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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Cinderella (2006), The Doll Master (2004), Don’t Click (2012), Ghastly (20011) - Asian Horror

4 Horror gems with English sub-titles

Cinderella (2006)

The film starts off with a birthday cake being lit in the dark. An unseen figure humming "happy birthday to you" carries the cake into a room but then drops it in shock as we see another unknown person commit suicide by shoving her face into a vent ...

Starring Sin Se-Kyung, Do Ji-won
Directed by Bong Man-dae
Written by Son Kwang-soo
Release date: August 17, 2006
Running time: 94 minutes
Country: South Korea
Korean - English sub-titles


The Doll Master (2004)

5 young people, a quiet doll maker in a wheelchair and her dedicated helper, a chained old man in the basement and a mysterious young girl in red... all together in a lonely doll museum in the woods. What starts out as a fun trip to pose for new dolls soon turns into a nightmare that not everyone will survive.

Starring Kim Yu-Mi, Im Eun-gyeong, Shin Hyeong-tak, Ok Ji-young
Directed by Jeong Yong-gi
Produced by Han Man-taek
Written by Jeong Yong-gi
Release date: July 30, 2004
Running time: 90 minutes
Country: South Korea
Korean - English sub-titles


Don't Click (2012)

A horror movie about the mysterious happenings that happen to a pair of sisters after watching an unidentified video. Directed by Kim Tae-kyeong, Park Bo-yeong plays Se-hee who tries to save her sister Jeong-mi, her boyfriend Joo Won and Kang Byeol plays the sister.

Starring Park Bo-young, Joo Won
Directed by Kim Tae-Kyeong
Produced by Kim Yong, Cha Ji-hyeon
Written by Hong Geon-gook, Kim Tae-Kyeong
Release date: May 31, 2012
Running time: 107 minutes
Country: South Korea
Korean - English sub-titles


Ghastly (2011)

After his parents are murdered, Bin is taken into the care of relatives. He begins to act strangely, the new occupants of his house experience horrific nightmares, and a mystery unfolds as a terrible secret is revealed.

Starring Eun-jeong Han and Hyomin
Directed by Yang Yun-Ho
Produced by Choi Soon-Sik
Written by Kim Yoo-Ra
Release Date: August 4, 2011
Runtime: 92 min.
Korean - English sub-titles
Country: South Korea

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Shattered-Scherben (1921) & Warning Shadows-Schatten (1923)





Shattered - Scherben (1921)

Post-World War I German cinema offered some strikingly stylized films, such as The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and The Golem. This stark tragedy, told with practically no subtitles, and with the characters often pantomiming instead of speaking to each other, could fit into the same category as the first two films, except it's nowhere near as successful creatively. The daughter (Edith Poska) of a track-walker (Werner Kraus) is raped by the section inspector. The girl's mother is so ashamed of her fate that she wanders into a storm and perishes. The track-walker finds his wife's body and prepares to bury her. The girl breaks down and tells her father what has happened. In a fit of anger he chokes the inspector to death, and then hands himself over to the authorities. Carl Mayer, who wrote Caligari, was also the author of this story. ~ Janiss Garza, Rovi

One of the key films of the German kammerspiel movement, this silent work chronicles the tragic repercussions of a furtive love affair between a railway worker's daughter (Edith Posca) and her father's supervisor (Werner Krauss). Subtitles in English.

Kammerspielfilm is a type of German film that offers an intimate, cinematic portrait of lower middle class life. The name derives from a theater, the Kammerspiele, opened in 1906 by a major stage director Max Reinhardt to stage intimate dramas for small audiences. Few Kammerspiel films were made, but nearly all are classics. Kammerspielfilme (the plural form) formed a German film movement of the 1920s silent film period that was developed around the same time as the more commonly known Expressionist movement in cinema. The Kammerspielfilm was known as the "chamber drama" as a result of the influence from the theatrical form of the chamber play. It is characterised by its focus on character psychology and its lack of intricate set design. Also, unlike Expressionist films, Kammerspielfilme seldom used intertitles to narrate the story.

Original Score, Brian Pinette

Stars: Werner Krauss, Edith Posca and Hermine Straßmann-Witt
Director: Lupu Pick
Writers: Carl Mayer, Lupu Pick
Production Co: Rex-Film GmbH ... Country: Germany
Language: German (English intertitles) ... Release Date: 27 May 1921 (Germany) Also Known As: Shattered
Running time: 61 min





2 German Silent films gems on 1 DVD

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Saturday, October 20, 2012

Ten Little Indians (1974) Elke Sommer & Cat & The Canary (1927, 1978) Laura La Plante, Carol Lynley


Ten Little Indians (1974) Elke Sommer & Cat & The Canary (1927, 1978) Laura La Plante, Carol Lynley 3 films 2 DVDs





Laura LaPlante ~ The Cat and the Canary (1927) & Carol Lynley, Honor Blackman The Cat and the Canary (1978) DVD

Silent film classic 1927 and 1978 camp-cult classic ...

