The Monster Club
Our search for the perfect seasonal film led us to the Halloween-Party-In-A-Box that is 1981’a The Monster Club. Vincent Price, John Carrradine and Donald Pleasance round out half of what was supposed to be an assemblage of the 6 gentlemen of classic horror.
Still, we get an anthology of three spooky tales spooky, sad, and funny, surrounded by a quirky wraparound story and three surprisingly catchy interstitial rock tunes. And if you REALLY want the full Halloween experience, check below for Elvira’s commentary – not once, but twice.
The Monster Club (1981)
Episode 272 Guys and a Chainsaw
Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.
Craig: And I’m Craig.
Todd: Well, here we are, week two in our October Halloween themed month, which we always do every year. And when we do these movies, we look for movies that are. Oftentimes set in Halloween time, or at least have a Halloween spirit about them.
Something that just seems more appropriate for Halloween. And I think it was with that spirit that I selected this week’s movie. And I don’t even remember how I found it. It wasn’t on any of our lists and I’m not even sure I knew about it beforehand, but Craig had written me a message this week saying that Elvira was.
Talking about possibly hanging up her dress. And also that she had just released a memoir. And so I was like, oh my gosh. So I was going online. I was going down all these Alvira rabbit holes. And I think it was during that process that I stumbled upon some videos of her hosting and lists of what she was hosting.
And I came across this title, The Monster Club. Which starred Vincent Price. And I was like, okay, cool. Vincent Price, John Carradine. Awesome. It’s a horror anthology. Awesome. It’s the monster club and it has this cool poster of all these kind of old horror movie monsters on it. Fantastic. And Elvira has hosted it twice.
She hosted it once on her TV series and again for thriller video. And I thought, oh my gosh, this looks to be the. Halloween type movie, something that maybe you’d throw on during a Halloween party, something that might even not be too gory, might even be something the family or the kids could watch. And so I just said, Craig let’s do this.
And I also sent him links to Elvira’s, uh, segments of hosting it and everything like that. I thought I would just sit down and watch. As Elvira’s hosting it and just kind of relive what I would imagine to be like the ultimate Halloween experience. So this is 1981’s, The Monster Club, directed by Roy Ward baker, starring Vincent Price.
And John Carradine. Have you ever heard of this one before Craig?
Craig: Um, the only reason that I had heard of it is because scrolling through shutter, I had seen the box art, I guess, for lack of a better word. And it looked interesting, but not necessarily like something that I would be immediately drawn to.
I mean, it’s, it’s older. I don’t seek out older movies usually even though. Uh, I’m a big fan of, um, Vincent Price, especially, I just don’t tend to seek those movies out. So I was actually kind of excited when, uh, you suggested it and I’ve been, you know, I’m obsessed with, with Cassandra Peterson Elvira way.
And you know, with her name being in the news lately, I’ve been excited about her too. I ended up not watching her hosting gig because. The one that was easy for me to access was on YouTube. And the quality was really low. I watched her introduction to it and to say it’s typical of what she does is not an insult in any way.
Um, in fact, it’s a compliment. I love her as a host of these types of movies. She’s hilarious and sexy. Wonderful. And I just love everything about her. Um, and I know that she intentionally hosts bad movies, but I also know that she loves. These types of movies that she hosts. And so for her stamp to be on, it was kind of another feather in its cap for me.
So I was looking forward to it. Um, really not knowing anything about it. You had told me, cause you were so excited. You were like, dude, I found the perfect movie. It’s got bits of price, John Carradine and Elvira hosts it. And it’s an anthology and it’s everything perfect for Halloween. And I was like,
so I, I didn’t know it was an anthology movie either and we, we both love anthologies. I love anthologies. Um, so I was, I was looking
Todd: forward. Well, the movie is produced by Milton and key is the guy behind an Amicus productions. Uh, Amick has productions did settle into horror anthologies in the sixties and seventies, much like.
Well hammer didn’t do so many anthologies. They did some, but they mostly were known for their Gothic horror. Amycus did anthologies with a lot of the same cast and you can often confuse them with each other just because they have a similar style, similar cast, everything like that. But most of Amicus has anthologies were usually modern day.
Like they took place in the modern day, whereas hammered. Tend to stick strictly with period pieces, social sort of Gothic, classic whore. I love the Amicas horror movies, tales from the crypt. The original one is an Amicus production. I, for years thought it was a hammer production, the house that dripped blood.
So this isn’t actually an ambitious production. It’s just one of the producers of cuss who went off and did some other productions. And this movie didn’t actually get a theatrical release in the U S either. I know, which is weird, right. It was released in the UK. Uh, on a limited theatrical run, it wasn’t a very big success commercially or critically, which is a shame because they had high hopes for it.
You know, the director, Roy Ward baker, who is a classic director, he’s directed a lot of horror, but he’s also directed some classic films, like I think a night to remember, which has many people claim is one of the most definitive title. Movies, which was, I think, uh, from the fifties or forties even. And then the writer here, uh, are Chetwynd Hayes, uh, who was a famous British writer of scary stories and, and go stories.
And so this is actually adapted, uh, from his material. Um, in fact, he is a character. In the movie, he is played by John Carradine as an author. He wasn’t actually terribly thrilled with the movie either because he thought that, uh, it was a little too cheesy at times. And he didn’t like the changes to his material, which is fair enough.
