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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 17-18: BOOMERANG 1947 (TCM VIEWING)

Fine film noir.

Now film noir may not be what everyone likes at Halloween time, but to me they are great anytime of the year.

Dana Andrews stars as Henry L. Harvey, a prosecutor working in a small Connecticut town in which a priest is shot in the head and killed.

After the murder there is a huge investigation, but no leads are found and the officials are baffled as to who the killer is. Political pressures mount until a man, John Waldron (Arthur Kennedy) is arrested and forced to sign a confession by the police.

Harvey begins to question if the man is really guilty and before you know it the politicians are after him to convict no matter what. This film is based on a real incident in the 1920's and director Elia Kazan really makes it work along with his excellent cast.

The supporting cast includes Jane Wyatt, Lee J. Cobb, and Ed Begley. This is available on DVD and is a highly recommended thriller with plenty of twists and turns, and as I said, it may not be a "horror" film, but it is horrifying in it's implications of innocent people being accused of a crime just for political gain.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Julie Adams is 91.

Monday, October 16, 2017

RIP DON PEDRO COLLEY 1938-2017

The Lord of the Undead has passed away at the age of 79.

Colley started his career in 1967 with an episode of Daktari and never looked back.

His deep rich voice made him a perfect villain or hero in many films. His two most famous genre roles were in "Beneath The Planet Of The Apes" in which he played a scarred underground mutant and to me his greatest role was as Baron Samedi in the classic film "Sugar Hill".

He died on Oct. 10 in his hometown of Klamath Falls, Oregon after losing his fight with cancer.

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 16: RATTLERS 1976 (TCM VIEWING)

Interesting little thriller.

After two children are killed by rattlers a local Sheriff calls in a snake expert to find out why.

The snake attacks become more and more frequent. Sam Chew is Dr. Tom Parkinson who is accompanied by the lovely Ann Bradley (Elisabeth Chauvet).

During the course of the investigation it is discovered that the snakes have become very aggressive due to being contaminated with buried chemicals that the Army buried in the Mojave Desert.

The insane Colonel Stroud (Dan Priest) tries to cover everything up, but to no avail. This film is very simple on plot and some parts leave you scratching your head, but it's still an impressive little movie considering what the makes had for money and such.

I caught this by accident on TCM at a friends house and enjoyed myself watching this low budget thriller. I know Something Weird carried this on DVD and it is probably still available. Recommended.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Suzanne Somers is 71, Erin Brown is 38, and Christopher Mitchum is 74.

Friday, October 13, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAYS 13-14-15: STRANGE CASE OF DR. RX 1942 (UNIVERSAL)

I have to leave town for a few days so this review will cover the next three days.

Very odd Universal film.

Lionel Atwill got second billing in this film, but his role is very, very small.

The plot involves police hiring a detective named Jerry Church (Patrick Knowles)to investigate the mysterious deaths of five men who were acquitted of crimes and have now been murdered by an avenger known as Dr. RX.

The movie plays more like a very light crime thriller with plenty of comedy thrown in. That comedy is handled by both Shemp Howard and Mantan Moreland, who play off of each other very well.

Lovely Anne Gwynne is Kit, Jerry's wife. Jerry has to dig thru a lot of clue's to find the mysterious killer, which he finally does after he almost has his brain replaced with that of a gorilla's.

Atwill's character of Dr. Fish is on hand to explain what we have just seen, and then the film ends. It is indeed one of the most bizarre Universal horror films I have ever seen and I had not seen it for years until I got this DVD.

The supporting cast includes Samuel S. Hinds, Paul Cavanagh, Mona Berrie and Edmund McDonald.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Ashanti is 37, Pamela Tiffin is 75, and Judy Bamber is 81.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 12: THE MAD GHOUL 1943 (UNIVERSAL)

George Zucco steals every scene he is in.

Zucco is Dr. Alfred Morris a college professor who has managed to duplicate an ancient Aztec drug that puts people into a living death state.

One of his students, Ted Allison (David Bruce)wants to work with the Prof. during the summer to help his grades so he can graduate and marry his fiancee Isabel Lewis (Evelyn Ankers).

Morris immediately subjects Ted to the poison gas and changes him into a zombie. Why you ask? Because the daft Professor wants to prove he can reverse the process. The requires blood from fresh human hearts from living or dead people. Therefore the Prof. has a zombified Ted digging up dead bodies for their hearts.

In the end Zucco gets what's coming to him in a grisly way. It's a good shock ending for a film from the time period. This was a very successful film yet it was one of the few Universal films that never had a sequel.

All of the performers do a great job and the rest of the cast includes Milburn Stone, Turhan Bey, Robert Armstrong and Charles McGraw. A wonderful chiller that should be seen by every horror fan, and one that is perfect for the Halloween season.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Deborah Foreman is 55, Susan Anton is 67, Robin Askwith is 67, and Brigitte Lahaie is 62.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 11: RAMBLINGS

I watch horror films all year round, but this time of year they feel different, if you know what I mean.

