Monday 6 October 2008
Basking In The Cesspool Of Filth #2 - The Return
Before getting to the most recent batch of gloriously hideous video atrocities I've viewed, I wanted to mention something I forgot to include in my recent post about the Spanish horror film [rec]. Before the movie started, the good folks at The Bloor Cinema treated us all to a few vintage trailers. The first two became instant adds to my must-see queue:
OK, so "Nightbreed" looks kinda bad actually, but in a cheesy fun kinda way.
But the best trailer, the one that had the crowd laughing out loud was for:
This wasn't the same exact trailer we saw - ours was cut in a much more humourous way with a way-too-serious voice-over - but it still does the job...These were the perfect way to get the audience engaged and in the mood for the film they were about to be shown. So much better than the same old, same old trailers we get 80% of the time these days in the multiplex.
Now, on with the atrocities:
The Brood (1979 - David Cronenberg) - The first 70 minutes of this early Cronenberg film are surprisingly slow and not anywhere near as gross or blood-drenched as I had anticipated. It still has a few good jumps and some tense moments though, but what we've seen of the brood at this point is only slightly creepy and a bit goofy. However, you know it's going somewhere and it ends up being very effective once we see the entire brood and feel the suspense of a rescue attempt. Not to mention the "I sure wasn't prepared for that" moment of the reveal from the chracter of Nola. Like I said, I knew something was coming, but you just can't really prep yourself for this kind of thing...
Blood And Black Lace (1964 - Mario Bava) - Huge disappointment. I thought I had read that this was one of Bava's better and more intense Giallos, but apart from the great colour lighting and some terrific looking scenes, the story and suspense were actually quite lame. It's pretty pointless to complain about the after-the-fact dubbing and lousy acting in these films, but geez...It was particularly lousy here. And the worst attempt to portray an epileptic fit on film ever.
From Beyond The Grave (1973 - Kevin Connor) - Yet another Amicus compilation film and yet another winner. This time Peter Cushing plays an antiques shopkeeper whose merchandise may bring along with it a little something extra. Each of the stories is really good, but the third was probably the most entertaining since it was quite funny and still ended with some solid creepiness. And as always there's plenty to look at and watch for in the background - the shop in particular has lots of spiffy items at which to marvel.
Yokai Monsters: Along With Ghosts (1969 - Yoshiyuki Kuroda, Kumiyoshi Yasuda) - Some time ago while reading up a bit on Takashi Miike's 2005 film "The Great Yokai War", I had come across mentions of a set of late 60s Japanese films from a series called "Yokai Monsters". But I had completely forgotten them until Kimberly at Cinebeats made mention of them quite recently. It just so happens that all three were just released in a bargain priced set, so amazon was quite kind to deposit them at my door just the other day. The Yokai are spirits/monsters that are part animal/human and are found in Japanese folk tales - usually having some kind of supernatural power. This first film in the set (though apparently the third one released) focuses on the story of little 7 year-old Miyo who is in search of her father and running away from a gang who believe she has an incriminating document. Of course, the gang members don't heed the warnings to avoid violence and weapons while in certain parts of the woods (seriously, if an old white haired man pleads with you not to do something - DON'T DO IT!) and so they encounter an interesting variety of Yokai. Not as many as I had hoped, but enough to satisfy and make me eager to check out the other two films (both of which apparently have plenty more of the beasts). The special effects range from effectively cheap (meaning that sometimes a simple papier-mache mask and costume can do wonders) to slightly cheesy.