oin the Decades of Horror: The Classic Era Grue Crew for this episode – Erin Miskell, Jeff Mohr, and Joseph Perry – as we take our second journey in a row to Transylvania this time take in the silent scream splendor of Nosferatu (1922), the first cinematic version of Bram Stoker’s classic novel Dracula.
Decades of Horror: The Classic Era
Episode 21 – Nosferatu (1922)
Nosferatu is most definitely based on Bram Stoker’s novel, but it is just as definitely an unofficial version. The filmmakers intentionally avoided obtaining the rights from the Stoker family, hence, the names along with a few other details, were changed to protect the not-so-innocent. As a result of their unsuccessful subterfuge, Dracula becomes Count Orlok/Nosferatu (Max Schreck), Harker is converted to Hutter (Gustav von Wangenheim), Mina is replaced by Ellen (Greta Schröder), Renfield is changed to Knock (Alexander Granach), and a new way to kill the undead is devised.
Directed by German expressionist legend F. W. Murnau, Nosferatu reinforces the director’s reputation as master of shadows. Jeff marvels at the shadows and shot composition of nearly every scene. This episode’s Grue Crew all agree that Henrik Galeen’s screenplay loses much of the character depth present in Stoker’s novel. Produced by Enrico Dieckmann and Albin Grau, Nosferatu was most influenced by Grau who also served as art director and costume designer, and even created some of the poster art.
It is hard to imagine Max Schreck as a normal human being after witnessing his portrayal of Count Orlok. In fact, many people over the years have speculated he was a real vampire.
Joseph makes sure we discuss Alexander Granach’s performance. His version of Knock seems to have set the mold for future portrayals of Renfield. Erin expresses her concerns for the dangers of one-dimensional female characters, such as Ellen, who represent pure good and whose only purpose throughout the film is to sacrifice herself for the benefit of everyone else.
All in all, they all agree. If you haven’t seen Nosferatu (1922), what’s the hold-up?
We plan to release a new episode every other week. The next episode in our very flexible schedule is another James Whale classic, The Old Dark House (1932), selected and hosted by Chad Hunt.
Please let us know what you think of Decades of Horror: The Classic Era and what films you’d like to hear us cover! We want to hear from you! After all, without you, we’re just four nutjobs talking about the films we love. Send us an email (email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org) or leave us a message, a review, or a comment at GruesomeMagazine.com, iTunes, Stitcher, the Horror News Radio App, or the Horror News Radio Facebook group.
To each of you from each of us, “Thank you for listening!”
Paul Cardullo returns to discuss another Film Festival Favorite, Family Possessions (2017) from director Tommy Faircloth. We've covered the film before online and in our Gruesome Magazine print edition but Paul provides a new perspective from not only GenreBlast Film Festival but from Wreak Havoc Film Festival as well and compares the two experience giving this review a unique perspective. The film feature two familiar genre names from the Eighties, Mark Patton from A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge and Felissa Rose from Sleepaway Camp. It also features up and coming stars from past Faircloth films Elizabeth Mears, Jason Vail, and Leah Wiseman in the starring role. Andrew Wicklum and Erika Edwards also make a strong impression in this terrific thriller.
Vanessa returns with another killer review of a supernatural horror film. This time it is Live-Evil (2017) from director Ari Kirschenbaum. The film features Charlene Amoia, Vladimir Kulich, and Tony Todd. Vanessa praises the film's spirit, tone, and artistry. She dives into the demons and the dead, mentioning Eddie from Iron Maiden along the way. Listen to the review below to discover why the film and its murder-mystery vibe connects with Vanessa so strongly.
"You ungodly warlock! Because of you this hotel and this town will be cursed forever!" An angry mob storms the hotel of Schweick (Antoine Saint-John), a warlock trying to keep the 7th doorway to hell at bay. Or whatever the hell is happening in this opening as he's covered in queso. The Beyond - like many a Lucio Fulci film - takes liberties with logic and forward momentum in story. There's a lot more emphasis on the horror of the images rather than a traditional narrative structure. It's an acquired taste. But who amongst the Decades of Horror 1980s crew acquired this taste? Listen to find out!
Decades of Horror 1980s
Episode 123 – The Beyond (1981)
The Beyond is the middle chapter in Fulci's Gates of Hell trilogy, following Gates of Hell (or City of the Living Dead) and just before The House By The Cemetery. While a loose trilogy, each has a Giallo sensibility that combines bright gore with nonsensical narratives. Outside of the basic premise of a young lady Liza (Catriona MacColl) inheriting a hotel that has a gateway to Hell, The Beyond is mainly an excuse for the madness to unfold. Tarantulas bite a guy's face. A woman's face melts after being covered in acid in front of her daughter. Zombies attack for no real discernable reason.
So, does this sit well with the Decades of Horror crew? Well, Doc Rotten is a tried and true Fulci fan, though he admits that the Italian legend frustrated him initially. Christopher G. Moore and Thomas Mariani admit they aren't as up on their Italian horror. Christopher has some trouble with the dream logic and lack of consistency in the characters. Thomas can see that, but revels in the unintentional hilarity at play. It's a brazen frank discussion about auteur theory, gore and the grammatical errors of "Do Not Entry." Make sure to go Beyond the extra mile and listen to it all!
We want to hear from you – the coolest, most gruesome fans: leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1980s podcast hosts at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Special thanks to Neon Devils for their awesome song Bone Chillin!
