOUND, SUSPICIOUS, THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH.
Did you say "Sadly, a lot of Hitchcock these days does that"? That was really funny! But I guess you meant "those days"? Yes, I noticed that too. I think Hitchcock is best used when the story plot thickens to the end (Dial M for Murder, Vertigo, Psycho), rather than where there's just some sort of obvious physical conclusion (North by Northwest's house and monument climbing).


Quote:
Originally Posted by FryeDwight View Post
SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (1939). So many good points in here (Sets, Music, Splendid cast), but WAY too long, the Monster really doesn't have much to do and that Mushmouth Kid has GOT to go! Lionel Atwill is very good here and Bela is just fantastic...for Me, he really is the reason to watch this. Finally, I could not believe how hammy Basil Rathbone was in here...think LOVE FROM A STRANGER with a high dose of caffeine. Worth seeing, but too lethargic...even the HOUSE films had more zip. **1/2
That kid yelping, "Well, hellooo!" is the funniest delivery of the 30's! Son of Frankenstein is so fun to watch. To me, it's just the ending that really wrecks the experience.

I mean really, basically everything written having to do with the experimenting, science and action sequences of the Monster is ridiculous, unimaginative and quite dull. They needed to bring in a hardcore sci-fi-horror writer to deal with that aspect of the film. Can you imagine if Son of Frankenstein had a hardcore science and horror side to balance out the rich characters?
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  #3636  
Old 01-30-2018, 05:39 AM
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ISLE OF THE DEAD (1945). Probably the least of the Lewtons, but considering the troubled production (Boris needing Medical time off, script re-writes), it does have some good moments. However, the followup of THE BODY SNATCHER leaves this in the dust. **
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  #3637  
Old 02-04-2018, 12:46 PM
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Day of the Triffids (1962)
7/10



Almost everyone views a spectacular meteor shower which leaves them blind. With the shower sprouts deadly carnivorous mobile plants with a taste for humankind. Two groups deal with the aftermath. One, a husband and wife scientific team on a small lighthouse island off Britain. The other a merchant navel officer who assists a young orphan girl, as they travel through Western Europe.

Based on the novel of the same name, the film boasts classic scenes oft repeated in future sci-fi and horror films, as so, for those who haven't seen it, the film will surely seem familiar. The killer plant special effects are visually effective, though at the same time a bit static and somewhat unconvincing. Film has a traditional classical soundtrack, and by the numbers shot direction of the time period. The concepts are the draw here, whereas the dramatic relations of the characters are rather bland.

The male leads were quite grumpy and frustrated before everything goes haywire. Once they have something to do, they are quite protective of the ladies and they're mission, while only mildly dialing down their surly dispositions. The weakness of the film is we don't know the characters well before, nor after, their experiences, and any change in behavior is elusive. The interactions remain, either rather dull, or even when emotions boil-over, they're seemingly tepid and inexplicable.
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Last edited by Sculpt; 02-15-2018 at 04:40 PM.
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  #3638  
Old 02-07-2018, 07:11 PM
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The Mysterians (1957)
6/10



Space aliens arrive on Earth, cause some destruction, take some hostages, and explain they want peace, a small plot of land and some Earth women (don't we all?). Directed by Ishirō Honda.

Listening to some of the film's Commentary of a recently released DVD, this was only the second color, and first widescreen film, in Japanese film history. As with many films where the main draw is it's state-of-art visual effects, it becomes dated very quickly. And this film was indeed state-of-art Japanese film artistry in 1957. There is quite a bit of film beauty, and if you knew the skill they used to achieve it, you'd be as impressed as so many were at the time. Fortunately, these film techniques would go on to be used in great films such as Mothra Vs Godzilla (1964).

Unfortunately, The Mysterians is almost completely devoid of basic human characterization and meaningful interpersonal interaction. Along with a lack of suspense, even the science fiction plot is over-simplistic and dull.

One thing that struck me was the film would often repeat the same shot two, three or more times within the same scene sequence (jet fighters breaking formation). As aficionado of Japanese sci-fi and kiaju film/TV of the era, the repetition of shots was a sign of stock footage, run-time filler, laziness and cheapness... ironically, there was nothing cheap about the film, as it had a large budget (exceeding Gojira/Rodan), and it was one of the highest grossing films in Japan that year. The shot repetitions were unnecessary, but certainly not its worst drawback.

And most importantly, if you ever watch the film, don't view with the (current) Tokyo Shock English dub! It's one of the worst dubs I've ever heard. It seems to be mocking of the material. As an example, it gives some Japanese "dumb hill-billy" accents. I don't know if the original RKO English dub exists anymore, but that would be only one I'd risk.
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Last edited by Sculpt; 02-22-2018 at 05:08 PM.
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  #3639  
Old 02-17-2018, 10:51 PM
FryeDwight FryeDwight is offline
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SHE FREAK (1967). Quite sleazy partial remake of FREAKS by the producers of BLOOD FEAST (and the film has that ambiance to it) involving a Hash slinging waitress trying to move on up. Lots of footage showing carnivals being assembled , obviously this is filler. Acting OK and if not mistaken, this is the first film of Bill McKinney who went on to cinematic infamy as the overly amorous Mountain Man in DELIVERANCE a few years later. **1/2
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  #3640  
Old 02-22-2018, 12:42 AM
FryeDwight FryeDwight is offline
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BEDLAM (1946). Karloff is good in here and a couple of decent scares, but find this very lacking, especially in comparison to Lewton's earlier works. And Anna Lee's "Material Girl" is annoying in the extreme. **
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