September 22, 2009

Del Tenney and the House of the 3rd Sin

THE CURSE OF THE LIVING CORPSE (1964)
Directed by Del Tenney
STARRING:
Roy Scheider as Philip Sinclair
Helen Warren as Abigail Sinclair
Robert Milli as Bruce Sinclair
Margot Hartman as Vivian Sinclair
Dino Narizzano as Robert Harrington
Candace Hilligoss as Deborah Harrington
Hugh Franklin as James Benson



“There is no calamity greater than lavish desires
There is no greater guilt than discontentment
There is no greater disaster than greed.”
- The Way of Lao-tzu

Del Tenney’s Curse of the Living Corpse is all about sin, most pointedly the 3rd deadly sin, greed. Nearly every principal is devoured by greed before the final curtain falls, so much so that greed becomes Greed during the course of the movie, luring all into the steel gears of its bloody machinations; grinding up the gentle and wicked alike.

Funeral

Curse, along with Horror of Party Beach, composed a powerhouse double feature that ran roughshod through America’s drive-ins through 1964 and 1965. For a detailed history of this low-budget success story, see my post Horror of Party Beach, but the brief low-down is that the production team of Alan Iselin, who owned a chain of theaters in Long Island, and Del Tenney, who had just made a successful B slasher film called Violent Midnight (Psychomania in U.S. release), combined forces and kicked the living crap of every film their modest double bill ran against, included movies with multi-million dollar budgets (the budget for Curse ran about $40,000 to $60,000).

45 years after its initial release, Curse of the Living Corpse stands as Tenney’s most accomplished film as well as a virtual template for any aspiring film maker who is short of cash but long on artistic ambition. Curse does so many things right, on so little money, it remains a character driven, humble wonder and an immensely enjoyable piece of committed film making. Tenney builds his house of sin on an excellent foundation.

Curse tells a story that begins with death and ends with decay – death of the physical body and hope for the living, and eventual decay of sanity, of mind, and sanctity of soul - all shrouded in the black ornate shadows of the gothic.

The movie begins with a soundless, overhead shot – looking straight down onto a body, arms neatly folded, laying in a coffin. Four pallbearers in black topcoats and hats take their positions, their footsteps echoing on a stone floor. The men turn to face the coffin, and a white glove closes the coffin lid as a single cello begins to thrum a funeral dirge. The coffin is loaded into a horse drawn hearse, and the meager funeral procession of perhaps a bleak baker’s dozen makes its way over the autumnal countryside of 19th century (1892) New England. The land is modestly hilly and sparse, and we see our mourners walking along the spine of a dead hill, a series of black silhouettes following the long, black carriage like the faceless disciples of some forgotten cult of Azrael. The way is lined with leafless trees, stripped to ugly nakedness for the coming winter, looking horrid and ossified. It appears that our death parade is marching solemnly through the skeletal remains of a grotesque race of beings, their backened, tendril bones hissing faintly in the wind.

We watch as the pallbearers ceremoniously place the coffin of family patriarch, Rufus Sinclair, on his final cold slab in the weed-encrusted family mausoleum. Mourners file Inside around the coffin, hats are removed and held in gloved hands, and heads are bowed in the grim light of the tomb. A minister (William Blood) holds a Bible in both hands at this waist. He will not need to quote the Text for this sermon. The words read are brutally sparse and without promise of a wondrous Heaven:

“Whatever a man’s role in life, it is not for mortals to judge. Rufus Sinclair is now laid to rest. Let us pray for an eternal, sound sleep.”

After these meager, blunt offerings; sans any mention of joining the Heavenly Father in blissful reward, the minister straightens his back and offers the family his deepest sympathies, especially the widow, Abigail Sinclair (Helen Warren). There is something in the minister’s voice and manner that suggests his stern sympathies are not for the loss of a beloved father and husband, but more for the life endured before the passing. We are treated to a close up of Abigail, all white hair and black veil, and her downcast eyes are indeed those of a religious icon or martyr; suffering selflessly instead of mourning urgently.

