Kino Lorber Releases Two Lost Gothic Classics For Summer.

If horror and mystery stories are a regular part of your summer reading, you may want to consider these two classic horror/mystery hybrid films as a companion for a hot night in front of the air conditioner. Kino Lorber is re-releasing excellent adaptations of classic stories from Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, both loaded with horror film tropes from seasoned directors and studios.

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HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES DVD (Kino Lorber)
There are over twenty film and television adaptations of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic story of The Hound of the Baskervilles. Hammer Film Productions were in the height of their infamous revamps of classic horror franchises when they turned their attention on the timeless detective. Hound was meant to launch a series, but the lack of Hammer monsters kept people away at the box office. Hammer left its signature on this film with trademark paint can blood, brooding organ music, and a gothic setting to the first Holmes mystery ever to be filmed in color. Peter Cushing’s Holmes was also well informed as he was an acute fan of the books and brought many of Holmes’ mannerisms to the screen.

André Morell’s performance of a more competent Dr. Watson was also praised as a more accurate reading of the character from the original stories and an antithesis to the much beloved and remembered bumbling portrayal in the earlier films where Nigel Bruce portrayed Watson regularly to Basil Rathbone’s Holmes. The combination of these elements brings an unmistakably stylish approach to a one-of-a-kind production. -Billups Allen

Hound of the Baskervilles
dir. Terence Fisher, 1959, color, 87 min.
DVD and Blu-ray at Kino Lorber Home Video.

 

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TEN LITTLE INDIANS DVD (Kino Lorber)
Peter Collinson’s 1974 adaptation of Agatha Christies’ Ten Little Indians was obscured at the time by a star-studded version of Murder on the Orient Express of the same year. Collinson’s penchant for mysteries laced with dark corners and suspense is apparent in The Spiral Staircase (1975) and his 1969 classic The Italian Job. If Murder was a star vehicle, Ten Little Indians is the character actor’s exercise. Adolfo Celi and Gert Frobe both appeared in early James Bond films as baddies. Herbert Lom also stands out among an excellent cast as the calculating Dr. Edward Armstrong. Filmed at the Abbasi Hotel in Iran, the location is a perfect modern gothic location for dark lighting and grisly murders. There is a pinch of classic horror attached to this classic tale of ten people lured to a remote location and picked off as revenge for past transgressions one at a time by an unnamed entity. – Billups Allen

Ten Little Indians
dir. Peter Collinson, 1974, color, 98 min.
DVD and Blu-ray at Kino Lorber Home Video.

 

 

 

 

 

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