DELIRIUM magazine returns with a tribute to the late, great Al Adamson!
DELIRIUM Magazine #23 is an affectionate salute to one of the most discussed exploitation movie architects of all time, the late, great Al Adamson!
To time with the release of Severin Films’ juggernaut Blu-ray box set featuring over 30 of Al’s bizarre works, this beautifully illustrated issue features exclusive interviews with Adamson’s producing partner Sam Sherman and director David Gregory, whose latest documentary BLOOD & FLESH: THE REEL LIFE & GHASTLY DEATH OF AL ADAMSON digs deep into Al’s oeuvre and examines the horrific, true crime tragedy of his senseless and gruesome murder. Further into our Adamson examination, we have film historian Howard S. Berger’s exhilarating analysis of Al and Sam’s signature opus: 1971’s berserk, stitched together monster mash DRACULA VS. FRANKENSTEIN, a so-called “bad movie” that is really a kind of secret, subversive psychedelic masterpiece.
Bouncing off that gonzo Gothic picture’s legacy, we jump back into the world of Hammer Horror, with an appreciation of 1974’s Hong Kong co-production THE LEGEND OF THE SEVEN GOLDEN VAMPIRES and then sit down for an EXCLUSIVE new interview with British horror legend Judy Matheson, who co-starred in the double-shot “Karnstein” Hammer shockers LUST FOR A VAMPIRE and TWINS OF EVIL! Padding out this extraordinary issue is a unique interview with HELLO MARY LOU: PROM NIGHT II director Bruce Pittman where we discuss NOT his filmography but rather his sideline as a photographer, snapping shots of legends like Robert Mitchum and Ann-Margret. Buffalo-based horror hero Greg Lamberson dissects his new creeper WIDOW’S POINT, multi-hyphenate artist Dante Tomaselli riffs on his unique body of work and managing editor Michael Gingold traps actor William Sanderson for a flashback interview on the notorious revenge thriller FIGHT FOR YOUR LIFE.
DELIRIUM #23 is a MUST for lovers of the bizarre, monstrous, bloody, beautiful and bizarre! ON SALE NEXT WEEK at www.FullMoonDirect.com!
Feast your eyes on the official teaser trailer for the latest DEADLY TEN film
Circle the monstrous month of March 2020 as the time when you’ll get your first taste of the next DEADLY TEN title, BLADE: THE IRON CROSS! Director John Lechago’s kinky and twisted spin-off of the anti-Nazi PUPPET MASTER “AXIS” trilogy starring everyone’s favorite murderous marionette is in post-production as we speak and set for its WORLD PREMIERE on Full Moon Features and Full Moon’s Amazon Prime channel.
Mike Flanagan’s Netflix series is among the greatest haunted house tales ever filmed
Many years ago, when I was coming of age as a horror film obsessive, my mother mentioned that – to her- the scariest film ever made was Robert Wise’s 1963 movie THE HAUNTING. She cited the lack of blood, of violence, of anything remotely exploitative in the picture and praised the way it had the power to terrify with sound and mood and the reactions of its characters to things that went bump in the night. For someone who was in love with FANGORIA magazines and who was waking up in the era of practical special FX from goremeisters like Tom Savini, this sort of antiquated picture seemed a bit too tame for me. But then I saw the film. And I got it. And man, did it get me…
Wise’s adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s novel “The Haunting of Hill House” is indeed a marvel of dread and seems only more powerful when stacked against Jan de Bon’t vulgar 1999 FX-soaked stinker of a remake, a migraine-inducing dud that fills in all the delicate blanks of its predecessor with unimaginative shocks and overbaked imagery. News of yet another mounting of Jackson’s tale, this time as a Netflix series, might have annoyed some of THE HAUNTING’s puritanical fanbase (especially in the wake of that de Bont bummer), but turns out there’s no need to fret. Because this new incarnation, THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE, is helmed by OCULUS and OUIJA 2 director Mike Flanagan, a director who is probably the only voice in contemporary horror worthy of the moniker “master”. Here is a filmmaker who truly, deeply understands the mechanics of the haunted house drama, who almost always shows a deft hand at balancing character and carnage and refuses to submit to cheap shocks and savagery. Flanagan developed, wrote and directed every episode of THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE, making this the ultimate Flanagan experience, a ten hour free-fall into domestic hell that honors the source novel and the Wise film and still manages to feel contemporary, fresh and accessible.