The movie is clearly intentionally cheesy. It’s not taking itself seriously. It’s very mad cap, which I think is part of its charm. But apparently that, you know, didn’t resonate with the audience. So well, the producer wanted to have the six biggest horror names, um, that he could think of right there on the bill Vinson.
Uh, John Carradine, Clauskinski Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing. I was thinking of who declined it. Christopher Lee declined it just out of the name alone, I guess the title he didn’t like, but, uh, Vincent Price, John Carradine, and indeed Donald Pleasants are all three in this movie, as well as a bevy of more or less famous British actors and actresses in here.
Uh, who’ve been on television and various movies, including. One of my favorites, who I was really happy to see in there.
Craig: Brett Eckland. I knew you were going to say that when right. Eckland,
Todd: you know how much I love her from the Wicker
Craig: man. I know I do. And I totally recognized her. And she was one of the people that I knew that I had seen in something else.
There are so many recognizable faces in this. Um, I feel like if you were a fan. Especially whore, uh, during this era, so many recognizable people and, and I recognized a lot of them and, and, and clicked on their IMDV profiles and saw that they had been in many things that I had heard of, but not necessarily that I had seen, but, uh, Britt Ekland.
Yes. She. The sexy innkeeper’s daughter in the Wicker, man, I don’t think I’ll ever forget her singing. She sang like a whole song.
Todd: That’s right. And danced.
Craig: She was young and beautiful then. And she’s absolutely stunning in this. Just a little bit older. When I say older, I don’t even necessarily mean middle age, but just a little bit older and Franklin.
Even more beautiful. Like she continued to age into her beauty and she plays a relatively small role, but I was captivated
Todd: by, I wanted to see more of her wonder to sing again, but there are people in here. Stuart Whitman again, not, not it’s a face. You would know. Um, he seemed to always play Cowboys and sheriffs and things like that.
Definitely a leading man back in the fifties and sixties, and, uh, still pretty good looking, uh, here in 1981, he’s in the very last story. Richard Johnson, uh, who is plays a vampire father in this was in the, uh, the haunting from 1963, pretty notorious movie based on Shirley Jackson’s novel. The haunting of.
And Dr. Menard from zombie to which we watch the Lucille folchi zombie movie, which I have a soft spot in my heart for, but he actually didn’t only play horror. He played a ton of stuff, actually more like Shakespeare and other stuff than, than really whore. Um, so yeah, you just got, you got a smattering of names and people in here, just like you said.
So it’s just so surprising, uh, that it was only licensed for telecom. In the U S and I think that’s how all Vajra ended up picking it up. And then it ended up on home video through her thriller video. So that’s probably how most people in the us ever got to see this movie just paid the price
Craig: of admission to the Munster club, the thriller video treat for this time round.
Yep. The monster club. They have a two drink minimum, but that ain’t the bad news. Bad news is that count. Dracula’s the bartender loving Mary’s anyone. It’s good. Starting a pair of McCobb doms finest, my old house, Mr. John Carradine and Vincent Vinnie, the P price. What is it? They say forewarned is forearmed.
I believe me, honey, most of the characters in this movie have at least
Todd: forearms and going online. I’ve actually found that there are a lot of people who really have fond memories of this movie really enjoy it, but it is weird all over the place. It is just a campy and I say, Fond in a, in a nice way, but it’s just a campy mess, you know, it’s it’s Vincent Price and John Carradine with this goofy wraparound story involving this literal monster club.
Vincent Price is a vampire, apparently not a very dangerous vampire who’s stumbling around the streets and kind of on his last drop, I suppose. And he comes across John Carradine, who we, whose character we see right away is an author because he’s passing by a bookstore where his novels and his face is on display
Craig: two weeks to get her some money for food. Keep food down
to help you.
Todd: Bears his fangs and bites down on him. The next shot is of John Carradine. His character just sort of rubbing his neck.
Craig: Yeah. No visible
Todd: wound or anything sitting, having a cigarette. Yeah. It’s kind of silly. And Vincent Price is something I’m a little confused by, but he says I drank your blood, but I didn’t bite you so well,
Craig: he’s I didn’t, I didn’t bite hard or I didn’t bite deep or something.
And that comes up again. There was a vampire segment in the movie too. Um, apparently the vampires can just, you know, have a little nip and you’ll be fine. They, they have to like really bite down to infect you. I guess Vincent Price of course is amazing. I mean, he’s just a horror icon and it doesn’t matter.
What movie he’s in and he’s been in some great movies and he’s been in some stinkers. We, you know, like this movie is corny and late in his career, he was taking sillier roles, I think, because that’s what he was being offered. Didn’t we do another. Movie where he, it was silly movie that he was in
Todd: blood bath at the house of death.
Right. I love it. Yeah. I liked it too. He’s barely in it,
Craig: but yeah, he was, and his role was really silly. This is the only time in his whole career that he’s ever played a vampire. I just random trivia. Vincent Price was a Missouri. And I live in Missouri. He was born in St. Louis, but for whatever reason, I’m not exactly sure why he came to my hometown.
Many times I live in a small college city. I think population like around 20,000, maybe even a little bit less, but Vincent Price, uh, for whatever reason, visited our city. Many times he visited, uh, For like our, our university’s homecoming and was in the parade. And our university has a Vincent Price scholarship, which is still going strong within the last five, 10 years.
The university had a celebration of him and they held a big dinner because I guess in his later years he wrote a cookbook. Did you go to that?