The Cat and the Canary (1927) is an American silent horror film adaptation of John Willard's 1922 black comedy play of the same name. Directed by German Expressionist filmmaker Paul Leni, the film stars Laura La Plante as Annabelle West, Forrest Stanley as Charles "Charlie" Wilder, and Creighton Hale as Paul Jones. The plot revolves around the death of Cyrus West, who is Annabelle, Charlie, and Paul's uncle, and the reading of his will 20 years later. Annabelle inherits her uncle's fortune, but when she and her family spend the night in his haunted mansion they are stalked by a mysterious figure. Meanwhile, a lunatic known as "the Cat" escapes from an asylum and hides in the mansion.

The Cat and the Canary is part of a genre of comedy horror films inspired by 1920s Broadway stage plays. Paul Leni's adaptation of Willard's play blended expressionism with humor, a style Leni was notable for and critics recognized as unique. Leni's style of directing made The Cat and the Canary influential in the "old dark house" genre of films popular from the 1930s through the 1950s. The film was one of Universal's early horror productions and is considered "the cornerstone of Universal's school of horror." It has been remade five times.

Original Score by Brian Pinette



The Cat and the Canary (1978) Carol Lynley, Honor Blackman
With Michael Callan, Edward Fox. Directed by Radley Metzger.

Frank Willard's 1927 stage play The Cat and the Canary was filmed several times before this 1978 version saw the light of day. In the story, Annabelle West (Carol Lynley) is one of several potential heirs to a huge fortune. Brought to his foreboding mansion to learn who will benefit from his death, the anxious heirs must sit still for the deceased's taped recitation of his bequests. The dead man, Cyrus West (Wilfred Hyde-White), takes advantage of the occasion to scold his greedy and unpleasant relatives. He leaves behind several posthumous practical jokes which drive his points home. It's a rainy night, the mansion is full of surprises, most of the heirs are an anxious, unpleasant lot, and at least one of them is not above committing murder to have his way. ~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide

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And Then There Were None; Ten Little Indians (1974) Elke Sommer, Oliver Reed

Plot Summary for And Then There Were None (1974) Updated version of the Agatha Christie book "And Then There Were None. In this version, the group is invited, under false pretenses, to an isolated hotel in the Iranian desert. After dinner, a cassette tape (voiced by the legendary Orson Welles) accuses them all of crimes that they have gotten away with. One by one they begin to die, in accordance to the Ten Little Indians Nursery rhyme. After a search is made of the hotel, they realize that the murderer is one of them. A few members of the group attempt to trust each other, but the question still remains, who can one trust? and who will leave the hotel alive?

Starring Elke Sommer, Oliver Reed, Maria Rohm, Charles Aznavour, Stéphane Audran, Gert Fröbe
Directed by Peter Collinson
Produced by Harry Alan Towers
Screenplay by Harry Alan Towers (as "Peter Welbeck")
Uncredited: Enrique Llovet
Based on Novel: Agatha Christie
Music by Bruno Nicolai
Cinematography, Fernando Arribas
Studio Corona Filmproduktion Talía Films COMECI
Country: France / Spain / Germany / Italy
Running time: 98 min.

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Carol Lynley is Jean HARLOW (1965) & Iron Man (1931) Jean Harlow










