6 Horror Performances That Deserved An Oscar Nomination


Despite making some inroads as of late, horror films still never quite get the respect that they deserve when it comes Oscar time.  That’s especially true of the performers who regularly appear in horror films.  If it’s rare for a horror movie to receive a best picture nomination, it’s even rarer for someone to get nominated for appearing in one of them.

And yet, it takes as much skill to make a monster compelling as it does a historical figure or a literary character.  In fact, it may take even more skill.  After all, everyone knows that Queen Elizabeth I actually ruled over England and that Atticus Finch was an attorney in the South.  However, everyone also knows that there’s no such things as vampires and that the dead cannot be reanimated or raised as a zombie.  It takes a lot of skill to make a monster seem human.

With that in mind, here are 6 horror performances that deserved, at the very least, an Oscar nomination:

1. Boris Karloff as The Monster in Frankenstein (1931) and The Bride of Frankenstein(1935)

The great Boris Karloff is perhaps the most egregious example of a deserving actor who was consistently ignored by the Academy because of the type of films in which he appeared.  In the role of Monster, Karloff was never less than brilliant and he set the standard by which all future monsters are judged.

Dracula (1931, directed by Tod Browning)

2. Bela Lugosi in Dracula (1931)

When viewed today, it’s perhaps a little bit too easy to be dismissive of Lugosi’s grandly theatrical interpretation of Dracula.  But, if you can ignore all of the bad imitations that you’ve seen and heard over the years, you’ll discover that Lugosi’s performance is perfect for the film in which he’s appearing.  Indeed, Lugosi’s best moments are the silent ones, when he goes from being a courtly (if vaguely sinister) nobleman to a hungry animal.  In those moments, you see why Lugosi’s performance endures.

3. Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates in Psycho (1960)

Ah, poor Anthony Perkins.  Before he played Norman Bates, he was considered to be something an up-and-coming star and even something of a neurotic romantic lead.  As with Lugosi’s Dracula, we’ve seen so many bad imitations of Perkins’s performance that it’s easy to overlook just how good he is in the role.  He was so perfect as Norman that spent the rest of his career typecast.  And, sadly enough, he didn’t even get a much-deserved Oscar nomination out of it.

4. Christopher Lee as Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man (1973)

Christopher Lee was one of the great actors and, though he may be best remembered for his horror work, he actually appeared in almost every genre of film imaginable.  Lee was often dismissive of the Dracula films that he made for Hammer so, as much as I’d love to argue that he deserved a nomination for The Horror of Dracula, I’m instead going to suggest that Lee deserved one for the role that he often cited as his favorite, the pagan Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man.  Lee brings the perfect mix of wit and menace to the role and, in the process, shows that not all monsters have to be undead.

5. Donald Pleasence as Dr. Sam Loomis in Halloween (1978) and Halloween II (1981)

Much as with Lugosi and Anthony Perkins, it’s important (and perhaps a little bit difficult) to separate Pleasence’s performances in these two slasher films with all of the imitations that have followed.  In both films, Pleasence does a great job of playing a man who has been driven to the verge of madness as a result of having spent too much time in the presence of evil.  As potentially dangerous as Sam Loomis sometimes appears to be, there’s no way not to sympathize with him as he continually tries to get people to understand that he wasn’t the one who left Michael escape.  If nothing else, Pleasence deserved a nomination just for his delivery of the line, “As a matter of fact, it was.”

6. Betsy Palmer as Pamela Voorhees in Friday the 13th (1980)

“I’m an old friend of the Christys.”  AGCK!  RUN!

Scenes That I Love: Nic Cage Meets The Bees in The Wicker Man Update


From the 2006 remake of The Wicker Man.

Actually, I don’t know if love is quite the right word.  I’m actually kind of annoyed that The Wicker Man has gone from being one of the best horror films of the 70s to being known for the remake’s bees scene.  That’s one reason why remakes, in general, are not a good thing.  That said, for the record, I don’t like bees either.

4 Shots From 4 Films: The Exorcist, Female Vampire, Ganja and Hess, The Wicker Man


4 Shots From 4 Films is just what it says it is, 4 shots from 4 of our favorite films. As opposed to the reviews and recaps that we usually post, 4 Shots From 4 Films lets the visuals do the talking!

This October, we’re using 4 Shots From 4 Films to look at some of the best years that horror has to offer!

