Archive for the ‘Site Updates’ Category

Operazione paura

Monday, October 24th, 2011

And so finally back to horror for the final week of the Bava, Bava and Freda season. Although saddled with horrible titles in the US and Italy, this was probably Bava’s best gothic horror work and had some of the most gorgeous photography of all his films, aided by a good script and some fine acting. A must see for fans of Bava and gothic horror films in general, but think of it under its much better British release title – Curse of the Dead

Roy Colt e Winchester Jack (1971)

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

The end of the Bava, Bava & Freda non-horror works is Bava’s third and final Western Roy Colt e Winchester Jack

Riccardo Freda adventures

Monday, October 17th, 2011

A pair of Euro-adventure films from Riccardo Freda. The first and most interesting is Genoveffa di Brabante (1964), a medieval adventure film based on a classic tale – an incredibly obscure film that might never have been shown outside of Italy, it boasts a few good fighting scenes but a very tiresome second half. An interesting curio and the MYA DVD certainly looks good, even though the English subs are a little ropey.

Rather more conventional is White Warrior (1959) which would be an unremarkable Peplum, except that instead of rebels fighting Rome, Steve Reeves is fighting the Tsar’s forces in 19th Century Russia.

Double Face (1969)

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Back to Riccardo Freda and a look at one of his lesser known films, Liz and Helen (1969) which is rather oddly an Edgar Wallace inspired thriller aimed at the German market starring Klaus Kinski. Very enjoyable with a good storyline and plentiful nudity, the film is sadly only available uncut on DVD via a rather distracting composite print.

Bava’s twisted Gialli trilogy

Saturday, October 8th, 2011

Although Bava is credited with creating the Giallo with ‘Blood and Black Lace’, he never made another straight genre entry. Instead, the closest he came was with this trilogy of films from the early 1970s.

Five Dolls for an August Moon (1970) is certainly the most conventional of the three but still has a very strange atmosphere, sees most of the killings take place off screen and seems to reveal the killer part way through… or not.

A Bay of Blood (1971) has a very mixed up plot for a Giallo (although it does at least all resolve) but is most interesting for its twenty minute slasher movie sequence – made almost a decade before the slasher movie boom.

Hatchet for the Honeymoon (1970) is certainly the best of the trilogy and one of Bava’s very best. A psycho killer take on the genre, the main character is hunting the killer of his mother, a killer whose identity is blurred in his mind and revealed piece by piece when he kills…

Macabre (1980) Lamberton Bava

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Lamberto Bava makes his directoral debut with this strange and slow paced thriller – Macabre

Bava invents the Giallo in Sei donne per l’assassino

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Bava made a few tentative steps in La ragazza che sapeva troppo, but here he really kicks off the Giallo genre in Blood and Black Lace which contains everything from the black gloved killer to the cast of attractive women but most importantly the genre’s focus on the gory details of the killings themselves.

La ragazza che sapeva troppo (1963)

Monday, September 26th, 2011

The first steps towards the Giallo came for Bava with this erudite mystery thriller La ragazza che sapeva troppo

Four Times that Night (1972)

Monday, September 19th, 2011

Bava’s forgotten entry to the sex comedy genre is a Rashamon inspired four-parter telling multiple stories of a couple’s first date. Unfortunately the good idea is rather poorly executed and the film remains a curio rather than particularly recommended.

Read our Four Times that Night review.

Bava serves up a plate of Spaghetti…

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

Lets get right back where we left off. The Bavas and Freda might be best loved for their horror work, but all have worked in other genres and I am going to take a look at a number of other projects on which they worked.

First up is a double bill of Spaghetti Westerns. The Road to Fort Alamo (1964) is a very early genre entry, made around the same time that Sergio Leone was cooking up the first of his iconic Dollars films. Unlike his contemporary, Bava did not try to re-invent the genre but was instead happy to make a solid if rather uninspired mime of the American films. The later Ringo del Nebraska (1966) shows a similar lack of Italian influence and is almost unrecognisable as a Bava film but does make for a solid Western story.