Our Patreon Poll Winner: Q The Winged Serpent (1982)
"Boy, have we got a vacation for you...where nothing can possibly go wrong..." - the tagline for the 1973 theatrical version of Michael Crichton's Westworld sets the movie up perfectly. Richard Benjamin and James Brolin star as friends who visit Western World to play out a fantasy vacation living in the wild, wild West. Yul Brynner is cast as The Gunslinger, a rogue cowboy dressed in all black who continually tries to gun down our heroes. Paul Cardullo joins Doc at the Retro Films Series at the Carolina Theater in Durham, North Carolina for a James Brolin double feature (more on the second feature in a future review). Find out how this classic which inspired the hit HBO series of the same name holds up 42 years later and on the big screen. Also, to paraphrase Paul, "You haven't seen anything until you have seen Dick Van Patten in a bar fight..." Check out Paul's review below.
Without even knowing it, Doc gets revenge on Jeff Mohr for suggesting Night of the Lepus as a Decades of Horror 1970s topic. In the spirit of that campy classing, mixing in elements of classic Eighties schlock Critters and Killer Klowns from Outer Spaces comes Cute Little Buggers (2017) from director Tony Jopia. Jeff is on board, armed with bottles of "Bugger Killer" to review the film about killer bunnies hungry for human flesh and primed to repopulate the world alien style. Oh, my. Jeff shares his appreciation for the plot, the effort, and the inclusion of Caroline Munro in an extended cameo role but confesses that much of the film is lost on him, disliking the film but selling it all the while. Check out his review below.
The Grue Crew is stuck in the traps of JIGSAW but doesn't seem to be too bothered since he at least switched Netflix on to stream STRANGER THINGS Season 2. Yes, the show everyone's talking about and the film series people cringe from vague memories of are here as fodder for the Horror News Radio crew. Joining them is award-winning filmmaker Christopher G. Moore, who suffers through the elaborate traps to get the sweet relief of his favorite show still running. But is everyone in agreement? Listen to Horror News Radio to find out! Dave Dreher also slips in some Horror News of the Week, in where we discuss the return of John Carpenter to the director's chair, ghosts crossing with Helen Mirren in the Winchester trailer and Rob Zombie resurrecting The Firefly Family. Oh, what horrors indeed!
As always, the HNR Grue-Crew would love to hear from you, the listeners, the fans. You can always reach out via email at feedback(AT)horrornewsradio(DOT)com or find us on Twitter: Doc Rotten | Dave Dreher | Thomas Mariani. Also, like us on Facebook and join the Horror News Radio Facebook Group.
Marvel returns to Asgard with Thor: Ragnarok (2017), the third in the Thor series of films. However, this addition to the franchise brings far more spirit, color, life, and humor to the sometimes stiff characters. Director Taika Waititi along with writers Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle, and Christopher Yost may have created the most accessible and hilarious Marvel Cinematic Universe movie thus far. While the plot is a bit thin and may waste its opportunity to spotlight Cate Blanchette as Hela, the Goddess of Death, it makes up for that with a terrific cast full of energy and charisma. Chris Hemsworth turns his Thor on end with a brilliant comedic performance while maintaining the action hero elements. Tom Hiddleston returns as fan-favorite Loki and never misses an opportunity to shine. Mark Ruffalo guest-stars as Bruce Banner (and the Incredible Hulk) while Tessa Thompson steals the film as Valkyrie. The film is full of surprises and delights and will surely entertain its audience. Thor: Ragnarok is solid gold! Check out the review from Doc Rotten below with guest review by Christopher G. Moore.
"This is indeed a disturbing universe." Maggie Simpson (James Earl Jones) gives us one of many great quotes the recite endlessly. The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror episodes are just a sliver of the legacy this titan of a show has left behind. With over 600 episodes in nearly 30 years of time, our favorite yellow-skinned cartoon family has seen a lot of things. Celebrity cameos, world-changing event & a gradual dip in quality. The works. Now, join Decades of Horror 1990s and Beyond for a journey through all of the anthology Halloween episodes that have aired from 1990 all the way to the most recent 28th entry as the October haunts season concludes!
Decades of Horror 1990s And Beyond
Episode 29 – The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Retrospective (1990 - 2017)
The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror is has been an annual staple for America's longest-running sitcom since it's second season. Starting off with segments that adapt Edgar Allen Poe or parody Amityville Horror, The Simpsons certainly has changed in the intervening years. The segments have grown more gruesome, the parodies more modern and the jokes... few and far between? I know. Someone saying The Simpsons has declined in quality on the internet. Shocker! Still, Simpsons THOH episodes always have something curious about them even at their absolute worst. The animation is usually quite elaborate, turning Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie & all our favorite Springfieldians into something off-kilter and Alf Clausen's music was always an ethereal joy.
To talk about the good, the bad and the ugly of all this, Thomas Mariani has recruited three terrifying treehouse dwellers and fellow lifelong The Simpsons fans Yonathan Habtemichael, Kaycee Jarrard and Scott Johnson. All three describe their passionate love for the classic years before groaning (and in some cases, sticking up for) the modern years that are so derided. Simpsons THOH segments of old are praised for their consistent laughs, imagination, and cultural impact. More modern stories are... given a bit less praise. Yet, there's still some love to go around for underrated gems and for the most peculiar episode: a Halloween Simpsons episode that is an anthology with no continuity?! Well, if you asked how that happened... a wizard did it. Happy Halloween Everybody... oh, it's November 1st? D'OH!
We want to hear from you – the coolest, most gruesome fans: leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1990s And Beyond podcast hosts at email@example.com or tweet Thomas @NotTheWhosTommy. Also, make sure to give us some love via iTunes reviews and ratings. Helps us get more notice along the way.
The intro and outro is “Suck City” by Black Math. Look for more of their music via Free Music Archive.
Batman Returns (1992)