1959......

..... I just finished watching the old 1959 version of 'The Hound of the Baskervilles' again.... and damn, I do love that movie..... serving wenches, murders, monsters, lonesome howls out on the moor.... I swear, it is a wonderful movie...... forebodings, Sherlock Holmes, curses, and Christopher Lee as Sir Henry.... it just doesn't get much better than that.....

.... TCM and AMC tend to show it every few months and I always end up tuning in just before the tarantula scene... (where Christopher Lee is about to be bitten in the face and Peter Cushing wicks it off with his cane and beats it to death in the corner)...... but today I watched it from the very beginning.......

.... good god, I was shocked and amazed..... I mean, can you believe that in the "Leave It To Beaver" world of 1959 they aired a movie that opened with a concerned Father being beaten, burned, and tossed into a moat by The Lord of The Manor?..... and then dragged back in - dripping and screaming - to be jeered at, punched, and laughed at by a crew of aristocratic, would-be rapists?.... all while his poor, tightly-corseted daughter cried into her bedchamber's pillows as the gangbangers laughed about their upcoming melee in the hall below?..... I was shocked...... Sir Arthur Conan Doyle must have had a twisted streak two miles wide......

.... I had always imagined that in 1959 the censors had everything pretty much battened down..... no foul language, separate beds for husbands and wives, no kissie-poo with tongue, no smooch to last longer than 10 seconds, etc...... but wow, the beginning of Baskervilles is just plain bawdy....

.... I remember reading Lee's biography a few years ago and loving every word.... it was titled "Tall, Dark, and Gruesome", and I highly recommend it, by the way........

.... the funny thing is, Christopher Lee looked remarkably like a young Nicholas Cage in the flick.....

... anyway, if y'all get a chance to sit through that movie, do yourselves a favor..... Peter Cushing is absolutely fantastic as Holmes..... way, way, WAY better than Rathbone, if I do say so myself...... and hey, it was also mildly refreshing to see Lee in a scene with a buxom lassie that didn't involve blood dripping from a neck or set of fangs.... sure, she still tried to kill him once or twice, but that wasn't really the point....

.... oh, and did you know that Vincent Price and Christopher Lee were both born on the same day?.... the 27th of May..... and Peter Cushing was born on the 26th?..... wow..... all three were close friends, from all accounts...... my goodness..... can't you just imagine what a birthday party THAT must have been?...

by Eric on November 23, 2008 | Bullshit (6) | TrackBack (0) | Movies
Bullshit So Far

Aren't you, Zonker, Elisson, Hairboy and Denny also born within days of one another too? And there is a birthday party shindig at you house?

Thanks the Gods that it doesn't involve blood dripping from a neck or set of fangs, since that could possibly be construed as a not good thing.

Bullshitted by Erica on November 23, 2008 06:22 PM

..... point taken, Erica....... although, I do believe that Zonker brought a set of devilish horns one year.....

Bullshitted by Eric on November 23, 2008 09:04 PM

Speaking of censors and movies. Ever see the uncut version of TARZAN AND HIS MATE (1934)
Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen O'Sullivan.
I saw the cut version umteen times growing up but there was a scene of Jane (Maureen O'Sullivan) skinny dipping that was only restore in a release of the film after 1990.
It was perhaps the most highly erotic yet innocent nude scene ever put on film. Never seen it. Check it out. Masterpiece.

Bullshitted by Tbird on November 23, 2008 09:18 PM

"no kissie-poo with tongue" Don't know why, but that made me laugh.

Bullshitted by Bou on November 23, 2008 10:46 PM

The BBC versions of all the Holmes episodes come closest to perfection. If perfection means faithful reproduction of Doyle's work. No contest.

Jeremy Britt, even as he was dying, which you could attribute to Holmes' cocaine addiction if you were really into it, was way better than Basil Rathbone.

Bullshitted by jdallen on November 24, 2008 08:18 AM

It's been a long time since I've read the actual story, so I have no idea if the movie stayed with the story or "added" scenes to make it more lively. I think it's very likely that those scenes were added to give the movie some zing - but I could be wrong. Movies seldom stay true to the way the story was written.

It's likely I have seen that movie a long time ago, so I'll have to look for it again. Sounds like it's lots of fun to watch. LOL.

I agree the Mystery Theater versions of Sherlock Holmes with Jeremy Britt were absolutely true to the books. Now I have to dig out my Holmes Anthology and go read it.

Bullshitted by Teresa on November 24, 2008 12:56 PM