“31 days of terror” is how the Webster’s Dictionary describes the month of October. Do not waste your time searching for the information. Most people interpret it to imply promoting one horror film each day, but at FSR, we’ve pushed it a notch or nine further by highlighting 10 different films each day. To keep things interesting, we’ve compiled this list of the top Roger Corman-directed horror flicks.
Roger Corman is the subject of a significant chapter in any book on the history of film. With more than six decades of experience in the film industry, the iconic filmmaker has undoubtedly made a name for himself. Innumerable blockbusters may be traced back to Corman’s school filmmaking, where many of Hollywood’s biggest names got their start. In making movies what they are now, Roger Corman had a tremendous impact, and that is not exaggerated at all.
Talent spotting is a strong suit for Corman. As a studio head for a number of independent companies, Corman frequently provided aspiring actors a chance to show off their talents when they were still nascent in the industry. Anyone who lives in Los Angeles is likely to have worked on a Corman film at some point. Corman’s early work with Martin Scorsese, Joe Dante, Jonathan Demme, Jack Nicholson, and Peter Fonda are just a few of the names that have worked with him in the past.
“Pope of Pop Cinema” is also recognized for his thriftiness.. His films are frequently shot on a shoestring budget, and as a result, they tend to seem cheap and rushed. His work isn’t necessarily lacking in quality, but it tends to be a little rough around the edges. Because Corman is a marketing genius, even if the films are poor, it doesn’t matter. The director believes that all but one of his films have been financially successful.
Corman’s work is celebrated today with ten of his best horror films. As a result, it wasn’t an easy undertaking. With more than 50 films under his belt as a director, there had to be some gems that were overlooked. Perhaps you’ll have greater luck next year, Tales Of Terror and Tower Of London!
According to Brad Gullickson, Anna Swanson and Jacob Trusell and RobHunter and Mary Beth McAndrews and me, these are the ten best Roger Corman-directed horror films.
1. The Terror (1963)
Okay, so The Terror isn’t one of Roger Corman’s finest 10 horror films. He didn’t even oversee the entire production. A scene or two were directed by Francis Ford Coppola, Dennis Jakob, Monte Hellman, and Jack Hill. Jack Nicholson may or may not have gotten behind the camera at any point. So, what’s the point of including it? Because the film’s backstory is so fascinating. Because we live in a democracy, every vote counts!
In the early 1800s, Nicholson plays a French soldier who gets lost on a beach. He discovers a castle belonging to Baron von Leppe (Boris Karloff) and soon uncovers a mysterious story involving the baron’s dead wife (Sandra Knight), a witch, and a guy named Eric. After arriving at this French chateau, Dick Miller sounds like he’s just another Bronx person.
When Corman’s tennis match was postponed, he had a free weekend to work on the film’s concept. He decided to make a short film out of the sets he had left over from The Raven. Trying to make a feature film in one weekend turned into a nine-month ordeal and the longest production ever faced by filmmaker Corman .’s Although the picture itself is a disaster, and the narrative behind its production is fascinating, the film itself is engaging. Is this a 5 star review? “Chris Coffel”
2. The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)
Roger Corman’s original The Little Shop of Horrors, premiered in 1960, before both the Broadway musical and the 1986 film. Seymour Krelborn (Jonathan Haze) is an awkward florist who works with Audrey (Jackie Joseph) and Gravis Musnick (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), the owner of the flower business (Mel Welles). He exhibits the plant he bought from a Japanese florist on Central Avenue to help rejuvenate the shop: The plant, which he names Audrey, Jr., has a craving for human blood, and he immediately discovers this. While trying to keep his secret under wraps and feed his new plant, Seymour ends up in a state of complete pandemonium. Jack Nicholson’s depiction as a pain-obsessed patient at a dentist’s office further enhances the film’s gonzo nature. This is a great opportunity to thank Roger Corman for bringing Frank Oz’s Audrey II puppet and “Suddenly Seymour” into the world. (Mary Beth McAndrews))
3. The Raven (1963)
You should avoid Roger Corman if you want a faithful version of an Edgar Allan Poe short tale or poem. The man is a sycophant who cares nothing about anything other than his own personal brand. However, even by Corman’s standards of loose adaptations, The Raven is a wild deviant from the source material. That’s fine, though. If you’re looking for the original, you should read it. It’s still out there somewhere. For those who crave a strange, mystical comedy that features Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, and Boris Karloff in a head-to-head battle, look no further. He is a joker, a goof, and a laugher. If you’re looking for something to make you laugh, this is the one for you! A Corman film as light and airy as this one is hard to come across. Make the most of its elusive character. It’s (Brad Gullickson)
4. The Pit and The Pendulum (1961)
It’s good when a movie does exactly what it claims it will. In Edgar Allan Poe’s 1842 short story, The Pit and the Pendulum, there is indeed a pit and a pendulum. If I were a simple woman, that would be more than enough. It’s a shame, because Roger Corman’s 1961 masterpiece is full of wit, charm, and depravity. The Pit and the Pendulum is evocative period horror done correctly, thanks to a story by Richard Matheson (The Legend of Hell House, I Am Legend). Vincent Price and Barbara Steele also star in the film. The film follows the story of Francis (John Kerr), who travels to Spain after the death of his sister. It is a crowning moment in Corman’s career. His wife’s spouse, Nicholas Medina (Price), is the descendant of the Spanish Inquisition’s most blood-hungry torturer. Francis’s suspicions are aroused, and he begins to question the official cause of death as a “blood disorder.” Sweet ham, inexpensive seats and Corman’s unconventional close-ups are all prizes in this movie. The Pit and the Pendulum, a slow spiral into lunacy, is a perfect example of the Corman-Poe-Price partnership’s campy gothic thrills. In the words of Meg Shields:
5. House of Usher (1960)
Price tells Damon in Roger Corman’s gothic masterpiece, “Evil is not a term, it is a reality.” For the first time in Corman and Price’s career, Edgar Allan Poe’s House of Usher is brought to life with vibrant colors and an abundance of fog in an incredibly detailed set design and costume. Richard Matheson’s film version of the short tale is based on a man (Damon) who visits the family mansion of his fiancee (Myrna Fahey) only to realize that the family suffers from a horrific disease. Roderick Usher, the fiancée’s brother and the mansion’s caretaker, is played by Price. A career-best and most original performance by Price. Price, who is missing his trademark mustache and has bleached-blonde hair, is constantly in pain because he is extremely sensitive to sounds. To him, the slightest movement can cause him to spiral into a state of psychosis.
There is a special place in my heart that will always belong to the House of Usher. When I was 16, I bought it from a mom-and-pop video store and it was the first Corman film I had ever seen. If you’ve never seen anything by Corman or Price before, this is the film for you. “Chris Coffel”