THE PLAGUE OF ZOMBIES
Hammer Films, having already delved into horror "re-makes" of most of the classic monsters, began to broaden their base as time went on, eventually coming to this classic movie featuring the walking dead.
There is trouble in the small village of Cornwall where the residents are all dying of a strange malady which has the local doctor perplexed. He calls in his old professor from the university and soon they both become embroiled in grave robbing and defying the local authority. It seems the rich owner of Cornwall's mine--shut down because it was too dangerous to keep open--has been killing the local and turning them, through voodoo rituals, into his zombie slaves.
There are some really good atmospheric moments in the film, not the least of which is the dream sequence where the dead rise from their graves. To this day, it is a chilling scene. Add to it some fine acting and an interesting script, and you have an offbeat and enjoyable classic film.
Just don't expect any gut-chomping. These ain't those kinds of zombies!
I watched this film last year and thoroughly enjoyed it and was happy to see that, upon my revisitation, I found it even more fun than before.
Two sisters bring their families together for holiday festivities out at the country home of the eldest sibling. One of the children is sick with something and, as the families enjoy each other's companies, he begins to act out more and get creepier by the moment. Eventually, all the children get sick, and whatever is affecting them has turned them into homicidal deviants.
This movie is a lot of fun, as well as being absolutely suspenseful and clever. The acting and script are great, as is the direction, and the editing is used to perfect effect in ratcheting up the tension with every passing moment.
I'm on the verge of calling this movie a modern classic, but I will hold off on such a declaration for now. Safe to say, if you enjoy terror, you will enjoy this movie.
THEATER OF BLOOD
Vincent Price stars in a magnificent film of ultimate revenge.
Edward Lionheart, an actor much derided by critics while he was alive, comes back from the grave (so they think) to enact his vengeance. Spouting Shakespeare at every turn, Price as Lionheart is fantastic as the wronged actor, meting out his own brand of peculiar justice as he offs each of the critics one by one.
It is a bit jarring to see Price walk around in this modern setting (for the 70's) after so many films set in the past, but it is this very thing which adds a layer of the surreal on the events in the film. To see Price stride around, quoting Shakespeare in the 1970's is a lot of fun, bringing his old-style acting into the modern world (much like the character he plays in the film).
This isn't your father's Vincent Price, but he still rocks!