It takes no time at all for our suspensions to be confirmed. The minster shakes the hand of the eldest son, Bruce Sinclair (Robert Milli), bids him luck, and takes his leave. The family collectively relaxes their attitude once the church emissary has left, their bodies slumping as though released from some dry, hard grip. “Well,” says the Bruce, immediately taking the reins as head of family, “it’s over and done with. I thought we’d never see the end.”

The mother, Abigail, makes a weak protestation, but Bruce asserts his dominance: Oh, really, Mother. Piety doesn’t become you. Of all of us, you have suffered the most.” His voice becomes mocking – snide. “Of all of us it is you who should breathe a sigh of relief.”

“in the name of sanity, leave her alone,” says the younger son, Philip (Roy Scheider) weakly, covering his mouth and beginning to cough furiously. Philip, we will learn later, is asthmatic – a symptom of his profound weakness. “Let’s get out of here. I can’t breath!”

The family lawyer, Benson (Hugh Franklin); clearly disgusted with the entire ordeal, orders the family back to the main house so that he can read the last will and testament. The clan, smelling money amid the stench of their decaying father, agree and leave the tomb without another word.

Upon leaving, the widow lingers behind for a final goodbye. Abigail returns alone into the crypt, closing the door behind her for privacy. She moves to stand at the head of the coffin, staring down at the lid as though able to see her husband’s face beneath the rough, wooden surface. She produces an ornate, large, glittering piece of jewelry from underneath the pitch-black shadows of her shawl. As Abigail speaks to her dead husband, telling the story of the diamond studded pin, she tells the tale of her blighted love for Rufus Sinclair, and his horrid, crushing dominance.

Helen Warren

"Once, too long ago to remember, you gave me this diamond pin . . .” she begins, holding the pin in her hand, it’s brilliance set against her black glove.

She begins her tale with hope, explaining how she imagined it a symbol of his love, something she might treasure for the rest of her life. Yet, the wearing of the pin was to quickly become a matter of duty instead of love. “Once every fortnight, you ordered me to wear it,” she says, her voice turning harsh.

As time passed, the wearing of the pin took on increased tones of supplication - even ugly oppression - as Sinclair would remind his wife of its worth at every wearing. Her body, then, became simply a handsome place for Sinclair to place symbols of his power; leaving the pin’s glimmering facets devoid of any warmth of love. It’s dazzling and frozen glinting becoming for her touchstones of her husband’s piggish veracity.

The pin, thus, became a hateful object, the very symbol not only of Rufus’ greed and oppression, but also a fortnight reminder of her own foolish hope for love.

“At last,” says Abigail, looking at the coffin lid, speaking to her dead husband, “unable to touch it, I hid it from sight.” She clutches the pin to her chest, her face becoming blank and frightened in memory. “Oh, that look,” she says, “when I told you it was lost. Like some terrible device clamped to your face; closing, closing! Contorting! Until the last final stroke!”

Before leaving the vault, Abigail returns the pin, leaving it on the lid of the coffin. She does so without any sense of bitterness, but rather a grim despair from which, clearly, no reprieve will ever present itself. She has simply missed love in this life, burned up the years of her youth and beauty in false and misguided hope. This scene, while leaning to the melodramatic, never rings false; due largely to some chancy dialogue that just barely works and the complete and utter commitment of actress Helen Warren. The actress simply goes for it, grabbing the scene by the balls and absolutely demanding that it work. An actress even a shade more self conscious would have tumbled the scene, and perhaps the entire production, straight into the dreaded pit of camp.

Once all the principals are gathered inside the house, Lawyer Benson reads the last will and testament of Rufus Sinclair to the family. As the family and near-family listen to the provisions of the will, the terrible spring is wound that will propel the remainder of the movie.