Carol Lynley as HARLOW (1965)
NY Times, May 1965
"The "Harlow" based on Mr. Shulman's handiwork still lurks around the bend, trumpets blaring. Meanwhile, at the Paramount, is the race-winner penned by Karl Tunberg and shot, in the short-cut Electronovision process, apparently before the ink dried. The picture took eight days for filming, the last two due to inclement weather. It didn't rain long enough.
There is, front, center and anything but alluring, Carol Lynley as the nation's movie sex goddess of the thirties. She squeaks, occasionally furrows her youthful brow and twitches her nostrils.
Let's round out the cast. There's Ginger Rogers, as the star's whining, pushing mother; Barry Sullivan, as the girl's lazy, avaricious stepfather; Efrem Zimbalist Jr., as a lofty-nosed actor the heroine finally loves. Hurd Hatfield plays Paul Bern, her "incapable" producer-husband, and Jack Kruschen is Louis B. Mayer, depicted here as a kind of realistic, owlish Santa Claus.
All these, and unfortunates, under Alex Segal's direction, lope through the vignettes of this bony, bargain-basement appraisal of a famous, misguided and tragic young woman. The story, at least as souped up here, never suggests the evolution of a fine comedienne—an actress who learned—whose radiant, white-hot image brightened the screen, glowed and dimmed.
The picture has the tough-minded young heroine falling into her choice "Hell's Angels" role and then battling her mother, stepfather and studio over her sex synonymity, seeking solace in a doomed marriage and finally expiring, rather mysteriously, attended by true love (Mr. Zimbalist) as "Mr. Mayer" intones, "May God rest her soul." Most of the dialogue is atrocious. The picture hovers over the sequence of her tragic alliance with the suicidal Mr. Bern—a brief, amoral aftermath—with peephole solicitude.
Hermione Baddeley totters in with motherly advice to the heroine, playing Marie Dressler. Michael Dante, as a professional lover, clips off the film's most telling line to Miss Lynley: "Everybody has problems. But you stars are the ones who can afford to have them."
The Electronovision rush job on Miss Harlow's life and career is also a dimly-lit business technically. Maybe it's just as well. This much is for sure: Whatever the second "Harlow" picture looks and sounds like, it can't be much worse than the first.
B/W - Overall good quality for this low budget opus filmed in 8 days in EARLY videotape style media.

Iron Man (1931) Lew Ayres, Robert Armstrong & Jean Harlow

Drama film directed by Tod Browning and starring Lew Ayres, Robert Armstrong and Jean Harlow. It is a bit of an anomaly for Browning, who is more associated with horror and melodrama than sports films. Tod Browning directed “Dracula” with Lugosi and the immortal horror classic “Freaks.”

In 1951, Universal remade it with Jeff Chandler, Evelyn Keyes and Rock Hudson, directed by Joseph Pevney

Starring Lew Ayres, Robert Armstrong, Jean Harlow
Directed by Tod Browning
Produced by E. M. Asher, Tod Browning, Carl Laemmle Jr.
Written by W. R. Burnett (novel), Francis Edward Faragoh
Distributed by Universal Studios
Release date: April 30, 1931
Running time: 73 minutes

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Mary Pickford, Cinderella, Snow White, Marguerite Clark, Blue Bird, Shirley Temple








Mary Pickford, Snow White, Marguerite Clark, Bluebird, Shirley Temple


Alice in Wonderland (1930) ... Cinderella (1914) Mary Pickford ...Alice in Wonderland (1915) ...
Snow White (1916) Marguerite Clark
1 DVD

The Blue Bird (1918) - Silent classic & The Blue Bird (1940) Shirley Temple
1 DVD
Peter Pan (1924)
 Disney Alice Comedies (1924-1927; eleven titles) - EXCLUSIVE
Copy-written menu, theme song by Brian Pinette

 4 DVDs - 8 film gems Free Ship USA
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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

And Then There Were None ~ Ten Little Indians (1974) Elke Sommer, Oliver Reed





And Then There Were None; Ten Little Indians (1974) Elke Sommer, Oliver Reed

Plot Summary for And Then There Were None (1974) Updated version of the Agatha Christie book "And Then There Were None. In this version, the group is invited, under false pretenses, to an isolated hotel in the Iranian desert. After dinner, a cassette tape (voiced by the legendary Orson Welles) accuses them all of crimes that they have gotten away with. One by one they begin to die, in accordance to the Ten Little Indians Nursery rhyme. After a search is made of the hotel, they realize that the murderer is one of them. A few members of the group attempt to trust each other, but the question still remains, who can one trust? and who will leave the hotel alive?

Starring Elke Sommer, Oliver Reed, Maria Rohm, Charles Aznavour, Stéphane Audran, Gert Fröbe
Directed by Peter Collinson
Produced by Harry Alan Towers
Screenplay by Harry Alan Towers (as "Peter Welbeck")
Uncredited: Enrique Llovet
Based on Novel: Agatha Christie
Music by Bruno Nicolai
Cinematography, Fernando Arribas
Studio Corona Filmproduktion Talía Films COMECI
Country: France / Spain / Germany / Italy
Running time: 98 min.

