Getting acquainted with Hammer Horror

Discussion in 'Classic' started by crikan, Jul 9, 2012.

  1. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    There's Evil and Horror, neither of which were directed by him.
     
  2. Anthropophagus

    Anthropophagus Well-Known Member

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    If Horror is the one with David Prowse and Ralph Bates I remember it as pretty shitty indeed. I have the VHS lying around somewhere.
    Oddly enough, I quite liked The Evil Of Frankenstein.
     
  3. Anaestheus

    Anaestheus Well-Known Member

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    The others are very right. The Fisher Frankenstein films are, in order:

    Curse of Frankenstein, Revenge of Frankenstein, Frankenstein Created Woman, Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed, and Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell.

    There's a really nice arc going on as the Fisher films focus more on the doctor. In the first film, he has nothing but good motives, but with each progressive film we see the effects of failure and societal rejection drive him madder. It's a pretty impressive series taken as a whole. But, I will agree that Curse is not as good as the films that followed it. But that really is more due to it being Hammer's first step into horror and they hadn't quite perfected their own voice yet.

    The other two Frankenstein films are really pretty bad, comparatively.

    Also, I realized that I made a mistake when I credited the Quatermas films to Fisher. Those were actually Val Guest and Roy Ward Baker. They're still top tier though.
     
  4. Anaestheus

    Anaestheus Well-Known Member

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    Also, since they weren't all promoted as Hammer collections, the "Icons" series collects some of the more off-beat Hammer films and are pretty good for the cost. Each set has at least two gems in it.

    Icons of Adventure: The Pirates of Blood River, The Devil-Ship Pirates: The Stranglers of Bombay, and The Terror of the Tongs

    Icons of Horror: The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb, Scream of Fear, The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll, The Gorgon

    Icons of Suspense: Stop Me Before I Kill, Cash on Demand, The Snorkel, Maniac, Never Take Candy from a Stranger, These are the Damned.
     
  5. dave13

    dave13 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, those are all great. I really enjoyed Cash on Demand. I think I'll make that one a Christmas tradition.
     
  6. russweiss

    russweiss Well-Known Member

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    At the end of Taste the Blood Dracula is reduced to ash. At the beginning of Scars the ash is resurrected by blood dripped from a bat. It's been a while since I watched these films but that seems to have some continuity.
     
  7. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    But he's reduced to ash at the end of EVERY movie! :lol:

    The first four are direct continuations into each other with the ending of the last film at the beginning of the next, but Scars doesn't and gives absolutely no indication on how his remains traversed such a long distance back to his castle or by whom.

    And it just barely occured to me that we're forgetting about the second film in the series, Brides of Dracula!
     
  8. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    [Nelson Munz]I can think of two things wrong with the title of that movie![/Nelson Munz]

    It gets overlooked, because there's no Dracula (no Brides either), but it really is a great movie.
     
  9. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    But it does feature Cushing as Van Helsing, so it is definitely a direct sequel.
     
  10. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    I'd definitely argue that Brides Of Dracula and Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed are essential. And I agree with Paff 100%--The Curse Of Frankenstein is extremely overrated. Lee's Creature is pretty spectacular. But it's a long, dull slog before he ever appears. And although most Hammer films have a timeless appeal, Curse is outright dated. Shots of disembodied brains and eyeballs might have passed for graphic spectacle in 1957. But today they're quaint. And the first two-thirds of Curse relies on that kind of material for thrills. I'd choose any of the other Hammer Frankensteins over Curse--even Evil.

    Curse Of The Werewolf gives a really interesting spin on werewolf mythology. And young Oliver Reed gives a very good lead performance. I'll also throw out a couple films that haven't been mentioned yet, Vampire Circus and The Hound Of The Baskervilles. I definitely prefer Circus to the later Draculas and Countess Dracula. And Baskervilles is a very Hammer-esque spin on the best-known Sherlock Holmes story--complete with some added horror trappings and a very unusual role for Christopher Lee.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2012
  11. buck135

    buck135 Kanamit

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    Now, now. You're forgetting that he was trapped under ice!
     
  12. startide

    startide Member

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    Now I'm gonna have Kate Bush in my head all bloody day... :rolleyes:
     
  13. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    hahaha! you got me! ;)
     
  14. buck135

    buck135 Kanamit

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    Lol. Such great movies. They'll never make films as good as these ever again.
     
  15. crikan

    crikan Well-Known Member

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    Is the 2006 release, The Ultimate Hammer Collection, still a recommended way to pick up alot of Hammer Horror films. I currently don't have 17 of the 21 films in the set. I haven't found a Region 1 counterpart that is similar and I finally got a region free BD/DVD player.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2014
  16. dave13

    dave13 Well-Known Member

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    i have that release, and it's fantastic. especially for the money (i think that after conversion and shipping I ended up paying around $40 CAD for it). a lot of the films are now long OOP Anchor Bay titles (like Horror of Frankenstein), and while some releases are missing supplements that were available in Region 1, some like the Nanny have one's that were never available here. I think I was missing fewer than 17, but it's still one of my favorite sets.
     
  17. zbinks

    zbinks Beset by Creatures of the Deep

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    It looks like Universal will be upgrading their Hammer Horror Series (Brides of Dracula / Curse of the Werewolf / Phantom of the Opera / Paranoiac / Kiss of the Vampire / Nightmare / Night Creatures / Evil of Frankenstein) boxset to Blu-Ray this September.

    https://smile.amazon.com/Hammer-Horror-8-Film-Collection-Blu-ray/dp/B01I048O8W/ref=as_sl_pc_tf_lc?&tag=horrdigi-20&camp=216797&creative=498569&linkCode=ur1&adid=1WD6CMMM3T0CZAAESQFT&&ref-refURL=http://www.horrordvds.com/community/threads/getting-acquainted-with-hammer-horror.43821/page-2
     
  18. Anthropophagus

    Anthropophagus Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the heads up. This should be great!!
     
  19. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the heads-up! My pre-order is in. That's an awesome price for this set. Woo hoo!
     
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  20. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    Pre-order price on this set is down to $42.08 at Amazon!
     
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