The Monster Club (1980) – movie review

the monster club pic 3

The Monster Club (1980) 

Directed by Roy Ward Baker
Produced by Milton Subotsky
Starring
Vincent Price
Donald Pleasence
John Carradine
Stuart Whitman
Britt Ekland
Patrick Magee

This is often considered the last Amicus Film, however Amicus was dismantled shortly before working on this film. This is also the last film that Milton Subotsky worked on in his career. It is based on short stories by British horror author R. Chetwynd-Hayes who is also a main character in the film. Vincent Price plays Eramus, a vampire who attacks the author, R.Chetwynd-Hayes, played by John Carradine. When he realizes he has attacked his favorite author, he offers Chetwynd-Hayes access to a place that will give himthe monster club poster ideas for his next book. He brings him to a club where all the ghouls and creatures of the night gather. At a small table in the corner three stories are revealed. The first story concerns a Shadmock described as a lesser monster who’s only power is his demonic whistle. The Shadmock, Raven, puts out an ad to hire a personal assistant. A young man convinces his girl to take the job just so they can later rob the rich old estate owner blind. At first the young woman is fearful of Raven’s strange, deathly look. But soon it seems the Shadmock and the assistant may be falling in love. As his trust in her grows he reveals the hidden safe showing the riches of the centuries. But will the young woman steal his valuables or stay on as his assistant and let their budding love flourish? Raven puckers his lips but is it for a kiss or to whistle? The second story tells the tale of a young family who lives in a big scary house and the husband/father who ‘works nights’. A few detectives in a van start flowing the young boy and asking him questions. What does your father actually do for a living? Why does he sleep all day in the monster club pic 2the cellar? etc. The detectives finally convince little Jimmy to let them In and lead them to the cellar. They are modern day vampire hunters with wooden stakes and garlic cloves. Can Jimmy’s dad somehow survive a daytime attack? In the final story an impatient movie director, Sam, goes location hunting for his next film and finds a small town inhabited by the Humgoo (ghouls). The ghouls won’t let him leave the town, they want him to stay for dinner. They paw and grab at him like zombies, trying sluggishly to bite him. He takes sanctuary in an abandoned church where they seem reluctant to enter. There he learns the strange history of the tthe monster club pic 11own. All the stories are campy entertainment and there isn’t a moment of anything remotely scary in the whole film. The film is amusing and entertaining, but I wouldn‘t consider it much more than a novelty. Between the story segments there are full 1980’s MTV video style songs played by bands at the club with mixed results. There’s also an interesting stripper dance where the woman takes off more than her clothes. The wrap around story concludes with a social message. The undead creatures make R.Chetwynd-Hayes, an honorary member of the Monster Club, after describing what man does to his fellow man (to a montage of news clips and video) and concluding that man is the biggest monster of all.

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Be sure to view all the Amicus films I have reviewed on Parlor of Horror at this master page: Amicus Films Overview 

Terry M West – ‘Night of the Car Nex’ story series

Car Nex story series

Night of the Car Nex series

Terry M West announces a new short story series based on his original story, Night of the Car Nex.

These tales will be written by some talented friends, hand picked by Terry, and they will expand on the Car Nex story-line. Car Nex is short for Carnivore from the Nexus.

The Car Nex story series presents tales from a variety of horror authors based on Terry M. West’s wicked demon creation, the Car Nex! Each Author is free to write the story with their own characters, settings and storylines, whether they are linear or alternative world adaptations.


Horror fans, get your monster on! Read the Car Nex series!
the Car Nex series on Amazon

Like the official Car Nex page on facebook

The Scariest Ghosts in Movies – my top 10 list

Parlor of Horror:

Thought this would be a good time to recycle this post. For all of you going to see the new Poltergiest movie, you might want to see how it compares to my top 10 list :)

Originally posted on parlor of horror:

The Top 10 Scariest Ghosts in Movies & film
These are my picks for the top 10 scary ghosts I’ve seen in movies and films. I’m talking about physical manifestations of ghosts, not necessarily the best ghost story or haunted house flicks.
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1)The Twins – The Shining (1980 – Stanley Kubrick)
Who knows what makes these twins so scary – they just are. They don’t really do anything, they just stand there with their creepy stares and creepy blue dresses.
  
 
Not so creepy all grow’d up!

2) Samara – The Ring (2002 – Gore Verbenas)
Another creepy little girl, but this one comes right off the screen at you.
  
  
Who is this pleasant young lady…What? No! She’s the actress that played Samara?

