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The Ghoul


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It’s on tonight on Svengoolie. MeTV. 
 

the ghoul. 1933. Boris Karloff. 
 

I haven’t seen it before. Looks like it’s worth checking out. Plot sort of reminds me of The Walking Dead (also starring Karloff). 
 

I regret missing Lon Chaney Jr in Son of Dracula last weekend. 

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I absolutely love this film.; not so much for the story, but for its look. TCM aired this film a while back and I kept it on the DVR for the longest time. When there wasn't anything particular I wanted to watch, I played this film, with the sound low, sort of as background noise. Some films, I find meditative. Shanghai Express comes to mind- a mesmerizing road film. Night Flight from 1933 is another. I just play these films with the sound low, not really watching them.

Strange, though, that a horror film would strike me in this way, but it does. If you've not seen this film before, you need to change that. How many times can one watch Frankenstein and Dracula?

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Oops!  Here I go again.  I thought this was going to be about Ron Sweed (alias "The Ghoul")  out of Cleveland in the 1970's.  Back me up here, Sepiatone!  I watched his show on cable in Port Huron, Michigan way back then.  

But now that I know I was misinformed, I am looking forward to seeing it on Sven tonight.  Thanks for the interesting build-up, guys.  The Austin Rodeo (on the Cowboy Channel)  will have to take a back seat to tis one, I'm afraid.

 

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I first saw this film in my hometown back in the early 1970s, on a midnight movie double bill, with a William Castle comedy, of all things: The Busy Body,  about mobsters looking to dig up a corpse that was wearing a suit stuffed with cash. Sid Caesar, Robert Ryan! Really notable these days only because it was Richard Pryor's first screen appearance. Otherwise, dumb and annoying. Where the theater owner got a print of The Ghoul, I'll never know, because supposedly, this was considered a lost film. The print was horrible, looked like a 16mm dub of a dub, sound so muddy you could barely make it out. About 500 splices in it. The kids in the audience didn't care. It was just a cool thing to do back then.

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"Loosely based on a 1928 novel by Frank King (and subsequent play by King and Leonard J. Hines)," The Ghoul is, IMO, memorable and notable strictly because of Boris Karloff's performance. Perhaps had James Whale been at the helm, it would be better than it is. Any resemblance of the story to The Mummy was, reportedly, purely intentional:

     "A pulp thriller about a criminal mastermind, known only as The Ghoul, who has plunged London into a crime wave. Basis for the 1933 film of the same name, directed by
      T. Hayes Hunter and starring Boris Karloff. The film added mystical elements to the story in order to capitalize on Karloff's previous film, "The Mummy," but rationalized
      them during the conclusion, in keeping with the non-supernatural source material." -- Royal Books

King's novel was also the basis for the 1961 British horror-comedy What A Carve Up! (in The Colonies, No Place Like Homicide) starring Carry On regulars Kenneth Connor and Sid James.

 

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I saw The Ghoul some years ago and freely admit I can't recall any of it now. I just remember my response to the film being "Meh" and thinking I would probably never watch it again. It was definitely a disappointment compared to most of the vehicles Karloff was making at Universal at the time. Definitely a minor effort, I thought at the time.

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2 hours ago, unwatchable said:

I first saw this film in my hometown back in the early 1970s, on a midnight movie double bill, with a William Castle comedy, of all things: The Busy Body,  about mobsters looking to dig up a corpse that was wearing a suit stuffed with cash. Sid Caesar, Robert Ryan! Really notable these days only because it was Richard Pryor's first screen appearance. Otherwise, dumb and annoying. Where the theater owner got a print of The Ghoul, I'll never know, because supposedly, this was considered a lost film. The print was horrible, looked like 16mm dub of a dub, sound so muddy you could barely make it out. About 500 splices in it. The kids in the audience didn't care. It was just a cool thing to do back then.

Busy Body. Have to hunt that one down. Sounds interesting. 

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2 hours ago, unwatchable said:

I first saw this film in my hometown back in the early 1970s, on a midnight movie double bill, with a William Castle comedy, of all things: The Busy Body,  about mobsters looking to dig up a corpse that was wearing a suit stuffed with cash. Sid Caesar, Robert Ryan! Really notable these days only because it was Richard Pryor's first screen appearance. Otherwise, dumb and annoying. Where the theater owner got a print of The Ghoul, I'll never know, because supposedly, this was considered a lost film. The print was horrible, looked like 16mm dub of a dub, sound so muddy you could barely make it out. About 500 splices in it. The kids in the audience didn't care. It was just a cool thing to do back then.

Robert Ryan was hilarious and funnier than Sid Caesar. He should have made more comedies.

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5 minutes ago, unwatchable said:

It does sound interesting, but then, when you see it, not so much:

 

You can find everything on the internet now. 😁

20-23 years ago , NO WAY. Had to hunt for the VHS tape on eBay or hope for a showing on AMC or TCM.

thanks for posting

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