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Showing posts from June, 2012

The Gentlemen's Guide to Midnite Cinema Podcast

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A few weeks back I was invited to make a podcast with the delectable Aaron Duenas of The Death Rattle infamy. We chatted for a couple of hours over Skype - Aaron in Hawaii, myself in Northern Ireland - about Italian horror cinema, my book on Dario Argento and the little seen Italian-shock oddity, The Spider Labyrinth.
The podcast is now online for your listening pleasure, so why not head over to The Gentlemen's Blog to Midnite Cinema to check it out and see if Aaron lived to regret asking me to participate!

For great appreciations and critiques of everything from Seventies Ozploitation to lesser spotted Eurocrime titles, plus a slew of in-depth interviews with the likes of Laurence Harvey (The Human Centipede II), Sherilyn Fenn (Twin Peaks, Boxing Helena) and John Jarratt (Wolf Creek, Picnic at Hanging Rock) to name but a few - don't forget to check out Aaron's fine blog The Death Rattle.

Adios!

Audiodrome#9: The Devil In Miss Jones

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Gerard Damiano’s moody 'porn-chic' title The Devil in Miss Jones (1973) straddles an odd divide between art house and hardcore pornography. Upon release it was described as "More morality play than masturbation aid." It follows the tragic story of virginal spinster Justine Jones (Georgina Spelvin), who commits suicide only to end up facing an eternity in Hell because she took her own life. She insists that if she’s given another chance she can ensure she lives a life that truly warrants such eternal damnation. So begins an X-rated and oddly emotional odyssey of lustful licentiousness. The lush piano driven score courtesy of Alan Shuman highlights the melancholy at the heart of the story and negates typical conventions of kinky Seventies porn soundtracks.

Head over to Paracinema.net to read my review of Shuman’s wistful score. Feel free to leave a comment over there too if you're up for chatting about it.

While you’re there, why not pre-order a copy of issue 16 o…

Ginger Snaps

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2000
Dir. John Fawcett

When film critic and writer Laura Mulvey said that ‘Monstrosity is explicitly associated with menstruation and female sexuality... woman’s monstrous nature is inextricably bound up with her difference as man’s sexual other', (Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema) it's like she was specifically referring to John Fawcett’s Ginger Snaps; a film about a young woman who is attacked by a werewolf on the night she begins to menstruate. Links between the menstrual cycle and lycanthropy cunningly swirl together to form a twisted tale of monstrous pubescence filtered through a chilling body-horror narrative. The result is a dark, savagely funny and haunting film that staggers blinking and bloodied into the unkind light of day as the most significant ‘menstrual horror’ since Carrie (1976).

In classic horror cinema, the figure of the werewolf is used to signify a collapse of order and the boundaries between animal and human. Lycanthropy has been used as a metaphor …

Paracinema 16

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Issue 16 of Paracinema Magazine is now available to pre-order. Amongst the myriad articles (written by genres fans for genre fans) lurking breathlessly within its pages just aching to pleasure your glassy orbs are This Ain’t Hollywood XXX: The Cultural Significance of the Porn Parody by Justin LaLiberty; “Images of Horror and Lust” in Ken Russell’s The Devils by Samm Deighan; Rehabilitating Daddy, or How Disaster Movies say it’s OK to Trust Authority by Jon (Shocks to the System: Subversive Horror Films) Towlson; The Films of René Laloux: Notes on the Golden Age of French Science Fiction by Derek Godin; plus much, much more.

There’s also a little something by yours truly entitled Shadowy Suggestion in the Weird West: Val Lewton’s Apache Drums. 

Sound good? Fancy picking up a copy? Of course you do! You’re only human. Head over to Paracinema.net and pre-order one now.

Support independent publishing!

Dead and Buried

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1981
Dir. Gary Sherman

This original and atmospheric horror flick comes courtesy of the director of cannibals-in-the-London-Underground shocker Death Line and the men responsible for penning such classic genre titles as Alien, Return of the Living Dead and Total Recall (Dan O’Bannon and Ronald Shusett). It should come as no surprise then that it unravels as a rather unconventional and off the wall yarn with more than a few surprises up its bloodied sleeve.
When a number of vicious murders occur in the sleepy seaside town of Potter’s Bluff, Sheriff Gillis (James Farentino) suspects that something sinister is afoot. The further he submerges himself in the investigation, the more he realises that all is not what it seems in Potter’s Bluff, nor has it been for some time…

Opening with a shot of a black and white photo of the town that dissolves into live action, Dead and Buried immediately evokes contemplative notions of yesteryear and its roots in the past. This concept underpins the sen…

A Mummy Aboard the Titanic?

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On a recent visit to the newly opened Titanic Belfast®, I’m sure you can imagine my excitement when I discovered that one of the myths revolving around the sinking of the ill-fated vessel concerns a mummy that was secretly stowed away onboard. There was even a creepy mummy on display in the centre. Naturally I took pictures.

The mummy has been a popular stock figure throughout the history of horror cinema and literature, and it has long been associated with a terrible curse that brings about the untimely deaths of those who dare to enter its sacred burial place and disrupt its slumber. This belief probably stems from the supposed curse on the tomb of Tutankhamen and the death of Lord Carnarvon who was present during its excavation. Six weeks after his involvement in the project, Carnarvon died from blood poisoning caused by a mosquito bite.

From Bram Stoker’s 1903 novel The Jewel of Seven Stars, (later adapted as the 1971 film Blood from the Mummy's Tomb) to Universal’s Boris Kar…