Todd: I did go to that dinner. That was a lot of fun.
Craig: I didn’t go
Todd: his daughter. Was there something like that?
Craig: Yeah. So there, so I, I don’t know. I mean, it’s not really like a familial connection or anything, but just the fact that he.
You know, had some sort of connection to my hometown in dears me even more to him. And he’s great. And, uh, this is a silly movie and he’s pretty silly in it. And I can only imagine that he and John Carradine probably felt filmed their roles in a couple of days, you know, they’re their, the wraparound story so important, but it all filmed basically in just a couple of locations, you know, that street that you already talked about and then the monster club.
Can you tell me more about John Carradine? Because I feel like I should know more about him, but I don’t like the only thing I know or I think I know is that he has a couple of famous sons too. Right? David
Todd: and John Kennedy and junior. Right? Well, uh, David Carradine, right. Was ZOS and Kung Fu a lot of action movies.
I think he ended up in Quentin Tarantino. Kill bill
Todd: especially in the eighties. I remember his son, John Carradine was in a lot of silly horror movies. Like, I’m pretty sure he was in a couple Jim white Norske pictures. You know what I mean? He was all over the B movie circuit, whatnot, but, but I’m all pretty well-respected.
I mean, he really came into his own, like in the third. You know, we’re talking classic old Hollywood. He did play like house of Frankenstein and house of Dracula on movies like captain kid, and return to the eight man. And he was on TV, like constantly on, on TV shows, ed Sullivan show and, and movies around the world in 80 days.
And, and kind of these kind of things like matinee theater and stuff like that. And just, uh, just constant. Constantly working actor extremely competent, good at what he did in a lot of roles. And then it seems like around the sixties or so. Um, he was in a lot of TV series, but then he was also doing like horror films, uh, some good, some bad, most of them kind of silly the vampires blood of Dracula’s castle, you know, stuff like that house of the seven corpses.
And, and yeah, he just kept going all the way up until his death in 1988.
Craig: I’m God, I have to say I’m surprised he lasted that long because he looks ancient in this movement. Now I realize that a. Today for whatever reason, um, people seem to be living longer and looking younger as they age again, for whatever reason, I don’t know, but he looks, he and Vincent Price are both very elderly in this movie, but that’s also kind of part of it’s charm.
The guy he played. Chetwynd Hayes. Um, the, the real guy, one of the issues that he took with the movie was that, um, John Carradine was too old to be playing and, and the, the role was offered to Peter Cushing. First, Christopher Lee, Christopher Lee. Oh, that’s right. Christopher Lee. Um, and, uh, he turned it down.
He would have. Uh, much younger at that time, but anyway, whatever it’s cute. So yeah. Aramis, Vincent Price, the vampire bites him, and then he’s like, oh I, and then he like goes through his wallet and he’s like, holy crap, you’re this author. And I’m a huge fan. And the guy, the guy’s like, why would you be a huge fan?
Why would you want to read about monsters? You are a monster. And he’s like, oh, everybody wants to read about people like themselves. Ah, which I thought was hilarious and he’s like, I want to pay you back. And it’s so cute because they’re just, they’re so like gentlemanly towards one another, like the vampires just bitten him and he’s like, I want to pay you back.
And he’s like, oh no, no, no need.
but he says, I, I want to take you to this monster club for inspiration. And that gets, um, the author’s attention. So they go to this monster club, which is shortly just to soundstage, set up to look kind of like a nightclub and full of monsters, but the monsters are just people in. Very mediocre, Halloween costumes, like, like silicone masks and, uh, plastic fangs and cheap costumes.
It look awful. It did. But in the spirit of Halloween, like, yes, super fun. I want to go to this Halloween party. I want to throw on a. Costume and a funny mask and go dance to these rock band performances that are all tongue in cheek, innuendo monster songs. And that’s
Todd: the crazy thing about it is it’s like for its time, a modern club, there are lights and a stage and rock bands up there performing, you know, songs that are total.
Craig: they’re great. That the first one, I think the first one is called. The monster club or something, but the chorus, like, I wish I could remember it I’d sing it, but I can’t. It’s like monsters Ru. Okay.
and he’s saying it over and over again, but it goes on forever. And between every segment we get a full. Song performance.
Todd: That was so crazy, right? The movie is just like a big party. I think that what they were going for, right. Just this kind of insane party Halloweeny don’t take itself. Seriously kind of atmosphere.
And that’s why I thought it was going to be great for Halloween. And I’ll say in that respect, as far as I’m concerned, it didn’t.
Craig: No, no. And it’s not like they never say anything about Halloween. They never say it’s set on Halloween or whatever. It doesn’t matter. This is a Halloween movie through and through costumes, monsters, parties dancing, totally Halloween.
And I usually wait, I usually wait until the end, but you’ve already said it like, this is a group. Halloween party movie, you know, you’re, you’re having a house party. Turn the TV on, have something on in every room. This is great. This would be perfect. People could sit and watch if they want it to, or it could just be atmospheric in the background is great.
This stories. Oh, before we get into the stories, Vincent Price has there, there’s a poster on the wall. Oh my goodness. Monster genealogy and Vincent Price has a long and detailed monologue about what happens when different monsters mate with one another. And what results from that. And I have never in my life.
