Horror Classics, Vol. 5 & 6 [2 Discs] [DVD]

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Overview

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Special Features

  • Digitally mastered
  • Interactive menus
  • Chapter selections
  • Digitally enhanced audio 5.1

Synopsis

Scared to Death
Completed several years before its 1947 release, Scared to Death is historically important as Bela Lugosi's only color film (outside of his brief unbilled appearance in 1931's Fifty Million Frenchmen, which today exists only in black & white). Other than that, it's a dreary story of how a beautiful but treacherous young woman (Molly Lamont) literally dies of fright. Anticipating Sunset Boulevard by at least five years, the film is narrated by the deceased "heroine", meaning that suspense and surprise are hardly considerations here. It's a toss-up as to who's funnier: the film's official comedy relief, dumb detective Nat Pendleton and dumber blonde Joyce Compton, or the "odd couple" team of the caped-and-cloaked Bela Lugosi and his dress-alike dwarf companion Angelo Rossitto. For the record, Lugosi plays a sinister hypnotist named Leonide, yet another of his myriad of "red herring" roles in the 1940s. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Silent Night, Bloody Night
The secrets of a small New England town are violently exposed on Christmas Eve in this proto-slasher shocker. The owner of the long-abandoned Butler estate is desperate to sell, and dispatches his lawyer from New York to negotiate its purchase by the town council. Meanwhile, an inmate from a nearby insane asylum breaks loose and makes his way to the old mansion to take bloody revenge for a crime kept hidden for 35 years. The maniac makes mysterious phone calls to various prominent citizens, telling them that "Marianne" has returned, and lures each to the Butler house to meet their doom. The mayor's daughter, Diane, receives a visit from a man who claims to be Jeremy Butler, the mansion's owner, in town to investigate his lawyer's disappearance. Together they attempt to unravel the sinister mystery of the Butler house, which turns out to be a harrowing tale of incest, insanity and mass murder. Cult favorites Mary Woronov and John Carradine are featured in the cast of this eerie thriller, which also includes cameos from Warhol Factory legends Candy Darling and Ondine. ~ Fred Beldin, Rovi

Good Against Evil
The made-for-TV Good Against Evil might not have existed had not The Exorcist shown the way three years earlier. Dack Rambo and Elyssa Davalos star as sweethearts Andy Stuart and Jessica Gordon. The course of true love is messed up when Satan claims Jessica as his own personal property. Desperately, Andy turns to a pair of priests, Fathers Kemschler (Dan O'Herlihy) and Wheatley (John Harkins), for spiritual guidance, not to mention a bit of brute force in purging poor Jessica of her demons. Jimmy Sangster's screenplay doesn't miss a trick, nor does the spooky direction by Paul Wendkos. When first telecast on May 22, 1977, Good Against Evil ran 72 minutes; syndicated prints have been expanded to 97 minutes. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Snowbeast
In this made-for-television chiller, an enormous and angry Bigfoot launches a campaign of death and destruction against the skiers who have disturbed its home. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi

Night Train to Terror
This unusual horror anthology mixed edited-down versions of one unreleased feature and two previously released films (Death Wish Club and The Nightmare Never Ends) with newly shot wraparound footage to create a surreal combination of crazed plotting and grindhouse gore. The framing device consists of God and Satan on a train full of breakdancing teenagers telling each other stories about humans. The first story focuses on an institute for the mentally ill that is really a cover for a black market organ-harvesting operation. The second story focuses on a man who falls for a woman who is part of group of people that attempt suicide for fun. The final story tells the tale of a group of mortals who attempt to stop Satan from returning to earth to begin the apocalypse. Each episode combines deranged plot twists with heaping helpinds of sex and violence, resulting in a film that plays like a lysergic and deranged variant on comparatively sedate horror anthologies like Creepshow. Night Train to Terror didn't enjoy a great deal of box-office success, but has gone on to enjoy a lengthy life on home video, where it continues to astound (and confound) viewers with its blood-spattered weirdness. ~ Donald Guarisco, Rovi

Moon of the Wolf
Filmed for television, this story concerns a series of killings in the Louisiana bayou. The sheriff on the case believes that a werewolf is behind the murders. The film was adapted from a book by Leslie H. Whitten. ~ John Bush, Rovi

Kill, Baby, Kill
One of the more prominent works of Italy's premier horror stylist Mario Bava, this occult murder mystery interweaves elements of the traditional giallo thriller formula with an unusual Gothic ghost story. The tale is set in a modern-day Carpathian village rocked by a series of bizarre murders, in which the female victims are found with gold coins imbedded in their hearts. The coins are revealed to be talismans placed on the victims by the local sorceress (Fabienne Dali), meant to ward off the supernatural powers of the aged Baroness Graps (Giana Vivaldi). The baroness has been acting as an earthly liaison for the vengeful ghost of her murdered daughter, who wants to claim the villagers' souls -- with Erica Blanc next on the list. In order to free the village from the evil curse, Dali must find the sequestered baroness and destroy her. The film was released in the U.S. in two dubbed and re-edited versions, Kill, Baby, Kill! and Curse of the Living Dead (packaged as part of an "Orgy of the Living Dead" triple feature). ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

The Devil's Nightmare
This seedy but effective little supernatural thriller involves a group of seven travelers -- each of whom represents one of the Seven Deadly Sins -- who take shelter in a mysterious baron's haunted castle, where they are visited in turn by a seductive, lingerie-clad succubus (Erika Blanc), who metes out suitable punishment in accordance with their evil deeds. It is revealed that their enigmatic host is a former Nazi general whose family's Satanic legacy includes the birth of a malevolent she-demon into each generation. Only the token priest of the group manages to stand up to the evil forces. A Belgian/Italian co-production; also released as The Succubus, The Devil's Longest Night, Castle of Death and The Devil Walks at Midnight. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

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