Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Let the Wrightson one in

During our visit to LA, Peter and I had a chance to visit with legendary artist Bernie Wrightson, who's amazing illustrated version of Frankenstein was recently reissued in honor of its 25th anniversary.

I wanted to post a note here in case anyone is interested, as it is the most beautiful the book has ever looked, and while the first printing is now sold out (the initial run was only 7500 copies), you can still get first edition copies on Amazon for less than $20 while they last!

I've seen less attractive volumes regularly offered at $50 or more - so this really is a steal. Act quick if you want to grab a first edition before they're gone.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Who Let the Wrong One In?

The horror community is in an uproar over a change in the subtitles used in the hot new vampire flick Let the Right One In.

Turns out they cheaped out and didn't include the version that played theatrically - and while it's not like it's completely wrong, the guys over at Icons of Fright have gone out of their way to pinpoint some of the bad changes made.

The good news, as a result the studio will be reissuing the film with THEATRICAL subtitles noted. If you haven't seen it yet - you might consider holding out for that.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Warner Brothers Archive Collection

In an interesting move, Warner Brothers has made available an on demand archive collection of previously unreleased titles on DVD.

This is a very cool concept that I would be excited to see more studios adopt, but in the mean time, I can't wait to order up a widescreen Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze to check it out.

Check out the ful list of available titles here.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Return of Psychotronix!

FYI - the Psychotronix Film Festival returns to DeAnza college on Saturday, April 18th.

This time, we'll all remember to bring a blanket or comfortable pillow to sit on! Even if you can withstand the films being screened, those classroom chairs can be murder!

Saturday, March 21, 2009


If you were to measure the success of a movie party by the number of folks who stay longer than they originally planned, our Phantasmathon was another winner.

Of course, that in no small part is due to the fact that the first three films all end with a similar cliffhanger, which begs to be followed up with the subsequent film. And besides, they're just plain fun. Let's hope we haven't seen the last of the mysterious Tall Man and the never-catch-a-break former ice-cream man Reggie. It was a fun night celebrating 30 years of Don Coscarelli's classic franchise.

Next up, Mel Gibson in his greatest recurring role: Mad Max and The Road Warrior!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

2009 Schedule Update

Due to some Blu Ray release announcements (and the lack of announcements for some others), I've shuffled our schedule for the second half of 2009. I still hope that we'll see releases of Ben Hur and North by Northwest this year, but to be safe I want to hold off on scheduling those until I know we'll have them in HD.

Since the Wizard of Oz has been confirmed (without a street date as of yet), I'm leaving that as our post-Thanksgiving event for now. Similarly, rumors are flying about a Lord of the Rings Blu Ray release in early December, so I've tentatively slotted that for our end of the year party.

The next several months are still on track and locked in - we'll finalize each of those as they get within a few months.

March 21

April 25

May 23

June 20
July 18

August 22

September 19

October 24

November 28

December 26

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

SLC History of Horror III

I skipped detailed reporting of last week's screening of the Spanish version of Dracula. While appreciated for its technical achievements, it was the longest film we've watched thus far and it was deemed prudent to put off Murders in the Rue Morgue until this week. That in turn bumped The Most Dangerous Game to the much more appropriate pairing with King Kong.

So this week we watched the excellent adaptation of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde starring Fredric March from 1932, along with the man-in-monkey suit adaptation of Edgar Allen Poe's Murders in the Rue Morgue. Jekyll and Hyde was certainly risque for its time, and makes for an entertaining group viewing.

Next up, a Boris Karloff double feature with The Mummy and The Old Dark House. See you next Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Let the Right One In

I started hearing raves about this film as it made its way through the festival circuit, and yet we didn't make the effort to go see it during its brief local theatrical run. We finally sat down to watch it this past weekend and it's worthy of all the praise it has garnered.

It's a refreshing take on the vampire tale, dare I say one of the most heat warming vampire films to arise from the ashes of the post Anne-Rice-alyptic era.

I enjoyed the film so much that I just bought the book (translated from the original Swedish) and can't wait to dive into it as well.

If you're not sold, check out the trailer, but better yet, take this recommendation on faith and rent, borrow or buy this movie before you see or hear much more about it. It's richly rewarding.

Monday, March 16, 2009


How do I love Phantasm? Let me count the ways. The silver sphere... Morningside mortuary... the Tall Man... the Hemi Cuda... the dwarves... the eerie score... the black box... the missing fingers... the hearses... the tuning fork... the ice cream man...

Made on a shoestring budget 30 years ago by up and coming independent filmmaker Don Coscarelli, Phantasm has got a bit of everything in it - as if every incongruent nightmare image were poured into a cauldron and stirred about until it came to a boil.

It was successful enough that Universal backed a bigger budget sequel. It similarly adds to the overall mythos, but also left the audience wanting more. The third and fourth sequels (Lord of the Dead and Oblivion) saw the return of the original cast members, which was a welcome surprise. And while one can easily pick apart each film in the series, it makes for a fun roller coaster ride from start to finish, and I contend that the twists and turns on the journey are in fact the reward.

We hope you'll join us for this mini-marathon of all four films (don't worry - none of the films are that long). It starts this Saturday at 4pm. But even when it's over - it's never over. See you there.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Planet of the Apes on Vintage Vinyl

Gotta love the things you can find on the internet. Back in the 70s, Peter Pan/Power Records put out a series of comic book and record sets. These included everything from Marvel and DC comic characters to Star Trek. My favorites were the Planet of the Apes adaptations.

Imagine my surprise not only finding someone had created MP3 files of the audio, and scanned all of the comics - but someone has gone to the trouble of creating Flash multimedia files where you can watch and listen at the same time.

Nostalgia worth sharing, in my opinion. Check them out, along with the rest of Hunter's Planet of the Apes site.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

History of Horror Part I

We kicked off the Slaughtered Lamb Cinema History of Horror last Wednesday with the double feature of Dracula and Frankenstein. Two great films that launched the careers of Lugosi and Karloff (who we'll be seeing a lot more of in the weeks ahead). In addition, both films featured excellent supporting roles from Edward Van Sloan and Dwight Frye.

As we work through the best of the 30s and 40s, we'll be tweaking the schedule to accommodate folks availability and the interest in the films on the horizon. The plan for this week is to watch the Spanish version of Dracula (which was filmed alongside the Lugosi classic), along with the return of Bela Lugosi in the adaptation of Poe's Murders in the Rue Morgue. I think we'll start planning for 7:30pm starts for this series - we're coordinating pairs of films that will run under 3 hours each night.

Here's the current plan for the next six weeks:

* Dracula (Spanish Version) (1931) 104m

* Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde 96m
* Murders in the Rue Morgue (1932) 61m

* The Mummy (1932) 73m
* The Old Dark House (1932) 72m

* White Zombie 69m
* Island of Lost Souls 70m

* Mask of Fu Manchu 68m
* The Ghoul (1933) 77m

* The Invisible Man (1933) 71m
* Mystery in the Wax Museum 77m

* King Kong 104m
* Most Dangerous Game 63m