Heard this kind of thing. No, but two of the stories, you know, there’s a vampire story. Of course we’ve all heard about vampires, but two of the stories are about these. Hybrid monsters that are strange, but interesting. Like I really was into it. I was
Todd: too, he tells this story and God that must’ve been a pain to memorize that ma the actor in me was just sitting there going, oh my God, how can we deliver this whole thing?
But the first story is about a shad mock, oh, we’ll open a Google
Craig: with produce. Uh, we are too, but the vampire and the Google would produce. It’s a weird go. And
Todd: the weird vamp would produce
Craig: a shadow. Now aware go in the bamboo would imagine, but if we’re advancing van Gogh would produce a rabbit. Now, if a shabby were to mate with a ratchet or a mandate, the results would
Craig: a muck.
Where to meet with any of the other hybrids. They’re all Springs would be called Chapman
Todd: and they only recently, so anyway, he says, this is the most sad of all of the monsters, the most pathetic
Craig: of them. Yeah. They don’t really do anything except whistle. All they could
Todd: do is whistle. Yeah.
Craig: And the guys like they whistle and Vincent Price was like, well, not very often, but.
Uh, and he’s like, well, what is the whistle do? And he’s like, oh, wow. I’ve only ever encountered one person who experienced the shad mocks whistle. And that’s the intro to the story. And the first thing you see is this guy, his name ends up being George in a, like in an asylum and in a padded room. And all these doctors are looking at him and talking about him and he’s catatonic, and then it flashes back and.
A story that that guy is really only kind of tangentially in, but he and his girlfriend, Angela are scam artists, I guess. And they’re looking through a newspaper for their next hit. And, uh, they come across this guy. Who’s looking for like somebody to help him catalog inventory,
Todd: antiques, antiques.
Craig: Yeah. And they’re like, oh, that sounds promising.
He probably has lots of expensive stuff. So they send Angela, she goes to his house. It’s this big, huge slike stone Gothic mansion. It’s gorgeous. And the guy that answers the door. His name is Raven, even though I don’t know that they ever say that he opens the door and he’s just very pale and gaunt with pale makeup on his skin and dark highlights around his eyes and shadow.
And he’s kind of
Todd: in the shadows. He’s in the shadows at first can not look at her as he’s leading her through. Talking about how the PR that was very hard to keep secretaries because, uh, eventually they couldn’t work very well together. And,
Craig: and, and when he finally. Brings his face into the light. She is so frightened by him that she runs away, which like, I don’t care.
It’s not like I’m looking for realism in this movie, but he wasn’t. I mean, he was kind of ugly I guess, but like, he was just pale. Like, it wasn’t really that big of a deal.
Todd: I thought they were going for the launch. Annie Phantom vibe, the launch. Yeah. It w he spins around and the light hits him and expression on his face that he’s making.
And that sort of reveal moment is exactly the same reveal moment as when Christine poles, the mask off the Phantom in the old black and white Lon, Chaney, where the opera and his face is actually reminiscent to that. That’s true. A little less ghastly and, uh, with, with, without the horrible teeth and she runs out right.
Sort of screaming and. Like
Craig: you said, I, I thought that this, this was in the trivia. I just thought it was really funny that I, that genealogy poster, the artist who made that, drew it before they cast the movie. And then they just happened to cast somebody who looked exactly like his illustration. It’s so weird.
Um, but anyway, um, she’s frightened about. But George, her boyfriend convinces her to go back because there is tons of stuff there and she goes back and I like this story because it’s Gothic in the way that I don’t even know if you’d call him the antagonist, but the monster is very sympathetic. Yeah. He’s very meek and mild and, and lonely, sad, lonely, sad about the fact that he’s an outcast and he can’t be around people and he’s trapped in his home because if he goes out, people have these terrible reactions to him, and it’s really sad.
So. They start working together. And then he obviously starts trying to woo her in a very sweet way, giving her flowers, giving her rooms full of flowers. And it seems to me that she started to feel sorry for him. And she goes back to George and says that she wants to pull out. She doesn’t want to do it anymore, but he convinces her to.
Keep going, you know, like we can at least get something, you know, even if it’s just a little something, we can get something to stick around for awhile. Raven is friends of the birds
Todd: and I’m not even, not even the, you know, high class doves, but they’re lowly cousins. The pitch
Craig: he’s friends, the birds are his friends and he feeds them.
And here there is only friends and this cat has been skulking around. For a long time. And eventually this cat kills one of his birds and he’s devastated. He picks up this dead bird and you know, it was like crying. And then he sees the cat and he puckers his lips and the camera does it intense, close up on his lips.
Anyway. And Angela hears it from inside and it scares her and she runs out and crosses him as he’s running in and he’s weeping and runs up the stairs and she goes outside and the cat is completely melted, gooey pile. I mean, in the shape of a cat, but just a goofy pile of. Okay. And so she doesn’t particularly freak out about that.
George tells her to look for a safe, and she sees him make a transaction with somebody for a ring that he shows her. And then he puts it in the safe show. He knows where it is. And then Raven asks her to marry. And she doesn’t really respond. Like I think she just leaves and she feels guilty, but George is like, well, just go along with it and tell him if you’re going to marry him, you need a ring.
So he’ll get that ring out of the vault and you can. The combination and she’s reluctant, but she does.
Todd: She’s super reluctant.
Craig: Yeah. But he’s like he said, of course you can have the rain. You can have anything you want. All I want is your love. You could still love me. You know, you could still love me. And he confesses to being a shad walk and he’s like, Hmm, I can’t really explain what that is.
