Another seemingly random collection of movies, this time including some cheap exploitation, cheesy fantasy, horror and noir. I revisit an old favourite, re-evaluate a low-budget Canadian film from the ’70s, and finally catch up with a couple of movies I’ve wanted to see for decades.
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.
Michael Powell’s final masterpiece, Peeping Tom (1959) virtually ended his filmmaking career, but it’s rediscovery in the 1970s and ’80s restored him to the pantheon of cinematic greats. Revisiting the film on Blu-ray reinforces my appreciation of a film which was ahead of its time.
Kids and monsters, kids in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, and a couple of cousins from Israel who tried to take over Hollywood in the ’80s: all help to take one’s mind off the tedious last days of winter.
In 1993, back when I was working at the Winnipeg Film Group, I was offered a few days work as an extra on a TV movie being shot here: which is how I became the least convincing state trooper ever to appear on screen in Paul Shapiro’s serial killer comedy Heads, starring Jon Cryer, Ed Asner and Jennifer Tilly.
Although I saw fewer movies in theatres than ever, this year offered a rich array of films on disk, belying continuing prophecies of the medium’s demise in the face of on-line streaming.
Arrow Video’s spectacular Blu-ray of Rabid is a reminder of just how good and natural a filmmaker David Cronenberg is, while the director’s recent Maps to the Stars seems a less personal work.
With Scanners, his occasionally gory telepath thriller, David Cronenberg made a significant move from low-budget horror towards the mainstream.
While Death Hunt is an enjoyable outdoor adventure, it plays fast & loose with history, transforming northern Canada into a facsimile of the American west
Horror has been a staple of movie-making almost since the medium was invented – Georges Melies made Le Manoir du Diable in 1896 – and the genre has at times been suspended between art and exploitation, though perhaps more often slipping to the latter end of that spectrum. In the silent period, horror was dominated […] Read More