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Messages - Gothick

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4336
Fans,

Looks as if Fox Studios continues to give new meaning to the phrase "blood-spattered screen" with this week's twofer release of the Amicus classics Tales from the Crypt (1971) and Vault of Horror (1973).  From patron reviews posted today on Amazon.com (I have not been able to find reviews of the disc elsewhere), I gather that my worst fears have been released and Fox have chosen to release the butchered 1974 US MPAA-approved theatrical print of Vault of Horror.  Genre specialists were scandalized by the state in which the film debuted in US theatres back in the day.  I've never seen but have read lurid descriptions of butchered segment finales replaced by clumsy freeze-frames for more than one of the episodes in this typical Amicus omnibus entry (if you've seen Dr Terror's House of Horrors, Torture Garden, From Beyond the Grave, or any number of other titles in the Amicus catalogue, you've basically seen Vault of Horror).  I am particularly upset by this news because I've been waiting for years to see this one in a restored print, as it includes pairings of some of my favorite British thespians; notably Daniel and Anna Massey cast as brother and sister in the first and Glynis Johns and Terry-Thomas as husband and wife in a later segment.

Fortunately, a Region 0 UK release of Vault of Horror is available from British dealers on eBay and Amazon.co.uk.  This is now my sole court of resort for finally getting to see this one, it would appear.

I recommend another entry in the new releases from Fox: Devils of Darkness (a completely forgotten, stylish little film from 1965) paired with Witchcraft, a 1964 release directed by Don Sharp that's circulated for years in low-quality bootleg prints.  Both films have story elements that fans will find reminiscent of Dark Shadows, and from what I can determine, both films have been released in decent quality prints by Fox.

G.

4337
Current Talk '07 II / Re: today's slideshow
« on: September 12, 2007, 03:31:11 PM »
That was the day the Pod People made their clumsy attempt to infiltrate Collinsport.  Before the Pod Carolyn had spent even a single day at the Great House, the real Carolyn returned and decimated her alien imposter with a super-strength can of Aquanet.  It holds, and holds, and HOLDS!

"Marilyn" Ross later attempted to write a novel about this, but his innate insipidity took over and the truth was never told ... until now!

cheers, G.

4338
Current Talk '07 II / B & J
« on: September 10, 2007, 07:56:45 PM »
Over the past weekend, I took several breaks from catching up with various domestic routines to revisit set number seven of the DVD series.  In particular, the memorable episode in which an hysterical Julia discovered the *true nature* of Dr. Lang's experiment and was hollering into the phone to the operator to connect her to the police, "qu-HICK-ick-ick-icklyeeee, QUICKLY!" only to be told by Barnabas to "remember someone."

Despite the gaffe, I found Julia's next line to be beautifully understated:  "You always win, Barnabas."

Barn replies something like "We checkmate one another."

And Julia sadly and quietly demurs:  "No, you stop me but I seldom am able to stop you."

I thought it was a brilliant little moment, perfectly encapsulating a lot of the relationship between these too.... and it came in the wake of one of the most notorious blunders in the series' history!

G.

4339
Calendar Events / Announcements '07 II / Re: The Old House in Tarrytown, NY
« on: September 09, 2007, 12:28:05 AM »
Wow, what gorgeous images on Rob Yasinac's page.  Thanks for sharing that link, and the great shots, Midnite!

G.

4340
Some might appreciate what I wrote about her on my blog:

The book [A Wrinkle of Time]  had a huge influence upon me as a shy, bookish, all too self-concious child in the mid Sixties. Mrs. Whatsit was perhaps the first of a series of brisk, witty Crones I kept waiting to sweep into my own life with a dash of wisdom and ample comforting arms. Above all, I remember wiping away tears when Meg is told "Your faults are your greatest source of strength." I lost track of how many times I silently repeated that line to myself during my extremely painful, awkward adolescence (which only presaged an equally uncomfortable young-adulthood). Madeleine L'Engle was thus one of my mentors, albeit second-hand through her books; I'll always remember her with honor and love.

Incidentally, Hugh Franklin wasn't L'Engle's only Shadows connection.  During the 1940s she roomed with her lifelong friend, a flamboyant New York actress named ... Cavada Humphrey.

cheers, G.

4341
Calendar Events / Announcements '07 II / Re: That Familiar DS Ring...
« on: September 09, 2007, 12:18:07 AM »
The actual dog-howl sound effect from the show would make a FABULOUS cell phone ring tone.

