While Mr. Bogdanovich wasn’t prolific in the horror genre, on one of his first films he worked with on the horror greats on one of their last films. The film was Targets (1968), and the star was Boris Karloff. Bogdanovich not only directed the film but starred alongside him as well. The story is about an old aging horror icon tired of the old ways, that beautifully (and terrifyingly) blends the old fictional horror with new and real horror of the day when a young man goes on a killing spree for no apparent reason.
Bogdanovich gave Karloff a chance to show once again that he was a much more talented actor than most would ever give him credit for. But Bogdanovich was a true lover of cinema in every sense of the word, and when you hear him talk about movies, you understand a little more the power of cinema.
Our thoughts go out to him and his family in this difficult time. Gone, but not forgotten.
Cinema history changed 90 years ago on this day, with the release of James Whale’s Frankenstein. Sure, Dracula had been released in February and was a big hit, but some thought it was a fluke. But once Frankenstein hit the screens, the wheels started turning for what would become the Universal Horror Classics. Can you imagine being in that audience 9 decades ago, having no idea what you were going to be seeing onscreen?
Of course, one of the reasons the picture was a success does fall on the shoulders of Boris Karloff and his incredible performance. He not only sparked a multitude of nightmares to adults with this character, but children from around the world saw through the makeup and saw the “monster” for what he really was, an innocent outsider. Growing up as a horror fan, like a lot of us, knew what it was like to be different and looked upon as strange or weird. So the creature has always had a special place with me.
This film has always been a personate favorite of mine, and would be in my top ten films of all time. It still is as impactful and powerful today as it was 90 years ago, thanks to everyone from the mad genius James Whale, the anxiety-ridden character of Henry brought to life by Colin Clive, the set designers to created this world they lived in. And of course, had it not been for makeup man Jack Pierce, we might not be celebrating this anniversary.
Here’s to another 90 years to our deeply misunderstood creature. May people continue to learn not to judge people from the way they look, but what is inside them.
On October 26th, this new documentary on one of the greatest icons of the horror genre will be available on Digital and On Demand from Shout! Studios. You’ll get to hear from names like Guillermo del Toro, John Landis, Joe Dante, Christopher Plummer, Ron Perlman, Peter Bogdanovich, Roger Corman, Christopher Frayling, and many, many more, all in honor of this great man. Check out the trailer below and mark your calendar for the 26th!
Just in case you might be late to the party, next weekend, Aug. 27th & 28th, at the Skyline Drive-in, they are holding their 10th annual Super Monster Movie Fest, with the theme this year of The Devil Made Us Do It, featuring 10 films dealing all things with the devil! We’ve been coming out to this event pretty much every year since 2012, and once again, we’re excited as hell to head out there next weekend as well!
Here is the final lineup and times for this year’s features:
I will watch any movie that Boris Karloff is in, no questions asked. Even if he in in there in a small role or cameo, I will watch it. He has always been my favorite actor and the movie that made him famous, James Whale’s Frankenstein, remains in my top ten films of all time. I also can never get tired of reading new books on him and his life, or seeing documentaries on this talented man. Now with this new documentary coming out from director Thomas Hamilton, we have the opportunity to maybe learn even more about this unbelievably talented actor.
You will get to hear from a wide range of filmmakers and scholars and why Karloff is important to them and film history. Names such as Guillermo Del Toro, John Landis, Joe Dante, Christopher Plummer, Peter Bogdanovich, Ron Perlman, Leonard Maltin, Christopher Frayling, Sara Karloff, Gregory Mank, Roger Corman, Stephanie Powers, Ian Ogilvy, Norman Jewison, Orson Bean, Caroline Munro, Stephen Jacobs, Dick Miller, Peter Asher, David J. Skal, Donald Glut, Lee Grant, Sharyn Moffett, and more.
Check out the trailer below and make sure to look for it when it does become available.
(1965) Directed by Daniel Haller Starring Boris Karloff, Suzan Farmer, Nick Adams, Freda Jackson, Terence de Marney, Patrick Magee
It’s funny sometime as a movie lover, that you have such fondness for a particular film that you had first seen as a kid, always remembering how cool it was. As an adult though, does that cinematic pleasure still remain, even after you’ve become more “educated” in the film world? Even after reading some less than positive reviews about the film? Do you watch it now and wonder how could I have ever liked this? Or is it like a small part of your brain is stepping back in time to that first viewing?Continue reading →
What better way to spend your Halloween than at the drive-in, watching 3 of the classic Universal Monsters! The McHenry Drive-In will be screening Frankenstein,Dracula, and The Wolf Man this Friday and Saturday, Oct. 30th and 31st.Continue reading →
It’s probably no secret that Boris Karloff is one my idols in the movie world. From the countless entertaining movies he appeared, to all the stories of him just being a great person in real life, he’s definitely my favorite of the horror icons. When the stage play Arsenic and Old Lace started, the role of Jonathan Brewster was played by Karloff. This was the character who stated that he killed someone because he said he looked like Boris Karloff! Karloff toured with that play for many years, but never made it to screen version. Continue reading →
Some time ago, when this whole pandemic thing started, I was posting a question about your favorites. It was basically done to give people quarantined at home something to do to help pass the time. Even though it was getting a pretty good response from people, after about a week though, I stopped. But I was recently reminded about something else it was doing, which was getting us fellow fans to communicate with each other, posting replies, and getting somewhat of a conversation going. Since we’re all fans of this great genre, no matter of your political, religious views, or whatever else, it was allowing fans to leave all that behind and just talk movies.Continue reading →
Back in 1938, a theater owner named Emil Umann rented prints of the original Dracula and Frankenstein, along with Son of Kong, and screen them as a triple feature. He got the rental of the films pretty cheap because the studios didn’t think anybody cared about these monster films anymore. Oh how they were wrong. These screenings became so popular, that Umann started running them close to 24 hours a day to keep up with the demand. He even contacted Bela Lugosi to come down to make appearances during the screenings. Once Universal discover this, not only did they increase the film rentals, but made 500 more prints and started renting them to other theaters. Plus, they immediately put another Frankenstein film into production!
If you haven’t had the chance to see these two classic monster films on the big screen and are in the Chicagoland area, now is your chance. The Pickwick Theater in Park Ridge, IL, will be screening both Dracula and Frankenstein on October 30th, starting at 7pm. The Pickwick is a great theater to see these films too! So make your plans now to make sure you attend and see our horror history come to life on the big screen!