Helen Warren, Robert Milli, Roy Scheider, and Margot Hartman

It is revealed in the reading that Rufus Sinclair suffered from a “strange malady” which often left him in a catatonic state closely resembling death. Because of this condition, he had a terrible fear of being buried alive, so much so that his entire last testament compromises an elaborate contrivance designed to prevent such a fate (shades of Poe). Each principal family member, as a condition of their inheritance, is given a task to prevent a living burial. Abigail is to wait three days before arranging for the entombment. Eldest son, Bruce, is to seek multiple medical opinions before burial. Youngest son, Philip and his wife, Vivian, are to make sure the door to the mausoleum is always kept unlocked and professions kept inside, respectively; etc, etc.

As he reads the will, Lawyer Benson glares over the top of the large document and gathers himself for the testament’s brutal kicker. “If you do not follow my wishes,” He quotes carefully, eyes burning in flashes at the members of Sinclair’s wretched family,” I solemnly vow that I shall see that each of you suffer in the manner you most dread.”

Via the will, each family member is then paired with a terrible fate befitting their particular fear or phobia should dead father’s wishes not be met: Bruce, the handsome and arrogant eldest, will have his face horribly disfigured. Philip, the youngest and asthmatic son, will perish by strangulation. Philip’s wife, Vivian, will drown like Ophelia. But the most interesting fate is reserved for his widow, Abigail, who (it is revealed) has an unnatural fear of fire (passion?). Rufus, by the reading of this heartless curse, is perhaps telling of his wife’s frigidity or, perhaps, her unwillingness to accommodate his pleasures. It’s very easy to imagine so, watching Abigail’s face blanch as the lawyer reads: “Flames will be your fate.” Abigail’s mouth opens slightly at the words, and she casts her eyes down in shame. What Rufus could not obtain willingly in life - Abigail's complete consumption in the fire of a moment - shall be demanded from the grave. Or, better still, Rufus has promised to return personally to exact his pound of burning flesh.

Thus, we have the curse of the living corpse. Living, because Sinclair has vowed to rise and walk the earth again, leaving his tomb to visit upon each of his family a most specific and horrible fate; and considering his history of living death - his "strange malady" - such a circumstance seems preordained.

After the reading of the will, Lawyer Benson informs them that should none of the immediate family be alive at the end of year that the estate and all the holdings will revert to family counsel (himself) to be dispersed with as counsel sees fit. With that, the film has set its beautiful, classic construct in motion; and the players are set spinning, responding to the awful tension of the wound center.

And what a blighted cast this legal wheelwork sets in motion:

Bruce, the eldest, is a swaggering, avaricious, failure; albeit a handsome and dashing one. He failed to complete his studies at medical university in his youth, surrendering the effort; preferring a life of gambling and sexual debauch to the challenges of a career. Actor Robert Milli, with his grand, baronial manner and Clarke Gable looks, is perfectly cast; chewing up scenery and scullery maids like a wolf tearing though a hen house.

Philip, the youngest, is a self-pitying drunk, the kind of drinking man who can nearly disarm you with a cleverly bitter wit and intelligence, but who is at heart a frightened, half-formed man; forever crushed by a failure to live up to a father’s expectations. In the reading of the will, his father’s text refers to him as “Philip . . . wheezing, weak, Philip . . .” to which Philip’s only response is to stare one thousand miles straight ahead as he lets his glass of sherry pause a moment near his lips. Philip has asthma; terrible asthma, which has served to make him conveniently fragile, a pale overly sensitive boy unable stand long in the glaring light of his father’s judgment. No, Philip has never stepped up to the mark, content instead to live off a father he hates while using his sardonic and cruel tongue on those fools who choose to participate in the roughhouse of life. His daily task is to keep his tortured mind forever numbed with bottles and flasks hidden throughout the house. Roy Scheider made his movie debut in this film and, unlike the character he plays, is not a bit shy about stepping up to the mark of judgment (more about Mr. Scheider later).