Over the past few days I have been viewing new movies to add to the blog, but have also been visiting movies I usually watch this time of year.

I don't know about you, but I love watching the old Universal films as they are like putting on an old comfortable pair of shoes. Watching films like "Son Of Dracula", "Mummy's Hand", "Mummy's Tomb", and others are always a pleasure.

It brings back memories of Saturday afternoons as a child watching these on Creature Features from Spokane, Washington or catching them on weekday afternoons on various stations from Denver, Colorado and Salt lake City, Utah.

These films never get tiresome and I cannot recommend them enough. For some reason these films go hand in hand with cooler weather, falling leaves and early darkness.

Yes, all horror films are good for Halloween, but the Universal films were MADE for it, I believe. I know many of you have these in your collections and I am curious about what you folks like to see during the Halloween season. Feel free to drop me a line if you'd like and fill me in.

Public or private message are welcome. Thanks again for reading.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 10: MAD DOCTOR OF MARKET STREET 1942 (UNIVERSAL)

The great Lionel Atwill is at it again.

Atwill is Dr. Ralph Benson, a somewhat mad doctor who is doing bizarre experiments in suspended animation. His patient dies and he is forced to flee San Francisco.

The cruise ship he is on sinks and he and several other fellow passengers are stranded on an island with hostile natives. Benson wins the natives over when he saves the life of the island leaders wife and they begin worshiping him as the "God Of Life".

The others on the island are to be used as Benson carries out his strange plans for world domination. This is a pretty weird but pedestrian Universal thriller, but Atwill manages to carry the show on his own.

The climax is pretty intense and if you like Universal B horror films from this period, you should enjoy this. The rest of the cast includes Una Merkel, Mala, Claire Dodd and Noble Johnson.

Check it out if you get a chance. This was the last starring role for Atwill.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Jessica Harper is 68.

Monday, October 9, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 9: CYBORG 2087 1966 (KINO) BLU RAY

One of my all time favorite films which has never been officially available on any form of home media before comes to Blu-ray from Kino.

For the past 8 years I have owned a bootleg of this I bought on Ebay and have always hoped this would come out, but never thought it possible. Well here it is in a beautiful presentation.

Michael Rennie is Garth, a half man half machine being called a cyborg that is sent from the year 2087 back to 1966 to prevent his own creation by capturing a scientist, Sigmund Marx (Eduard Franz) who has developed a brain machine that in the future will be used for total mind control by the government.

Garth enlists the aid of Dr. Sharon Mason (gorgeous Karen Steele) and Dr. Carl Zeller (Warren Stevens) to help him find the professor and escape from two soldiers sent from the future to stop him at all costs.

Yep, if this sounds familiar it should. The Terminator from 1984 was the same basic plot line. However, I really love this little low budget gem. If Kino keeps this up can "Destination Inner Space", "Castle Of Evil" and "The Vulture" be far behind?

I first saw this film way back when WTBS was WTCG and they played it in a block with three other features that night. Feanklin Adreon directed this and he handles the chores well. Easily a top release of the year, at least in my opinion. The rest of the cast includes Wendell Corey as a perplexed Sheriff, Adam Roarke as his deputy, John Beck, Harry Carey, Jr, and Joann Pflug. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN DAY 8: DIMENSION 5 (KINO) BLU-RAY

One of my favorite films surprisingly comes to Blu-ray from Kino.

For years the only copy I have had of this film came from Sinister Cinema, and that served me well until I heard this Blu-ray was coming. Other than Sinister, this film has never been available on any home entertainment medium before.

Jeffrey Hunter is Justin Power and US secret agent who is assigned to stop a shipment of nuclear parts that an enemy is sending to the US to destroy Los Angeles. They plan to nuke the city!

Powers and his gorgeous Chinese counterpart Kitty (France Nuyen) use time travel belts to combat the enemy known as "The Dragons", a Chinese communist terrorist group.

Power finds trouble wherever he goes and things get more complicated as time goes by. Harold Sakata is the head bad guy known as Big Buddha and his presence is always scene stealing.

Will Power and Kitty be able to stop the total destruction of Los Angeles? You gotta see it to find out. The Blu-ray presentation is beautiful and I am very glad Kino put this out as it has always been a favorite of mine since I saw it many, many years ago on CBN, the Christian Broadcast Network on the late show!!

Low budget, but highly entertaining film also stars beautiful Linda Ho, Donald Woods, Robert Ito, David Chow, Jon Lormer and Kam Tong. Recommended viewing.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Olive Sturgess is 84, Jil Jarmyn is 91.