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Karloff, Lugosi or Chaney (Jr.)?

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jdb1

Postby jdb1 » May 29th, 2008, 8:45 am

Rfan, have you seen Karloff in Peter Bogdanovich's Targets?

He plays a famous actor very much like himself who is making a personal appearance at a showing of his old movies at a drive-in. He is an old man obsessed with dying - he fears death and yet he longs for it; at the end he pulls himself together and faces death down, both literally and metaphorically. One of his very best performances, and possibly his last - I'm not sure.

raftfan
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Postby raftfan » May 29th, 2008, 9:49 am

jdb1 -- Yes, "Targets" is a gem, and offers a brilliant and touching performance by Karloff that should have at least been nominated for an award. Sadly, "Targets" was not Boris'a final picture (it should have been the "one to go out on"). He made those four terrible Mexican movies after the Bogdanovich film. Each. though, was released after his death. Boris apparently just loved to keep working, but what a sorry climax to a remarkable career. As far as I'm concerned, "Targets" will remain Boris's final movie.

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cinemalover
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Postby cinemalover » May 29th, 2008, 10:02 am

My appreciation of Karloff just continues to grow with age. Having recently seen such rareties as Night Key, The Climax and The Strange Door it seems that every performance he gives is interesting enough to make even bad films bearable. He was the consumate professional, no matter how lowly the role.

And for Raftfan, no I don't think Monster Kids ever grow up. Why would we want to? Those films are deeply imprinted on our minds.
Chris

The only bad movie is no movie at all.

raftfan
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Postby raftfan » May 29th, 2008, 10:43 am

So true, cinemalover. And how could it be otherwise when one's most cherished memories of one's formative years are reading Famous Monsters and other genre publications, visiting the Downtown Theater on Saturdays to catch reissues and new Hammer and AIP releases, and watching Saturday night Chiller movies.

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MichiganJ
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Postby MichiganJ » May 29th, 2008, 10:59 am

The first time I saw Bride of Frankenstein was on Creature Features on a Saturday night. Outside, the weather was storming, lightening and thunder (what better way to watch a horror movie?) I distinctly remember being terrified when the Monster was rampaging around the cemetery when my father, who sported a flat-top haircut at the time, came into the room. That still ranks as one of the most satisfying scares I had in my life.

Famous Monsters, was there ever a better magazine? (You axed for it!)

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cinemalover
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Postby cinemalover » May 29th, 2008, 2:45 pm

Hi Kevin,
My first experiences with all of the great Universal horrors also came via the late night television experience. Up here in Seattle we had a Friday night "Nightmare Theatre" that was hosted by "The Count". They started at 11:30 and were aften a double feature. If I was able to stay awake long enough to see the second feature (which always led to the potential of sleeping through my favorite Saturday morning toons!) the rest of the house was always asleep and "dead" quiet. It's amazing how distirbing the simplest sounds in the house can be when you're alone in the dark watching Frankenstein's creation or the Wolfman on the prowl.
Chris



The only bad movie is no movie at all.

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MichiganJ
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Postby MichiganJ » May 30th, 2008, 10:13 am

Hi Chris,
I completely agree. The only bad thing about home video is the loss of discovering these amazing films on late-night TV (I, too, missed many an episode of Scooby-Doo in order to see the Wolfman battle the Frankenstein Monster [the Monster obviously won, by the way!]). In New York (Jersey, actually. Same thing), we had Creature Features and Chiller Theater...both on Saturday night (if memory serves). The great thing about Creature Features; if my parents said “no” to a particular movie on that Saturday night, they were unaware that the very same movie was rebroadcast at noon the following Saturday!

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cinemalover
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Postby cinemalover » May 30th, 2008, 6:09 pm

Kevin,
It is such a completely different mentality today with all the wonderful opportunities to see so many different films at the touch of a finger. When I try explaining to my kids that when I was their age we had maybe 5 stations (depending on the direction of the rabbit ears, cooperative weather, etc...) and no one even dreamed of a VHS recorder. Well, we did have those 16mm snippets of film that we could play to death silently in our old sprocket projectors. My kids look at me like I'm crazy or making up some big fabrication. I won't even try to explain to them what life was like before cell phones and home computers.
Chris



The only bad movie is no movie at all.


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