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Invasion of the Vampires (1963)

The sequel to The Bloody Vampire, I think I enjoyed this one even more. Count Frankenhausen is back, as is the giant bat.

(I mean...)

Not much to say here, the same pros and cons as the first film apply. Atmosphere by the truckload, terrible English dubbing. This time the score really stood out to me. A borderline avant-garde mix of electronic (?) noises and moaning voices, it had sort of a bludgeoning effect, similar to Goblin's Argento scores. Good stuff. Again, if someone were to restore these things and release them as a BluRay set, I'd be all over it. Watched this one on YouTube.




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Captain's Log
My Collection



Well, you've taken an interesting turn, Cap.



Well, you've taken an interesting turn, Cap.
I don't know if it's clear from the screenshot, but all of the vampires in that last pic have stakes through their hearts. That whole segment felt very much like a proto-NotLD, as they were more zombie than vampire at that point. An interesting little wrinkle. Both films are worth seeking out for those with the patience for such things.



...Both films are worth seeking out for those with the patience for such things.
Well, the second one is, clearly, just for the Vampire Bunny.




Thing I love about this one is that her witch-face is actually just a mask hanging on the coat-rack.
Oh, and the idea that you need a Haunting License.
I guess I like everything about this.




"'Vampyr' is as close as you get to poetry in film." - Guillermo del Toro

This is the story of Allan Gray, a dreamer and wanderer (of some means it would seem, given his nice suit) and seeker of the supernatural. And he finds it. Wandering one day with his butterfly net, he stops at an Inn and is almost immediately dragged (not unwillingly, mind you) into the supernatural events set in motion by the local vampire and her thrall.
It's funny that the first time I saw this film, the print was poor enough that I didn't really even appreciate a story, I thought it was all just dreamy sequences and some goings on. I liked it, but I didn't even realize it had a narrative. On a second viewing a couple years ago, it made much more sense but I still didn't fully follow it. Oddly, on this third viewing the narrative seemed abundantly clear and I couldn't understand how I ever had trouble following it. Until my friends said they didn't follow it at all and it just seemed kinda dreamy to them.
Maybe that's what I like so much about this movie.
But make no mistake, this is a great little vampire movie. Allan Gray's adventure is a great little story and the way our protagonist becomes intimately wrapped up in this dark and deadly situation acts as an avatar/bridge for the audience themselves, particularly when Gray himself, wanting to help but actually being a bit hapless, seems to become the focus of the danger.


Dreyer's camera is just wonderful in this film. It is a character unto itself. Some of the tracking shots are just hard to be believed given the era and the compositions are always interesting. Dreyer always puts a lot in-frame for the eyes to digest, which is good while characters are reading a book for a significant portion of the film, and you could steal dozens of macabre frames from the good print currently available to decorate for the whole Halloween season. Or just run the movie in the background to spook up your party.
If anyone hasn't seen Vampyr, you should.



Wooley classin' up the joint up in here.

I discovered Vampyr during that time in my life where I was starting to consider myself a "film buff", so it'll always have a special place in my heart. It was a great way for a horror kid to slide into the fancier side of cinema.

And I had the same first-time reaction as you. I blind-bought a horrible public domain VHS and my first impression was that it was more abstract than it actually was. The day the Criterion edition was announced was a big day in my life.



Wooley classin' up the joint up in here.

I discovered Vampyr during that time in my life where I was starting to consider myself a "film buff", so it'll always have a special place in my heart. It was a great way for a horror kid to slide into the fancier side of cinema.

And I had the same first-time reaction as you. I blind-bought a horrible public domain VHS and my first impression was that it was more abstract than it actually was. The day the Criterion edition was announced was a big day in my life.
It's funny, the first time I watched it, I didn't understand virtually anything. The second time I watched it, I still didn't understand at all who the doctor was, at all, or how linear the story is and why the film ended the way it did.
This time I was like,
WARNING: "the whole plot" spoilers below
"Oh, so that guy's a doctor and he's the thrall of that creepy-looking old person, who must be the vampire, and instead of helping the girl he's basically preventing the family from saving her so she'll kill herself and be damned, and he performs the fake transfusion on Allan basically draining him of his blood and nearly kilingl him, taking him out of the equation for a while since he seems to be the wild-card, but, ultimately, the old manservant reads the book that was left for Gray, realizes the vampire is the same one that had haunted the area some years before, digs up her grave and stakes her and then kills the doctor...
The end."
I just think it's weird that the movie can be like that, seem perfectly narratively straightforward on later viewings when it was like a dream on the first one. Which, again, is what my friends watching for the first time thought of it.



Yeah, Vampyr is terrific. Probably my favorite classic horror film. Nice review of it
Thank you. I would like to have said more, but in order to watch these at night I have to write them up during the day when I'm at work so I don't get much time to do them.



My Birthday present?!!!
You shouldn't have!
(But I'm glad you did.)



Alert!
This just in:
Lemora is still awesome. I repeat, Lemora is still awesome.



I looked up the Monster Fan Club address. Looks like a beauty supply store is there now, so they'd be a bit confused.
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Last Great Movie Seen
Mad God (Tippett, 2021)