Even though this book was released October of 2018, this is the first time I’ve come across it, or at least that I’m remembering! Of course, being on Hammer Films, I know I’m going to need to add it to my library. But at only 96 pages, it does raise some concerns on the content. Sure, I’ll be ordering it anyway, if only to be able to review it here and let other Hammer fans out there know whether it is worth their $25!
According to the blurb from the publisher, author Alistair Hughes gives us “Everything you ever wanted to know about Hammer’s horror films is contained in this incredible graphic guide. Charts, templates, diagrams and illustration take you through all the facts and figures. From the relative heights of Frankenstein’s Monster, to the actors to have played Dracula … no stone is left unturned in this compelling and fascinating look at the films which redefined ‘Horror’ for a generation.”
Not sure if everything I ever wanted to know about Hammer’s horror films could be contained in only 96 pages, but we’ll see.
A Vault of Horror: A Book of Great (and Not So Great) British Horror Movies from 1956-1974
By Keith Topping
Published by Telos Publishing Ltd., 2004. 427 pages.
Okay….do we really need another book on British horror films? Damn Skippy we do! Especially when they are laid out like this one.
We are always a sucker for trivial information about our favorite films and this book gives us that and so much more. Each film reviewed is in different categories. We have the basic cast & crew info, plot/synopsis, and even tag lines and famous quotes. But then we also have different categories like “Nudity, Violence and Sadomasochism” or “Outrageous Methods of Dispatch“, or “You May Remember Me From…” There is also quotes from actual reviews of the film, as well as the authors own thoughts.
But the tons of extra trivia within these pages here are what makes this book a joy to read. No matter how much you know about these films, there is going to be something in here that you didn’t know. It also helps you connect certain actors or filmmakers with other films, giving you other titles to add to your “to-watch” list.
We had a lot of fun reading through this book and is a great one to go back to for research, or just an occasional time-killer. Topping has done an excellent job putting this volume together and is a must for every library. Highly recommended.