Martin Scorsese narrates this tribute to Val Lewton, the producer of a series of memorable low-budget horror films for RKO Studios. Raised by his mother and his aunt, his films often ... See full summary »
On a Greek island during the 1912 war, several people are trapped by quarantine for the plague. If that isn't enough worry, one of the people, a superstitious old peasant woman, suspects ... See full summary »
Tom Merriam signs on the ship Altair as third officer under Captain Stone. At first things look good, Stone sees Merriam as a younger version of himself and Merriam sees Stone as the first ... See full summary »
Nell Bowen, the spirited protege of rich Lord Mortimer, becomes interested in the conditions of notorious St. Mary's of Bethlehem Asylum (Bedlam). Encouraged by the Quaker Hannay, she tries... See full summary »
With a collection of Hollywood horror big guns talking about the films they love, this documentary on the life and career of Val Lewton is bound to make make you want to dive into his best known horror films.
Focusing on the nine horror films that Letwton made for RKO this film is as much about what is scary and the horror film's changing face as it is about its subject. Lewton, he produced the films and had input on the scripts, pretty much changed the face of horror as we know it. Gone were the monsters we could see, killed mostly due to budgetary considerations, and in their place we were given monsters of the mind, with horrors we never saw, only imagined. The films ended up being scarier as a result because the monster could be what ever we imagined it to be and not a man in a suit. Lewton's work foreshadowed the films of the 1960's including Hitchcock's Psycho.
This is a breezy 53 minutes that really only suffers in that you don't want it to end. Packaged as part of a DVD box set of the films, I'm hard pressed as when to say you should watch the film, before you dive into the films or after. I don't think it matters so long as you see it.
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