But my family, if you meet my family, you’ll kind of get it. And so let’s have this big engagement party and it’ll be fancy and we can dress up, but it has to be a masquerade because I don’t want you to see people’s faces. And she’s like, that’s cool. I love getting dressed up. So they have this big masquerade ball,
Todd: which is a total eyes wide shut vibe.
It’s very, totally quiet. Nobody’s
Craig: talking about. Quiet, nobody’s talking, everybody’s just dancing. But the shad walk masks are spooky because they’re basically just like formless, opaque, plastic over their face. And they’re very super simple, but like in that simplicity, just hiding whatever is behind there is kind of creepy.
It’s a big, you know, ballroom dance and they’re all dancing and rape. Stands back while she’s like being passed among the other men of the family. And eventually she sneaks away to the safe, which I thought was so stupid.
Todd: Like really it’s time to do this by the way. Right.
Craig: And of course he catches her, but he’s like, whatever, take the money.
I don’t care. I don’t need the money. You could still love. And she freaks out. It’s like, I could never love you. And you’re a monster you’re hideous. And, um, he whistles, then it cuts back. Oh. And I loved that scene when he whistles and the, uh, ballroom dancing just stops. The music stops, everybody stops and just turns and looks in that direction.
Super cool. But the next thing we see is, um, back at her apartment with her boyfriend. She comes in the door, but she’s hooded and she walks into a corner and she turns around and she pulls her hood down and her face is completely melted. And she says to him, you could still love me. And she keeps repeating that.
I loved that story. It’s not a cinematic masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination, but the story I thought was great.
Todd: Heartbreaking, right. Oh, it’s so good. Very tales from the crypt and so cool. And then we get a song that’s, I’m just a sucker for your love, with
Craig: your song. Hilarious.
Todd: It basically. Three or four minutes of just this guy, his face, and to be fast for four or five minutes of this guy’s face, he was putting on quite a performance, but even the camera needed something interesting to do.
And it kept like zooming in and zooming out and zooming in and zooming out and zooming in and zooming out. And I was thinking, God, if I had to watch this on a big screen, I think I would like to dizzy at this point,
Craig: the songs are fun. I have to say they dragged on a little. Because literally you get the whole performance,
Todd: but you know, they weren’t bad.
Craig: Like, no, they weren’t, they weren’t
Todd: bad. They were catchy. Right? Yeah. That’s
Craig: true. That’s true. The lip sinking, left a little bit to be desired, but whatever who cares. Yeah. Then the club secretary, who’s aware Wolf introduces this director named linked them, but Suski, and he’s a vampire, but he just looks like a guy handsome.
And he said that he’s going to present this film based on his own youth. And then we jumped right into the next story, the vampire story. And this is the one that Britt Ekland is in. So I’ll let you take
Todd: it. Yeah. Oh, it’s, it’s kind of a interesting story. You’re not, you don’t know what to take of it at first, uh, is this little boy and he’s going to school and his mother who’s Britt, Ekland, uh, you know, tells her, you had encourages him.
You mustn’t worry
Craig: about those children. You see, you must remember that you are better than they are back in the old country, but we came from your father was a nobleman. He’s a calm, which means of course, that I am accountants. You must be a vibe,
Todd: but then we see it later on in the movie and oh, your dad works so hard for you and, you know, try your best at school is it’s a mom who knows that her kid is being bullied and he’s kind of a sad, hot mom.
Hot mom, mom, that’s not unimportant. I mean, it is to the story, but not to me, not watching, but it’s typical boy hood, you know, he goes to school and the kids are teasing him and pushing him around and they’re jumping over a puddle and they’re daring him to jump over a puddle. And he can’t, he jumps right in the middle of the puddle, which causes all the kids to laugh.
The principal or some teacher, wherever kind of shoes them away while the kids stands there in the puddle for the next five minutes, it’s kind of weird, but he’s being looked upon by Donald Pleasants, his character, uh, who looks to be dressed like a priest at that time. I thought anyway,
Craig: no, but then later he’s not, I guess it was just a disguise Donald Pleasants.
I didn’t know he was in all those old Amycus movies. I only knew him from. Yeah. So that was
Todd: interesting. Yeah, it is kind of interesting. Um, and it’s nice seeing him here. He does a fine job with his role. I think he, the son comes home and his dad comes up, I think, uh, from the. Basically where he sleeps, which is in the basement.
And he goes through this long monologue as well. Uh, as far as talking about his job to his assign. Yeah.
Craig: Yeah. And he warns him to watch out for men with violin cases. This, this one was sillier of all three. This one was the silliest. It was kind of like, um, Ozzie and Harriet, except the dad’s a vampire, you know, like that’s what, that’s what it felt like, but like not a mean scary vampire.
That’s just what he does. Like dad gets up at night and goes to work. Oh my God. But not before kissing his wife and kid goodbye. And, and the kid looks out the window as he’s leaving. And he turns around and smiles and waves, and he’s very affable and friendly. Like, no. Frightening in any way, but it’s a hundred percent apparent that he’s a vampire.
Todd: hidden from us. It’s silly. But then it was around this time that I noticed that this violin music was continuing play underscoring, the whole thing. And I was getting these distinct godfather vibes so much like the godfather with all this going on. And these guys with violin cases running around and, and, uh, eventually they corner the kid and they
Craig: are Donald Pleasants.
