Monsters

All posts tagged Monsters

Lon Chaney, Jr. in Happy Landing

Published June 2, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

Lon solo

Truly one of the oddest stardom stories must belong to Sonja Henie. A world famous Olympian skater, Henie made a huge mark on Hollywood in the 1930s. Providing an exuberant presence with modest acting skills, she appeared in vehicles that revolved around her ability to perform in huge Busby Berkeley style numbers on acres of ice. Many of these spectacles made tons of money, meaning Henie became one of the most poLon grouppular stars of her time…albeit in some of the strangest cinema ever produced.

Nicely, in 1938’s Happy Landing, Henie shares a brief scene with a future horror icon. Appearing here as Trudy Ericksen, a small town Norwegian hopeful who has started to make good in the Big Apple, Henie impulsively declares that she is going to marry a playboy, enacted smoothly by Cesar Romero (Two on a Guillotine, Batman), to an overeager reporter – –  played with gusto by none other than Lon Chaney, Jr. ! Nicely, Chaney’s goofy everyman energy is in full if modest supply here. For terror fans, it is a truly pleasant surprise, and one of the many things that makes the viewing of these old black and white programmers such a pleasure.

Sonia HenieNaturally, Henie, who spends much of the movie in close-ups featuring an approximation of thoughtful whimsy, finds her true love by the film’s spectacular finish. Chaney, of course, would go on to classic monster status with his appearances in such films as 1941’s The Wolf Man, 1943’s Son of Dracula and 1944’s The Mummy’s Ghost.

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

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Review: Printsploitation 3

Published February 24, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

Printsploitation3

If one needs evidence of the diversity of the horror fan, they have to look no further than the latest issue of Printsploitation magazine. A combination of a comic book, fine art publication and a more traditional genre magazine, this brain child of artist Scott Miller, features drawings from a number of influential indie genre artists devoted to various decades of terror cinema.

Nicely, in the third volume, the glorious black and white artwork is balanced out by a terrific article on the posters of ‘80s sexploitation flicks (and fun reviews of the films themselves) by Heavy Metal Movies author Mike “McBeardo” McPadden and a celebration of acclaimed yet obscure VHS box artist CW Taylor by Dr. Jose.

The art, itself, is an amazing display of eclectic interests and themes. From Don England’s take on Peter Cushing to Putrid’s detailed reimagining of the (much maligned) 1979 monster film Prophecy, this volume has surprises on every page. Favorites here include Corrine Halbert’s darkly innocent take on Michael from the epically trashy Euro horror Burial Ground and the beautiful rendered power profiles of such icons as Susan Tyrell, Debbie Rochon and William Girdler by Klon J. Waldrip.

Capped off by Halbert’s hypnotically quirky take on 1962 indie masterpiece Carnival of Souls on the cover, this beautiful tribute is a must have in the collection of any serious fan of the scare scene.

Printsploitation Issue No. 3 is available for purchase from

www.corinnehalbert.com and

http://printsploitation.bigcartel.com/.

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

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Alice Faye

Published January 14, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

Alice Faye.JPG

Beautiful. Violent. A showcase for the brilliance of Doug Jones. Yes, Guillermo Del Toro’s The Shape of Water is many things. But, as an ode to the cinema of old it, nicely, also introduces modern audiences to the majesty of such golden age troupers as Alice Faye, Carmen Miranda and Betty Grable.

As a prominent part of the soundtrack, Faye’s husky, thoughtful version of You’ll Never Know definitely mimics the emotional lives of the outsiders at the film’s core.

Not surprisingly, Del Toro hasn’t been the first genre specialist to recognize Faye’s brilliance. Eagle eared viewers may remember her signature stylings from Innocence, a Season Two offering from Buffy, the Vampire Slayer, as well.

Auteurs recognize. Now, it’s your turn.

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

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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!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Laura Branigan

Published July 16, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

laura monsters 2

Power ballad diva Laura Branigan almost got sold into slavery on an episode of CHiPS, but her greatest acting role had to be the mysterious Amanda Smith-Jones on the A Face for Radio episode of the syndicated ghoul fest Monsters. There she confronted an obnoxious radio host played by Morton Downey, Jr. – no surprise there, huh? – and turned him into a hideous monster-puppet.

Of course, Branigan was much better known for her smoky and truly unique renditions of popular pop songs. Among her best loved numbers, which include Gloria, Shattered Glass and The Lucky One, Hot Night from the Ghostbusters soundtrack is probably the one that will get most terror lovers bopping.

Meanwhile, Branigan, who died at the age of 52 from a cerebral aneurism, is always being remembered, fondly, at www.laurabraniganonline.com.

laura-branigan

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

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Julie Wilson on Monsters

Published July 13, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

 

Julie Angry

Sultry cabaret legend (and Broadway performer) Julie Wilson joined the ranks of such acclaimed stage doyennes as Vivian Blaine, Gisele McKenzie and Patricia Morison when she appeared on the 1991 Monsters episode, A Face for Radio. All these grand dames of the dusky boards had horror credits to their names and Wilson was a welcome addition to the club.

Julie MortonHere as the clairvoyant Cassandra, Wilson tries to warn Morton Downey,  Jr.’s obnoxious Ray Bright about impending danger. Of course, Bright treats Cassandra with nothing but skeptism and scorn. Despite this hateful onslaught, Wilson allows her character to maintain the cool regality that made her a wonder of the song set and establishes Cassandra as someone with both compassion and a rigid will. Naturally, Bright’s cynicism eventually relegates him to the clutches of a Dick Smith inspired creature in the episode’s penultimate awakening. Still, the finest moments here, for terror freaks who like the horror mixed with a cup of class, belong to Wilson.

Julie Monster

Interestingly, the smoky Laura Branigan, a singer who possessed a much different style yet equally passionate fan base, also appears here as the woman who helps spell Downey’s doom.  All in all, it’s a twisted music lover’s wonderland.

julie singing

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

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Eva Everything

Published June 4, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

eva everything

Independent and adventurous, Canadian singer Eva Everything produced an album, an E.P. and a handful of eclectic music videos in the ’80s, all decorated with a groovy, DIY vibe.

This energy led to the inclusion of No Pleasure, perhaps her most popular song, in Tibor Takacs’ mini-monster, home invasion fest The Gate.

Meanwhile, her video for that song’s companion piece, Painless, rings with comedy, truth and entrepreneurship. Everyone here worked on a volunteer basis.

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

the gate

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