Posts Tagged ‘Bela Lugosi’

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Audio! Video! Out Now!

November 2, 2012

Man, this week has been utterly insane. I thought I’d been intense before when it comes to output, but this has definitely been something else. And I’ve got the bloodshot, baggy eyes to prove it! But I am done. Finished. Allowed to just sit on my behind and spend the rest of the weekend getting into the second season of The Walking Dead. It’s a bit slower-paced than the first, and they sure do get a lil’ bit preachy in this one but it’s still – easily – one of the best tv-series I’ve seen in years.

Anyway, finishing up the final details for The Norliss Tapes It’s Halloween EP yesterday I decided to make a video for it on the spot. The song was great (Staffan had the verse finished, I wrote lyrics to the melody and he finished up with the chorus) and hearing the finished audio track I knew I just had to get going. And I totally lucked out choosing Herk Harvey‘s 1962 chiller classic Carnival of Souls as it has great tone, some beautiful photography and a truly great performance by lead-actress Candace Hilligoss. And lots of the edits in the video just came together so beautifully I can assure you it was such a fluid process it really didn’t feel like “work” at all. Easily one of my all-time favorite horror movies it was made for a ridiculously low amount of money and is considered by some to be an independent cinematic masterpiece. If you haven’t seen it I highly recommend it! Considered to be in the public domain you can find it online at Archive.org.

I gotta say that with this EP the whole project sure took some strides forward. Me and Staffan were truly riffing off of each other and like I already stated what began as an idea of doing one seasonal song and give away for free we ended up with a five-track mammoth offering tons of variety. We’ve got some Carpenter, some Kraftwerk, some Beastie Boys influenced weirdness and cool samples from horror classics like Dracula starring Bela Lugosi and George Romero‘s Night of the Living Dead. Check it out on Bandcamp here and how about a tiny taste? Maybe you wanna sing along?

Bonfires light up the night, offering protection
As we slowly retreat to the warmth inside
Under the full moon’s light, somewhere in the cold
There’s a sudden howl, come closer child
It’s Halloween
It’s Halloween

Soon skeletons walk, they’re the dancing dead
Demons gather in shadows, they’re allowed to feed
And as lovers caress, clutch themselves for safety
They pass through the trees, shrieking with delight
It’s Halloween
It’s Halloween…

 
 
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Happy birthday Bela!

October 20, 2012

Well, today marks the 130th birthday of horror legend Bela Lugosi. Born Béla Ferenc Dezső Blaskó in Hungary in 1882, he migrated to the USA in 1921 after a brief stint in Germany where he starred in F.W. Murnau‘s Der Januskopf among other films. His main performance was of course as Dracula in the Broadway play that later turned into Universal Pictures‘ 1931 box office hit – although the studio initially wanted Boris Karloff to star in it.

During his life time Bela starred in over 100 movies and found himself being somewhat typecasted by a Hollywood that insisted on casting him as the proverbial bad guy. Battling a morphine addiction during the 50s he made a meager living starring in various “b-movies” such as the god-awful Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla before striking up a friendship with fan-boy/director Edward D. Wood Jr – forming a working relationship that resulted in the cult classics Glen or Glenda, Bride of the Monster and Plan 9 From Outer Space.

Much has been said about Wood’s work – in Brett Thompson‘s 1995 documentary The Haunted World of Edward D. Wood Jr. Bela’s son Bela Lugosi Jr. delivers some pretty harsh sentiments – and the infamous Medved Brothers sure made a mint putting down the filmmaker, but I consider that poor drunken transvestite to be a true American auteur who’s ouvre was unique and truly had a language of its own. There’s tons of “awful” movies out there that makes for some pretty excruciating viewing, but you’ll never mistake them for Ed’s. His celluloid atrocities are perfectly wrong masterpieces, shock-full of entertainment value that never fails to grab (and maintain!) the attention of the viewer. And say what you will about film but that is its main objective – to fascinate and entertain us. And based on that criteria I’d say Ed succeded.

Considered to be in the public domain (on account of a divorce snafu) you can enjoy Bela, Vampira and Criswell (oh Lord, I just love Criswell!) in the originally titled Grave Robbers from Outer Space from 1959 on YouTube. Check it out:

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