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Satan-worshiper Prince Prospero invites the local nobility to his castle for protection against an oncoming plague, the Red Death. He orders his guests to attend a masked ball and, amidst an atmosphere of debauchery and depravity, notices the entry of a hooded stranger dressed all in red. Believing the figure to be his master, Satan, Prospero is horrified at the revelation of his true identity.
"Satan. The lord of flies. The fallen angel. [Vincent Price whisper the only way Vincent Price could whisper] The devil."
This the best looking of the Corman Poe adaptations (shot by Nicolas Roeg!) that I've seen, with a bold color palette leaning towards very-1964-modern psychedelic poster art shades of blue, teal and yellow (like this kind of), and of course deep, deep, deep red. Has almost the air of something like Fellini Satyricon, La Grande Bouffe or even Salo, ultimately less about Satanic evil and more about excess, greed, indulgence, wrath and cruelty: Real end of the empire human flaws that assure mutual destruction and total annihilation. These themes would resonate with Cold War era audiences as much as contemporary…
Part of the Sight & Sound: Stewart Home Project
Roger Corman's The Masque of the Red Death proves once again that, if given the choice in horror movies between atmospheric weirdness and cheap scare tactics, I'll choose the former a hundred times out of a hundred. This film is many things - hyper-stylized, moody, gothic, campy, profane, eerie, funny - and all of these attributes I'd rate as having a higher degree of difficulty than simply being able to frighten me. If I want to be scared, a well-placed plastic spider can often do the trick. If I want to be entertained, it'll take a little something extra, like gorgeous production design and perfect music and Vincent Price chewing up the…
Brightly colored gothic horror inspired by Poe (and coming a lot closer to the original story than, say, The Raven), this is an eerily beautiful film. I actually was a bit shocked when Vincent Price outright declared his allegiance to Satan; I expected some sort of work around, some sort of avoidance of the topic. Instead, Corman's film embraced the villainy, declared Satan the master of the universe and the death of God, and then toppled it all with the most gorgeous grim reapers ever (fuck off, Gaiman). This is pre-psychedelic kaleidoscopy painted on the grimmest classic horror. Vincent Price seems to relish his role here, which turns what would be hammy into the exquisite.
December count: 94/100
Crazy to imagine something this focused on perversion and degradation, this balletic, this European was a popular drive-in favorite with teens in the mid 60s. This loses its way a bit whenever Price isn't onscreen, but when he is, it coooooks - this might be his very best villainous role, a touch of camp but resonant in his cruelty and inhumanity.
It's too bad we never got those White Death, Blue Death, Yellow Death, or any of the other Death movies we were promised.
This gets better everytime I see it! One of Vincent Price's best performances. It looks beautiful and is incredibly moody. I want to go to there!
SATAN RULES THE UNIVERSE!
Vincent Price is great in one of the better Corman-Poe movies. He's so menacing. I like the medieval setting, the performances by Hazel Court, and Jane Asher, and a lot of the imagery.
Screened as part of "Halloween Fest 2016"
Intensely bleak film that plays like Ingmar Bergman gone commercial. Vincent Price does dastardly like no one's business as a Satan-worshiping prince who amuses himself by torturing prisoners and humiliating his guests. What initially seems like high camp becomes far more disturbing as we slowly realize the heavy questions of existence at the film's core. Price's philosophies may not be far wrong, and his Christian prisoners may not be so right. In the end, death is the only certainty, whether it comes swift and harshly (a vicious bird attack) or slow and euphorically (the delirious bal masqué).
There were some memorable parts and the same chilling Cormanesque sets and atmosphere, but the film overall didn't resonate with me as House of Usher and The Raven did.
Part of Hoop-Tober 3.0
Here's the thing with The Masque of the Red Death, it's a campy, very theatrical adaptation of an Edgar Allan Poe short story but, at the same time, delivers a very grim and eerie tale that is able to resonate to this day. Made in 1964, directed by Roger Corman and starring the one and only Vincent Price, you'd instantly believe that this would be only entertaining for certain audiences and then really cheesy for others. It's not however. It might be labelled as a horror (and there are some very disturbing ideas and acts present) but it's much more a very quiet and atmospheric film. It's not slow or boring but to many viewers these…
Price was good as a satanist, but this was kinda boring.
Film #20 of Neglify's Scavenger Hunt #19
Task /31 Vincent Price
In the this adaptation of Edgar Allen Poe’s The Masque of the Red Death Vincent Price plays, Prospero, a castle-dwelling nobleman in a time in which a terrible plague is sweeping the country. He is a Satan worshipper and is incredibly sadistic to those in his court as well as the many guests he keeps around him for an all-out descent into debauchery, celebrating in the midst of all the suffering that surrounds them. Price is in top form here as he is essentially playing the most spoiled of brats grown into a man. His performance is theatrical and OTT, it is a ‘moustache twiddling’ role, the kind Price…
This is one of Vincent Price's films I never seen before. I must say I enjoyed it very much. The story line easily kept my attention through out the film... and I found the visuals to be done very well. The vibrant colors they used seem to add to the story. And I found the entire cast to be great. This is one I would really like to add to my own collection.
Part of Shocktober 2016
I would have liked less pointless side plots/characters that have very minor to no impact on the plot at all, and more world-building/atmosphere. Some more stuff outside of the palace, and more build-up to the masquerade ball. Maybe some more of an explanation of what the red death is, and why everyone is so afraid of it. You know see it slowly eating away at the countryside, instead of mentioning at the beginning and then bringing it back for the climax.
I like the idea of the Prince being a cruel and evil dictator and red death essentially acting as karma, plus the last 10 minutes of this film were amazing, the script could have just used some serious refining.
I also liked just how existential the film's philosophy and message were, was not expecting that.
Film #14 of Scavenger Hunt 19
Task 12/31: An independent horror film
Film #26 of Hoop-tober 3.0
This is another one of Price & Corman's wonderful Poe adaptations. Price is marvelous as the sinister, cultured, cruel Prospero, and Corman's direction is solid. There's a good supporting cast here, and lavish, colorful sets and costumes. Apparently Corman was able to borrow sets from Becket, so this is a handsome production. Nicholas Roeg is here as cinematographer, and he makes wonderful use of light and dark in the film, as well as the jewel-like colors of Prospero's masquerade ... and of the figures of death. One of the best of Price's films. Highly recommended.
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