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(Review originally written at 25 July 2008)

It's amazing that he man who has made so much crap movies in his career, in which giant crabs, enormous leeches and other unlikely monsters are threatening the Earth, can also make good movies as well. Roger Corman is sort of the uncrowned king of B-movies but this movie is simply above that. It's the second out of six movies he did based on an Edgar Allan Poe story. Ironicaly those are perhaps also the six best movies that he ever did in his still going on long career of directing and producing movies. Most of his Edgar Allan Poe based movie he made also starred Vincent Price as the movie's main lead.


The movie perhaps more looks and feels like an Hammer studio movie but it in fact isn't one. Good to see that not only the Hammer studios had a sole monopoly on horror film-making in the '50's, '60's and '70's. This movie uses the same sort of atmosphere, character treatments and story-telling, completely with the same sort of (fake) looking sets and locations.


The movie obviously benefits from the presence of Vincent Price, who plays the mysterious main lead of the movie. Vincent Price was a true Shakespearean like actor, who just happened to like playing in horror. He and others such as Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee truly uplifted the genre at its time and gave the world many enjoyable and great horror flicks. Price starred in many different movies based on Edgar Allan Poe stories and poems. Like usual for these type of movies, all of the other actors in the movie aren't much good and are some big unknowns that never really made it in the business.


It's truly an atmospheric movie. The movie its horror spawns from the movie its mysterious and eerie atmosphere. It also features some great stylish done flashback sequences, which adds to the overall horror atmosphere of the movie. The movie further more features some truly memorable horror moments. It's a movie that definitely gets better toward its end.


The movie has some great atmospheric music, which really suits the genre. The score is composed by Les Baxter, who spend most of his career working for these such movies, which also explains why he never broke through to the general audience.

Wonderful and effective Corman/Price Edgar Allan Poe movie within its genre.


8/10


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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