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Curse of the Demon - Tonight!


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Here's a heads up reminder / recommendation for anyone interested in an atmospherically interesting horror thriller: CURSE OF THE DEMON, Jacques Tourneur's unsettling 1957 classic screens tonight on TCMU. Although highly regarded in many circles, CURSE OF THE DEMON isn't nearly as well-known and appreciated as some of his other films like OUT OF THE PAST, THE CAT PEOPLE, I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE, and LEOPARD MAN. If you're a fan of Tourneur's trademark style of sumptuous visuals and subtle suspense, then you will no doubt enjoy CURSE OF THE DEMON. Check it out!

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I'm not sure what these "plugs" for Underground are doing on here...

Those who like Underground will catch the segment; those who don't, won't???

I guess I can alway start "plugging" my beloved silents and foreign films... >>

 

Otter,

 

The Underground fans often post about upcoming films just as silent fans and the foreign film fans do when they want folks to know about a film they like or consider important.

 

If there are silent and foreign films that you wish to post about, please feel free to post about them.

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I guess they're on here, because like it or not(and I don't know why myself) Underground is on TCM's schedule. Giving a heads up about something coming up on TCM doesn't seem to me to be out of line. And who in the world said you Couldn't plug silents and foreigns............ Go for it!

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It would never occur to me to do so on a general forum, frankly; I figure fans of whatever genre will be following that time slot and those forums devoted to that? Sounds a bit like proselytizing, actually... But there goes my paranoia again!

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I figure fans of whatever genre will be following that time slot and those forums devoted to that? Sounds a bit like proselytizing, actually...!>>

 

Fans of all genres post reminders for films of all genres here in the general forum. Thanks to FredC's keen eyes, many here have been reminded of some great noir, precodes and other genres that they might otherwise not have watched except for FredC's recommendation.

 

Fred is not alone in his recommending films on the schedules that others may overlook. Every week someone pops up with a suggestion.

 

This is the most popular forum on the board and many posters only check this one and none of the others.

 

But there goes my paranoia again!>>

 

Have you seen a doctor for that? :)

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[nobr]Dewey,[/nobr]

 

Have been eagerly anticipating catching this flick also, for I am a big fan of Tourneur's style (also like Andrews' acting, too, even during his lush stage).

 

Actually, though, am surprised and disappointed that TCM isn't showing the original, British release - Night Of The Demon. It is my understanding that

Curse of the Demon, the American release, is an edited-down, inferior version. :(

 

Oh well. Beggars can't be choosers.

 

S A M

[nobr]527.gif[/nobr]

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Looks like it was the US 82-minute version.

 

This is the type of thing that really makes me wish Underground still had a host.

A lot has been written about the two versions [known as NIGHT OF THE DEMON in the UK and CURSE OF THE DEMON here] and I think it really would have been worthwhile to have someone give some of the background and the differences [i believe the lead character was a golfer in the UK version!] At least one book has been written about the two films, and it seems like those tuning in would have been interested in the film's history. It's a shame that TCM decided not to give such a classic film the full treatment, but maybe they didn't wish to point out that the version they were showing was 12 minutes shorter than the UK version.

 

BTW, anyone notice some odd changes in sound when watching HOUSE OF USHER? There were distinct changes in sound quality at certain points. Maybe it's just my TV?

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Good atmospheric movie, with great use of empty halls, the woods, and light and shadow. Loved the way that they turned the conventional withholding of a glimpse of the boogey-demon on its head by bringing him on early! That didn't interfere with the effectiveness of the final scene either. Yikes, if I'd seen this movie as a kid, I wouldn't have slept with the lights off till I was 30.

 

Poor Dana Andrews. Did they have to have the poor guy drinking and talking about "needing a drink" in practically every scene? My favorite character: Mrs. Karswell (Athene Seyler), the mother of the cult leader, who was very nimbly played by Niall MacGinnis. Loved his creepy beard too. Btw, many will recognize the striking Ms. Seyler from Truffaut's Fahrenheit 451.

 

I've no idea nor do I care to debate about the different versions of this movie that seem to have many folks on the 'net in a tizzy. This version was a pip, worthy to be seen along with Cat People, and M. Tourneur's other spooky works.

 

Housekeeping note for TCM:

I don't mean to steal CineSage Jr.'s thunder nor am I usually too persnickety about our individual spelling and grammatical errors, since I commit them too, but,---since TCM is apparently a subsidiary of a multi-million dollar international corporation, could one of their personnel, (or subcontractors), please double check the spelling of the name of the director of last night's feature, Jacques Tourneur? That's not spelled T-o-u-n-e-u-r, as TCM displayed during its promo for TCM Underground just prior to the film's airing.

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I stayed up to watch this movie for two reasons. 1. I'm a fan of Dana Andrews. 2. On Deweys' recommendation. Personally, I didn't see anything out of the ordinary about it, it was equal to many other horror films of the era such as 'Creature from the Black Lagoon', and others. Compared to todays' horror films it afforded me a few chuckles, but for fans of the genre, I'm sure it was a welcome addition to TCMU. I agree with moirafinnie about Dana and the drinks - He never turned around without being offered a drink, or having one in his hand already. I hope this is taken in the correct light - I did not find it especially entertaining, but neither did I find it a bad movie, it was simply another in the same vein as all of the 50's B&W horror movies.

