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A Bay of Blood (1971) – Episode 78 – Decades of Horror 1970s

“Diabolical! Fiendish! Savage… You may not walk away from this one!“ The Grue Crew are on a giallo kick, and as everyone knows, there’s always room for giallo. (Groan …) Join your faithful Grue Crew – Doc Rotten, Bill Mulligan, and Chad Hunt, along with guest host Chad Lab – as they count the baker’s dozen of kills delivered in Mario Bava’s A Bay of Blood.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 78 – A Bay of Blood (1971)

Like a lot of foreign films released in the U.S., A Bay of Blood had a bit of an identity problem as it experienced several re-titles. Originally known as Reazione a catena, among its many other titles are Twitch of the Death NerveCarnageBlood Bath, and even The Last House on the Left, Part II.

Mario Bava serves as director, co-writer, and cinematographer in this giallo gem. An heiress is murdered at the outset and from then on, it is no holds barred as the rest of family schemes, maneuvers, and murders while trying to secure the family inheritance for themselves. You might need a scorecard to track who is being killed, how they are killed, and who the killers are. Yes, there are killers, as in plural. The first and second murders quickly reveal A Bay of Blood as not your ordinary run of the mill slasher flick.

Speaking of slasher flicks, Doc identifies several very familiar looking kills and the influence A Bay of Blood must have surely had on Friday the 13th (1980), and hence, other 1980s slasher fare. Bill reveals, not that it was a big secret, that Bava is his favorite director and notes the appearance of for the second episode in a row following her role in Deep Red (1975). Most of the film’s characters have little to like, creating a bit of a hurdle for Chad Lab, but as the innovative kills mount, he quickly gets over it and comes to love the film. Chad Hunt helps the rest of the Grue Crew keep the characters straight and recounts his repeated cries of, “What? … What?! … What?!!” as the killings unfolded. With so many murders from which to choose – hanging, spear, octopus, billhook, etc. – the Grue Crew can’t resist picking each of their favorite kills

Of course, this episode’s Grue Crew gives a unanimous recommendation to this classic giallo film. If you haven’t seen A Bay of Blood, it is guaranteed you will not guess who commits the final murders.

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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Deep Red (1975) – Episode 77 – Decades of Horror 1970s

“I can feel death in this room! I feel a presence, a twisted mind sending me thoughts! Perverted, murderous thoughts… Go away! You have killed! And you will kill again!” Are you talking to me? Join your faithful Grue Crew – Doc Rotten, Bill Mulligan, and Jeff Mohr, along with guest host Chad Lab – as they follow the clues delivered by Dario Argento in his giallo tour de force, Deep Red (1975).

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 77 – Deep Red (1975)

Originally titled Profondo Rosso in Italy, also known as The Hatchet Murders in the U.S., Deep Red is written by Bernardino Zapponi and director Dario Argento. Gialli commonly feature a female lead, but in Deep Red, Argento went with a male lead, casting British actor David Hemmings in the role of Marcus Daly, who,from the square below, witnesses a murder taking place in a building window. Daly is drawn into the investigation and as the body count rises, he is aided by Daria Nicolodi as a reporter on the case. Other players include Daly’s friend Carlo (Gabriele Lavia), Carlo’s mother (Clara Calamai), and a very disturbing little girl (Nicoletta Elmi).

This episode’s Grue Crew was split on which version they watched: Bill and Chad Lab saw the American version with over twenty minutes edited from the run time, while Doc and Jeff viewed the full length Italian version. It should go without saying, but here it is anyway: they are all very impressed with Argento’s Deep Red! Some of the giallo tropes present, such as a black-gloved killer, are pointed out by Bill, while Doc highlights Argento trademarks, for instance, the protagonist recalling clues from memory to unveil the killer’s identity. Chad Lab points out the tantalising red herring Argento serves up and on which he then feasted. Jeff loved the way the clues are doled out and how some of the early clues aren’t even recognized as such. Of course, they all love the Goblin soundtrack!

If you haven’t seen Deep Red, see it now! If you have seen it, watch it again! Doc and Jeff recommend the uncut version, but both versions are fine movies!

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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Suspiria (1977) – Episode 58 – Decades of Horror 1970s

“Suzy, do you know anything about … witches?” Suzy Bannion doesn’t know much, but she’s about to find out a lot more, … the hard way! As of the recording of this podcast, it’s just 12 days past the 40th anniversary of the U.S. release of Dario Argento’s Suspiria, a Giallo masterpiece. Doc Rotten is still on hiatus, diligently working on the next issues of the Gruesome Magazine quarterly print and electronic editions. (Issue #2 is now available. Don’t miss out!) In the interim, your regular hosts, The Black Saint and Jeff Mohr, are joined by the capable and knowledgeable Bill Mulligan, film director, and Chad Hunt, comic book artist/writer and co-host of Decades of Horror: The Classic Era podcast. Join them as they are completely entranced by the magic of Argento’s audio and visual feast.

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 58 – Suspiria (1977)

Suspiria is the story of an elite dance school in Germany that is a front for some supernatural shenanigans. The school is run by Madame Blanc (Joan Bennett), and its head instructor is the disciplinary Miss Tanner (Alida Valli). Suzy (Jessica Harper) is a young American who has recently arrived at the school. Life at the school is a dreamlike, nightmarish experience. Suzy’s life there is soon rocked by the brutal murders of two fellow students, Pat (Eva Axén) and Sara (Stefania Casini), and the school’s blind piano player, Daniel (Flavio Bucci).

Co-written (with Daria Nicolodi) and directed by Dario Argento, the film’s plot is a train wreck. Luciano Tovoli’s cinematography and the Goblin’s score, however, are so masterful, no one seems to care that exactly what happens or why it happens is never made clear.

The Black Saint and Bill Mulligan extol the effect the trailer had on them when they first saw it. Think involuntary bodily evacuation. The crew all think Suspiria is Jessica Harper’s film more than any other member of the cast. When they learn she got the part after Argento saw her performance in Brian de Palma’s Phantom of the Paradise, they throw some smack toward award-winning director and fellow Decades of Horror co-host, Christopher G. Moore (See Decades of Horror 1970s – Episode 40 – Phantom of the Paradise (1974)). Suspiria is filled with effective and memorable scenes that our fearless Grue Crew discuss in detail, especially the sequences that detailing the first murder, the razor wire girl, and the return of razor wire girl (more bodily evacuation). They also remark on the film’s omnipresent vivid and often inappropriate-to-life colors.

Find out that what Disney film The Black Saint has never seen. (What?!) Or hear The Black Saint’s story about meeting Dario Argento. Or find out why much of the time, the dancers’ behaviors seem juvenile.

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.