Complete - un-cut ... includes theatrical trailer.
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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors (1965)



Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors (1965)

Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Max Adrian, Ann Bell, Peter Madden & Donald Sutherland

Dr. Terror's House of Horrors is a portmanteau film consisting of five stories within a frame story. Five men enter a train carriage in London bound for Bradley, and are joined by a sixth, the mysterious Doctor Schreck (Peter Cushing wearing a beard and false eyebrows). Schreck is the German word for terror, hence the title of the film. It also recalls Max Schreck, the actor who played the title role in the 1922 vampire classic Nosferatu. During the journey, the doctor opens his pack of Tarot cards and proceeds to reveal the destinies of each of the travellers. This provides the framework to tell five horror stories.

Directed by Freddie Francis
Produced by Max Rosenberg, Milton Subotsky

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Agnes Moorehead ~ “The Invaders” & “Sorry Wrong Number”, The Magnificent Ambersons


Agnes Moorehead “The Invaders” & “Sorry Wrong Number” DVD

THE TWILIGHT ZONE: TV Episode ~ The Invaders
When a woman investigates a clamor on the roof of her rural house, she discovers a small UFO and little aliens emerging from it. Or so it seems.
Stars: Agnes Moorehead
Director: Douglas Heyes
Writers: Richard Matheson, Rod Serling (creator)
Original Air Date: 27 January 1961

Radio Shows (3 audio “recordings" - episodes on DVD with “The Invaders”)

SORRY WRONG NUMBER
Radio play by Lucille Fletcher

Two airings starring Agnes Moorehead who originated the role on radio that would become the film starring Barbara Stanwyck.

Fletcher's play originally aired on the Suspense radio program on May 25, 1943, essentially a one-woman show with Agnes Moorehead as Mrs. Stevenson. The play was reprised seven times, each starring Moorehead. The final broadcast of "Sorry Wrong Number" starring Agnes Moorehead was on February 14, 1960.

However, there was another radio version ... In the 1948 film "Sorry Wrong Number," the role of Mrs. Stevenson was played by Barbara Stanwyck, for which she later received an Academy Award nomination. Stanwyck performed the role of Mrs. Stevenson once on radio, along with her co-star Burt Lancaster, in an hour long adaptation of the film for Lux Radio Theater. This episode aired on January 9, 1950.

DVD with Twilight Zone + THE INVADERS and Agnes Moorehead in SUSPENSE ~ Sorry Wrong Number; two Agnes Moorehead versions & Miss Stanwyck in her own version.

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2 DVDs - DVD with Twilight Zone + THE INVADERS and DVD - The Great Ambersons (1942)
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Bette Davis, Gloria Swanson, Anne Baxter, Jane Wyatt - Hitchcock DVD


Hitchcock Ladies - 4 Award winning actresses in 4 suspense Alfred Hitchcock Presents episodes:

Bette Davis
Out There - Darkness - Alfred Hitchcock Presents - 1/25/1959

Anne Baxter
A Nice Touch - Alfred Hitchcock Hour - 10/4/1963

Gloria Swanson
Behind the Locked Door - Alfred Hitchcock Hour - 1/27/1964

Jane Wyatt
The Monkey's Paw - A Retelling - “genuinely terrifying" - Alfred Hitchcock Hour - 4/19/1965


 
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Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1903, 1914, 1927)

Silent classics: Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1903, 1914, 1927)


Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1903) Edwin S. Porter

Working for Thomas Edison, Edwin S. Porter was the first American "director," the pioneer who discovered how to use Edison's invention to tell stories and entertain audiences. His Uncle Tom's Cabin (1903) was one of the very earliest "full-length" American movies -- although "full-length" in 1903 meant about 14 minutes. According to a Notice in The New York Times, it premiered on August 3rd at Huber's Fourteenth Street Museum; sharing the program with it were several live acts, including a married team of "colored comedians."

Porter shot the film inside the Edison Company's studio in New York, and made sure there was no doubt whose film it was by including a “Sign” displaying the Thomas A. Edison ® in almost every one of the 14 separate scenes. (Edison had reason to be proprietary; within weeks after this film was made, Sigmund Lubin, his Philadelphia competitor released "a dupe" of it.) The movie's actors, sets, costumes, and much of its stage "business" derive from one of the turn-of-the-century theatrical "Tom Shows." Other than Edison's name, the film contains no credits and which UTC Company Porter employed has never been learned. But although many changes were required to turn a five act drama into a one-reel silent movie, Porter's film is extremely valuable as a partial record of what thousands of live audiences saw when the "Tommers" came to town.