3) Blake and his Crew – The Fog (1980 – John Carpenter)
Damn, creeps with hooks that come in…

View original 608 more words

Earthquake (1974) – movie review

 earthquake 1974 poster 1

Earthquake (1974)

Directed by Mark Robson
screenplay by George Fox and Mario Puzo,

Starring:
Charlton Heston
Ava Gardner
George Kennedy
Lorne Greene
Geneviève Bujold
Richard Roundtree
Marjoe Gortner
Barry Sullivan
Lloyd Nolan
Victoria Principal
Walter Matthau

An ensemble cast fights for survival after a massive earthquake in Los Angeles. This film is a who’s who in 1970s stars and iearthquake 1974 pic 15s one of a series of disaster films that were made at the time, along with Airport, The Poseidon Adventure, and The Towering Inferno. With such a large cast it takes a full hour just to introduce them all and develop the drama of each ones life.

I couldn’t wait for the earthquake to hit. I knew with all the advancements of special effects, this was going to look like a bad Gamera film and I could get a good laugh. I must say I was pleasantly surprised by some realistic scenes. The quake sequence lasted a full seven minutes. Sure you can pull out a few hokey moments, a person running toward a falling building stone, and a bad camera earthquake 1974 pic 17warp effect to make it look like a building is falling forward, but overall the quake sequence doesn’t look all that dated. The dam busting wide open is the second climax of the film and the wash away scenes are just as impressive.

There are some good social messages within the story. Charlton Heston is the hero in the film despite his flawed character. He leaves his wife at a shelter so he can go find his mistress (the mistress winds up at the same shelter as the wife). Another storyline deals with the store clerk/loser that is suddenly called to the national guard and finds his position of authority to be the perfect time to take revenge against some local thugs. Although the beginning was rather slow, the quake, subsequent storylines, aftershocks and damaged dam, make for an exciting second half. George Kennedy turns out to be the secondary hero as the street cop trying to get some order in his crumbling city.

earthquake 1974 pic 3

rollercoaster poster midway_2 battlestar galactica movie
Sensurround
I had first seen this film in the theaters in 1974. I was 11 years old. At the time Universal Pictures had a short lived gimmick called, Sensurround, which would vibrate the theater seats when the earthquake hit. There were a few movies that included this technique including the War movie, Midway (1976), Rollercoaster (1977), and Battlestar Galactica (1979), for which it was quite effective. The way Sensurround provided the vibrations was with a giant speaker system at the back of the theater – twelve foot sub woofer cabinets developed by Cerwin-Vega Speakers (anyone in music would recognize the brand name). It would only pick up and deliver the lowest frequencies of the film so it wasn’t heard by human ears, but it was felt in the vibrations of the theater floors. I don’t know if the system was manually ‘clicked on’ at certain times of the film or if it was triggered by the film reel itself, but it did not activate until the destructive moments of the movie. I always hoped that the would do a Godzilla film with this feature but the days of multiplex theaters made it impossible to continue with Sensurround.

Rants and Raves – spring 2015

Rants and Raves – spring 2015

You’re sick dude!

I haven’t been able to get out much to the theaters to see any new movies. I’m still fighting the Big-C and I had a pretty bad relapse this year. I’m just now getting back on track…maybe. Just thought I’d let you all know so if you suddenly see no reviews here, it’s quite possible I’m in the hospital. For now you’ll probably just see a lot of reviews of older horror and sci-fi films. Also, I forget things because of the chemo, so if I told anyone I was going to read a review or check out something and haven’t, its because I don’t remember too well. bb_king 4

A nod to BB King, the master of Blues who passed away this week at his home in Las Vegas. He had a unique style, with an almost happy, uplifting sound, (odd for the blues) that was instantly recognizable to all who heard his sweet Lucille sing to his tunes. (Lucille is his guitar.) Every time I heard him play, it brought a smile to my face. Happiness to you in that big band in the sky, BB!

I’d like to say goodbye to David Letterman. His jokes were dry and his humor rather stale, and he often poked fun at himself for the stale jokes he delivered. However, behind that dry humor was intelligence, charm, and a sharp wit. Through the years I had watched The Late Show, davidletterman_2015on and off, knowing Letterman was always on with some great guests and poignant stories. Thanks for all the laughs and memories Dave. Also, a nod to Paul Schaffer, a talented musician and performer. You will be missed.

Looking forward to the Carnage Conservatory re-launch coming soon. If you all had not seen it, the CC was webzine of visceral Horror stories, the morec michael forsyth pic 2 gore the better.

I am thinking of moving all my writing tips posts to a different blog, a new blog where I may even host some stories written by my fellow bloggers. Let me know your thoughts on this.

