|The Public Life Of Henry The Ninth
|The Curse Of Frankenstein
|The Not-So-Good Doctor
|The Very Evil Count
|Queen Of The Hammers
|Lovely Miss Caroline
|Ingrid gets frisky
The success of The Curse Of Frankenstein and Horror Of Dracula led to entire cycles of films based on these iconic monsters, with Cushing and Lee cavorting as Van Helsing and Dracula for most of the Dracula cycle and Cushing gnawing the scenery as the ever-deranged and viciously sarcastic Dr. Frankenstein through several Frankenstein sequels. Both of these cycles, and Hammer's other pictures, also gave rise (in more ways than one) to the entity known as Hammer Glamour, as a bevy of beautiful actresses were certain to appear in each new picture. Among the notable Hammer Glamourites were Ingrid Pitt (who appeared as Countess Karnstein in The Vampire Lovers), Barbara Shelley (who appeared in Dracula, Prince Of Darkness and The Gorgon, and would soon become Hammer's top female star), Martine Beswick (who had the title role in Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde), and the legendary Caroline Munro (famed for Hammer's somewhat offbeat Captain Kronos, Vampire Hunter). Apart from the Frankenstein and Dracula cycles, Hammer did four notable films based on the Mummy (The Mummy, Curse Of The Mummy's Tomb, The Mummy's Shroud, and Blood From The Mummy's Tomb) and would also create other famous (and notorious) films such as Plague Of The Zombies (which would precede Night Of The Living Dead by about two years), Curse of The Werewolf (with the much-loved Oliver Reed as the Werewolf), and adaptations of both The Phantom Of The Opera (with Herbert Lom) and H. Rider Haggard's novel She (featuring Ursula Andress as, well, She). Hammer wound down in the 1970's with a disastrous production of Alfred Hitchcock's The Lady Vanishes, which all but bankrupted the studio. However, the Hammer films would not be forgotten, as scads of horror hosts in local markets and such shows as Creature Features and Chiller Theatre would include most of Hammer's output in their offerings, ensuring their place--and much love--in the minds and hearts of horror fans.
|Let Me In
In 2012, Hammer will return to the Gothic sensibilities with which it made its mark, via a new supernatural thriller titled The Woman In Black. Based on the Susan Hill novel of the same name, the film stars Daniel Radcliffe (of Harry Potter fame) and is the story of a Victorian-era London lawyer who journeys to a remote English village for the settlement of the recently deceased Alice Drablow, and finds a terrible supernatural mystery that endangers his own child. Set to hit theaters in February of 2012, The Woman In Black has all the Gothic horrors and mystery that made Hammer great, and in the current mire of remakes, sequels and half-baked genre films, it's no doubt going to be one of the better horror releases of 2012. Watch for it. We'll be there.
In closing, the MonsterGrrls and I, as always, have taken great delight in bringing you fun, laughs, and frights for Halloween, and we hope you stick around for what we do next. May all of you reading this have a prosperous, safe, and happy Halloween for 2011, and please join us again for the party in 2012. This time, maybe we'll see if we can't blow up the lab...
Happy Halloween to all,
John Rose (the Mad Doctor) and the MonsterGrrls: Frankie, Bethany, Harriet and Punkin
SPECIAL THANKS TO: John Dimes, Rebecca Bishop, Mod Ghoul, Diane Irby, Sinister Minister and the Altargirls, Uncle Fright, Marlena Midnite, Nicolette Lewis and Sasha Trasha, Bobby Gammonster, Joe Flynn, The Bone Jangler, The Pumpkin Man, The Movie Gravedigger, Jebediah Buzzard and the great Count Gore De Vol. We couldn't have done any of this without you, and keep up all your good work. Happy Halloween to you all from all of us here at the Monster Shop!! --J.R. and the Grrls