Hugh Franklin

The last major player of this gothic-style dysfunctional family is Vivian, Philip’s wife. Vivian has the predatory nature and look of the shrike, ready with a quick turn of glance and cold eye to swoop down with her hooked bill and impale men on a nearby thorn for easy dismemberment. She is a Lady Macbeth who would feel no compulsion to wash off the blood, if only pale Philip had the balls and the lungs to be king. Never a woman to limit her horizons, Vivian gives herself often to Bruce, sensing a new Lord of the Manor, but her sex is a sweet Venus trap: She will consume whatever she takes to her bed (or throw-rug on the floor of the music room, as the case may be). Margot Hartman is Vivian, and with her sharp, black eyes and severe, beautiful face, she seems very much the woman who could break a thousand men.

These flawed and unpleasant characters, and a few others, ricochet through the movie, driven by the lashings of the dead tyrant, Rufus Sinclair. The fate of the individuals concerned, as well as the conclusion of the movie, is well devised and clever, all elements slipping into place beautifully.

The French have a saying: “The greedy dig their own graves with their teeth,” The anonymous Frenchman could have been taking about Curse, as the movie begins with a grave and a good dollop of greed – the third deadly sin. Other deadly sins are involved here, surely; among them nearly all of the classic seven. Lust? Certainly. Bruce will accommodate anything on two legs and Vivian hides lust like a scalpel under her bodice. Anger? Sloth? Envy? Wheezy boy, Philip, gets high marks for all three. But the driving wheel here is greed. It permeates the wet, black souls of the sons of Rufus, fills the thin, steel heart of the wife of Philip. All their mouths become filled with the filth of the world around them as they writhe against one another like snakes in a pit.

Well! Let’s get right to the Good Stuff.

THE GOOD STUFF, Part I: . . . And introducing, Roy Scheider!

Roy Scheider was 32 when he played Philip Sinclair, the sardonic young sot in Curse. It was his first film. He had appeared briefly in the television soap opera, The Edge of Night, but was mostly known as a New York stage actor. He plays Philip to a tee, giving the part exactly what it needs; and certainly a marvelous career followed. Scheider has appeared in many important films (Klute, The French Connection, Jaws, All That Jazz). He has also been in many films that were simply exceptional or never got there due (Marathon Man, 52 pickup, Sorcerer, Cohen and Tate). All in all, a great and busy career; one that any hopeful actor would give a digit for. Yet, watching Curse of the Living Corpse, one can’t help but sense something . . . unrealized about the actor.

Roy Scheider

With is angular, handsome face, clearly cut from quality granite, and his hawk-like authority (even in Curse, playing a drunken wastrel), he brings to mind an American Basil Rathbone. Both men share some inborn sense of superiority, a vaguely cruel intelligence that simply assumes the upper rung; and certainly both men have a profile that could crack up glaciers. Of all modern actors, Scheider is the only one worthy of dueling up a staircase with a grinning Errol Flynn, forcing Robin to fence backward until leaping to the safety of a chandelier. Perhaps Scheider missed a more glorious career as rapacious villain. Sure, Police Chief Martin Brody was a great role, but Brody was essentially a gentle family man who beat the monster shark by simple dogged perseverance. Scheider was made for darker stuff. Imagine a career, instead, filled with roles like Philip Sinclair, a ruined soul grinning with hate at lovers and family, cursing the God and the father that bore him into the pestilent air of life; triumphant in the steel grip of his own glorious will.

Like Rathbone, Scheider makes a hateful contempt look beautiful and admirable; and like Rathbone, he can make you want to hate the world, too.

THE GOOD STUFF, Part II: The Pale, Ravishing Spirit

In 1962, Candace Hilligoss starred in Herc Harvey’s wondrous Carnival of Souls. Anyone who has ever seen this film will never forget Candace’s chilly, transcendent performance as Mary Henry, the unsmiling, luminescent church organist. For this, she will never be forgotten as long as people watch movies. In fact, Carnival has only grown in stature over the years, having received the glossy Criterion Collection treatment in 2000. Curse of the Living Corpse was Hilligoss’s next appearance on the big screen in 1964, and it was also her last. She never appeared in another film. The reasons for this are as ethereal as the actress herself, but whatever the reasons – they simply aren’t good enough to justify such a loss.

