All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1187. An easy way of seeing how…
The Masque of the Red Death
Horror has a face.
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.
SATAN RULES THE UNIVERSE!
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!
Summer of the Beast film #46:
I have no idea if the original story was as good of a script as this movie, but this movie's script is really quite great. I also, as most always in movies from the 60s, love the bright colors, especially whenever the characters walk through the color rooms. Just gorgeous!
You're know you're in for a good time when the most empathetic character in a movie is the humanoid personification of a virulent and deadly plague.
Vincent Price is at his Price-iest, hamming it right the hell up as the malevolent Prince Prospero, intent on throwing a satanic bacchanal in his sealed castle as disease stalks the land around him. Taking a woman from a doomed village as his prisoner/unwilling girlfriend (as well as her father and lover), he starts upping the ante for all his invitees and soon violence and death are inside the castle as well - right when a suspiciously dressed guest saunters in (Spoiler for a 174-year old story: It's Death)
35mm @ Metrograph
Deciding to visit the countryside towns, an Italian prince throws his annual masquerade ball to overlook his burning a village down to forget the plague ravaging the area only when the party guests start dying, he is forced to come face-to-face with his own personal demons.
This one has several built-in pluses working for it being another of the Price/Corman/Poe films. Among the best parts here is that this one continues what occurs in most of the other efforts as it features some great location work. As most of the time is spent with the characters exploring the Gothic, cob-webbed labyrinthine castle, it builds up suspense marvelously through several fun and highly enjoyable scenes. The first trip through the castle,…
Scavenger Hunt 19
Film 16, Task 12
An independent horror film.
Awkwardly paced, but highly entertaining. Very colourful, as well. Vincent Price is more interesting in this than in the other film of his I watched this month, Laura.
Roger Corman is probably one of the most... ambitious filmmakers to ever live. Some would say he worked in the same way as Ed Wood, making movies with ham sandwich budgets but a tone of passion as well. The reason Corman's films aren't regarded as poorly as Ed Wood's are their mindsets.
Ed Wood worked fast and cheap but he assumed everything he was doing was "bold" and "visionary." I always got the sense that Corman knew what kind of movies he was making. I mean come on, no one with Sharktopus on their resume believes they're going to be the next Kubrick. It is interesting to note that he is known for working with big future stars when they're…
G A R B A G E
This was one of a series of movies made in the early 1960s by Roger Corman based on the works of Edgar Allen Poe, most of them starring Vincent Price. Corman is generally known for making corner cutting low budget movies, and while this isn’t exactly Lawrence of Arabia it is actually a pretty decent production which features some good sets and features color cinematography by Nicolas Roeg. The presence of Vincent Price is also quite the asset as his general glee at playing a truly dastardly evil king is definitely fun. That having been said, the movie has to really strain to turn an extremely short story into a feature length narrative and it kind of squanders a story that works really well in its brevity and mystery.
The sixth film in Roger Corman's great Edgar Allan Poe heptaology. Screenplay by Charles Beaumont. Cinematography by Nicholas Roeg.
A fascinating adaptation by Beaumont, incorporating elements of Poe's short story, "Hop-Frog," an idea that doesn't look good on paper, but works within the insane kaleidoscope of the film.
I heard Corman say recently that MASQUE was one of his two personal favorite directorial efforts, and like the other one he mentioned (THE INTRUDER), this one shows a serious touch that one does not often see in a Corman picture.
With a nod to Fellini's LA DOLCE VITA in terms of incessant party decadence, and notable for preceding SATYRICON by five years.
A gorgeous presentation, restored and on blu-ray.
VINCENT PRICE IN SIX GOTHIC TALES (Arrow blu-ray box).
Vincent Price Horror Weekend 2016.
Thanks to everyone that made the 1st Cult Movie Challenge so much fun and so successful! I know I've had…