Since most people in the film's original audience would have seen at least one "Tom Show," they already knew not just the larger story (and so could fill in the many gaps created by telling the story of a 500-page novel or a 3-hour play in less than 14 minutes), but the dialogue and "stage business" of the individual scenes. The catalog that the Edison company prepared to help sell the film to exhibitors provides descriptions that help 21st century viewers "see" what is going on ... As the catalogue also notes, Uncle Tom's Cabin was the first American film ever to include titles (called "announcements" here) to identify and introduce each new scene.





Like the typical "Tom show," this performance uses white actors in blackface for the major "black" parts, and black performers only as extras. This version also gives a vivid idea of how the "Tom show" version of Stowe's novel depicted slavery; most of the time, even at a slave auction, the slaves can't help dancing. The movie's subtitle is Slavery Days, which suggests its makers and its viewers believed this re-presentation was faithful to historical reality.

The movie was shot in 14 sequences, each with its own stage set and film title.

Original Score by Brian Pinette






Uncle Tom's Cabin (1914) Sam Lucas

This 1914 version of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s classic was directed by William Robert Daly. It was adapted Edward McWade from the play adaptation by George L. Aiken. It was the second known film adaptation of the story.

It starred Sam Lucas, Teresa Michelena, Marie Eline (again), Roy Applegate, Irving Cummings and Boots Wall. This was the first "white" film to have an African-American star, Sam Lucas.

Sam Lucas, one of the most respected and celebrated entertainers of his time, is credited with breaking barriers for black actors and becoming the first African American actor to star in a “white” feature film. Lucas is best remembered for his comic and dramatic roles performed on the minstrel circuit and Broadway stages, and by the end of his career, a major motion picture.

Lucas was born Samuel Mildmay in Washington, Ohio in 1840. He began singing and playing the guitar as a teenager and went on to establish a reputation as a performer while working as a barber. After the Civil War when African American performers (in blackface) were allowed to work in minstrel shows, Lucas joined traveling black companies and sang on the Ohio River steamboats. Lucas built a reputation as the best all-around entertainer in the business and was empowered to select his own shows which allowed him to star with the most successful black minstrel companies as a comedian and singer.

Dissatisfied with limited minstrel roles, Lucas attempted to establish himself as a serious actor by appearing in dramatic plays during the mid 1870s. By 1878, he became the first black man to appear as the title character in the serious stage production of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin. At the age of 73, the veteran actor capped his career when he recreated the role of Uncle Tom in the 1914 film version released by World Film Corporation as well as two comedy shorts made as Tom. Lucas is believed to be the first African American actor to appear as Uncle Tom during the era. Shortly after completing the film, Lucas died after suffering a long bout of liver disease.
Release Date: 10 August 1914
Production Co: World
Runtime: 54 min


Uncle Tom's Cabin (1927)

Silent film “epic" directed by Harry A. Pollard and released by Universal Pictures. The film is based on the eponymous novel written by Harriett Beecher Stowe and was the last silent film version. It was preserved in a copy at the Library of Congress.

In this version of the film, all of the major slave roles, with the exception of Uncle Tom himself, were portrayed by white actors. Actress Mona Ray played the slave Topsy in blackface, while the slaves Eliza, George, Cassie and Harry were all presented as having very light skin coloring because of mixed-race heritage.



This two-hour movie spent more than a year in production and was the third most expensive picture of the silent era (at a cost of $1.8 million). Black actor Charles Gilpin was originally cast in the title role, but was fired after the studio decided his "portrayal was too aggressive." James B. Lowe then took over the character of Tom. One difference in this film from the novel is that after Tom dies, he returns as a vengeful spirit and confronts Simon Legree before leading the slave owner to his death. Black media outlets of the time praised the film, but the studio—fearful of a backlash from Southern and white film audiences—ended up cutting out controversial scenes, including the film's opening at a slave auction (where a mother is torn away from her baby).

The story was adapted by Pollard, Harvey F. Thew and A.P. Younger, with titles by Walter Anthony. It starred James B. Lowe, Virginia Grey, George Siegmann, Margarita Fischer, Mona Ray and Madame Sul-Te-Wan

Universal, 1927. Directed by Harry A. Pollard. Camera: Jacob Kull, Charles Stumar. 1hour 48min



Harriet Beecher Stowe (June 14, 1811 – July 1, 1896) was an American abolitionist and author. Her novel Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852) was a depiction of life for African-Americans under slavery; it reached millions as a novel and play, and became influential in the United States and United Kingdom.

It energized anti-slavery forces in the American North, while provoking widespread anger in the South. She wrote more than 20 books, including novels, three travel memoirs, and collections of articles and letters. She was influential both for her writings and her public stands on social issues of the day.

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