He’s got like some goons and they do carry around violin cases. It turns out that they’re vampire hunters and that’s, you know, all it comes down to Donald Pleasants, gets the kid to talk about his dad and the fact that he sleeps all day and oh really? Where does he sleep? Oh, down in the basement. Okay.
Todd: So go down and check it out sometime.
Craig: Yeah. Right. And it’s so as soon as the mom leaves to go shopping or whatever, the kid goes down there finds his dad in the coffin is scared. And then the guy show up. We are the beach box, honey. Special brownish concerned with blood crimes. We have sworn to eradicate the curse of feminism from this land.
Your father, hasn’t been the most difficult case of Michaelia on hunted and from London, he’s been clever, very clever, but now
Todd: I’ve got him. It’s total like untouchables type stuff. It’s so silly. The mom comes home, but not before this guy has hammered a stake through dad’s chest and then mom comes home and screams.
And at that moment, um, the vampire. In enough time to bite Donald Pleasance on the neck. So now his guys look at him and I’m like, oh my God, sir. Well, now you’re a vampire and he’s freaking out and they’re like, well, we’re just going to have to stick you, you know? Uh, sorry, sir. Try to make it as painless as possible.
He wouldn’t mind laying down over here.
Craig: How would you be most comfortable, sir?
Todd: And it was kind of hilarious. They go through this just wacky routine. Now it’s like people bumping their heads into walls and, you know, he holds up a mannequin in front of them, which they accidentally steak and whatnot. Anyway, I don’t remember how it is, but they finally get the steak. There it is. They get him
Craig: down on the stairs.
And then the guy, you know, just the random goon guy, like holds this huge steak up over his chest. And then just very lightly taps it with the hammer, like tap, tap, tap, tap. But apparently that was enough. ’cause he said. And so they, they take him out on a stretcher and again, there’s more physical comedy there.
It’s, it’s, it’s pretty stupid. But then we cut back down to the basement where mom and son. Grieving, but dad pops up and he was like, thank goodness. I always wear my stake proof vests. He’s like, there’s tomato, ketchup under here. And they all laugh and hug. And the dad says such a happy family. And then that’s it.
Todd: the end. It’s cheesy
Craig: as hell. So cheesy. And in watching it like. Honestly, I was rolling my eyes a little bit, but I knew talking to you that I would enjoy talking about it because as silly as it is, it’s cute. And it’s funny. That’s another thing I like about this movie and I was reading reviews.
And a lot of the review. And when I say reviews, I don’t mean critical reviews. I mean, viewer reviews, a lot of them were saying, you know, this is fun because it’s like, old-school whore. This is something that you could sit down and watch with your family. And it is, this would be something that you could sit down with your family and watch around Halloween time.
Scary in some regards, but there’s no, there’s very, very little gore, like some white blood, which ends up being tomato, ketchup, and some mild, mild violence. I could show this in school. Oh yeah. And I liked that. I appreciate that about it. Especially if you had young kids who were, you know, excited about Halloween and you didn’t want to show them nightmare on Elm street, but you wanted to kind of get that spooky vibe.
I don’t know how much kids would appreciate this because kids tend to think old things are late. Yeah. Uh, I don’t know. I liked it. I would sit down and watch it with kids. It’s good storytelling. It reminded me a lot of like, after school specials, like those Saturday morning, not necessarily afterschool, but those, those Saturday morning live action kind of drama things that sometimes would be kind of creepy and scary, I guess, kind of like the precursor to.
Like goosebumps or are you afraid of the dark or something like that? I know we’ve talked about it before, but it’s the only one that I can think of off the top of my head, uh, the red room or something like that, that they played when we were kids it’s along those lines. But anyway, I liked that about it.
Todd: And then we’re back to the club and the next song is about a stripper, which is. Actually, I thought it was the catchiest song of the bunch. I actually liked it.
then during the instrumental break of the song, suddenly on the other stage, there is a woman who starts stripping and I was like, whoa, this is actually going to be kind of cool. And then she turns around and is facing the wall. She starts to take her bra off. The light goes out on the stage so that you just see her in shadow and she starts peeling off from one arm, her skin, you see her bones in shadow peels, the other arm, the skin off, and you can see the other boat and then peels the legs and all that.
This is basically, it becomes a dancing skeleton. I
Craig: loved it. Absolutely loved it. That was brilliant. I thought it was great. It was animated of course, you know, from the time that it switches. I was surprised that the movie was going to go there, but it never went. Live action beyond burlesque, you know, it was just TZ kid-friendly totally.
And right at the point where it would have become a titty show, then the lighting changed and it turned to animation and she started stripping her skin off. Loved it. Absolutely loved it. It was great. And then, uh, the, uh, the author guy asks he’s like, He points to one of the faces at the very bottom of the genealogy chart.
And he’s like this girl, she can’t be a monster because she looks like a human and harassments like, oh, well, I mean, she’s only kind of a monster cause she’s, uh, a Hume goo, which is half human half ghoul. And the author is like, well, what does she do? Does she whistle
and he’s like, no, they really don’t do much of anything. He said, uh, aside from they do have like a character. Appetite, which comes from their ghoulish ancestry. They’re really not bad. They really don’t do anything. But then he, uh, tells the story, well, I don’t know if he tells it, but we get the next story and it’s the human view story.
