One of the most sought after lost films, especially for horror fans, is the 1927 film London After Midnight, starring Lon Chaney as the strange and sharp-toothed vampire. Every few years, there are reports that it has been found, but nothing ever comes of it. While we still wait in hopes that one day, a complete print will be discovered.
Until then, we now have a new book by author and film historian Daniel Titley that delves into the film history, from the production, distribution, original critical reviews, which will include “a wide gallery of never-before-seen materials from stills, to rare lost newly-translated texts, to the early production documents, posters, and press-books.”
This 452-page hardcover book, priced at $46, just came out at the end of this year, but I know we’ll be adding it to our library. And at some point, we’ll be posting a review about it here. Not sure if that will happen before the film is eventually found, but we’ll see. In the meantime, if you’re a fan of Lon Chaney and this film, you may want to check this one out.
Back in 2017, author and historian Christopher Frayling gave us Frankenstein: The First Two Hundred Years, giving us an amazing history lesson, filled with a ton of amazing photos and illustrations, on the story of Frankenstein. Now, Frayling is back to give us a look at the other classic monster, the vampire, in Vampire Cinema: The First Hundred Years, recently published by Reel Art Press back in October. Not sure how I missed this coming out, but better late than never, right?
With close to 300 pages, Frayling gives goes through the cinematic history of the vampire, starting with the one that started it all, F. W. Murnau’s Nosferatu, released in 1922. Filled with a ton of stills, posters, artworks, and pressbooks, this is another essential volume for fans of horror films, and especially fans of the vampire sub-genre. The price is $45, which may seem a little steep, but if this is anything like the Frankenstein volume, it is more than worth it since that is a beautiful coffee table book that will give you more than a few hours of fun paging through it, not to mention maybe even learning a thing or two about this popular sub-genre.
In our never-ending pursuit of learning more about the horror genre, we have many volumes from McFarland in our library. They have such a wide variety of subjects, from critical essays and academic studies overviews of different sub-genres, and plenty of amazing biographies.
Going on right now, McFarland is not waiting until Black Friday to start their online sales but have started offering 40% off ANY title!!! Just head over to their website (by clicking HERE) and start choosing titles. When you get to the check out, add in HOLIDAY22 for the code and it will take off the 40%. That’s damn near half price folks! I know McFarland can be a bit pricy so now is your chance to save some series dough! The sale goes from now until Monday, November 28th, so don’t wait too long!
Okay, so who needs another book on British Horror films? Specifically, one that titles that American International Pictures produced and/or released here in the states? I know, I know. We ALL do, right? We all know you can never have too many reference books in your film library, so now is your chance to add one more!
AIP was always known for their quick black and white low budget exploitation flicks on the 50s, but once they realized how much money they were making on Corman’s Poe features, they continued that trend, even having films produced across the pond, creating some of our favorite films, such as the Dr. Phibes films, Witchfinder General, Die, Monster, Die!, and so many other great ones.
In Witches, Bitches and Banshees: The British Films of American International Pictures, author John Hamilton spent over two decades doing research on these films, interviewing more than 60 names in the business that were involved, from “inside corporate AIP dealings as well as extensive behind-the-scenes coverage on the films”, all now encompassed in this 354-page hardcover edition. Includes a foreword by director Gordon Hessler and actress Valli Kemp.
You can order your copy directly from Little Shoppe of Horrors through their website HERE. The price is $55 plus $6.50 shipping, if you’re in the states. If you’re in the UK, Hemlock Books should be getting them in stock shortly. Otherwise, email Mr. Klemensen from LSoH for a shipping quote.
One of the best werewolf movies to come out in the new millennium was Neil Marshall’s debut film, Dog Soldiers, which came out in 2002. That’s right, this is the 20-year anniversary and it’s great to see it get some more (much deserved) attention!
With such a great story, incredible cast, and some of the best-looking werewolves on film, it still remains a favorite amongst werewolf movie fans, and for good reason. Now, two decades later, we get a book that details the making of this modern monster classic with Janine Pipe’s book Sausages: The Making of Dog Soldiers!
Within this volume, that runs close to 400 pages, you’ll hear insights about the film from interviews with the cast and crew, never seen before photos, excepts from the script, and plenty more. It will also include a foreword from Joe Dante and afterword from John Landis, two directors that kind of set the standards for modern-day werewolf films.
Published by Encyclopocalypse Publications, and available in both hardcover ($22.99) and softcover ($15.99) editions, I know this title will soon be on the shelves in my own library.
