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"Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

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"Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Old 09-23-13, 12:36 AM
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"Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1





Black Sabbath (1963)



Selected by Bladz



IMDB ENTRY

ON YOUTUBE

NETFLIX WATCH INSTANTLY
(Streaming 10/15)
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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags are unnecessary in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF SPOILERS.
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Last edited by Chad; 09-29-13 at 06:35 PM.
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Old 09-30-13, 12:12 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

^I see that the youtube link is for, IMO, the weaker AIP cut. For those who haven't seen this movie yet, hopefully you can get your hands on the original Italian version. The stories get scarier and scarier in the Bava cut. Plus, Karloff has an amusing send-off at the very end of the movie (He's only seen at the beginning of the AIP cut)
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Old 10-01-13, 09:11 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I was about to watch this on that youtube link, but your post reminded me that I have those Bava sets which include this, so thanks MK!
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Old 10-01-13, 10:31 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Watched it on YouTube in the hosted by Lord Mortimer Mortis ten-part form, and was underwhelmed... but mostly because of the inopportune circumstances. Not just the 10-minute timeout (unfortunately linked at least twice to supposed-to-be-jumpy moments), or the static or the hosting segments - which weren't that bad, and were quite amusing a couple of times, but the volume level.

The sound was so low, even when I put the volume all the way up on my old iPad (because two separate computers could only stream it in juddery frames-missing form which was even worse than the sound problems) I could barely hear a thing. I followed the first story, which seemed rather predictable, but the second.. I assume what was said on the phone was mildly important, but all I heard was near-silence. The third was better, and I was hopeful that Mr Karloff would act at some point, so that was good too.

Overall, though, a disappointing experience - but disappointing largely because of the format.
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Old 10-01-13, 11:26 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

This is one of my favorite horror anthologies. I have only seen the AIP version so I'm excited to be watching the original Italian cut when I get home from work tonight. I ordered the UK Arrow blu-ray so looking forward to seeing it in HD for the first time also.

When I first watched 'The Drop of Water', one thing that stood out for me was Bava's use of color and how Argento was influenced by him. I rarely get creeped out by a movie but when that corpse starts rising from the bed..... that did it for me.
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Old 10-01-13, 01:53 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Such a good movie IMO... solid old fashion scares, ... I mean I cannot get that womans face out of my head.
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Old 10-01-13, 01:55 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Finally cracked the DVD that I've been sitting on for over a decade. I selected this as my first film of the challenge, because I was having some trouble deciding where to begin. Think this is probably only my third Bava experience, following Rabid Dogs and Bay of Blood, but it's easily the best. I'm a fan of horror anthologies and Italian cinema, which explains why I purchased this one blindly all those years ago. The visuals are so incredible, though, that I'm not disappointed I didn't look into getting an HD version (despite a pretty impressive transfer from Image disc). Highly recommend this one to anyone who's looking to check out an older anthology and the first segment will also count toward Telephone Terrors theme night. Oh, and there are some very attractive women present here.
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Old 10-01-13, 02:21 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I think this is one of the best horror films ever, and quite possibly the best anthology horror film. I'm watching the Arrow Blu of it now and have to say it is a great presentation.
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Old 10-01-13, 04:03 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I really enjoyed it as well. The DVD from the Bava set looked great imo, and the film historian (?) commentary was well done.

The three stories ramp up in quality each time, some really chilling images in all three stories, but the last one especially.
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Old 10-01-13, 04:16 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I'll have to look into buying the box set.

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
The three stories ramp up in quality each time, some really chilling images in all three stories, but the last one especially.
I guess this depends on which version you watch? I believe the Italian and English versions have different orders for the stories. And both have a lot of the same dubbing. I've always found it odd when releases such as this get (or start) screwed with, and then the result is completely unnecessary.