She is perfectly cast here as Deborah, wife of nephew Robert Harrington (Dino Narizzano). Robert is the only living relative worth a damn, and he is forever doing the right and noble thing. Yes, he is as dull as the day is long and Tenney wisely doesn’t focus much on this do-gooder (in fact, in Curse of the Living Corpse the more moral a character is, the less screen time Tenney is willing to give them).

Being the young bride of this well-behaved and obedient young man, Hilligoss isn’t given much to do; and I can’t say I mind. Her wane and voluptuous presence, gliding through her few scenes as though moonlit, was exactly what I wanted from her. She was always the most beautiful ghost that ever walked the earth. An abundance of dialogue would serve only to dull the experience of sighting her.

My theory is this: Her characters in both Carnival and Curse are the same blonde aberration, never smiling and never quite belonging among the men and women of blood and bone. She is made of something lunar and desirous – a dream of woman - a spirit of smooth, firm flesh that will always be cool to the touch. Look for her face at your next séance.

Candace Hilligoss

THE GOOD STUFF, part III: The Devil is in the Details

The Devil is in the Details goes the saying, and what is true of the Unclean One is true of film making as well. With regard to the details, Tenney is a film maker eager to give the Devil his due, and this attention to detail results in a movie that looks far more expensive than its meager budget.

The goodness begins with a solid, daring script from Tenney himself (this is probably the first rule of independent film making on the cheap: do as much as possible yourself). Of equal importance, Tenney and his cinematographer, Richard L. Hilliard, give the film the look of a 19th daguerreotype. Scenes are blocked so as to compose perfectly constructed images, suitable for framing, yet no one ever looks posed or stiff. The action of the film flows in a natural way, and the camera moves nicely, fluidly, one scene to the next in a smooth, visual journey.

Costume design by Dina Harris and art direction by Robert Verberkmoes attends to the appropriate dress and look of the sets (which were built from scratch on estate land owned by Tenney’s wife, actress Margo Hartman); and the original score for the film was composed by Wilford L. Holcombe, which was performed by a hired orchestra.

The entire movie is permeated with a powerful sense of commitment, particularly from the cast (who were all theater people Tenney knew in New York), but one also gets the sense that the boom operator and coffee gopher shared in the desire to produce something special.

When trying to express my love for small budget, B movie films and their makers, Del Tenney is one of the directors that often come to mind (along with Al Adamson, William Grefe, Edward Wood, Eddie Romero, etc). When discussing this film on the commentary track of the Dark Sky Films DVD release, Tenney can be heard at one point near the end collecting himself for a prideful, summary comment about Curse (Tenney is an irritatingly humble man who must be nearly beaten senseless before saying something good about himself).

We didn’t have much money or time, says Tenney, “but I wanted to make a piece of art.”

Well, then. There it is.

When purchasing the merchandise of life – doorknobs, shoes, politicians - it is nearly always true that you get what you pay for; which may suggest the ultimate glory of art. When dealing with artists, who are pathetically driven by some internal tyrant blind to payment, what you get is often far more than the price tag suggests.

27 comments:

  1. Very impressive stuff - both the post and the film, I mean. I agree with you wholeheartedly about Tenney: a real talent; the best kind; the sort that can make the most with the littlest to hand. You can never mistake this for anything but a very low budget film, but it draws attention to its cheapness paradoxically, not with what it is unable to achieve but with the incredible amount it has managed to get on screen. He never gives up and smirks at us like, say, Herschell Gordon Lewis when he knows his ideas are too ambitious for his resources. He does everything he can and takes such care - real dedication. What a shame he didn't make dozens of these damned things. The period setting must have stretched the coffers, but it makes such a difference to the end product.
    Such a fascinating companion piece to Party Beach!
    I think it most resembles what Corman was doing at the time, or perhaps something from the Corman school, Dementia 13 for instance. The shades of Poe you allude to are, I think, more specifically shades of Corman's Premature Burial, released just before Tenney went to work and the major influence I would think. (And worth seeing if you haven't for its shades of Hazel Court!) But then there's all the sliding panels and passageways and suchlike, which go back to The Cat and the Canary and earlier...
    And I had no idea it had Scheider in it until I started to watch it - his presence takes it somewhere else again. (Interesting that you likened him to Rathbone; I always think there's more than a dash of George C. Scott there, too.)
    Definitely one of the great double-bills of American horror: thanks so much for pointing me towards them, and for analysing them with your usual insight and authority.
    You have a hard act to follow here...