G.  (not a cell phone owner)

4342
Current Talk '07 II / Re: Nicholas Blair's motivation
« on: September 08, 2007, 11:41:59 PM »
As Joy said, Nicholas frequently reminds Cassandra about their "bargain."  My understanding is that she was allowed to return to the mortal world in order to fulfill her curse upon Barnabas and drive his soul into the fires of perdition (Great Goddess, I think I'm channelling Rev. Trask!!).  Once he brings her back, we presume he hangs around to make sure she gets her job done without further blundering.

One of my favorite scenes is when Nicky and Cass are out on the terrace and he sneers at her for being "so in-COM-pe-tent."  I just adore HAA's reading of Nicholas' very fruity dialogue.  This stuff is better than heroin--hell, it's better than two sticks of Land-o'Lakes lashed together in a rough-hewn manner!

The Nicholas/Cassandra scenes hint heavily at some pretty dark and gritty backstory between the two, and a lot of fanfiction has been written speculating about just what this was.  It's too bad they never did a flashback to show how the two first met.

G.

4343
Testing. 1, 2, 3... / Re: Was something wrong (for over 2 weeks??)
« on: September 07, 2007, 11:40:40 PM »
Do you use Internet Explorer (IE)?  I do and this happens to me frequently.

In general, this site doesn't work very well with that browser--very sludgy and clunky.  I blame it all on Bill Gates...

G.

4344
Current Talk '07 II / Re: The Video Watchdog on 'Dark Shadows:The Beginning'
« on: September 07, 2007, 11:16:06 PM »
Thanks for this, retzev. Nice to see that Tim is finally starting to understand the unique fascination of DS!

G.

4345
What fun!  It's nice to hear that actual residents of Maine appreciate our kooky show.

G.

4346
Calendar Events / Announcements '07 II / Re: GH: A Hard Act To Follow
« on: September 06, 2007, 11:28:51 PM »
Thanks for that review, Brandon.  I heartily agree that Grayson was "f**king awesome" and I'd say the same about the book, too!  Hats off to R. J. Jamison!

G.

4347
This is in response to the original post from testokes:

Since you say you're new, you may not be aware that *a lot* of how the Dark Shadows storylines evolved (or failed to evolve) was directly dictated by Dan Curtis.  There's an interview with Sam Hall from the 1980s that is cited in a lot of the books available on the history where Sam recalls saying to Dan more than once, "Dan, please, can we NOT do x, y or z" and Dan would respond:  "Are you writing the show or not?  If you don't want to do it, I can get other people to write this show, you know!"  Odd though it may seem today, Adam apparently generated lots of positive fan mail from the kids who had become a big chunk of the show's audience back in 1968.  I remember reading about this at the time and thinking it odd although I was only ten years old myself in '68.

According to Robert Rodan's reminscences out at the LA Festivals, Adam's abrupt departure from the show occurred when the actor requested a raise.  (The same thing happened to Lisa Richards, too.)

I still think the 1968 storyline with Adam, Cassandra, Nicholas, the Dream Curse and Eve included some of the best moments from the show.   I won't bother to do a laundry-list here because I've already done so in MANY other threads that bash this period of the show's history.  I do find it interesting that people who detest this period of the show are more than willing to cheerfully ignore the longueurs and imbecilities of other periods in the series.  As I have said before, I regard Dark Shadows as a patchwork of shining moments and lacklustre misfires--sometimes this was the case even within a specific episode!

G.

4348
Calendar Events / Announcements '07 II / Re: Happy Birthday to Raineypark!
« on: September 04, 2007, 04:05:22 PM »
Happy Birthday Dear!!!! (even if it is three days late and a dollar short--as my Dad used to say).

Many Blessings to you!

hugs, Steve

4349
Current Talk '07 II / Re: Today's slideshow 09/03/2007
« on: September 04, 2007, 03:41:03 AM »
Barnabasjr, I totally agree!  I expected a caption along the lines of:

"Well, Barnabas, you can't come because Professor Stokes DIDN'T invite you over for the Wine and Cheese Hour in the Senior Common Room!  Nyah, nyah, nyah!"

G.

4350
Calendar Events / Announcements '07 II / Re: Another 2004 DS Reference
« on: August 23, 2007, 09:03:20 PM »
The reference to Dark Shadows in this entry strikes me as odd.  Surely the network filmed any number of failed pilots during 2003-2004?  Of course, very few if any generated the level of buzz that the Shadows pilot did--and surely very few came with a five million dollar plus price tag!

G.

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