And it’s the last one. And I liked it too. It started out looking like it was going to be another vampire story, but it turns out that that’s really what we see in the beginning of. Uh, a film set of vampire movie being made. And the director is talking to one of his production assistants and asking about scouting locations and the production assistant makes some sort of excuse or something.
And the director’s like, well fine, whatever. I’ll do it myself. So he goes production scouting, and then gets in over his head. Yeah, he’s
Todd: driving through the London countryside and following some map or something drives to this place and he sees a sign for ghouls. And drives down that street. It goes through the forest and then into this massive fog.
And as soon as he comes out on the other side of the fog, uh, he is immediately in this very small like village, I guess. It looks like a movie set. Yeah. There’s a little cemetery there that looked like all the graves have been dug up. There’s a little church. Then he walks into what must be like a hotel or a motel or something.
And the proprietor walks out and just, just super spooky. And um, he says, ah, who runs things here? I want to, I want to check this place out for movie set and ask for permission. And this guy says, oh, the elders, the elders will, how do I talk to the elders? Or the elders will be back. But, uh, he walks upstairs and around is this, oh, this is when he starts getting crowded by just creepy.
Craig: They appear out of nowhere that innkeeper, by the way, it was played by Patrick McGee or Maggi, not sure. Um, but he had a really, uh, disturbing. In a clockwork orange, every role in a clockwork orange was destroyed. That’s true. I recognize him. Yeah, those, um, these, these gray clothed and gray faced people just like appear out of nowhere and there are a bunch of them and he tries to go out to his car and they’re like crowded all around them.
He gets out to his car. But it’s clearly been sabotaged,
Todd: yells at them. They push them inside. Yeah.
Craig: They push him back inside. He locks himself in a room and then this young girl appears and identifies herself. She talks weird. Like, I don’t know why, like she doesn’t have full languages and thing. It’s weird.
She’s she’s pretty, her name is Lou. I saw that she had been in other things. I didn’t write it down. Um, oh, she was an elephant man, so she brings some food and she very cryptically. She compliments his clothing
We’ll get these boxes.
And you quickly figure out that she’s talking about graves from the graveyard. And she says, but now all of the boxes are empty, but she tells them that her mother was human and she’s dead now. And I guess they ate her. I don’t know. Um, but so she’s a human goo and, uh, she, she basically confesses that he’s food.
They’re, they’re going to be. But she says run across the courtyard to the church because they can’t go in there. I can. Cause I’m only.
Um, and so he does, and they try to stop him, but he’s able to get in there. And then he finds, I say a corpse, but it’s really like a skeleton with a book. And in this book, he reads the story about how these ghouls took over this village. And this part of the movie was genius. Like a feature length film about this and in this style, I agree.
I loved it. You
Todd: know, it actually made up for the kind of low budget production design of these ghouls, you know, which were just, like you said, they looked like gray people, um, was seeing the imagery, uh, of the book, apparently that he’s flipping through where it has illustrations of these goals, which are.
Creatures. It actually looked like something from tales, from the crypt, with fangs coming out and looking spooky. And I think just mentally, I was able to project that level of tear onto the people that were attacking him. Now, I was like, oh God, this is, this is really freaky. And at that moment they start throwing rocks.
Oh, she, she runs in, right. So she manages to run in and join. Uh, and they start throwing rocks through the windows. And she even mentioned to him, they’re super easy to kill people with rocks, these guys. Uh, and so they’re kind of under assault from afar, but he he’s has this big stick with a cross on it that he finds in the corner that he sticks out the window.
And that is what, ah, you know, Kind of like vampires, like drives them back a little bit. So he uses that stick with a cross on it to get him and her out. And he, he promises her. I’m going to get you out of here. I’m going to put you in movies and all kinds of stuff. Right. And so they just full on run, uh, using the.
Uh, to offend those guys off and they tear off down the road that he drove in on many trips a couple of times, and he sticks the stick up, uh, with a cross to try to just leave that behind so that they won’t progress on the path they take another way around. Eventually they get to the fog. And, uh, their guys are right behind them and they run through the fog.
But as they’re running through the fog, she gets hit in the back of the head by one of those rocks. And they’re on the other side of the fog, which presumably is what kind of keeps them in, but she’s dying and she dies.
Craig: Well, I mean, the acting was pretty bad, but yeah, like all she wanted to do was, you know, get out. She, can you get me out? Will you get me out? And she wants to wear nice clothes and ride the underground. Cause she, they told her there’s really good eating and the.
But she’s, she’s a pretty girl and she, you know, she plays very innocent and sweet and again, no blood, no gore, nothing. It’s just, she got hit in the back and she’s like, it’s just like, when father hit the rabbit in the back, it died and now I will die. If he closer inside that.
Todd: Yeah. So he flags down a car of cops that are coming by and, uh, he just runs out.
He hops in the car and the cops, instead of going down the road to get help, turn around and start driving back, uh, into ghouls Ville. And, uh, he’s like, where are you going? What are you doing? And they turned down there and they start to go through the fog. And the cop turns to him and says, oh, we always, uh, have a police escort for the elders when they returned to London.
And so, you know, it has that twist at the end where he’s not going to escape, but my God. I thought this was a creepy story, that it was creepier than it had any right to be. It was,
Craig: yes, it was that, that reminded me very much for whatever reason of Twilight zone. It felt very Twilight zone. Um, and in a good way, you know, and in the end, he’s in the back of the car and the ghouls of course are like pounding on the windows and then the cops shut her out and they’ve got the big, scary teeth.
