Those frighteningly awesome folk at the Horror Channel have done it again! Yep, their awesome season of Hammer Horror Saturday Night Double Bills is back from November 7th including some very cool network premieres. Now you can relive those halcyon days of the old BBC Horror Double Bills (sort of!) in the comfort of your own home. So snuggle up with your very own Bride of Frankenstein, Husband from Outer Space or Best Fiend and let’s see what’s on offer in the coming weeks…
November 7th – The Curse Of The Werewolf/The Gorgon
The Curse Of The Werewolf was Oliver Reed’s first big screen lead and he excels as Leon Corledo, a young man raised in the home of Don Alfredo Corledo (Clifford Evans), his kind and loving adopted father. When he leaves to find work, Leon discovers that he has increasingly violent urges each full moon. Although these tendencies are calmed by Leon’s love for the beautiful Christina (Catherine Feller), he ultimately cannot contain his curse, given to his raped mother, and transforms into a werewolf, terrorising the Spanish countryside. A mysterious monster is turning people to stone in a German village in The Gorgon. When his girlfriend is killed, Bruno (Jeremy Longhurst) becomes the prime suspect. His ensuing suicide seems to confirm his guilt, but professor Carl Maister (Christopher Lee) isn’t so sure. He thinks one of the villagers is possessed by the spirit of Megaera, sister to Medusa. Among the possible culprits are Dr. Namaroff (Peter Cushing), gorgeous nurse Carla (Barbara Shelley) and a mental patient
Saturday 14th – The Revenge Of Frankenstein/The Two Faces Of Doctor Jekyll
The second in the Hammer Frankenstein series and considered Terence Fisher’s best, General practitioner (Peter Cushing), now residing in the village of Carlsbruck is none other than our old friend, Victor Frankenstein. No one seems unduly concerned when the patients in a charity clinic begin losing their arms and legs during Dr. Stein’s emergency operations — no one except his young rival, Dr. Kleve (Kerwin Mathews). Full of clever (if gory) touches, The Revenge Of Frankenstein is among the best of Hammer Studio’s late-1950s films. Originally released in the UK as House Of Fright, The Two Faces Of Doctor Jekyll is a film version of Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Paul Massie plays Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde who wants to exact revenge on Paul Allen (Christopher Lee), who has been siphoning off Jekyll’s savings to finance his own gambling and womanising. In contrast to Stevenson’s story, director Terence Fisher ensures that there’s enough twists and turns to keep horror fans guessing.
Saturday 21st – The Evil Of Frankenstein/The Brides Of Dracula
Directed by Freddy Francis, The Evil Of Frankenstein is the third in the Hammer Frankenstein series, which sees Dr. Frankenstein (Peter Cushing) return destitute to his home village to recommence his experimental research into the reanimation of dead tissue. He stumbles upon his old monster suspended in ice and although he revives the creature, Frankenstein must seek the help of hypnotist Zoltan (Peter Woodthorpe) to repair its mind. Zoltan then assumes control of the monster, using him to wreak havoc. Director Terence Fisher followed the excellent Horror Of Dracula with the richly-coloured sequel The Brides Of Dracula. Though imprisoned in the family estate by his mother, Baron Meinster (David Peel) is released from his silver chains by an unsuspecting French teacher (Yvonne Monlaur), through which he gains access to a number of young women at a girls’ school. Fortunately, master vampire killer Dr. Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) is on the case. This is one of the first Hammer films to delve into the more sexual aspects of vampirism, with implicit suggestions of sadomasochism and homosexuality.
Saturday 28th – Night Creatures/Blood From The Mummy’s Tomb
Set in the 18th-century, Night Creatures is a engaging costume melodrama of skulduggery and stars Captain Collier (Patrick Allen), who is sent, with his crew, to investigate some coastal smuggling. However, when mysterious swamp phantoms appear, Captain Collier suspects that the odd village vicar (Peter Cushing) might be hiding something, and what better way to do that than by creating fortuitous ghosts to scare them away… Blood From The Mummy’s Tomb was the swan song for director Seth Holt who died shortly before filming was completed. An expedition led by Professor Fuchs (Andrew Keir) finds the cursed tomb of an evil Egyptian princess and discovers her perfectly preserved, severed hand, which sports a dazzling ruby ring. Several years later, Fuchs gives the ring to his young daughter (Valerie Leon), whereupon she slowly begins to take on the malevolent traits of its original wearer.