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Fox Horror Classics Collection (The Lodger / Hangover Square / The Undying Monster)
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Disc 1: HANGOVER SQUARE **Full-Frame Feature B&W **Commentary by Film Historian/Screenwriter Steve Haberman and Co-Star Faye Marlowe **Commentary by Richard Schickel **The Tragic Mask: The Laird Cregar Story **Hangover Square Vintage Radio Show - Performed by Vincent Price **Restoration Comparison **Trailer **Concertos Macabre: The Films of John Brahm **Restoration Comparison **Trailer
Disc 2: THE LODGER **Full-Frame Feature - B&W **Commentary by Film Historians Alain Silver & James Ursini **Man in the Fog: The Making of The Lodger **The Lodger Vintage Radio Show - Performed by Vincent Price **Restoration Comparison **Trailer **Still Gallery
Disc 3: THE UNDYING MONSTER **Full-Frame Feature - B&W **Concertos Macabre: The Films of John Brahm *Restoration Comparison **Trailer **Advertising Gallery **Still Gallery
This three-disc collection of vintage suspense from the Fox vaults not only presents three atmospheric and underrated thrillers in sparkling remastered formats, but also serves as a long-overdue tribute to the talents of director John Brahm and actor Laird Cregar, who stars in two of the three films. 1944's The Lodger is probably the best-known of the three; it's a remake of a 1926 Alfred Hitchcock film and stars Cregar as a mysterious house guest who may be Jack the Ripper. Cregar is top-billed in 1945's Hangover Square as another psychologically tormented soul; here he's a concert pianist (Bernard Herrmann composed the film's stunning concerto) who flies into a psychotic rage at the sound of a dissonant chord. And 1942's The Undying Monster is the "truest" horror title in the collection due to its werewolf plotline, but there's more than a touch of detective drama (and scientific procedural) in its frames as well. All three pictures are distinguished by German-born director Brahm, whose expressionistic visual style and emphasis on psychological terror over physical frights help to set these films apart from the monster-driven horror films coming from Universal at the same time. He's aided considerably by Cregar, who set the standard for movie madmen for decades to come. In addition to their stunning remastering, all three films feature in-depth featurettes on their principal players and histories. Concerto Macabre: The Films of John Brahm traces the director's offbeat career (after making an impact with the three films featured here, he concentrated almost exclusively on TV, where his output included stellar episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits), while The Tragic Mask: The Laird Cregar Story explores the oversized actor's struggle with typecasting and his homosexuality. The Lodger gets its own making-of documentary, The Man in the Attic, which explores Brahm's stunning visual compositions and Cregar's intense performance in detail. Trailers and advertising galleries for all three pictures are included, as are two complete radio adaptations of The Lodger and Hangover Square, both starring Vincent Price, who became Fox's in-house heavy after Cregar's untimely death at 31. Commentary on Hangover Square by film historians Richard Schickel and Steve Haberman with cast member Faye Marlowe, and James Ursini and Alain Silver on The Lodger, round the extras on this chill-filled set. -- Paul Gaita
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Top customer reviews
The Lodge is Ripper tale that stars Laird Cregar in a great performance. Merle Oberon is in it as the female lead(victim). Atmospheric and well paced. The performance by Cregar is Enhanced by top notch direction by John Brahm. Brahm is an often over looked director who did a vast collection of films and TV shows. He has done a wonderful job on this film.
Hangover Square is another Cregar outing where he stars as the hero/villain of the movie. Linda Darnell almost seals the show as a pub singer who is not to be trusted. Again Brahm was at the helm and the film is a minor masterpiece.
The Undying Monster is the most fun of the set and horror fans will enjoy the thrill ride provided by Brahm who also directs this wonderful B movie,
The whole set is a great way to spend a couple of nights being entertained in the noir style of John Brahm. The set should be called the John Brahm set but as I noted he was not as widely known as others. I believe that is why 20th went with the horror chant even though Lodger and Hangover are more psychological thrillers than out right horror.
Brahm continued in the TV realm with episodes in Thriller and other cult and horror shows of the 60's. If you have never seen these films they are well worth any thriller fan's time they are all well made and entertaining. Great set at a good price. A good set of extras round out the collection.
Also available're three more flicks: "Fox Horror Classics Volume 2". Okay, back to these three movies.
I was interested, specifically, in the -- "werewolf"-- Blu-ray release of THE UNDYING MONSTER. In checking out IF
it was worth the price of the pre-order, I---had these "Easter Eggs" drop in my lap. Not only is/was this collection of THREE
20th Century Fox Studios mysterious [film noir] terror REASONABLY-PRICED-----I won't mention PRICE----- all three of
these (and Volume 2) have been completely remastered. Volume Two is still on the way, so, THAT is another day's topic.
These three movies are boxed. Each of the three movies has two postcard-sized LOBBY CARDS inside. Each movie has
a treasure trove of extras. I'll list the contents important to SOME fans of these1942; 1944; 1945 "war time era" releases:
THE UNDYING MONSTER= English mono & English stereo; Spanish mono. Subtitled in English/Spanish/French; 63-minutes.
THE LODGER= Soundtrack~English mono & English stereo; --------------------Subtitled in English/Spanish/French; 84-minutes.
HANGOVER SQUARE=~~~~English mono & English stereo; --------------------Subtitled in English/Spanish/French; 77-minutes.
There are seventeen added bonus such as Trailers; restoration comparisons; commentaries; 2 radio broadcasts; featurettes;
still photo and advertising galleries; and a, w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l, 6-page booklet. The first two movies are based on novels, and the
third is---pretty much---a re-write of "The Lodger".
The magic of these films is Brahm's direction. His use of light and shadows is excellent and give what are essentially low budget thrillers an ambiance that a lot of bigger films lack. If you enjoy the old Universal films; you'll be impressed with these three. Well worth the price even if you're taking a chance like I was. Three great movies for dark and stormy nights!
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