In short, it’s one of the greatest small-screen horror entertainments I have ever seen.
To time with the impending release of the upcoming DELIRIUM Magazine #18, artist and designer Chad Savage has totally re-vamped our web portal www.DeliriumMagazine.com! In the coming weeks, expect a new wave of fresh, original content, including film and music reviews, exclusive interviews, essays and news as well as sneak peek looks at pages from our acclaimed print magazine!
Here’s a page from our exclusive interview with Oscar nominated screenwriter (GLADIATOR, SWEENEY TODD, SKYFALL, ALIEN: COVENANT) and PENNY DREADFUL creator John Logan, discussing his adoration of both Shakespeare AND horror movies. It’s a wild read!
This feature and tons more await you in our David Cronenberg-heavy 18th issue (scroll down to see our incredible cover by photographer Ama Lea) and you can order that issue now by going HERE!
Keep visiting www.DeliriumMagazine.com and explore some of the great editorial we’ll be running. At DELIRIUM, we’re not just riffing on horror movies, but ALL cult, fantasy, exploitation and oddball cinema. We just throw all our messy shared psyches at the wall and whatever sticks ends up in our magazine, and now…here. You never know what you’re gonna get.
Thanks for reading and sticking with us. Things are about to get weird (er)!
– Chris Alexander, EIC and co-founder, DELIRIUM Magazine
Prolific Eurohorror auteur Jess Franco made over 200 films in his wildly erratic, fascinating career. Among them is the visually splendid, extremely violent and intense 1976 retelling of JACK THE RIPPER, starring the one and only madman of the arthouse Klaus Kinski as Dr. Orloff/The Ripper.
DELIRIUM has an exclusive new interview with legendary European exploitation http://premier-pharmacy.com/product-category/anti-fungal/ film producer Erwin C. Dietrich and Swiss actress Nikola Weisse on the making of this Franco classic and working with two of genre cinema’s most interesting artists.
Filled with amazing art and edifying words, this is our most outrageous issue yet!
And look for a MAJOR Full Moon/Jess Franco announcement in the coming week!
THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH and THE WHIP & THE BODY
by Matty Budrewicz & Dave Wain
Amidst the cultural wave of boutique Blu-ray labels, Italian terror titan Mario Bava’s work has perhaps been best served, with superior, often extras-packed editions of his gloriously distinctive shock popping up on a regular basis. This year alone has been particularly rich release-wise, with robust deluxe packages of his long-lost crime potboiler RABID DOGS, the ALIEN-inspiring PLANET OF THE VAMPIRES, and a striking limited edition of his magnum opus BLACK SUNDAY hitting shelves either side of the pond; a fitting way to celebrate what would have been the maestro’s centenary. And now two more can join the party: his 1963 double whammy of THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH and THE WHIP & THE BODY, let loose by the UK’s Arrow Video and Odeon Entertainment, respectively.
With a luxurious wealth of Bava goodness to their name already – the aforementioned RABID DOGS and BLACK SUNDAY, and Bava’s third 1963 offering, the Boris Karloff-starring portmanteau BLACK SABBATH – Arrow’s GIRL is yet another impressive string to the companies bow. The quality of the film’s presentation is top-end: Though not quite free from the odd scratch and occasional frame movement, by and large the 2K HD master lovingly struck from the film’s fine grain interpositive – and, partially, internegative – is incredibly pleasing on the eye.
