Before I get to this week's Tuesday's Overlooked Film, I need to make an announcement--the Countdown to Halloween lives! For the sixth year in a row, I will be taking part in the multi-blog event that allows Halloween fans to raise our freak flag proudly in a month-long countdown to All Hallow's Eve. There were over 200 participating blogs last year, and I'm sure we will meet or exceed that number this year. To learn more about this event--or to get your own blog involved in the fun--click on the badge at the right adorned with the visage of the Creature From the Black Lagoon. Thanks to event curators John Rozum, Shawn Robare, and Jon K for allowing me and my fellow Halloween bloggers the opportunity to share our stuff with a great audience. The fun begins Wednesday, October 1st!
As a warm-up to the Countdown, here is a sample of what you can expect from me. This week's Tuesday's Overlooked Film is the 1962 horror film Tales of Terror!
Directed by Roger Corman and adapted for the screen by Richard Matheson, Terror stars Vincent Price in different roles in three stories loosely based on the work of Edgar Allen Poe. In the first tale, "Morella," Price meets his estranged daughter Lenora after many years as both face consequences due to the loss of the family matriarch in childbirth years before. In the second and most memorable part of the film, "The Black Cat," Price stars as a renowned wine taster in a battle with a drunken Peter Lorre over their love of both wine and Lorre's young wife. In the final tale, "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar," Price voluntarily surrenders himself to the control of an unscrupulous hypnotist (Basil Rathbone)--a decision both men come to regret.
This film is a step above the kind of b-movie fare that Corman is usually associated with. The production values, while certainly low budget, are higher than expected, and the performances of most of the cast are top-notch. "The Black Cat" is easily the most enjoyable of the stories, with a heavy dose of comedy to balance out the macabre aspects of the rest of the film. The wine tasting scene between Price and Lorre is alone worth the time spent viewing the film.
Despite the movie's title, Tales of Terror isn't exactly terrifying, but it's certainly creepy and entertaining, and is well worth your time. It's readily available on DVD and streaming services. The film's trailer is below. Thanks!