Thursday, June 10, 2010

Things I've Noticed: Hammer Horror is pretty cool

Over the years I’ve watched a lot of horror, as a little kid I watched whatever I could find on television, then as a teen I made my way through the standards of a kid growing up in the ‘80s (Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Lost Boys), and as I grew up I began exploring all sorts of aspects of the genre in film, from world cinema (if you haven’t seen it, the 2006 Korean film The Host is probably my favourite monster movie of the last 10 years) to the silent film and Universal classic monster movies.

For whatever reason, I had never got around to the Hammer films before last year. I knew they were supposed to be high on atmosphere and were considered shocking at the time, but I simply didn’t have access unless I wanted to purchase them. Since I began using an online DVD rental service these films have become available to me and I’ve got to say they’re a lot of fun. So far I’ve seen Curse of Frankenstein, Horror of Dracula, and Revenge of Frankenstein, and all three of them are definitely worthwhile.

For starters you’ve got some pretty good star power, Christopher Lee (as Dracula and the monster in Curse of Frankenstein) is fantastic, and Peter Cushing (pictured right) is unrepentantly evil in the Frankenstein films, sleeping around and using his creature to clean up after his indiscretions.

Part of what I love about these movies is the ability to simply lose myself in them, the cinematography is brilliant and even though I am very familiar with the source material, I made enough gasps of shock throughout Horror of Dracula that I had my wife laughing at me from across the house.

Next up for me is The Mummy, and so far I’m looking forward to working my way through these films, up to and including the ones with the kung fu vampires from the ‘70s.

1 comment:

  1. Good to hear you've succumbed to the charms of Hammer! You've chosen some good ones to start off with. There's a regular 10 Favourite Hammers post over on Watching Hammer if you're ever looking for recommendations on what to try next. And yes, the kung fu vampires are a blast!