Entertainment

All posts in the Entertainment category

Music to Make Horror Movies By: Toto Coelo

Published December 10, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Toto Coelo Man o War.jpg

While it seemed like artists like Alice Cooper, Ozzy Osbourne and Gary Numan covered all the bases on horror and science fiction themes in recording during the ‘80s, a close look at Man o’ War, the single album release from the colorful Toto Coelo, proves that there was another vibrant, less appreciated force at work.

Decorated with a sense of neon fun, this group’s biggest hit I Eat Cannibals is included here along with numbers such as (I May Commit) the Perfect Crime, the title track, Spy Vs. Spy and the stylish, dance influenced Dracula’s Tango (I’m a Sucker for Your Love). One just has to say “fangs” for a title like that, right?!?

Unable to replicate the success of Cannibals, and perhaps disappointed about the non-release of the horror sequel Grizzly 2 (In which they appeared in concert footage), the group disbanded in 1985. But lucky bargain bin hunters know that the electric joy and goofy gothic charms of Toto Coelo will never truly fade. Now, if only the folks at Stranger Things would take notice…

Toto Coelo

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

Maid for Horror: Leila Bennett

Published December 8, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Leila Terror 1

With elastic eyes and a rubbery physique, Leila Bennett enlivened multiple Golden Age comedies, almost always playing domestics. On a controversial level, she even played a maid named Hattie, in black face, in both the stage and screen versions of a piece called The First Year. While this is a decision she probably would have neLeila Dr X 2ver made in a more enlightened time period, thankfully, she did make some correct assessments, career wise. For example, classic fright fans will forever benefit from her choice to appear in a number of fun, highly regarded gothic horrors.

In 1932’s Doctor X, Bennett’s often timid Mamie is forced to reenact the death throes of a serial killer’s victim through the investigative experiments of Lionel Atwill’s determined titular character. Nicely, when Mamie isn’t being terrified by Atwill, she is tending to Joanne, his supportive daughter who is played by the legendary Fay Wray. Coming to Joanne’s defense when Lee Tracy’s manipulative reporter tries to con her, Bennett is able to also display some feistiness here, giving her screen time a fine sense of fun and inventive balance. Leila Terror 2

In 1933’s lesser known Terror Aboard, Bennett displays an aggressiveness not seen in Doctor X. Here, as a maid named Lena, she pursues famed comedian Charles Ruggles’ frazzled steward, Blackie, with an ardent surety. Harassment as humor turns to horror, though, when Lena discovers that John Halliday’s smooth Maximilian, the owner of the ship on which this misadventure occurs, is the man responsible for all of the mayhem and bloodshed that the guests are experiencing. Bennett, nicely, applies a little coy navigation to her concern here, but her efforts to outwit Halliday end in failure. Thrown overboard by the villain, Bennett’s Lena joins the other victims in this Pre-Code slasher pre-curser. Mostly ignored upon its release, this piece’s interesting kills, including death by freezing and assisted suicide, have begun to give it a bit of recognition among gothic connoisseurs, as of late. This will, hopefully, help to put an end Bennett’s semi-obscurity, as well.

Leila Mark 11935’s Mark of the Vampire, dominated by Bela Lugosi’s haunting presence as Count Mora, is probably the most famous of this moldable pro’s terror offerings. But, Maria, her character, is, perhaps, the most pedestrian of the trio represented here. Put in charge of watching over Irina, the film’s heroine played by the regal Elizabeth Allan, Bennett is required to do little more than react in ever growing fright. Her presence, as in the other roles, is substantial and committed to with boundless energy, though. In fact, Bennett has more screen time than the mystical Carroll Borland, whose exotic nature and haunting composure have long made her one of this project’s most memorable features.

Leila Dr X 1.jpg

Seemingly retiring from acting in 1936, Bennett died in New York City at the age of 72. But, forever young in celluloid, this engaging, unique performer is truly ripe for deserved rediscovery now.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

Music to Make Horror Movies By: Julie Wilson

Published December 3, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Julie_Wilson

Elegant yet slightly naughty, the legendary Julie Wilson enlivened Broadway stages, nightclubs and some minor Golden Age of Hollywood productions with her always divine, truly eclectic talents. Her electric presence was, perhaps, best met with one of her signature numbers, the fun and bawdy I’m a Bad Woman.

While, naturally, adored in the refined climes of the cabaret scene, Wilson also gave a little something to the Frankenstein Kids with her appearance on the A Face for Radio episode of Monsters…proving she was not only an eternal beauty, but a truly generous soul, as well!

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

Hopelessly Devoted to: Mary Wickes

Published December 1, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Mary W2.jpg

Mary Wickes was well known for adding a bit of dour (and occasionally judgmental) hilarity to many television shows and classic films. Her appearance as a frustrated, world renowned choreographer on The Ballet, a first season episode of I Love Lucy, for example, helped make that show one of the legendary series’ most hilarious offerings. Mary W4

Best known to many modern audiences as Sister Mary Lazarus in the Sister Act movies, cinema sleuths drawn to the darker side may be fonder of her quirky appearances on such shows as Kolchak: The Night Stalker and Alfred Hitchcock Presents, though.

