Monsters and Memories Revisited!

 

 

Hello Insomniacs! It’s been awhile since I’ve had a chance to do any writing! So, while we try to get that back up and running, I thought it would be fun to revisit one of my older columns that I had written for Horror Haven and The Fright Channel. So, here is my first ever article! Enjoy!

Greetings Groovy Ghoulies! My name is Ed Davis and I love horror and sci-fi movies. Good ones, bad ones. They are a great escapism. It’s hard to believe it has been nearly 80 years since Bela Lugosi first donned the cape in the screen adaption of the play Dracula. It changed the world and set the horror genre on fire.
I grew up in upstate New York on a steady diet of Creature Double Feature, The Movie Loft, comic books, KISS, and Alice Cooper.
I remember setting an old wind-up alarm clock to watch some horror movie that would going on at 2am. And either the clock wouldn’t work right, or I would make it through the credits. But every once in awhile, I would make it through a whole picture.
As I grew older and cable television changed, we lost a lot of those films to infomercials. But, thankful with the arrival of DVDs, we can now relieve so many of those films.
With this forum, I plan to start around 1930 and work my way through as many horror and sci-fi films I can get my hands on. From Abbott and Costello to all of those zombies, no movie will be left behind! If I can find it, you’ll hear about it. We’re going to start with 1930’s “The Bat Whispers” and go from there.
The 30s were a golden time for Universal. The main creatures were introduced then. Stars were made of Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi and so many more.
The theater going world were introduced to the 12 part science fiction serial and new things were tried.
I hope you all enjoy the journey with me.
I had never seen “The Bat Whispers” before, and I was not disappointed. It was adapted from a 1920 stage play, and it is a great early talkie. The plot revolves around a criminal named The Bat trying to steal $500,00 hidden in a country mansion somewhere. We are introduced to a cast of colorful characters. And I thought the mansion itself was an interesting character. A secret room, winding staircases, just a great atmospheric setting.
I was impressed with the early special effects used in the film. A great use of miniatures sweeping over city streets, train tracks, and the mansion itself. I think there might have been some early animation in the opening sequence. There is also a cool sequence involving a fire playing in the distance and it seems to dance off the side of the house, as if it was really there.
One scene that really stuck out to me involved the Bat and the daughter of the spinster who owns the mansion. The young woman looks up and sees the shadow of the bat on the wall and it seems to melt away in front of us to reveal the Bat himself. He starts to crawl towards the camera and right into your lap, my heart skipped a beat!
Watching this, I couldn’t help noticing how much the Bat reminded me of Batman and I wondered how much influence this had on Bob Kane’s creation. Doing some searching around the net, I discovered “The Bat Whispers” did play a role in the development of the caped crusader.
Do yourself a favor, and hunt this one down. A nice mix of laughs and scares to get you through the night.
Speaking of Batman, I was trying to find some toy or something to tie into this movie as I hope to do with all of my reviews. And I found this awesome play set from Mego that I always wanted, The Wayne Foundation seen at this address:
Isn’t that cool? It had a working elevator for your Megos and even the giant penny from the Batcave itself! Anyone out there still have one of these? Anyone still have their Megos?
That’s all for now. I’ll be back soon with another review and more monster toys! Until then, remember to watch the skies!

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This week’s movies!

Hello fellow insomniacs! I was contacted this weekend by a fellow Insomniac, John J. Bossong III. And he was wondering where he can watch my movies each week?

And I was quite honored by that question. Here at the Insomniac, we try to recreate a fun, drive-in atmosphere. And I would love nothing more to have some kind of actual outlet for these movies some day. To do the actual Insomniac Drive-In, maybe even stream somewhere! But alas, right now we will continue the reviews and great trailers each week.

But, it did get me thinking! I am going to share the week’s movies on Mondays from now on, in hopes that those that would like to watch along are welcome!

So, here we go!

Tonight: A Creature Double Feature of Daimajin AKA Majin, Monster of Terror and Return of Daimajin AKA Return of Giant Majin

Friday: The first of the season! An old school Dusk till Dawn Movie Marathon!
It will feature: Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster, Return of Mechagodzilla, Dear God No!, Frankenstein Created Bikers, Count Yorga Vampire, Devil’s Hand (1961), Devil Times Five, Don’t Look In The Basement (1973), and City of The Dead AKA Horror Hotel

Then back around to Saturday night for another Creature Double Feature with Reptilicus and Yongary, Monster From The Deep

So, there is the list for this week! We hope to catch up with you on some reviews this week! And hope you find something on this list to enjoy as well!

And if anyone has some streaming knowledge and wants to point in the right direction, welcome aboard!

Discovering A New World

I feel like Captain Kirk navigating new worlds…

Greetings fellow Insomniacs! We are working on some great reviews and an interview that I am very excited about! Details coming!

Writing today as I have been navigating Twitter and get used to it’s features. It’s a whole new world. And I kind of feel like Captain Kirk navigating new worlds and seeing things for the first time. Some of you are laughing, as you are old hats at this social media thing! I have enjoyed Facebook, and I found the benefits of Twitter. I have already started to make new contacts and learn about other horror projects out there.

I am enjoying the community feel and I can’t believe I fought using it for so long. I love the .gifs and pictures. The news have come pouring in. Growing up, I always wished there was a central location to be connected. Famous Monsters of Filmland, Starlog, and Fangoria just weren’t enough.

I was going through the list of people and things to follow, and I have now tailor made my own scroll of news and weird things. It’s great. And it’s still surreal to have this be a part or my scroll or anyone elses.

So, I keep following and keep tweeting. And it only gets my own creative juices flowing, so thank you all out there for that!

So, reviews and movies are coming! Get out and support a drive-in if you can, and we’ll talk again real soon! Your comments are always welcome!

We love email at monstersandmemories@Hotmail.com

Facebook: Facebook.com/InsomniacDriveIn

Twitter: @InsomniacDI

Hope to catch up somewhere!

The Bride of Frankenstein!

It’s no surprise the Monster survived the fire.

Greetings fellow Insomniacs! For some of you, this will be the first time we are getting together. And some of you have been here through various incarnations since the beginning. Let me say thank you to you all! The Insomniac Drive-In celebrates all things Horror, Sci-Fi, Kung Fu, Saturday Morning Cartoons, Kaiju, 80s Movies, and all the other pieces that made up my childhood.

I’m so excited to have a more permanent home for our reviews again, and look forward to where we go from here. Let’s get into it! “The Bride of Frankenstein” was released in 1935. It is part of the Universal Monsters series. It stars Boris Kaloff, Collin Clive, and Elsa Lanchester. Universal knew they had hits on their hands with Dracula and Frankenstein. So, it was no surprise that the monster would survive the fire at the end of “Frankenstein”. I haven’t seen this film in awhile and it was quite enjoyable. The story follows a Dr. Pretorius seeking Dr. Frankenstein after rescuing his monster. The monster has learned to talk and he wants a mate. Elsa Lanchester isn’t in enough as the Bride but her scenes are complete heartbreak for the Monster.

The set pieces are cool, I thought the laboratory in the first film was cooler, but there are some nice pieces. Directed by James Whale, there is more lightness to it. Apparently, Whales didn’t want to return to direct but ended up directing, and wanted to make a different movie. He felt he had told the story he wanted to in the first film.

Jack Pierce’s make-up on Karloff was great. Showing the after effects of the fire, the monster looks a little worse this time around. Karloff gets lines in this one. He always had such a kind voice, and he’s the one actor from this age that I would love to have a sit down with.

This is a great popcorn late night feature. If you haven’t seen it, definitely check it out!

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