Quote of the Day #6

“Why are there so often tears in your eyes, like this, when you wake up?” he asked softly. “Who was that you were calling? Who is it hurts you so?” “Somebody I knew in a dream, I guess.”
~ from Black Angel by Cornell Woolrich.
Roy William Neill deserves more attention. I keep confusing him with William Nigh, who had a likewise long career, mostly in B pictures, but Neill has real expressionist pizzazz, showcase in all those SHERLOCK HOMES films he did.
Thanks to Guy Budziak for a copy of this one.

11 Responses to “Quote of the Day #6”

  1. Speaking of purple prose ;)

  2. joe dante Says:

    I’ve been a Roy William Neill fan ever since I saw “Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man’, with its long swooping takes and striking use of foreground compositions. Then I discovered his Sherlock Holmes movies, “The Black Room” and the rest. I even named a character after him in “The Howling”.
    Definitely an underrated filmmaker, well worth the critical reappraisal he never got!

  3. Woolrich IS quite purple! But the good effects he gets more than justify, for me, the awkward passages where he seems to be trying to pad his word count. In a way, the penny-a-word approach works in his favour because he stretches suspense sequences to breaking point…

  4. Welcome, Joe! Fiona says hi, and also that she finally saw The Screwfly Solution and LOVED it. And spotted the appearance by Miike’s Imprint.

    I’ve been meaning to see some of those Holmes films again (I suspect I was about eleven when I last saw The House of Fear), and recently enjoyed Terror by Night, set on board a train bound for Edinburgh. Skelton Knaggs’ performance is worth a blog post all by itself.

  5. I remember being freaked out as a child by some of the killers in his Holmes fims, particularly THE SCARLET CLAW and THE PEARL OF DEATH (a 1944 double whammy).

  6. Well, Rondo Hatton is quite a concept. I knew about him as a kid, via Denis Gifford’s books, but didn’t see any of his other movies for years. Skelton Knaggs is less… deformed, but even more alarming, especially with the Scottish accent he does. He sounds like a depraved rent boy from Kelvinbriggs.

  7. Christopher Says:

    give me Gale Sondergaard any day..and Patricia Morrison..Henry Daniell…Alan Mowbray as Major Duncan Bleek…still can’t believe Holmes dosen’t like Curry!

  8. Tony Williams Says:

    Dan Duryea as tragic hero! What a performance. I also think FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLF MAN very underrated and not as bad as most critics believe. It is the only record of the way Bela Lugosi would have performed had he accepted the role and, despite, the fact that it is never mentioned he is blind, his performance really reveals the poignancy of his condition.

  9. Christopher Says:

    its a helluva wolfman sequel!..with Frankenstein thrown in there..almost tops The Wolfman.
    Did anyone see the new Wolfman movie?..I thought they did a good job of paying tribute to old universal in the set and atmosphere dept.

  10. Still to see the new Wolfman… what I heard kind of confirmed my suspicions, although I’m sure it’s enjoyable. And at least it’s a proper monster movie, not like The Mummy retreads.

    As a kid I was really struck by the fact that the classic image of the monster with outstretched arms really comes from Lugosi’s interp of the blind monster. Plus that was the most exciting title I’d ever heard.

    Just watched Roy William Neill’s The Viking and The Circus Queen Murder, both of which feature men with horns on their heads (norseman, devil costume) and are visually very beautiful indeed. He brings a lot of atmosphere to those shows — that’s the creepiest circus I’ve ever seen!

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