The Baby Sitter, a first season AHP episode, actually found Wickes in familiar comic territory. As Blanche Armstaedter, the best friend of Thelma Ritter’s love lost Lottie Slocum, Wickes adds plenty of humorous appeal. In fact, as she offers up tempting ice cream treats to Lottie, Wickes often comes off as a monument to devilish frivolity. Her delight in the fact that her fondest companion may be a cold blooded murderess makes Wickes’ Blanche the story’s standout, with this one of a kind performer  stealing scenes from her co-star, the well seasoned, virtuosic Ritter. Mary W6

Toby, on the anthology show’s second season, provided a more somber character for Wickes to attach her skills to. Working with a bit of a Tennessee Williams’ vibe, this production concentrates on the arrival of a fragile old maid type to a rambling boarding house. As Edwina Freel, the land lady of the establishment, Wickes provides plenty of heart and weathered kindness here. She seems to know that the romance between this crumbling flower and a long term resident is doomed to failure and her scenes resonate with both wearied hardness and a bit of tender concern.

Nicely, her tart edge is in full effect again with They Have Been, They Are, They Will Be offering on The Night Stalker. As Dr. Bess Winestock, a zoologist that Darren McGavin’s always curious Kolshak interacts with, Wickes delivers her lines with a tangy twist, often providing laugh out loud results. This particular venture is more science fiction in nature than some of this iconic show’s more horrific offerings. But Wickes does get to reveal the truly chilling fact that the bone marrow of the animals in her character’s care has been devoured then rejected by the hungry aliens that dominate this output’s proceedings here.

Mary W1Exposed as an often rigid and uncompromising force in Steve Taravella’s well researched biography I Know I’ve Seen That Face Before, these three varied appearances (among so many others) prove that Wickes will forever be one of the world’s premium actresses of any (and every) variety.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

Music to Make Horror Movies By: Fergie

Published November 26, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

fergie planet terror.jpg

“Like a barnacle they stick to me, like a zombie’s teeth in my flesh…”

As Tammy in Planet Terror, the multi-hyphenate Fergie unsuccessfully dealt with some vicious undead trauma. But in real life, this wise woman knows that the true emotional horror comes from a relationship gone cold.

Nicely, the video for Save It Til Morning, off of Double Duchess, her latest release, also prominently features handsome actor Jay Hernandez, known not only for his work in my deepest fantasies, but in the Hostel series, as well.

Of course, you can get in touch with this gorgeous songstress anytime of the day at www.fergie.com or https://www.facebook.com/fergie.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/bigggayhorrorfan

Horror, She Wrote: Alice Krige

Published November 17, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Alice K 1

Horror, She Wrote explores the episodes of the ever-popular detective series Murder, She Wrote, featuring Angela Lansbury’s unstoppable Jessica Fletcher, that were highlighted by performances from genre film actors.

Show business is full of complications…professional jealousies, Napoleon complexes, cold blooded killers. The sweet Nina Cochran (Alice Krige) definitely discovers this to be true on Murder in the Afternoon, a second season episode of Murder, She Wrote.

Alice K2The niece of the series’ stalwart Jessica Fletcher, a mystery writer who continuously finds herself solving real crimes, Cochran is accused of offing Joyce Holleran (Jessica Walter, Play Misty For Me), the evil head writer of the soap on which she appears. Of course, Cochran isn’t the only suspect for doing away with this callous doom bringer. Holleran has threatened the jobs of many of the show’s beloved cast, including the indulgent, adulterous Bibi Hartman (Tricia O’Neil, Piranha II: The Spawning).

Capped by a double red herring, this episode, nicely, allows Krige to display a full range of emotions. Fear and anger, naturally, figure prominently here. But true movie buffs may delight most to Krige’s sweet scenes with Lansbury and golden age character actress Lurene Tuttle (Psycho, Niagara, Don’t Bother to Knock), who plays Krige’s devoted grandmother with a daft charm.

Alice K3

Krige, who gave sophisticated and passionate performances in such horror offerings as Ghost Story, Sleepwalkers, Silent Hill and Stay Alive, also works well amongst the vindictive environs of  Walter and O’Neill. She, wisely, plays off their characters’ inherent selfishness with a firm and determined resolve of her very own. …and while that surely doesn’t provide much love in the afternoon, as those daytime ads in the flashy ‘80s always proclaimed, it most certainly allows for plenty of delicious, lightweight fun!

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

Curse of the Hag

Published November 17, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

Curse of the Hag

My buddy Jared insists that witches should be the next big trend in horror films. Now, if he’s talking kick-ass, feminist spellcasters – and I’m sure he is – then he just might be right on track.

For…massively awesome director Carolyn Baker has just unleashed the trailer for her latest Wisconsin based DIY effort Curse of the Hag…and it looks spooky, atmospheric and full of tough, complicated women.

The film, which is currently being submitted for festival circuit, can be followed at https://www.facebook.com/CurseoftheHag.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan

http://www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan