Yeah, a wee bit later than normal, but I didn’t forget. So much going on right now but it is all good stuff and that I brought upon myself so I can’t complain. Well, I could, but nobody will listen . . .
Okay, enough whining, let’s get to the Mystery Photo, right! Last week’s photo from from the 1957 film The Vampire, starring John Beal. While not really a supernatural vampire film, it is still a fun watch. And boy, when that image pops up that I used for the mystery pic, didn’t expect that for a film back then! Only got three correct answers sent in and they were from: Hoby Abernathy, Kevin Hart, and Bob Hartman! Well done!
This week’s photo is a little newer than 1957, but we’ll see how easy it might be. Take a peek and see what you think! As always, remember to send your guess to me in an email (makes it easier for me to remember!) to email@example.com. Good Luck!
Horror movie conventions are one of the best places to be at if you are a die-hard fan. There’s plenty to see, buy, and people to meet, both new and old friends, as well as celebrities. Horror conventions were a very important part of a lot of us horror fans “growing up” as we learned more and more about the genre, building our collections, or just meeting new people that have become lifelong friends, or even a wife!
This is our first part in a series of episodes on conventions, so we’re going to start out at the beginning for us, such as how they all started for us and which ones did we go to, to the current shows that we still attend.
These are the different conventions that we mention during this episode:
Chiller Theatre, Cinema Wasteland, Cinevent, Crypticon, Famous Monsters, Fangoria’s Weekend of Horrors, Fanex, Flashback Weekend, HorrorHound Weekend, Mid-Summer Scream, Monster Bash, Monsterpalooza, 25th Anniversary Night of the Living Dead Convention, Scarefest, Texas Frightmare
I apologize for not only no Mystery Photo last Monday, but also for the lack of updates. Last weekend was HorrorHound and that was quite a weekend. In a good way, but exhausted when I got home. Plus, with October looming over, I’ve got a lot on my plate right now. Granted, I kept asking for it, so I have no one to blame but myself. But if the passion is still burning, might as well keep throwing wood on it! Enough of that. Let’s get to the business at hand. Our last photo was from the Lovecraft “inspired” film The Shuttered Room (1967), starring Oliver Reed and Carol Lynley. Kudos to the following for sending in the correct answer: Hoby Abernathy, Gregory Avery, Dada Debaser, Dave Fronto, Kevin Hart, Charles Miller, Lee Nattrass, Michael Shields, and Nick Wilson. Well done!
Going for something a little more obscure with this week’s photo, so buckle up and put those thinking caps on! Take a peek and see what you think. Just remember, send your guess to me in an email, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Good Luck!
Now is your chance to see 4 classic horror films on the big screen, like they were meant to be! Not to mention seeing them in the company of other like-minded crazy horror fans! Next Saturday, on Sept. 24th, at the Midway Drive-in, located in Sterling, IL, they will be holding their annual Horrorfest, featuring some incredible titles: John Carpenter’s They Live (1988), Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984), Pieces (1982), and Doctor. Butcher M.D. (1980)! Plus, the first 500 people that get there will get a free Doctor. Butcher M.D. Barf Bag, thanks to sponsor Severin Films!
Back in 2016, a book came out called Scored to Death: Conversations with Some of Horror’s Greatest Composers, which I finally got around to reviewing in 2018. And then two years after that, in 2020, author J. Blake Fichera released a second volume, continuing his goal of bringing attention to these talented musicians who help enhance the scares and atmosphere in the movies we love. But now, Fichera is taking this one step further, by making a feature length documentary on these composers.
Scored to Death: The Dark Art of Scary Movie Music will be the first feature-length documentary that “explores the fascinating relationship between music and horror cinema.” Starting today, they have launched a Kickstarter campaign that will run through Halloween, hoping to raise the funds to make this project a reality. Production has already started, so fans of movie music need to make sure that it is able to continue.
Not a lot of filmmakers made a huge impact with really only one movie, but Doug McKeown did for me with his film The Deadly Spawn (1983). According to the posting from John Dodds on Facebook, it seems that McKeown has passed away. Dodds worked with McKeown on Spawn, creating the title monster. I couldn’t find any other notices about his death besides that, but since McKeown wasn’t a household name, maybe that’s why. But none the less, the horror genre has lost a man partially responsible for bringing that famous monster full of teeth alive on the screen.
In the past, my partner-in-horror Aaron Christensen (aka Horror 101 with Dr. AC) and I have given some little seminars at the Sulzer branch of the Chicago Public Library, giving an overview of the horror genre. This year, however, not only did they ask us back, but they wanted MORE! So now, we’re taking over every Tuesday in October with TERROR TUESDAYS!
Lady Frankenstein (1971), Erotic Rites of Frankenstsein (1973), Flesh for Frankenstein (1973).
While Frankenstein is one of the oldest monsters in the genre and has been adapted multiple times by a variety of creators, some closer to the original source than others, there are other filmmakers that go far enough away from the original novel that they’re not even in same library! But it is always interesting to see where these creative filmmakers take that story, giving it their own twist, and putting it out there for the world to see!
Join us as we delve into 3 different variations on the Frankenstein theme, all that deal with sex, nudity, gore, and some of the strangest in Euro-Horror!
Dragon’s Digital Domain Records have unleashed another CD of the work of composter Albert Glasser, another entry of the work he did with director Bert I. Gordon. This time out, we get both scores for The Amazing Colossal Man (1957) and its sequel War of the Colossal Beast (1958)! The release has 23 tracks with a total running time of 67 minutes! The release was mastered by James Nelson of Digital Outland, and also contains lineal notes from film music journalist Randall D. Larson.
Glasser worked on a lot of films, starting out by doing a lot of westerns. But once he got to the ’50s, he composed the scores for a lot of sci-fi/horror films. Thanks to the folks at Dragon’s Digital Domain Records, we’re able to enjoy Glasser’s music on their own. Composers have a lot to do on how the film plays for the audiences, and Glasser’s work is a good example of that.
Priced at only $17.95, you can order your copy from Screen Archives Entertainment by clicking HERE.
I know I don’t cover too many fictional writers here, or fiction for that matter, but back in the day, I devoured horror fiction as much as I do movies and non-fiction books today. One of the writers I followed was Peter Straub. His earlier novels, such as Julia in 1975, which became a great little ghost story film The Haunting of Julia in 1977, Ghost Story, which the movie adaptation became a big hit in 1981 with an all-star cast. In 1984, he collaborated with Stephen King with The Talisman, which they revisited with a sequel in 2001 called Black House. His 1982 novel, Floating Dragon, creeped the hell out of me.
So it is with sadness that I mention that Mr. Straub has passed away, at the age of 79. I remember either reading or seeing an interview with Stephen King, where he mentioned that Straub hand wrote all of his work, and that he didn’t feel sorry for anyone more than Straub’s editor because his handwriting was damn near illegible. In the late ’80s, when I was reading a lot of fiction, I would often write to authors, many times getting a letter back. When I got one back from Straub, I realized how right King was. I’ve posted the letter below.