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Vincent Price question!


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First, let me say that I think Vincent Price is one of the true legends of the cinema. This is one of the reasons that "House of Wax" is one of my all-time favorite films. It got me to thinking, has TCM ever had a Vincent Price marathon? (Halloween time would be ideal)

 

If there hasn't been one, isn't that sort of a disgrace to a channel that claims to show classic movies and actors?

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> {quote:title=NamathGuarantee wrote:}{quote}

>has TCM ever had a Vincent Price marathon? (Halloween time would be ideal)

 

As a Price fan myself, I do believe they have shown "blocks" of his films on occasion.

 

I am tired, however, of the perception that Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Claude Rains and Boris Karloff are "halloween" or "horror" actors.

They are all exemplary dramatic actors who have played in some scary horror films, but have a whole body of work in suspenseful dramatic films. To label them as "halloween" actors seems limiting and insulting.

 

For some reason George Sanders, who possesses the same broad dramatic qualities as the aforementioned actors isn't lumped into the "horror" category, although he has certainly played in scary films.

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I am a fan of all those wonderful actors you mention, as I'm sure are a great many people. You're right about these fine stars being associated too often with only "horror " films. Some of them -actually, I'm thinking of Vincent Price in particular - were also quite good with comedy, even if the "genre" of movie in which they appear funny is not categorized as a comedy. (I love Vincent's unruffled, lying-is-second-nature-to-me persona in Laura. )

 

However, I'm guessing that NamathGuarantee only meant that, if TCM needed an excuse to show a Vincent Price marathon, Hallowe'en would be an appropriate time to do it. Correct me if I'm wrong, NamathG., but I figured what you meant wasn't so much that Price is only good for horror movies, but that he's good, period. October would just be a time when you could screen all his stuff, including the horror and camp films he made.

 

Mr. Osbourne could start out by explaining that, although Price (and Lorre, and Lugosi and Karloff) is "typecast" as a horror figure, he in fact has a fairly eclectic body of work, and that TCM will show a goodly sample of it. Or something like that.

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Vincent Price was always great fun to see as a guest on talk shows, game shows and variety shows (like Carol Burnett's show). And I believe he did a lot of those appearances. As an actor he was capable of a wide range of roles, and very good at them all.

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I wish they would screen *Witchfinder General*, one of the great horror films (and in my opinion Price's greatest role). But they should show the UK version -- the US version looks pretty much the same, but they totally changed the music track. Paul Ferris's music for the UK version is particularly beautiful.

 

When I was a boy, I went to see *The Raven* at a movie theater on Main Street in White Plains, NY. Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, and Boris Karloff were there, promoting the movie. It was great to see them in person!

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Although I am not a Price fan, I would like to see this film debut, SERVICE DELUXE (Universal, 1938) in which he co-starred with Constance Bennett.

I find Price to be a bit of ham. His best performances were in HIS KIND OF WOMAN, HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL and COMEDY OF TERRORS.

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PrinceSaliano wrote: *I find Price to be a bit of ham*

 

Exactly! That's what I love about him! And he's a lovable ham. You mentioned His Kind of Woman;

Price is deliciously campy in it. The scene with him standing nobly at the prow of his sinking rowboat is priceless -if you'll forgive the pun.

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I've seen it. It's one of my favourite SNL's bits. That show is inconsistent, it doesn't always make me laugh. But almost anything with Bill Hader in it, and especially his Vincent Price imitations, are hilarious! (Did you catch the imitation of Ben Mankiewicz a week or two ago? I think it was posted as a link here.)

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*_Best Vincent Price films_:*

 

 

 

The Keys of the Kingdom

Laura

Leave Her to Heaven

Dragonwyck

The Baron of Arizona

The Las Vegas Story

House of Wax

His Kind of Woman

The Three Musketeers

The Fly - 1958

House on Haunted Hill - 1958

The Tingler

House of Usher

The Pit and the Pendulum

The Raven - This was 1 of my mom's fav Price film!

The Last Man on Earth

The Abominable Dr. Phibes

Dr. Phibes Rises Again

Theatre of Blood

The Whales of August

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein - The Invisible Man (voice only)

The Great Mouse Detective - Professor Ratigan (voice only)

Edward Scissorhands - The Inventor

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I would like to see _Wilson_ (1944) - A chronicle of the political career of US President Woodrow Wilson. ....Very Hard film to find....... I would also like to _see Curtain Call at Cactus Creek_ (1950)!

