32 Days of Halloween XII, Day 23: Blood of the Vampire!

Blood of the Vampire (1958)

As we round the corner of a circle which leads toward the inevitable First Halloween of 2019, we pause for a musical interlude from 1937. It’s “With Her Head Tucked Underneath Her Arm” by Rudy Vallee & His Connecticut Yankees. You should know your English history, but just in case you don’t, the song sort of explains itself as it goes along.

I watched our second selection earlier today and I had forgotten a glorious fact about it. It’s a two-parter from the second season of The Addams Family, in which we see how Gomez and Morticia met, a tale told on their thirteenth anniversary (the lucky one). Apart from the fact they’re just playing their younger selves with nothing really changed except the clothing (which is enough to warrant a viewing), the actress they tapped to play Morticia’s mom is just a genius bit of casting. See how quickly you can recall the name. Good luck.

And now for our feature film. It’s 1958 and it goes by the name Blood of the Vampire! Meet the infamous Dr. Callistratus. (I mean, check out that name…I didn’t need to come out and tell you he was infamous, did I?) He’s played by Donald Wolfit (the 1960 Hands of Orlac), who is conducting weirdo blood experiments on prisoners. Who should happen to wind up in said prison? Our hero, Dr. John Pierre (Breaker Morant). Will Dr. John discover the mad secret behind the experiments? Will he ever get free from prison? Do you, like me, now have the musician Dr. John singing something–anything–in your head? Watch and find out.

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Widge

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