Anyway, I really did enjoy the heck out of this. Can't believe I haven't watched it before. Such great imagery. And that is one scary old lady... The old lady in Pet Cemetery was always the scariest to me. Nope. Not anymore.
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Old 10-01-13, 04:39 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Speaking of Pet Cemetery, it has scariest kid for me, iirc.
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Old 10-01-13, 06:24 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Having seen both versions, I definitely agree that the original version is considerably better. The only things going for the AIP version is that many people saw it originally and you get Boris Karloff's own voice which does make the Wurdulak story better. I also enjoyed the commentary by Tim Lucas very much. He certainly gives good backgrounds on the various actors and actresses.
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Old 10-01-13, 09:30 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

The Drops of Water segment is easily the strongest. Maybe I'm alone in this but I've found the Wurdulak story to be atmospheric with great visuals but content that is a little too busy for the timespan. I love the ending of the Italian version that comically breaks the fourth wall.

It sounds like I need to check out the commentary.
Originally Posted by Darkgod View Post
Such a good movie IMO... solid old fashion scares, ... I mean I cannot get that womans face out of my head.
I agree. That is one creepy hag face.
Originally Posted by indiephantom View Post
Finally cracked the DVD that I've been sitting on for over a decade. I selected this as my first film of the challenge, because I was having some trouble deciding where to begin. Think this is probably only my third Bava experience, following Rabid Dogs and Bay of Blood, but it's easily the best...
Kill Baby Kill reminds me of Black Sabbath a lot with the visuals; you might want to check out KBK if you're in the mood for more Bava. I think KBK is my favorite Bava film so far.
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Old 10-01-13, 11:36 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I own the DVD version with the original Italian track and with the stories in order of The Telephone (more Giallo than horror) / The Wurdulak (the best segment that still holds up) / Drop of Water (my vote for creepiest corpse ever).
I bet audiences in 1963 must have fainted when Karloff pulled that severed head out of the bag! The original title, The Three Faces of Fear, is much more fitting I believe since in none of the segments does a "Black Sabbath" ceremony actually happen. And leave it to the Italians to scare you half to death and then end the movie with playful piano music.
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Old 10-01-13, 11:38 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Great anthology film. It could be the best Non-Hammer Hammer film out there. I loved the use of color and light in the vampire story, but it's the corpse face in the last chapter that sticks with you. It would have been cool if they had named that segment "The Ring". The "film making" final shot is priceless.
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Old 10-01-13, 11:48 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Just finished a few minutes ago, and what a rush! I really liked the film's style, especially the lighting and the quick zooms. Honestly, I did not go into this with much hope. I've never been a big fan of anthology films, and all of the poster art seemed pretty pedestrian. However, the film caught and held me from the first. The first segment felt like a noir - one of my favorite genres - and had a LGBT theme to boot! The film just kept getting better from there.

If I had to pick a favorite segment, I would go for "The Wurdalak". Karloff is great in his fur parka, and the tense builds and builds. While the outcome is fairly obvious when Karloff arrives, I wasn't expecting everyone to die, especially the little boy. (This is the second film I've watched in as many days that features a kid dying, both in fairly grotesque ways.) As Karloff cut a swath through his family, the house felt more and more claustrophobic and the situation more and more hopeless.

I did enjoy the other segments as well. "A Drop of Water" was freaky as hell. I agree with the consensus her that the old woman is among the creepiest. I would put her up there with bathtub woman from The Shining.
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Old 10-02-13, 09:19 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

I agree that "The Drop of Water" is the strongest of the three stories. It's frightening. I love how Bava uses light and shadows to make a tense scene even creepier. The old woman would scare the crap out of you in broad daylight, but at night, with those decaying colors and dim vision? *SHUDDERS* Bava was one of the best at setting a scene that terrifies you just by looking at it. Great film.
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Old 10-02-13, 03:18 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Waiting until the 15th when I can watch this on Netflix. Hopefully it will be the original Italian version that is apparently superior. The comments in this thread have me excited however, I have been meaning to check out Bava for years, and even had one of his films on my list last year that I never got around to.

