Fox Hunting and Class in Wyrd Landscape Cinema

There are few acts that occur in the rural landscape that are as vile or as brutal as fox hunting.  It is an act that highlights the class divisions still present in this country and one that does so more powerfully than most other “country pursuits”.  Aside from the obvious power on display by those of the upper classes who still, quite illegally, partake in … Continue reading Fox Hunting and Class in Wyrd Landscape Cinema

The Masque of the Red Death, Roger Corman (Part 3) – The Freudian Dream.

Part 1. Part 2. The Freudian Dream Corman’s Poe films have become famous for their dream sequences.  The source literature revels in the possibilities of nightmares taking over the psyche so they seem an apt distraction for a medium that already adores the possibilities of dreams.  The Masque of the Red Death perhaps contains Corman’s most effective and disturbing sequence; one of the few to … Continue reading The Masque of the Red Death, Roger Corman (Part 3) – The Freudian Dream.

The Masque of the Red Death (1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 2).

Part 1. The Levels of the Aesthetic Stage Through Castle Rooms and Colour. Corman’s beautiful excess of colour in the film has already been mentioned but colour plays a vital role within the film’s narrative too.  Its narrative focus however does not chime well with the Kierkegaard reading when considering the unevenness and ambiguity as to the death creatures and their colours at the end … Continue reading The Masque of the Red Death (1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 2).

The Masque of the Red Death (Roger Corman, 1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 1).

Roger Corman may be better known for pulpy B-movies but his work adapting Edgar Allen Poe for the big screen is uncharacteristically layered and has a depth that far outstrips films of a far more serious ilk.  Almost all his Poe adaptations (excluding the fun but overall light The Raven) take Poe’s original structure for stories and adds questioning elements to them, largely built around … Continue reading The Masque of the Red Death (Roger Corman, 1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 1).

The Fall Of The House Of Usher – Roger Corman (1960)

Roger Corman’s work has been often been described as schlock film; a pulpy mass of horror, sci-fi and B-movie nonsense of only vague merit and achievement.  Excluding his actual films for a minute, looking at the number of people who have developed under the man’s wing, whether as a producer or director, is quite astounding.  On the director’s side, he’s nurtured and helped the likes … Continue reading The Fall Of The House Of Usher – Roger Corman (1960)

The Tomb of Ligeia – Roger Corman (1964)

Roger Corman’s adaptations of Edgar Allan Poe’s short stories are just as vital to the classic horror canon as the films by Hammer and Amicus productions.  Their influence is vast and the number of big names to come out from under Corman’s wing is monumental.  Having set up a distinctive style to filming Poe’s work by shooting them all on soundstages, Corman sort to go … Continue reading The Tomb of Ligeia – Roger Corman (1964)

The Horror Film Score Rebellion Part 1 – Classic Horror

INTRODUCTION 1968 was the year that horror cinema sought to change the way in which it scored its films and began to develop alternatives to the increasingly cliched sounds that had become a staple of the genre since the silent era. David Raskin, who had scored the first two Basil Rathbone-starring Sherlock Holmes films in the early thirties, as well as a number of film … Continue reading The Horror Film Score Rebellion Part 1 – Classic Horror

A Beginner’s Guide to Vintage Horror 1920 – 1960.

Taking a side step from simply looking into the work of one particular director, here we are going to be looking at the highlights from a whole genre.  It seems like a big ask but really the genre of horror needs its past remembering now more than ever.  With the modern interpretation of genre reliant on set pieces or gore and torture, and with very … Continue reading A Beginner’s Guide to Vintage Horror 1920 – 1960.