Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Son of Dracula (1943, Robert Siodmak)


The old Universal Studios monster movies were a lot of fun even if not all of them were really good or great. Son of Dracula is a pretty decent flick, very film noir and has Dracula pretending to be a count in a swampy backwater town. This place doesn’t believe in vampires but they’re about to rather quickly. He commences to romancing a local wealthy belle (Louise Allbritton)who owns that kind of giant old mansion you see in period type pieces.

Her boyfriend (Robert Paige) to be refuses to give her up without a fight, and I enjoyed Lon Chaney, Jr. in the title role although for some reason they didn’t let him do too much vampire activity. Perhaps it was limited by the ratings board, or the movie lacked the budget. Still there are some wonderful black and white shots that echo in my brain even if the story is a bit thin.

I’ll give the flick props for the ending, which was a bit different than I expected, and for being mostly well paced despite being a tad slow in certain parts. I encourage folks to check this out anyways, as Son of Dracula is one of those old school movies that clearly influenced later horror pictures, for better or for worse.

The Big Green Lizard is Back! (Return of Godzilla, 1984)


The big guy comes back and he’s all pissed off again because the humans woke him up. Man is he cranky in the morning oh wait this happens at night. Nevermind. Naturally he sets out for Japan again, meanwhile the Soviets and the US want to nuke the creature even though the Japanese would be affected and that’s how they got stuck with an angry fire breathing monster in the first place. Read the room, USSR and the US!

The humans in this movie are solid enough-I cracked up at the one drunk guy who wasn’t afraid to talk smack to Godzilla when he should have been running away. How they defeat Godzilla is actually not bad. I liked it for being a simple plan. Also at one point the JDF sends a cool spaceship to attack Godzilla and it actually is oddly effective. Also why doesn’t Godzilla tower over the buildings I thought he was much bigger. Hmm, odd.

This film definitely had some influence on both the 2014 Godzilla and Shin Godzilla. I liked it a lot and I’m looking forward to seeing more of the 1980s/1990s Godzilla movies. Also I used a random Internet site to watch this I mean via legitimate means, I swear. Wink wink. This flick was missing the wicked sweet Godzilla theme music though which is a bummer. Oh well, 8.5/10, check it out.

Horrorfest 2020 Presents: Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh (1995, Bill Condon)


Woof that title is a mouthful. I loved the 1992 Candyman and so I decided to check out the sequel before it expired on Tubi. While the sequel is not as good as the first classic flick, Tony Todd remains creepy and menacing as ever in the title role. Also the New Orleans’ location is a nice eerie setting for the film’s events. Does Todd utter poetic lines full of death and despair still? Yep. Is the main female lead destined to watch loved ones get slaughtered right in front of her? Absolutely. Roll film.

Annie (Kelly Rowan) ends up investigating the Candyman legend because of her brother and her deceased father. Trying to uncover the truth she of course ends up summoning Candyman because no one in these movies believes he exists until it’s too late. Cue more gore and bees showing up. We even get a historical flashback thrown in for good measure. I’m a sucker for those.

I’m not sure if I care to watch the third film, however I am excited about the upcoming remake, which could breathe new life into the franchise. These movies are very 1990s which is both a good and a bad thing. Oh and I liked seeing veterans Veronica Cartwright and Bill Nunn popping up in the movie. One thing I’ve learned and which this move leans heavily on is that kids are always creepy no matter what in a horror movie. Even if they are on your side.

Horrorfest 2018 Presents: The Deadly Spawn (1983, Douglas McKeown)


There is low budget, and then there is low low budget. The second film I viewed on Halloween, The Deadly Spawn, was made on the super cheap, yet it is one of those dumb fun cult movies that people talk about having seen back when it came out. I found my copy on DVD at Half-Price Books, so I didn’t pay too much. The film has flimsy characters, not much of a plot and clearly was not very well shot, yet I liked it in a trashy sort of way.

Also I enjoyed the title alien, which spends most of the movie hiding in a basement and devouring anyone unlucky enough to come down there. The kills are quite gruesome, the ending made me grin and The Deadly Spawn has a third act that works as an intense violent bottle episode. This is one of those movies that you have to watch to believe, with your brain turned off and beer on hand. Ah, the 1980s.

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