I remember last year one of my favorite discoveries was an anthology horror film from the 40s that was clearly influential on the Twilight Zone and had a mind-fuck twist ending that seemed really ahead of its time. I wasn't expecting much from horror flick from the 40s, but several of the segments really creeped me out, especially the story about the Ventriloquists doll. It was one of the subset films, can anybody remember the title of that film? I wanted to recommend it to a friend.
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Old 10-03-13, 12:50 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Originally Posted by DaveyJoe View Post
I remember last year one of my favorite discoveries was an anthology horror film from the 40s that was clearly influential on the Twilight Zone and had a mind-fuck twist ending that seemed really ahead of its time. I wasn't expecting much from horror flick from the 40s, but several of the segments really creeped me out, especially the story about the Ventriloquists doll. It was one of the subset films, can anybody remember the title of that film? I wanted to recommend it to a friend.
DJ, that was DEAD OF NIGHT.

As far as BLACK SABBATH goes, I first saw it in the theater when I was 9 or so. My hometown theater had a habit of showing double-features of older horror films on weekends for us kids, and BLACK SABBATH was showing with Corman's THE RAVEN. My friend Mike and I went to see it, and, since it was the AIP cut, "The Drop of Water" was the first segment up. It absolutely terrified me. I was uneasy for the rest of the film, fearing that something that scary might pop up again, but it didn't. After it was over, we watched THE RAVEN, and I loved it. And then, they showed BLACK SABBATH again. Mike asked if I wanted to stay and watch it again, but there was no way in hell that I was going to do that.

When the movie first came out on VHS, I rented it and watched it alone...and it scared the crap out of me again. "The Drop of Water" is still in my personal top ten list of the scariest moments in the movies.

Since I saw the AIP cut first, that's the one that I love...but I certainly like the order of the stories in the Italian cut better.
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Old 10-03-13, 11:48 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Originally Posted by Undeadcow View Post
Kill Baby Kill reminds me of Black Sabbath a lot with the visuals; you might want to check out KBK if you're in the mood for more Bava. I think KBK is my favorite Bava film so far.
I actually don't it in a boxset, but I'll check out that one for sure and I'll be delving into more Bava most certainly.
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Old 10-03-13, 11:59 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

Originally Posted by rbrown498 View Post
DJ, that was DEAD OF NIGHT.
Thank you! I couldn't remember that title and it has been bothering me for a couple of days. What a pleasant surprise that film was.
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Old 10-15-13, 01:52 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

This is streaming on Netflix now and the quality is great. It streams in 1080 (doesn't say whether it was p or i) but the picture looked outstanding.

Now I didn't now there were different versions until I had watched it on Netflix and then read this thread (I stay away from reading any of the review threads until I watch the movie) but the Netflix streaming version appears to be the AIP version mentioned.

That being said, this movie is kick ass from the "Drop Of Water" story alone. Damn, it has to be the creepiest thing ever made around it's time. I rarely ever get creeped out by movies that were made pre-1970 but that segment did it. Everything about it was perfect. Now on to the disappointing rest of the film...

The second segment, "The Telephone," was decent but following the excellent "Drop Of Water," it pales in comparison. Not a very good ending and The Telephone suffers from an awful score that doesn't fit with the tale at all.

The worst and dullest segment of the bunch was saved for last..."The Wurdalak." It starts off well, and damn, I love Karloff, but once the two lovers leave the house, it just gets duller. I always hate how people see each other for 15 minutes and then are calling each other "Lover" and making comments like they could never leave each other's side. I couldn't help but laugh at the end when the horse took off running after everyone became a vampire. It was as if the horse said, "Fuck this shit. I'm outta here!"

An enjoyable movie but I would have reversed the tales (but it sounds like that is done in the other version). The dubbing was bad in places but I could live with it.

My rating: *** out of *****
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Old 10-22-13, 11:31 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

The Drop of Water: every time they show that creepy old lady corpse face:

Spoiler:
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Old 10-22-13, 11:51 PM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

The Telephone: "Hello? Hello!?"
Spoiler:


The film's composer seriously misunderstood the tone of this segment.

"Nothing, it's nothing. I was just frightened by... absolutely nothing!" So she's like my cat..

Last edited by DaveyJoe; 10-23-13 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 10-23-13, 12:30 AM
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Re: "Black Sabbath" Reviews/Discussion - 2013 Horror Challenge: Day 1

The Wurdalak: "What's the matter, woman? Can't I fondle my own grandson?" I really hope something was lost in translation there.

Wurdalak or not, Karloff's got it coming just for being a jerk!
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