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  2. Matthew: Great comparison with Corman. I hadn't thought of that, but it's absolutely right. The two directors share a certain dead serious sensibility and a love of character-driven stories. Corman, even when he was making movies about giant crabs or teenage cavemen, never made camp. Like Tenney, Corman made films about ideas and people, not monsters; and he always took his work very, very seriously.

    And both directors made films where the ideas and professionalism filled in the gaps in the budget. (not vice versa, as with many). I have always said that the greatest film makes in the world work in “B.” As William Grefe (Death Curse of Tartu and others) has said, speaking of some huge directors who always work the stacks of millions, “I’d like to give some of these boys thirty grand and two weeks, see how they could do.” (I’m paraphrasing).

    As always, thanks for the thoughts! -- Mykal

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  3. Woo hoo! New review!

    Yet another classic that I cannot claim to have seen, in fact I am ashamed to admit that I havent seen any of Tenney's films to date, but after the review, this looks like the right place to start.

    As I continue to expand back into all of the films that came before my time, I have been building an affinity for classic Gothic cinema, and CURSE sounds like it will be right down my alley!

    Thanks for another thorough and thoughtful review, Mykal!

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  4. Carl: Good to hear from you. Yes, I think you would really appreciate Curse. Tenney made every dollar count and had a knack for getting good stuff from his actors. Plus, it is really drenched in the gothic.

    Thanks for reading and thanks for the comment! -- Mykal

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  5. Love the Del Tenney stuff. Especially THE HORROR OF PARTY BEACH. Nothing can top that one!

    Thank you for this very thoughtful review!

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  6. Thanks, my friend. Yes, you can never go wrong with Tenney. I believe that Party Beach will always be the one he will be remembered for (although I still think Curse is a more ambitious movie. -- Mykal

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  7. Great post Mykal. I've been a'hankering to see this for some time now... The presence of the lovely Candace Hilligoss may have something to do with it. I also really enjoyed reading Mr Coniam's thoughts on the film too - particularly the parallels he drew with Corman's work. Great stuff as per usual - keep up the good work. Best wishes. ;)

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  8. James: Thanks as always! Speaking of a hankering, I've got one for the latest issue of Paracinema! congratulations! -- Mykal

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  9. What a cliché trailer! "Death by fear", seriously! No, your review made me a whole lot more interested in watching the movie!

    This was a great post, and as usual I had to save it for a moment where I calmly could sit down and read it. Now I have, and I realize that I must see this film.

    Funny that you made the connection between Roy Scheider and Basil Rathbone! I did that when I watched The Marathon Man. "Wow! A 1970's Basil Rathbone!" I don't think the person watching it with me had any idea what I was talking about.

    Absolutely great, great, great review! I can't seem to find the film though (even from my best "source" in these matters), do you have any clue where I can get the chance to view it?

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  10. By the way - have I mentioned that I think your blog header is one of the greatest ones I've seen? It looks so professional, and I can't really stop looking at it!

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  11. Lolita: There you are! I have been missing your pretty avatar! thanks for stopping by and reading (I know my posts are a bit longer than the norm). I love that you also saw Scheider as Rathbone. Good for you! Sympatico!

    And thanks for the compiments about the banner. I really appreciatate it.

