Saturday, September 1, 2007
We all know that the two big dogs of monster movie making are Universal and Hammer. Universal was the one there in the beginning and set the foundation. Hammer came in later to revamp and in some way resurrect the fading classics. Universal monsters are the most recognizable of course and Hammer had some very interesting takes on them. Hammer's Frankenstein monster was a lot more like Mary Shelly envisioned it, but as their Dracula went, they followed Universal in the way of a more attractive and charismatic character. Both Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee gave us great interpretations of the role but if you want a more true to character choice, that would have to be in the film Nosferatu with Max Schreck. Another obvious difference between the two are that Universal was done at a much earlier time and didn't have any of the elements that Hammer was able to include. Other than color of course Hammer wasn't relying just on the creepy atmosphere, music and characters as Universal had to, but they could also add the elements of gore and sex. As a young kid watching the Hammer films, I had no problem noticing that scantily dressed, big breasted woman, and of course all the extra full color blood spilling everywhere. Whether is was Werewolves, Mummies or Vampires we got a great treat from both and I hope the younger folks out there will find them and appreciate them as well. Long live the classics.