Steele Rules

 

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Over at The Chiseler, a profile of Barbara Steele, featuring the words of Daniel Riccuito, Jennifer Matsui, John Strausbaugh…  and Miss Steele herself. And apart from her contribution, I bet ya can’t tell who wrote what!

A Voice in Shadow.

Well, this might provide a clue — here’s a bit by me that didn’t mke the cut:

“THE LONG HAIR OF DEATH was directed by one of the Italian cinema’s most able all-rounders, Antonio Margheriti, who made westerns, gothics, gialli, sci-fi nonsense and just about every other kind of genre. Here it’s Barbara’s character’s mother who’s burned as a witch, cursing her persecutors. Barbara is merely shoved into a cataract, only to rise from the grave and involve her enemies in a Diaboliques-style plot along with her sister, resulting in an infernal revenge.

Visually this is a triumph, and as Barbara kneels at the pyre and scatters her mother’s ashes to the night winds, while a thin drizzle of rain is picked up by the movie lights illuminating the wafts of smoke and cinder, she achieves one of her greatest visual moments, under a slanting, charred crucifix.
The villain’s demise is superbly absurd, as he’s sealed within a cartoonish effigy which makes him look like the lost Goth member of the Banana Splits (original line-up: Drooper, Fleagle, Snorky, Bingo and Scabies). Gleeful villagers set him ablaze, unknowing of the role they are playing in Barbara’s masterplan.
It might seem that for once Barbara’s character is single rather than double, but the script assigns her a fresh name upon reanimation (from Helen to Mary Karnstein), while the name on her tombstone is Rochefort, for reasons that never become clear.”
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10 Responses to “Steele Rules”

  1. Thanks for the nice link! I need to see LONG HAIR.

  2. Here she is at the start of the marvelous Donald Cammell documentary. shame he never made a film with her.

  3. Here’s an interview I did with Her and some other L.A.-based Brits a few years back.

    She did a marvelous job as a live narrator of Brand Upon the Brain one weekend.

  4. Barbara at her most ineffable in a film that’s very famous in Italy but sadly little know elsewhere.

  5. And of course. . .

  6. And that’s not to mention. . .

  7. I promised I’d find her an agent. She wants to do voice-over work.

  8. You hear that? Anyone out there in La-La-Land with the right contacts…

  9. Danny had now taken the post down in hopes of finding a print publisher for it. Which I think is worth doing…

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