Today’s horror scene that I love comes from the 1972 French film, The Iron Rose. In this scene, directed by the great Jean Rollin, Francoise Pascal dances in a cemetery. Why is she dancing? Perhaps she is celebrating the fact her lover has just suffocated inside of the crypt that she locked him in. Perhaps she’s just happy that a clown came by earlier and lay some flowers on a grave. One can never be sure. This entire sequence is Rollin at his best.
This is one of Rollin’s most enigmatic films, which is saying something when you consider just how dream-like the average Rollin film is. It was Rollin’s fifth film and his first to not involve vampires.
This scene, of course, is from 1980’s The Shining.
Technically, this is before Jack Torrance met the ghosts and started to lose his mind but, in this scene, you can tell that Jack’s already getting a little bit tired of his family. Jack Nicholson’s delivery of, “See? It’s okay. He heard it on the television,” gets me every time.
So begins the monologue that serves as the centerpiece of the 1955 Ed Wood film, Bride of the Monster. The monologue is delivered by Bela Lugosi, appearing in one of his final roles.
Far too often, people tend to be snarky about the work that Lugosi did under the direction of Ed Wood. But you know what?
He actually delivers a pretty good performance in Bride of the Monster.
Ignore all of the stuff about atomic supermen and instead, just pay attention to the way Lugosi delivers the lines. Pay attention to the pain in his voice as he says that he has no home. Pay attention and you’ll discover that Lugosi actually gave a good performance in Bride of the Monster. He delivers the lines with such wounded pride that you can’t help but think that maybe we should let him create a race of atomic supermen.
Among the old horror icons, Lugosi has always been the most underrated actor. He got typecast early and he appeared in some unfortunate films but Bela Lugosi had real talent and you can see it in this scene.
In this scene, Conal Cochran (Dan O’Herlihy) explains not only the origins of Halloween but he also discusses how he’s going to make Halloween great again. This scene is probably the best in the film and it’s almost entirely due to O’Herlihy’s wonderfully menacing performance as Conal Cochran.
In this scene, poor, unfortunate Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney, Jr) visits a gypsy camp and learns that sad truth of his fate from Maleva (Maria Ouspenskaya). I love this scene not only for the iconic dialogue but also for George Waggner’s atmospheric direction and Maria Ouspenskaya’s performance. Even Lon Chaney, Jr. gives it his all in this scene. Larry Talbot may have been a dumb lug but he was our dumb lug!
Today’s horror scene that I love comes from the 1957 classic, The Curse of Frankenstein!
In this scene, the Monster (Christopher Lee) reveals himself and then promptly attack his maker (Peter Cushing). My favorite thing about this scene is that zoom shot of the Monster’s face after the bandages have been removed. The look he’s giving Frankenstein leaves no doubt about how the Monster feels about being reanimated.
Knowing that Lee and Cushing were close friend in real life makes this scene all that more enjoyable.