Book Review: Vampire Films of the 1970s

Vampire Films of the 1970sVampire Films of the 1970s
By Gary A. Smith
Published by McFarland, 2017. 240 pages.

Being the ’70s is the decade I grew up in, watching more than my share of flicks on TV, I’m always up for reading more about this wonderful decade and the movies that came out. Decades before zombies would finally take over, at this particular point in time, vampires still ruled both in theaters and television. This is more than proven with the amount of titles covered here by Smith.

The book starts with a brief overview of the sub-genre, some rules of vampires, then we jump right into the Hammer Film era, where he first gives a little history about the famous British studio before jumping to their ’70s Dracula flicks, then moving on to other fang flicks. Since Hammer made quite a few of them during the ’70s, they are all covered here, lumped together in different sub-categories. There are other groups in the book, like Asian vampires, the Mexican Santo movies, even one on vampire porn! So there are plenty of titles to seek out if you are relatively new to the vampire genre, or are always looking ones you have missed.

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New Horrors from McFarland

McFarland is a leading publisher that seems to be intent on making me go broke. While their editions tend to be on the pricy side, they still crank out some great volumes on a plethora of subjects within the horror film genre. We recently came across three upcoming titles that have sparked my interests and I know will be soon added to our library. Yeah, I know…horror reference book…duh? Anyway, read on to see if you might be needing to add these to your own library in the near future.

twisted-visionsThe first book is called Twisted Visions and is a collection of interviews.But not with just anybody in the film business. These directors are from around the world and have left us with films that made a niche in the horror and exploitation genre, that still makes an impact on viewers today.

Author Matthew Edwards has found and interviewed twenty-three directors that fit that bill. Some of the names are a little familiar, such as Jack Sholder (Alone in the Dark, The Hidden), Jörg Buttgereit (creator of the Nekromatik films), and Alfred Sole (Alice, Sweet, Alice), to a few names that don’t seem to be mentioned that often, such as David Paulsen (Savage Weekend, Schizoid), Romano Scavolini (Nightmares in a Damaged Brain), as well as a personal favorite of mine, Mariano Baino and his highly underrated film Dark Waters, plus many more.

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