As well as porting over the three key special features from Anchor Bay’s solid 2007 boxset – Bava biographer Tim Lucas’ scholary commentary; a nice nine minute interview with co-star John Saxon; and Italian horror expert Alan Jones’ breezy introduction – Arrow also throw the snappy ‘All About the Girl’ featurette into the supplementary mix; a twenty minute or so appreciation of the film featuring Jones, and filmmakers Richard Stanley (robo-killer thriller HARDWARE) and Luigi Cozzi (goofy Video Nasty CONTAMINATION). Better still, however, is their inclusion of the equally nicely mastered alternative American cut of the film, retitled EVIL EYE by distributor AIP. Despite being just as entertaining, EVIL EYE is, of course, no match for Bava’s intended Italian language version; even if the director himself was unsatisfied with the end result.
THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH is a fluffy murder mystery; a Hitch-cocktail of suspense, thrills and gallows humour as a young tourist (Letícia Román) finds herself at the centre of a decade old set of serial killings. And though, as Bava once exclaimed, it’s wholly preposterous, as a technical masterclass it’s unbeatable; a sumptuously shot pulse-pounder, with Bava’s prowling camera and innovative accent on slick, macabre and violent imagery laying the groundwork for the myriad of gialli that would follow – a genre Bava himself would refine the next year with BLOOD AND BLACK LACE, and later re-work with slasher progenitor A BAY OF BLOOD.
With THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH being widely acknowledged as the first giallo, as author Troy Howarth suggests in his insightful liner notes for Odeon’s THE WHIP & THE BODY, WHIP too could belong to that genre with its overt luridness and mystery-themed narrative. Regardless, Odeon finally gives the film the love it deserves following years of showing up on TV in a washed out, soulless full screen print. The HD clarity is nothing short of astounding, perfect for what is, again, one of Bava’s most beautifully lensed films; from the familiar Anzio-based coastal sequences, to the lush, shadowy textures of the castle interior; dripping with atmosphere and melodrama.
Often – incorrectly – criticized for its supposed languid pacing, really it is here where Bava truly excels, delivering a slow-burning escalation of terror as the ghost of a sadistic nobleman (the immortal Christopher Lee) terrorises his family following his death. With cast and crew all credited with English pseudonyms, the film betrays producer-led aspirations of fitting alongside the gothic vogue of Hammer and the Corman-Poe cycle; Bava, however, may well have surpassed them all.
Just as he did on Arrow’s GIRL, Tim Lucas is present for Odeon’s talk-track duties, the Video Watchdog editor having re-recorded his commentary from VCI’s fourteen year old region 0 NTSC disc in the wake of his knowledge expanding friendship with the film’s lead, Daliah Lavi. It’s another typically comprehensive and rewarding listen. Elsewhere, Odeon have included an engaging and detailed twenty-two minute overview of the film by film historian Jonathan Rigby, and a leisurely forty-five minute conversation with Lee, taken from the the ‘British Legends of Stage & Screen’ series. It may not be quite as lavish as Arrow’s GIRL, but Odeon’s WHIP is every bit as vital for students of spaghetti scares and connoisseurs of charismatic classic horror.
Snap ’em up.
THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH DELIRIUM REVIEW 8/10
THE WHIP & THE BODY DELIRIUM REVIEW 8/10
By Amy Seidman
If you’ve ever griped about the fault in the latest film festival you attended and thought “Why don’t I create my own? Why not? How hard can it be?” Well, my friend, prepare to have your eyes opened. Sit back, grab yourself a glass of your favorite plonk, and let this 88 minute documentary be your guide.
CELLULOID HORROR follows the trials and tribulations of now legendary writer Kier-La Janisse, the tireless organizer, founder and festival programmer (“and she’s one person!” exclaims a newscaster) of CineMuerte, Canada’s first International Horror Film Festival.