And that’s where it ends. That was the only one. That the app, the real author whose stories these are based on, that was the only one that he felt was adapted appropriately. He liked that one and I did too. And that probably was my favorite one and, and those illustrations, and I say illustrations because it wasn’t animation, they were still, but they did cool things with the camera zooming in and out and moving to almost make it look animated, but the illustrations were.
Great. Like they looked so good and seriously, I would watch that movie, the movie of one ghoul showing up in the town minister being like, oh, all God’s creatures. And so it takes him in and like washes it up and puts it in bed. And you just see this little ghoul, like peaking up over the sheets. Uh, I would so watch that.
Um, but anyway, so now we’re back to the club and the author says he wants to leave. And, uh, harassments is like, no, I want to induct you into the club. And he’s like, but I’m not even a monster. And then he’s like, oh, but we can’t have a monsters club without having humans. And then Vincent Price goes off on a.
Long monologue that’s genius. In the past 60 years, humans have exterminated over 150 million of their own kind. No effort is being spared to reach this astronomical figure. And the methods that they have used must demand our uncertainty, that duration, you know, Humes began with certain, very serious disadvantages, but these, they overcame with wonderful ingenious.
Not having a fag or a claw or even their wisdom worth talking about. They invented guns and tanks and bombs and airplanes and extermination camps and poison, Gaston, daggers, and swords and bayonets and booby traps and atomic bombs and flying the silos. Submarines, woe ships, aircraft carrier. And motor because they have even perfected a process whereby they can spread a lethal disease on any pot of this.
Not to say anything about nuclear power. Oh. During their short history, your now humans have subjected other humans to death by burning, hanging the capitation, strangulation electrocution shooting, drowning, crushing racking.
and other methods far, far too revolting for the delicate stomachs of this August to say, I never realized he was so talented. We don’t
Todd: like to boast. You can’t argue with anything. He said there it’s pretty good. It’s, it’s a really fitting into it. And then it just ends with the dance party
Craig: with a Vincent Price.
And John Karody like a hundred years
Todd: old, hopping around dancing with
Craig: the. Well, it’s, let’s call them robust women. Oh boy. It was something. And it’s just that party at the end. And that’s just it like, you know, all of these people in mass and stuff, singing and dancing and partying and the old guys dancing a little bit of,
Todd: or feeling there.
I think they were trying to capture some of that spirit there too, just with the randomness, you know, and all those monsters, horrible monster. Masks and things like that, but again, it just felt cool in its campiness. Yep. So, yeah, I mean, I ended the movie feeling happy. I liked the three stories. The third one was definitely my favorite one.
The first one I thought was just heartbreaking touching and whatever. It just, just,
Craig: it was a good mix. It was a really nice balance. It was, you had the heartbreaking one and then the silly kind of cheesy one. And then the really kind of like creepy one. It was a really good.
Todd: I didn’t even mind the songs. I thought the song could be annoying, but I thought they were fine.
They were kind of fun.
Craig: You can get the soundtrack. I think, uh, if you buy the blue Ray, it comes with not only the soundtrack with the songs, but also some of the score too. I don’t know that I need it, but just in case you want it.
Todd: Speaking of soundtrack. Did you know, I saw this in the end credits that the violin music in the background of the second, uh, thing was all traditional Transylvanian folk melodies. Oh
Craig: yes. I totally noticed the music and I loved it and I thought that it was genius. Like they talk about, watch out for guys carrying violin cases, and then you’ve got this heavy violin score.
Yeah. It was cool. It’s a goofy movie. It’s goofy. It’s cheesy. It’s silly. It doesn’t take itself too seriously. I honestly, you know, I understand why the three horror legends who didn’t take it. I understand why they didn’t. And I also know from things that we’ve talked about before that Vincent Price in his later years was just really not getting the kind of work that he had been getting in the past and he wanted to continue working.
So he would have. Um, pretty much anything that got thrown his way, but that being said, one of, you know, I don’t know if it was one of his final films, but definitely late, late in his career. Um, he did Tim Burton’s, Edward Scissorhands, which I just think is one of the most beautiful movies. Ever, and he is absolutely heartbreaking in that movie.
And John Carradine is, you know, like you said, he still lives had, I don’t know, a good 5, 6, 7 years after this, but, and I mean this with no disrespect, but the man looked old. Like he looks like he’s got one foot in the grave. Um, but, but it’s still, it’s still great to see these old guys who clearly wanted to work and we’re still getting work and it’s a fun movie.
I’m not surprised that it doesn’t have huge, critical acclaim. I’m a little bit more surprised that it doesn’t have more of a cult following than it does, because it seems like the type of movie that’s right for that, but I’m glad to have seen it. It was for. I might even watch it again
Todd: is me too, especially around Halloween time.
Yeah. Well, thank you again for listening to another episode. If you enjoyed this, please share it with a friend. We have plenty of more Halloween themed episodes coming up for you this month. So please stick around, just search us two guys in a chainsaw podcast and you’ll find our YouTube page, our home page, our Twitter feed.
Uh, if you could think of a good Halloween movie for us to do this year next year, just let us know just by submitting to a comment on one of those places. And we’ll be sure to put it on our list until next time. I’m Todd
Craig: and I’m Craig
Todd: with Two Guys and a Chainsaw.
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