    As to where you may get a DVD of Curse of the Living Corpse, I have sent you an email with a suggestion. -- Mykal

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  12. WOW..another terrific review and analysis. I don't tell you that often enough. In University I took a film studies class and did an essay on the golden age of science fiction in the 50s. If I had this site then I would have gotten top marks. What a resource!! You should teach courses on this stuff. Oh and I said it before but your site design is really spectacular. I don't comment enough and please know that I appreciate all the comments that you give to me.

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  13. Calvin: Thanks, my Canadian friend. Your blog is a blast and so often sends me searching for the comment link.

    A bit of advice, though? You really must get some help with the fruit cup issue. It's destroying you, man. -- Mykal

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  14. I am waiting for the show 'Intervention' to call me. You aren't the first one to tell me that I out of control with my fruit cup problem. I just don't want to be one of those people living on the streets with a five fruit cup a day habit.

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  15. You've taken that first important step toward recovery, and all your friends are proud of you: You have admitted you have a problem. You have to want this change in our life! -- Mykal

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  16. Mykal:
    What a marvelous and a thorough review (as always) - great point concerning Basil Rathbone's inborn sense of superiority, likewise with Roy Scheider.

    I really want to see it. Where can I possibly locate it?

    - Sebina

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  17. Sebina: So nice to hear from you agin. Thanks for kind words, as always. I will contact you via email with a suggestion about Curse.

    I found this to be a suprisingly well made film, consideringly the budget. The critic David Thompson, in his Biograhical Dictionary of Film, says this about Rathbone: "The inverted arrow face, the razor nose, and the mustache that was really two fine shears stuck to his lip. Ladies looked fearfully at him, knowing that one embrace would cut them to ribbons."

    I wish I had written that. -- Mykal

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  18. Very cool post. I always enjoy your postings. I learn so much from them about movies I've seen or never seen before.

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  19. Great writing. Great observations. I had a poster on my wall of CURSE and PARTY BEACH double bill when I was a kid. Would just lie on my bed and imagine what they were about. Thanks for the 2 posts.

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  20. Keith: Thanks as always. I must stop by Dino's for my dose of cool very soon. Forgive me. I have been so busy I haven't been able to make my aoppointed rounds of my favorites!

    Doug: Thanks, and I bet you miss that poster. I was looking for one myself lately, and they are very hadrd to come by.

    I dropped buy your place and like your blog a great deal. Very easy on the eyes and good content. I notice you don't have a follower widget. I'd be glad to follow if you did. -- Mykal

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  21. i admit Curse of the Living Corpse is an admirable effort but when we're talkin' Tenney i'd still rather live on the Beach with the Horror Party...anyway, another insanely great review!

    word verification- "unbari". a great monster name if ever i heard one...

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  22. My Dear Prof. It's always a pleasure. I hear you. My sentimental favorite from Tenney is Party Beach no question. If I had to pick one, that would be the choice.

    I just can't help loving Curse for it's straight forward competence on a pittance of a budget. -- Mykal

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  23. I'd forgotten that I'd seen and how much I had enjoyed CURSE OF THE LIVING CORPSE...after reading your review, I wanna see it again!

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  24. I got your mail today - thank you SO much! I am really thrilled! It will look really nice in my DVD collection. Nice handwriting you have! :)

    I took the liberty to give you the Kreativ Blogger award too, see here.

    Love //Lolita

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  25. CSMC: So nice to hear from you again! Yes, I was surprised how good this movie is, and I hope you get to see it again soon.

    Lolita: You must tell my how much you love this movie. I know, my handwriting is . . . Well, let's just call it unique! Also, I am so flattered by your award. Thanks so much. -- Mykal

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  26. Had a dream last night that Del Tenney was a neighbors brother in law and he would be visiting, and I regretted not having a DVD in my collection to impress him with. Could only have been inspired by this post lol..

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  27. Carl: That is so super cool. Nice to hear from you again. don't have this little gem, eh? I trust you understand what that means. -- Mykal

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