Author Troy Howarth has a new book out, this time examining the films of a filmmaker that probably doesn’t get the attention that he should, Umberto Lenzi. While most fans might know him because of his notorious entries in the cannibal sub-genre, like Eaten Alive! (1980) and Cannibal Ferox (1981), Lenzi worked in every film genre there was, from westerns, to comedies, to gialli, to the horror genre. Now Howarth gives readers a chance to learn more about not only about his films, but about the man himself.
Running close to 500 pages, this volume goes through his films, giving us more information about the making of them, as well as biography of the man himself, but also hearing from those that worked with him. There are also some rare behind-the-scenes photos, as well as promotional artwork, posters, and stills from the films.
While Lenzi might not be on the same page as names like Argento or even Bava, he still is an important figure in Italian cinema, and this book sounds like perfect way to dig deep into his films and his history. I know we’ll be adding this to our library!
This book is available in both hardcover and softcover formats, priced accordingly. You can find it on Amazon HERE, or have one of your local bookstores order it for you!
That’s right folks, start gathering those pennies because the latest book coming from Peveril Publishing is coming soon! And as a fan of Hammer Studios, this is one you’re going to want for your library. The House that Hammer Built: The Complete Hinds/Carreras Years (1934-1979) Vol. 1: 1934-1949 will “hopefully” be on sale late November, according to Peveril boss Wayne Kinsey. The best way to be notified when it is ready is to subscribe to their website (just click HERE). But beware, these are not cheap and sell out fast. But every single edition I’ve bought from them has been well worth it. Not only are they incredibly well made and designed, but they are also filled to the brim with facts about one of our favorite film studios.
This series of books, which will be in 3 volumes, is Kinsey’s “definitive work on Hammer”. On the Peveril site, he states that he’ll be “taking a chronological look at all Hammer’s films (in production order) including all the early Exclusive pictures for the first time as well as Hammer’s many un-filmed projects. I’ll be amalgamating all my research from previous books with all new research and return to the oral history approach, so we can hear many of the stories from the mouths of those who worked at Hammer, many sadly no longer with us.”
If you love historical information about Hammer Studios and their films, this series is going to be a must for your library.
I came across this title recently on Amazon, which looks like it was published a couple of months ago, but felt it needs some attention. I have not read it (yet!) but will be ordering it soon and at some point, will have my review posted. But since it is on one of the greatest makeup artists in history, I think it is important to mention here. I mean, this is the guy that created most of the faces on what we consider the Classic Universal Monsters, right?
This 332 page book by author Christopher Lock, that features over 350 photos and graphics, is the only “personal and professional memoire on Jack Pierce available anyway”, which gives fans a “comprehensive and unique insight into the background, psyche, and motivations of Jack P. Pierce; from his childhood in Greece to his immigration to America, his career rationales, his psychological instincts, his rise to fame and recognition, and his eternal legacy”, according to the listing on Amazon.
FAB Press has announced their latest edition to their Frightfest Guide, this time tackling one of the oldest monsters around: Vampires! Written by Nathaniel Thompson, this will follow the same style as their previous titles in the Frightfest series, which I have to say are all amazing. Beautifully laid out, with plenty of photos and information about each of the particular sub-genre they cover. I know, because I have all the previous editions!
They are taking pre-orders for the limited hardcover edition, that you can even get with a signed bookplate. The price works out to about $35 but it will cost you a bit more with the postage. Damn airmail freight! They do become available over here in paperback editions so you could always wait. But no matter which edition you get, I would highly recommend checking it, and the rest in the series out. They’ve covered ghosts, monsters, werewolves, exploitation, and grindhouse, which you can get most of them on Amazon for under $20. Such a deal. If you want to pre-order the hardcover edition, head over to FAB Press’ website HERE.
Back in 2012, Kier-La Janisse published her book House of Psychotic Women, that I guarantee was like no other book you’ve read before. Part autobiographical, while discussing in great details about different films that had an effect on Janisse throughout her life. Now, a decade later, she has expanded it with almost a 100 more pages and more than a 100 new film reviews, as well in a large format than the original.
According to publisher FAB Press, this book is “an autobiographical exploration of female neurosis in horror and exploitation films. Anecdotes and memories interweave with film history, criticism, trivia and confrontational imagery to create a reflective personal history and examination of female madness, both onscreen and off.” This will make sure you look at some films very differently than you do now, which is always the best that a book on film can do. You might not agree with the thoughts in here, but at least it will make you think.