In 1966 director John Frankenheimer, a race car enthusiast, was able to realize a long-cherished dream: to make a film about the Grand Prix racing circuit focusing on several drivers and their personal lives off the track. The result, Grand Prix, is still considered the ultimate racing film, due to its spectacular cinematography that puts the viewer in the driver’s seat with its Cinerama format, split-screen technique and immersive audio. According to the director, it cost about $10.5 million to make, was a box office hit and garnered three Oscars for Best Sound, Best Film Editing and Best Sound Effects. What many people failed to notice was that director Roger Corman had already made a film about the Grand Prix racing circuit three years earlier entitled The Young Racers (1963), which was made on location in Europe like Frankenheimer’s epic with exciting racing footage from Monte Carlo, Monaco, Rome, Rouen (France) and Spa (Belgium) and it cost less than half a million to make. Sure, it was a B-movie from American International Pictures (AIP) but it had a glossy, big budget look to it unlike the typical AIP product and it added some invocative twists to a formulaic genre film that often seemed influenced by the aesthetics of the French New Wave (Corman has always been a fan of European art cinema).Continue reading
Tag Archives: A Bucket of Blood
Most fans of classic Hollywood horror films probably remember the first time they saw a Universal horror picture. My first exposure was at age 5 when my parents allowed me to stay up late and watch The Wolf Man (1941) with them. After that, a lot of those early years in Memphis, Tennessee were spent watching “The Late Show” with babysitters while my parents were either attending or giving a cocktail party. Every Saturday night some horror favorite from Universal would air and The Mad Ghoul (1943) was a particularly fond memory. But the one that really stayed with me was House of Horrors (1946) featuring Rondo Hatton as “The Creeper.”Continue reading
Stare If You Dare at The Hypnotic Eye!
Everybody has probably been haunted or permanently tramatized by some movie they saw as a kid that burned images into their brain they couldn’t process or handle. For me it was a sick little B-movie that popped up on the late show called The Hypnotic Eye (1960), which I saw at the age of nine.Continue reading