Classic television horror, geriatric action and an off-the-wall Canadian horror from Kino Lorber and Severin; five recent disks present thrills, chills, strained comedy and some problematic post-colonial politics.
Winnipeg filmmaker and author Caelum Vatnsdal spent several years researching the life of everyone’s favourite ubiquitous supporting actor Dick Miller and the resulting biography is every bit as entertaining as the roles Miller has played through six decades in the movie business.
I’ve recently sampled a broad range of movies from Arrow Video, from Japanese classics to obscure gialli, recent horror and an original and disturbing Mexican movie which combines marital drama, dark eroticism and a very disturbing alien.
More brief notes on recent random viewing choices; another mixed bag of classic fantasy, generic thrillers, dramas drawn form real life, spectacular martial arts and gritty war action, and a scattershot, off-the-wall satire by “the world’s worst living director”.
Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s early television series Eight Hours Don’t Make a Day (1972-73) is a real discovery, a warm, funny, richly layered melodrama depicting the lives of a working class family navigating personal relationships in the context of economic and political constraints in post-war capitalist Germany.
Brief notes on recent random viewing choices; a mixed bag of horror, fantasy, action, genre revisionism, satire and political thrillers.
Three new movies and one classic make the most of ghosts, monsters and demons.
Two recent Blu-ray releases from Indicator showcase the idiosyncratic intensity of Terence Stamp’s acting. William Wyler’s The Collector (1965) is a prestigious Hollywood production, while Alan Cooke’s The Mind of Mr. Soames (1970) is a little-known low-budget Amicus feature.
Regional filmmakers working on limited budgets have to rely on ingenuity and imagination; Texan S.F. Brownrigg managed to turn out a number of effective horror movies in the 1970s, the two most notable – Don’t Look in the Basement (1972) and Don’t Open the Door (1974) – now available in a dual-format double-feature edition from VCI Entertainment.
Classic 3-D revivals, bloated CG action rooted in video games and recycled superhero and monster cliches, and a brooding contemplation of emotional and sexual repression in post-war England.