Monday, 20 November 2017


#MOMENTSOFTERRORMONDAY! 'The Satanic Rites of Dracula' The first of FOUR great fearsome clips for this week's themed post Little did we know when this scene played out on the big screen, that it would be the last time we would see Cushing's Van Helsing destroy Christopher Lee's Dracula for Hammer films . . . some felt a little cheated, by the method and staging of this symbolic scene. Dracula for them it seemed, has been thwarted by getting tangled in a bramble bush and poked by a piece of woodland fencing!!!!

I MAY BE in the minority . ..but I thought it was rather well done, and the pace of the scene, was a master stroke. It's almost graceful. Dracula is captured by his own thirst for revenge on the Van Helsing family. It is his anger and frustration that sees him trapped by the 'holy hawthorn' . ..the more he claws, the harder he pushes to reach Van Helsing, on the other side of the bush...the more the thorns hold him..until finally, he falls. Van Helsing doesn't even hurry to deliver that stake. 

AND THEN what appears to be a Crucifixion...and the pace changes again, what started as snarling and gnashing ...all slowly winds down. As time claws back the years, accompanied by the low musical score , flesh turns to bone, bone to ash...and finally dust. When compared to the blood and thunder action of all the other Hammer Dracula exits... this one is almost like a grotesque ballet. ....and the little nod to the final shot of the first Hammer Dracula in 1958, when only his signet ring remains . . . is a very good touch.

#MOMENTSOFTERRORMONDAY! VAN HELSING'S (Peter Cushing) granddaughter Jessica Van Helsing (Joanna Lumley) while investigating what appears to be a secret base for 'creepy goings-on' stumbles upon a cellar . ..with some unexpected creepies..and we don't mean spiders! Look out for actress Valerie Van Ost, who appeared with Peter Cushing in the pre slasher cult movie, 'Corruption' (1968) . .. Ost went on to leave the acting profession and become a theatrical agent!

#MOMENTSOFTERRORMONDAY!A bit of a shocking experience (sorry...) for one of Dracula's henchmen. In Hammer Dracula films of old school, he usually had one poor soul who did his bidding... one KLOVE played by Patrick Troughton in 'Scars of Dracula' (1970) and by Phillip Latham in the 1966, 'Dracula, Prince of Darkness' . .. now, there is an army of funky waitse-coated motor cycle ridding thugs, to protect him...complete with state of the art, CCTV! Michael Coles Inspector Murray, has a bit of a rough up with one, in this scene. Typical (see tv UK series 'The Sweeney') punch up, but with a very satisfying ending! Take that, villain!

IF YOU LIKE what you see here at our website, you'll  love our daily themed posts at our PCAS FACEBOOK FAN PAGE.  Just click that blue LINK and click LIKE when you get there, and help us . . Keep The Memory Alive!. The Peter Cushing Appreciation Society website, facebook fan page and youtube channel are managed, edited and written by Marcus Brooks, PCAS coordinator since 1979. PCAS is based in the UK and USA  . .

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