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Asylum (1972) – Episode 64 – Decades of Horror 1970s

“You have nothing to lose but your mind.” One of the final Amicus anthology films is prepared to drive you insane as Dr. Martin (Robert Powell) interviews the patients of a mental asylum searching for the head doctor who recently lost his mind in Asylum (1972). Roy Ward Baker directs from a script by Robert Bloch featuring Peter Cushing, Britt Ekland, and Hebert Lom. Doc Rotten and Jeff Mohr are joined by Chad Hunt and Bill Mulligan along with special guest-host Eli Mohr.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 64 – Asylum (1972)

With titles like Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors, Tales from the Crypt, and Torture Garden, Amicus Films threatened to give Hammer Films a run for their money…but never quite reached that goal. By the time they caught up with the studio that gave us Horror of Dracula and Curse of Frankenstein, the horror genre was maturing into its modern era as films like Night of the Living Dead, Rosemary’s Baby, and The Exorcist captured the audience’s attention. Asylum is one of the final films in their series of portmanteau films – and quite possibly one of its forgotten best. The wrap around story is woven into the film’s fourth tale “Mannikins of Horror” featuring a murdering toy robot while Peter Cushing stars alongside Barry Morse in a tragic tale called “The Weird Tailor”. Britt Ekland guides Charlotte Rampling down a sordid path in “Lucy Comes to Stay” while Richard Todd faces his slain wife’s revenge in “Frozen Fear”. A terrific film that has the Grue-Crew enjoying every frame.

“See what the author of ‘Psycho’ is up to now!” – the poster tagline pimps the fact that the screenwriter, Robert Bloch, is the man responsible for Alfred Hitchcock’s beloved horror classic.

The Grue-Crew are thrilled to welcome Jeff’s grandson Eli onto the show to review Asylum. A new experience for the lad, Eli starts off things noticing how the music in the first segment, Frozen Short, uses unusual cues to signal the various terrors that threaten Richard Todd in his basement. The Crew agrees with him about the acting as well, as each of the cast – especially Peter Cushing – give the film their all, providing the film with a bit more class that may be expected. Chad shares his own terrifying tale of facing a mannequin in his grandmother’s attic when he was young, a fear that he would have to face in the “Mannikins of Horror” segment. Except for Eli, who recently caught the film for this podcast, the rest of the crew remember catching the film when it was originally released – or, in the case of Doc, re-released under the title House of Crazies.

We want to hear from you – the coolest, grooviest fans:  leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1970s podcast hosts at docrotten@decadesofhorror.com.

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Vault of Horror (1973) – Episode 9 Decades of Horror 1970s

“Below the crypt lies death’s waiting room…the Vault of Horror.” Milton Subotsky and Amicus return with another horror anthology The Vault of Horror, a direct follow up to Tales from the Crypt (1972). Roy Ward Baker steps in to take the director reigns from Freddie Francis bringing his own distinct but similar style with improved angles and composition with a more humorous tint. The blu ray also brings the film to the States for the first time uncut.  The Black Saint and Doc Rotten tackle another groovy horror film from the 1970s.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 9 – Vault of Horror (1973)

The Vault of Horror brings five new tales to the big screen inspired by and adapted from the EC horror comics from the 50’s, four from Tales from the Crypt and one from Shock SuspenStories. The stories include “Midnight Mess,” “The Neat Job,” “This Trick’ll Kill You,” “Bargain in Death” and “Drawn & Quartered” with a collection of character actors from the 70s: Terry-Thomas, Daniel Massey, Anna Massey, Curd Jurgans, Michael Craig, Glynis Johns and Tom Baker. This release marks the first time the film is presented uncut where at least four scenes are restored. While the film does not feature a Crypt Keeper nor Amicus anthology mainstay Peter Cushing, the film does continue the revenge themed terror and horror that makes these films so special. “Everything that makes life worth leaving!”

We want to hear from you – the coolest, grooviest fans:  leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1970s podcast hosts at theblacksaint@decadesofhorror.com or docrotten@decadesofhorror.com.

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Tales from the Crypt (1972) – Episode 8 Decades of Horror 1970s

“You were cruel and mean right from the start, now you can truly say you have no heart.” Peter Cushing as Arthur Grimsdyke leaves a horrifying Valentines card for his murderers in Poetic Justice, one of the fantastic stories in the classic Amicus Anthology film Tales from the Crypt (20172). Inspired by the EC Comics in the fifties, Milton Subotsky pens a memorable, creepy tome featuring a deadly Santa, an antique with a deadly touch, a maze of death and more.  The Black Saint and Doc Rotten tackle another groovy horror film from the 1970s.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 8 – Tales from the Crypt (1972)

Tales from the Crypt is not the first horror anthology, it is not even the first from the British film company Amicus, but it may be the best remembered – if not, it should be. Drawing inspiration directly from the horror comics two decades earlier, the film ties together five short tales with a wrap around story featuring the Crypt Keeper. The Black Saint and Doc recap and review each story praising Peter Cushing in Poetic Justice and the creative revenge found in Blind Alleys. The film is responsible for inspiring two sequels, Vault of Horror and From Beyond the Grave, a loving tribute from Stephen King and George Romero with Creepshow and an HBO television that elevated the Crypt Keeper to a modern horror icon.

We want to hear from you – the coolest, grooviest fans:  leave us a message or leave a comment on the site or email the Decades of Horror 1970s podcast hosts at theblacksaint@decadesofhorror.com or docrotten@decadesofhorror.com.

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