The horrors of Kier-La’s rocky upbringing cleverly coexist with scenes drawn from the films she has screened at the festival that sadly mirror her own life. So what drives this unflagging tough as nails woman? The answer: Anyone starting up a festival has to possess those qualities. You have to eat, sleep and breathe the task, and this film documents just that.
An interesting aspect of CELLULOID HORROR is the support Janisse receives from the founders of competing festivals. From their points of view, Kier-La is a director with an unwavering passion and knowledge of the genre. More than that, she is thick skinned and fully capable of absorbing the hits that taking on an endeavor as big as this one is. They offer assistance in any way possible instead of seeing her work as a threat to their own festivals. In addition to the help provided by other festival organizers along the road to bringing CineMuerte to life, she receives support from friends, volunteers, and her husband as well.
By her own estimation, it costs about 25,000 dollars a year to run CineMuerte, so you may wonder how she funds it? My favorite of her funding tactics has to be the “Torture Garden, which tests a fan’s ability to sit through 12 hours of horror films that Kier-La describes as “truly fucked up.” Starting with a 20 dollar cover (which goes to funding the festival), the rate drops with each hour that you stay, and ends at 5 dollars if you survive that long. Her film selection is, in general, not for the faint of heart as proven by the woman who left crying or the man who LITERALLY fainted twice after watching Cannibal Holocaust.
Looking at the clips, the documentary can also read as a horror “greatest hits” package. If you are a fan of Udo Kier or Jean Rollin and need your fix, this film will cure what ails you. Udo Kier is truly Kier-La and the festival’s biggest cheerleader. Udo uses every press event as an opportunity to plug the fest and question why there is such a lack of support for it. From finding a place for Jean Rollin to get dialysis in Vancouver to separating http://healthsavy.com/product/nolvadex/ from her husband, this film is an inspiring and at times rocky ride.
Now, on to the bonus material…
The first and quite unique special feature of note is actually not in the film at all but in its packaging. Using the technology normally associated with singing birthday cards, just opening the DVD case for CELLULOID HORROR will freak you out when you are greeted by Udo Kier’s voice saying ”Where is Kier-La? I’m going to kill her.” It certainly scared the shit out of me when I first opened it, and had the same impact when I pranked the super-stoned couch surfer crashing in my apartment. It’s a great promotional idea, and you too can amuse yourself by playing the game with unsuspecting friends. When your targets open the box act as if you don’t hear Udo Kier’s voice, and using your finest patronizing tone ask about what drugs they’re blasted on, and as a capper ask them to lie down while you get them water and they reflect on their mental state.
Next is director Ashley Fester’s commentary. Among many anecdotes about the construction of the film, she thoughtfully discusses the accompanying music by Max Mueller that sets the background ambience for the film rather than dominating it. Fester touches on the lengthy process of getting the rights to use clips in the film which was of particular interest to me inasmuch as the film is loaded with them. She also uses the opportunity to thank the unsung heros of the film and all those that made it possible.
Additionally, there are Q&A’s for “Squirm” and with Udo Kier, deleted scenes and plenty of footage not included in the film. Real bang for your buck with this one.
While CELLULOID HORROR is a great tribute to Kier-La and to CineMuerte, it also provides a great resource for films you may not have seen. So if you’re dreaming about your own movie festival, and mimicking a small business start-up like the CineMuerte festival truly was? Well, then, stop daydreaming and prepare to put yourself deep in debt, risk alienating your friends and family, and all for the love of exposing people to films they may otherwise not be able to see. With a little luck you may, just MAY make it in the film fest business.
A final word: Check out this doc, and when you get a chance take a walk off the beaten path of Hollywood blockbusters, and recognize your local film fest by honoring it with your presence. And while you’re at it, how about offering a glass of the aforementioned plonk to a stressed-out organizer. As much as we all love horror flicks, it’s a tough racket.
Go to www.BreedProductions.com to order CELLULOID HORROR today.