4 Shots From 4 1973 Horror Films

The Exorcist (1973, dir by William Friedkin)

Female Vampire (1973, dir by Jess Franco)

Ganja and Hess (1973, dir by Bill Gunn)

The Wicker Man (1973, dir by Robin Hardy)

Scenes That I Love: Sgt. Howie meets Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man


From 1973’s The Wicker Man.

Christopher Lee always cited Lord Summerisle as being his favorite of all the “horror” roles that he played.  Interestingly enough, Lord Summerisle is not a vampire or a mummy or in any way a member of the undead.  He’s just an extremely pragmatic pagan, doing what he has to do preserve his power.

In this scene, Lord Summerisle meets and speaks with Sgt. Howie (Edward Woodward), who is not at all happy with Summerisle’s style of leadership.

4 Shots From 4 Christopher Lee Films: Curse of the Crimson Altar, The Wicker Man, To The Devil A Daughter, End of the World


4 Shots From 4 Films is just what it says it is, 4 shots from 4 of our favorite films. As opposed to the reviews and recaps that we usually post, 4 Shots From 4 Films lets the visuals do the talking.

Today, we pay tribute to another great British film star with….

4 Shots From 4 Christopher Lee Films

Curse of the Crimson Altar (1968, dir by Vernon Sewell)

The Wicker Man (1973, dir by Robin Hardy)

To The Devil, A Daughter (1976, dir by Peter Sykes)

End of the World (1977, dir by John Hayes)

4 Shots From 4 1973 Horror Films: The Creeping Flesh, The Exorcist, Night Watch, The Wicker Man


4 Shots From 4 Films is just what it says it is, 4 shots from 4 of our favorite films. As opposed to the reviews and recaps that we usually post, 4 Shots From 4 Films lets the visuals do the talking.

Since I just reviewed 1973’s Don’t Look Now, here are 4 shots from 4 other horror films that were released the same year.

4 Shots From 4 1973 Horror Films

The Creeping Flesh (1973, dir by Freddie Francis)

The Exorcist (1973, dir by William Friedkin)

Night Watch (1973, dir by Brian G. Hutton)

The Wicker Man (1973, dir by Robin Hardy)

6 Trailers In Honor Of Val’s Search For The Evil Eye


Hi, everyone!

Welcome to another special edition of Lisa Marie’s favorite Grindhouse and Exploitation film trailers!

Today, for her music video of the day post, Val took a look at the video for Josh Ritter’s The Evil Eye.  I’m the one who suggested that video to her.  Little did I know that it would lead to her watching a handful of films, all of which were either titled Evil Eye or, at the very least, has a connection to eyes that might have been evil!

So, in honor of Val’s commitment to her craft, I decided that today’s six trailers would be for six movies that Val either watched or mentioned in her review of The Evil Eye!  Unfortunately, it turns out that not all of those movies have trailers on YouTube.   And I already shared the trailer for Mario Bava’s The Girl Who Knew Too Much (a.k.a. Evil Eye) last week.

Let’s see what I did find!

  1. Bruka, Queen of Evil (1973)

I could not find a trailer for Queen of Evil.  However, when I did a search for “Queen of Evil Trailer,” one of the trailers that came up was for Bruka, Queen of Evil.  I’ve never heard of this film before but it looks like something some of our readers would like.

2. Manhattan Baby (1982)

However, YouTube did have a trailer for Lucio Fulci’s Manhattan Baby, which was also known as Evil Eye.  Actually, Evil Eye was probably a better title for it.  I’m one of the few people willing to defend this film and even I’m unsure just what exactly Manhattan Baby is supposed to mean.

3. The Green Inferno (1988)

Val’s search for information about The Evil Eye led her to Bloody-Disgusting.com, which featured an infamous review of The Green Inferno.  Here’s the trailer for 1988’s Green Inferno, which should not be mistaken for Eli Roth’s Green Inferno.

4. The Green Inferno (2015)

Here’s the trailer for Eli Roth’s The Green Inferno, which I have long defended as being a political satire.

5. The Wicker Man (1973)

Among the films cited as an inspiration for The Evil Eye video was the original Wicker Man!  This is a classic, even without bees.

6. Evil Eye (2014)

Finally, though I couldn’t find a trailer for 1975’s Evil Eye, I did find a trailer for this 2014 Evil Eye!