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Monday, October 02, 2006

30. CARNIVAL OF SOULS

30. CARNIVAL OF SOULS
(1962)
Directed by Herk Harvey

Because this is a list of my personal favorites it naturally reveals my own idiosyncratic likes and the presence of "Carnival of Souls" is due in large part to my natural affinity for abandoned places and pipe organs. I'll also admit to a special fondness for black and white movies (there are 38 on this list if I counted correctly). So when you add these elements together and start it all off with a drag race, well, it has Johnny Refund written all over it. Candace Hilligoss stars as the haunted survivor of the ill-fated drag race and, between playing church organ to make rent and fending off the advances of a greaseball rummy in her rooming house, she is plagued with visions of the dead. She acquires a morbid fixation with an empty and trashed amusement park by the ocean where she eventually confronts and is chased by a ballroom filled with the waltzing departed. The movie is blessed with that strange and highly personal atmosphere that can only be found in low budget affairs of this time period. Fascinating and strange, it has become a cult classic recently given the royal treatment in a fancy and expensive DVD reissue by Criterion.

1 Comments:

Blogger pee money said...

This has been on my mental "must see" list for a while now (probably from the last time I read your Dreadful 69). It's high time I sought it out. Maybe I can squeeze it in before Halloween. Incidentally, I've heard that Carnival of Souls has one of the best horror soundtracks ever. Have you heard it? What are your thoughts? I know you're a big Bernard Hermann fan, as am I, so I trust your taste in these matters.

2:08 PM  

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