 

I've often stated I am not a horror fan, but there are a few that I enjoy thoroughly and have watched repeatedly. They are:

 

Them

The Thing (original)

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (original)

The Day the Earth Stood Still

 

and more recently 1985's Enemy Mine

 

Thanks for the recommendation Dewey, I would not have stayed up otherwise, with or without Dana. These movies I like, they're scary enough to give a child nightmares, but they don't go 'over the top' in gore. To me they are different from things like Pussycat, Kill, Kill or Mudhoney. There is something about a difference in an imaginary monster killing and maiming, from people doing the same. Maybe that's what put me so against TCMU, but as long as I am snoring while it's on most of the time, I find no harm in it and can make my choice to watch or not. The introduction to TCMU with weeks and weeks of nothing but horror films from primetime to 4:00 a.m. is what put me off in the first place. I resented my Friday nights being taken away. This format however, is equal to Silent Sunday. Not being a big fan of silents, I rarely stay up for them except when a certain one is recommended, and I'm usually pleasantly surprised.

 

Anne

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Hi Anne - First off, let me say that I'm flattered that you took my recommendation to heart and, secondly, that I'm disappointed you didn't enjoy it more than you did. In all fairness, it's a difficult film (for some) to warm to initially; it took me several viewings over a relatively long period of time to develop a strong taste for it. As a kid, I found it's pace extremely slow and I had a hard time picking through all the British accents. It wasn't until the late 1970s, after becoming such a fan of the director (Jacques Tourneur) that I came to appreciate the intricate nuances (both visually and dramatically) he invested in this film. And, like you, I'm a huge fan of the 50s science fiction films you mentioned in your post (most particularly BODY SNATCHERS and THEM!). I think CURSE OF THE DEMON shares quite a bit with those films (as well as THE THING) in terms of generating a sinister yet beautiful atmosphere of encroaching dread, itself a singularly significant motif in the fearful Fifties. What an interesting time to be a kid! Thanks again, Anne.

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I really envy those who had the good fortune to be a kid during the 50s and 60s...so many fun sci-fi/horror films around back then. TCM played 13 GHOSTS

a couple a weeks ago and I couldn't help but imagine how much fun it would have been for kids to see that in 1960....just a fun movie with scares but nothing too unpleasant or frightening.

 

At any rate, I thought CURSE OF THE DEMON moved along pretty well, with some fun scary moments.

 

I'm a horror fan and I like the newer films too, and am not necessarily adverse to onscreen mayhem [my favorite horror film of all time is 1968's NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD], but the older films just have a charm that the newer films lack.

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Dear Undergroundfan:

 

You said: "imagine how much fun it would have been for kids to see that in 1960....just a fun movie with scares but nothing too unpleasant or frightening".

 

Ahhhhhhhhhh. . . . but you see, they were not 'fun' movies, they were truly frightening. Your senses are numbed by today's horror films, so the 50's seem tame by comparison. They are also to me, but in the 50's they caused plenty of nightmares. I don't know how old I was when I saw 'Night of the Living Dead', had to be over 16, but the other girl and I both left as soon as the zombie came out and spent the rest of the movie in the refreshment center. When we returned, the guys hardly knew we had been gone, at the drive-in yet! In my day, it was definitely a 'guy' movie.

 

Anne

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I like this one, as I do a lot of Tourneur's fine work. OUT OF THE PAST is just about the best of the tough guy thrillers. I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE the premiere psychological horror story. As has been discussed on another thread, his collaboration with producer Val Lewton resulted in some quiet, creepy suspense that outshines all competition. In fact, in the 1935 TALE OF TWO CITIES, the revolution montage is a Lewton/Tourneur production. And it has that tell-tale half real, half nightmare air about it.

 

I hope the posters from the other thread stumble onto this one. You may have been one of them, Dewey.

 

Red River

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The problem with it....as I discovered while watching the recording I made when this aired....was that (as others have described) TCM showed the 81 minute cut-down U.S. release print, and NOT the 96 minute British print. The original Brit print HAS been released on Columbia Home Video years ago, so Columbia obviously has the original uncut version.....so what I'd like to know is why TCM aired the shorter version?

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what I'd like to know is why TCM aired the shorter version?

 

Speaking (without license!) for them, I imagine it's because that's what Columbia sent them - and, rather than just knock it out of the schedule - the way many Columbias this month have been knocked - they went ahead and showed it. Maybe when things get more settled down with the Columbia relationship (this is the first month, I think), we'll get to see the full-length one.

 

On the other hand, we've been treated to full-length British issues of some other things, unexpectedly, for which they even had to slide some timings in the schedule - I was glad to be learning that here, since on that day even if I'd been following "Now Playing" instead of just my printed-out schedule I'd have been "off" for at least 2 movies I wanted!

 

Win some, lose some - but we win most, by far!

Bill

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