Friday, October 8, 2010

Halloween Countdown Day 8: Hammer Horror on TCM!

Rather than review a movie today, I want to point readers to Turner Classic Movies, which is showing 4 Hammer horror films tonight, and every Friday night in October.

First up is Plague of the Zombies (1966), a movie I have some fondness for:

I especially like how this film uses zombies as a critique of British class structure, anticipating anticipating the way George Romero uses zombies as a means of social critique. The film also anticipates Romero in the appearance of the zombies, though it's still tied to an earlier tradition of voodoo as the source for the zombie outbreak.

I'm looking forward to the second movie, The Devil's Bride (1967; a.k.a. The Devil Rides Out) because it's one of the Hammer films I have never seen.

Set in the 1920s, it stars Christopher Lee, this time as the hero, and Charles Gray as the Crowley-esque Satanist. It's directed by Terence Fisher, who made most of the great, early Hammer productions, and it's written by the great horror novelist Richard Matheson, adapting Dennis Wheatley's story.

The other two movies, The Reptile (1966) and The Gorgon (1964) are both worth checking out. I especially like The Gorgon because Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing team up as partners, rather than antagonists, which was usually the case. Also, these two movies are linked together nicely by virtue of the fact that they both feature female monsters, and to different degrees make commentary on the gender dynamics at work in each.

So, enjoy this opportunity to see a few non-franchise Hammer horror movies tonight!


Anonymous said...

Don't look at the eyes, Rex!! Hope you enjoyed it.

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