Seeing the world in black-and-white … and shades of grey

Time is running out for small-time entertainer Sammy Lee (Anthony Newley) in Ken Hughes' The Small World of Sammy Lee (1963)

The pleasures of black-and-white cinematography are on full display in Ken Hughes’ The Small World of Sammy Lee; shot on the streets of Soho and the East End by the great Wolfgang Suschitzky, this story of a small-time entertainer and compulsive gambler desperately trying to raise cash to pay off a gangster is a finely observed depiction of the seedier side of pre-Swinging London, shot through with bleak humour and the tentative possibility of redemption.

A 3D New Year

The fossil claw, in your eye, in Jack Arnold's Creature From the Black Lagoon 3D (1954)

At my annual New Year’s ritual of dinner and movies at my friend Steve’s, I finally got to sample the home 3D viewing experience; we sampled a number of movies, old and new, cheap and expensive, but while the experience had some interesting aspects, I can’t imagine wanting to watch in 3D too often.

Arrow’s American Horror Project, vol 1

William Preston makes a strong impression as one of the carnival's most deranged denizens in Robgert Allen Schnitzer's Malatesta's Carnival of Bloo (1973)

With a three disk first volume, Arrow Video embark on an ambitious undertaking with the American Horror Project, which intends to gather together independent, fringe features from the ’70s and ’80s, surrounded by supplementary features which provide context and possibly a cumulative history of this genre niche. Set one gathers three movies of varying quality.