 

 

These are the only 2 films of Mr Price I haven't seen!

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*Wilson* is one of the great biopics. I think the lead performance by Alexander Knox is one of the greatest performances, ever. The film is totally hagiographic -- it makes Wilson out to be a sort of saint, which he wasn't -- but it's a truly great epic with a terrific supporting cast of brilliant character actors. It's a Fox film and has been shown on FMC.

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One of my favorite Price roles is the Duke of Clarence in TOWER OF LONDON. He plays the sniveling brother to Rathbone's Richard III.

 

Price was also THE SAINT on Radio. Good series.

 

And as much as I love the Corman films - truly miraculous gang bangs of fun - my favorite Price film has to be THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL. Eight times a week on WOR's Million Dollar Movie did it!

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> {quote:title=RayFaiola wrote:}{quote}

>my favorite Price film has to be THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL.

 

Did you catch it at the Capitol last year with EMERGO? The print was GORGEOUS.

 

emergo.jpg

 

I took TikiKid to HOHH as well as House of Wax in 3D at the Eastman House last year and she thinks Vincent Price is the hunk of ages. I'm grooming her tastes in men through the movies, heh.

 

Ham? Camp? I guess so, but I've found that dramatic style of acting will capture kids attention and create interest in watching old b&w movies. (which, believe it or not they harbor prejudiced against)

 

Edited by: TikiSoo to add the photo still in my cache

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I worked on a pilot for a cooking show starring Vincent Price in 1969 and had the pleasure of talking to him and his wife Mary during the shoot. He was a gourmet cook and published several cookbooks and a world renown art collector. Once between set-ups I ask what his favorite film role was and without hesitating he answered "The Eve of Saint Mark" a war film he did in 1944 based on a play by Maxwell Anderson. I have not seen it in over 50 years and only vaguely remember the movie. I don't know if there are copyright problems or what, but it's never shown and most list of his films don't mention it.I ask him why that film and he said that it was special for him as it was a Maxwell Anderson play and the only war film he ever did and he was proud of his performance in it.I would love to be able to watch it again.

He always looked to me as if he was having a good time in his films. From classics like "Laura" to films like "House of Wax" and "House on Haunted Hill" he seemed to be having fun. I found him to be a very friendly and out going person. A true gentleman.......

I know I talked about this last year but I though it was worth repeating........

 

Edited by: fredbaetz on May 24, 2010 12:31 PM

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Love him in *Laura*, *Dragonwyck*, *The Long Night*, *Leave Her to Heaven*, *His Kind of Woman* (he was in rare form for a noir), *The Bribe*, *The Las Vegas Story*, *While the City Sleeps*, and later in his career, *Whales of August*. I am not big on the horror genre but he definitely has a diverse body of work that qualifies him to be SOTM outside of the month of October.

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>>I wish they would screen Witchfinder General, one of the great horror films (and in my opinion Price's greatest role). But they should show the UK version -- the US version looks pretty much the same, but they totally changed the music track. Paul Ferris's music for the UK version is particularly beautiful.

I think on its initial theatrical release in the US (as THE CONQUEROR WORM), WITCHFINDER did have the Paul Ferris score. It was the video release that lacked it. The most recent DVD restores the Paul Ferris score.

The biggest problem with the US version was the editing which reduced the carnage soemwhat but also reshuffled scenes. Price & his henchman at one point are fleeing from an encounter with Ian Ogilvy & pull over by the roadside to discuss what to do with him. In the US cut, this scene is placed before the encounter, which comes seberal scenes later.

AIP during this period seemed to think the just had to re-edit films & the results were usually not beneficial.

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He is simply perfection in *House on Haunted Hill* and *The Tingler*, among others. Back in 1985, I spent 5 glorious hours, dining, laughing and talking with Vincent Price, Helen Hayes, Eva Marie Saint, Anne Jackson and Eli Wallach. I'll never forget how down to earth, funny and personable they all were. They genuinely seemed interested in me! Mr. (call me Vincent) Price was especially gregarious!

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I think *Witchfinder General* is one of the most tragic films ever made. I originally saw it at MOMA in NYC. At the end, just about everyone is corrupted, including the hero and even the audience. "You took him from me" is one of the most haunting penultimate lines, spoken by hero Ian Ogilvy, because he is prevented from finishing his brutal hacking job on villain Vincent Price. Price is no campy villain in the film, he's pure evil, and the audience felt cheated, too -- we wanted the hacking to go on.

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