C. Michael Forsyth (author of Hour of the Beast) has started a kick-starter campaign to launch his new graphic novel, Night Cage. It sounds like a great story mixing the classic exploitation style and graphic novel tradition. Even if you’re not one that donates to KS projects, you should definitely click the link and check out the video, it is awesome!

 

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Plus what?

OK, whats the deal with Google plus? I have no idea how to use it, what it is used for, or why I should try and figure it out. All I know is I keep getting contacted about my friends and fellow bloggers to add to my circles (?). So I finally added a whole bunch of people, but nothing really happened. I thought there was going to be some kind of reward or party, but I got nothing. I don’t even see a circle…

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Linkedin Park

Another thing, I’m not on Linkedin and have no intention of starting a Linkedin profile. I know I’ve been contacted by many people, but I’m not being rude, I just don’t have an account with them. I like content, not showing off how smart I am or important I am in a list of my great accomplishments. On a blog I provide content, (hopefully interesting) and I read content. I am not the content itself…

New Reads:

If you have the desire to read some great horror, check out these books from my fellow authors:

Chad Lutze – Night as a Catalyst 

Weldon Burge – Broken

James Ward Kirk – Death Anxiety

I haven’t read any of these yet but they are all talented writers and you are bound to get some great horror entertainment from these books.

night-as-a-catalyst-cover-final BROKEN weldon burge JWK death anxiety

King Kong vs T. Rex (1933) model kit – kit bash

kk v tr 006

King Kong vs T. Rex

Kit Bash (n) – when a kit builder takes parts of two or more unrelated model kits to create a completely different subject, theme, and model kit diorama.

Long story short. I only recently saw the Mountain Gorilla kit from Revell. As soon as I saw a pic on a web-site I got the idea to use it in a King Kong diorama. I found the Airfix Tyrannosaurus to be the perfect size to simulate the big battle scene from King Kong (1933). Although both of these models are discontinued, I was able to find them on eBay at decent prices.

I built and compiled items for the base myself. I asked fellow kit builder, Murray Wakeman to make the long leaf palm tree (on the left hand side of the diorama). I had seen the tree in one of his creations and knew it would fit well with the scene. (Thanks Murray).

Revell Endangered Animals - Gorilla Airfix - T. Rex

model kits and items:

Revell – Endangered Animals -Mountain Gorilla (1974)

Airfix – Tyrannosaurus Rex – (1977)

Murray’s Long Leaf Palm Tree (2015)

Ann Darrow self- sculpted (and the tree where she sits)

Scene-it trees and plants

Custom base – self made

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Coming soon, Building a Custom Base – check it out at: Mike K’s Youtube channel (Mike K. is me)

Horror art and books – artists available!

Stephen Cooney pic 11

Horror art and books

Here I’d like to feature some up-and-coming artists that have been creating book cover designs.

I say, judge a book by its cover! If the cover grabs you, chances are you will enjoy reading the story.

Do you have a new book coming out? These experienced artists are currently available for all your book cover and design needs.

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Stephen Cooney
is an illustrator and artist greatly influenced by metal horror artists such as, Ed Repka and Derek Riggs. Stephen is known for his art in the science fiction, fantasy and horror genres, and is especially known for his zombie paintings. He is quite adept at producing artwork with gore, so if you have some crazy idea, lay it on him. A couple of his pieces remind me of the infamous Cannibal Corpse covers. He has designed book and magazine covers for many different publishers and authors from all over the world (over 100) and is regularly seen at art and book conventions. In the future he hopes to design album covers for some iconic metal bands.
https://www.facebook.com/steve.cooney.9?fref=ts

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William Cook
is an artist and horror writer from New Zealand whose work has graced both, the covers and the insides of many anthologies and books. He often uses the signature tag of ‘WookieArt.’ Some selections here are illustrations/graphic art pieces done for book jackets and covers. His work uses stark colors and bold design in digital compositions that really catch your eye.

You can see more of his work here: http://williamcookart.tumblr.com/ and here for my book covers: http://bloodsoakedgraphics.tumblr.com/

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Malle Malle (Marcel)

Is a 21 yrs old Graphic Designer from Germany. Through his company Xonic Art & Design, he creates Album covers, Wallpapers, Logos, Banner & Profile pictures, mostly Dark Horror, but also Science Fiction, with Abstract & Robotic Elements. He would be willing to create Book cover designs. On his facebook page you can find his personal work and his designs created for customers. His Price is very reasonable, 15 Euro – for every Design. Anyone can buy the Designs and can print his personal Poster, T-shirt Design or other Merchandise. His official Page: https://www.facebook.com/xonicartanddesigns