Sunday, August 8, 2010

Movie Review: Four From Hammer Horror

Back in June I posted about my explorations of the films from Hammer Horror with a review of Horror of Dracula. Over the last week my online rental service sent me four more Hammer Horror films, so here is a quick impression of the films I saw.

This film is actually a lot closer to the recent remakes than the original Universal film - you've got the Mummy himself, looking like the classic bandaged creature rather than the completely human looking Boris Karloff and even better Peter Cushing as a young, driven, and basically a nice guy (very different than his Baron Frankenstein).

Far and away my favourite of the lot, this film had everything I love in vampire movies - great atmosphere, an effective score, a sense of dread, and even though it had a ridiculously fake vampire bat - I have to say it tops the list for coolest vampire kill I've ever seen in a motion picture. I will definitely be purchasing this movie.

The Curse of the Werewolf (1961)
This one was actually pretty cool as it was adapted from the novel The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore, which I read last year, and kept remarkably true to the original story (except it was set in Spain rather than Paris), a lot of fun, and you get to see a very young Oliver Reed.

The Phantom of the Opera (1962)
Although considered a bomb when the film was originally released, I was impressed with the fact that the studio did actually ensure that a film taking place in an opera house had an actual opera being performed in the film. The creature effects were cool and I loved Michael Gough as a villain (although to me he'll always be Alfred Pennyworth).

By the way, after my last post I got a comment from the folks over at the Watching Hammer blog and after checking it out, I've got to say that I can't think of a better place to start if you are looking to explore the many films from the folks at Hammer.

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