Saturday, August 21, 2010

The House That Dripped Blood (1971)

Director: Peter Duffell

Starring: Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Denholm Elliott, Ingrid Pitt

More info: IMDB

Tagline: Vampires! Voodoo! Vixens! Victims!

Plot: A Scotland Yard investigator looks into four mysterious cases involving an unoccupied house: 1) A writer encounters a strangler of his own creation, 2) Two men are obsessed with a wax figure of a woman from their past, 3) A little girl displays an interest in witchcraft, and 4) A film actor discovers a cloak which gives him a vampire's powers.

My rating: 5.5/10

Will I watch it again? No

#91 on Drive-In Delirium Volume 2 (part of the TRAILER TRASH PROJECT)

The only horror anthology films I can recall really enjoying are CREEPSHOW (1982) and the more recent TRICK 'R TREAT (2008), both of which I've seen since I started this blog but have yet to write about (I'm sooooo fucking behind). So when it comes to these types of films, I go in optimistic and come out sleepy. There's almost always something to like but not enough to warrant repeat viewings. If there's just the one good story out of four or five, I'd be happy.

It was made by the 'other' UK horror movie studio, Amicus with Hammer being the dominant one. I've always felt that Amicus was between Roger Corman's cheap, lackluster Hammer-wannabe Gothic horror films of the 60s and Hammer's gorgeously delicious Gothics. Going by the numbered stories above, here's how they break down.

1) Denholm Elliott is always fun to watch and the twist(s) at the end were quite nice. I dug it but at only 20 minutes long it was sluggish getting through it.

2) This 20 minute story has the great Peter Cushing but he's not enough to save this slow and predictable segment.

How did this outfit get past the censors?

3) Now this one, with Christopher Lee, gets better except you see where it's going early on. But that's OK because the little girl is evil in the guise of innocence. This one runs about 25 minutes.

4) The final segment before the wraparound story wraps up, stars Jon Pertwee who's hamming it up (he's supposed to so it's OK). It's the shortest of the lot at only 15 minutes (if you don't count the 'surprise' ending). It's silly and hokey but I liked the idea of the horror movie star getting, unknowingly, Dracula's actual cape which in turn makes him into a vampire.

In all, though, the film just sits there plodding along. I'll keep giving these 60s & 70s anthologies a spin in the hopes that I'll find one I can sink my teeth into, so to speak, but my hopes in finding one are diminishing.

No comments:

Post a Comment