Premature Burial

Discussion in 'Classic' started by dwatts, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    That this film comes double-billed in R1 with Masque of the Red Death is, as they say, the icing on the cake. If anything I actually think this is a better film - more tense, darker, with a more satisfying conclusion.

    Ray Milland replaces Vincent Price after contractural issues between AIP and Croman, but no-one need worry that anything is lost. In fact, it's quite easy in your minds eye to see how Price would have played this role (quite different from Milland), and I think Corman was very fortunate to get the man he did.

    The movie is really marked by the swirling mists, the claustrophobia of a the limited sets (which actually work for the movie, given the obsession of the lead), and of course those wonderful performances.

    I've never tried to rate the Poe films, but I'd be surpised if this wasn't somewhere near the top. It's tight, frightening in places, and has a couple of real chills. The DVD is pretty good, if not reference quality - and stay well away from the trailer because it has far too many spoilers...

    It's interesting to think about the whole look and feel of Hammer films, and to compare and contrast them with the Corman Poe films..... both were clearly on to something, and to have one set without the other is unthinkable.

    Excellent one this.
     
  2. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    Nice one.Corman's Poe series had great atmosphere.He cast Ray Milland because this film was originally being produced by Pathe,the famed film lab who briefly got into film production.As American International had an exclusive lock on Vincent Price (in horror,at least),Corman cast Milland.Oddly enough,once the film was underway,Sam Arkoff from A.I.P ended up buying the rights to the film from Pathe,he strong armed them by threatening to pull A.I.P's film developing buisness from Pathe.They agreed to sell it to Arkoff for the cost of Pathe's investment.
    Milland(who starred in the classic ghost story THE UNINVITED in the 40's)starred in a long string of horror and sci-fi films after BURIAL,including Corman's X-THE MAN WITH THE X-RAY EYES,FROGS and THE ATTIC.He had been a Best Actor Oscar winner for THE LOST WEEKEND in the 40's.Like several of his female contemporaries in the sixties and seventies (like Joan Crawford and Betty Davis) he found a new audience in horror fans.
     
  3. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    I think it's just you and me in these threads, Erick. :D

    I adore Man with the X-Ray Eyes, what a stunning horror film that is. Although my favorite Milland film is probably Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder. It ain't horror, just great cinema.
     
  4. Shock Waves

    Shock Waves New Member

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    I really liked Milland in The Uninvited (1944), an oft forgotten movie that helped "serious" ghost movies get recognition.

    Great discussion.
     
  5. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    I didn't forget it, I just didn't know about it. :(

    Seriously, not seen that one - is it on DVD? There's so many classics that aren't yet out. As we get ready to move to a new format, we suddenly become more aware of all that is getting left behind.....
     
  6. Shock Waves

    Shock Waves New Member

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    You are so right. I don't believe it is out on DVD yet. I have the VHS and it is often shown on TCM (if you recieve that channel).

    http://www.amazon.com/Uninvited-Ray-Milland/dp/6302503493
     
  7. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    Thanks for that. I was on another forum recently and they were talking about Island of Lost Souls. Apparently Universal won't put it out because they don't feel the elements have held up sufficiently. Sad isn't it. I'd rather have it than not....
     
  8. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    I always enjoy your threads dwatts,because even though there are some good new horror films ,I think there is a tendency by a lot of folks to pass by some of the vintage classics.I myself know many people who refuse to watch a black and white film ,or even something more than 20 years old.Kinda sad.Still,as you can see,there are some fans of the older classics on this site,and as one of them, I always enjoy chatting about the earlier films,both legit classics and quirky B-pictures.

    I think Shock Waves is right,by the way,I don't think THE UNINVITED has hit DVD yet,though I have heard rumblings that it will later this year.Well worth a look !

    Oh,I was lucky enough to catch DIAL "M" FOR MURDER on the big sceen in the 90's,if you can catch it in a theater,do,it's a treat !
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2008
  9. MaxRenn

    MaxRenn Member

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    I should give this one another watch as I was not too impressed with it - I thought it was one of the weakest of the Corman Poes. I was probably missing Price and getting tired of the series' fixation on premature burial

    dwatts, do you really not like Masque? I think that one really stands out because it is different to the others and the color photography is stunning. Not to mention Corman working in some Bergman references.
     
  10. MorallySound

    MorallySound Mad Mutilator

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    This is a pretty good flick. I have it, along with X, in the Corman Boxset. Underatted flick.
     
  11. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    Oh, I like it plenty. Honestly though, I thought this was a better film. Milland is perfect in it, his obessessions realy become your own while watching.

    Masque is good, but I do feel it is let down at the end by the "lack" of FX. The cut aways are all too obvious. I've yet to see a Corman Poe film that isn't worth seeing though, and the at the prices you can get these discs it's silly not to buy them.
     
  12. Yowie

    Yowie Hologram

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    This is probably the Corman Poe I watch the most often, it's so wonderfully easy to get into, I think not only does Milland fear being buried alive but subconsciously seeks it too. It's clearly a morbid fascination of his.
     
  13. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    I've had this for the longest time and never watched it. It's piggybacked on another Corman/Poe, Tales of Terror (this is laserdisc, not DVD I'm talking about), and I've only watched Tales.

    Guess I'll pop it in sometime in the very near future.

    Oh, and speaking of LD/DVD, The Uninvited IS out on laser, and it fetches a nice price. There's a store near me with a copy, and I think they want $50 for it. That price drops to 99 cents or less once the DVD is released though, so it's not a good investment at all.
     
  14. Yowie

    Yowie Hologram

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    Yes, a real pity The Uninvited isn't on DVD, I guess it's the last of the big classic ghost movies not out yet. I have that Universal LD, btw.
     
  15. allmessedup

    allmessedup It's beer time.

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    Saw this one today--it was a staple of late night TV when I was a kid, but I'd never seen it in its entirety. Great atmosphere and performances. Roger Corman was able to do so much with so little! This doesn't look cheap at all.

    This has X--THE MAN WITH THE X-RAY EYES on the other side, so I'll be checking that one out this weekend too!
     
  16. BroodingHope

    BroodingHope New Member

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    I just picked this up on the double feature with Masque. I greatly look forward to watching it.
     
  17. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    So, I watched this over the weekend, and I definitely enjoyed it. A lot of people have mentioned the lack of Vincent Price, but I found a different actor gave the proceedings a much needed change of pace. Let's be honest, a lot of those Corman/Price/Poe collaborations start to run together after a while. Not saying they're bad movies, just that Price played pretty much similar characters in similar styles in most of them.

    Milland gave a much different approach, as a character you slowly realize is completely batshit insane. Price gives off that vibe almost from the moment he appears on screen. Plus, Premature Burial has a more serious feel than the rather campy entries in the series.

    Good recommendation, people
     

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