Wednesday, 16 October 2019

RARE SCHOOL FOR SCANDAL CUSHING PHOTOGRAPH PLUS ACTORS NIGEL GREEN AND ROBERT URQUHART REMEMBERED


A VERY RARE PHOTOGRAPH OF PETER CUSHING in 1948 FEB until OCT!! Now That is a LONG tour! Granted 'Richard III was also part of the tour, but knowing how Cushing found the repetitive nature of eight or nine performances a week, extremely difficult... I don't know how he did it. But here is where he learnt his trade, skills and attitude, that would prepare him for tv work in the 1950's and days that could be long and draining on the set of film work . . come November 1952 and one of his first roles on LIVE BBC tv in 'If This Be Error' .. HE certainly, would not be making errors


TODAY we are marking the birthday of that fine English character actor NIGEL GREEN . . . Green left us at only 47 years of age, with a very impressive career already at that point. In our banner can be seen on the far right, in a little get together on the set of the cast of Amicus films THE SKULL (1965) with Peter, Patrick Wymark far left, Patrick Magee sat down on the right. Green had a small role of Inspector Wilson, in the film.






ABOVE: PCAS FULL REVIEW AND LOBBY STILLS GALLERY OF 'THE SKULL'  Just CLICK HERE!


ABOVE: FULL REVIEW FEATURE OF TWILIGHT TIME REMASTERED BLU RAY RELEASE AND GALLERY! 'Sword of Sherwood Forest' tarring Peter Cushing, Richard Green, Nigel Green and Oliver Reed : JUST CLICK HERE! 



BECAUSE OF HIS STRAPPING build and commanding height, (6 feet, 1 inch) & regimental demeanour he would often be found playing military types and men of action, in films such as Jason and the Argonauts, Zulu, Tobruk and The Ipcress File. His large physique also led to his being cast as Little John in Hammer films THE SWORD OF SHERWOOD FOREST (1960), with Peter Cushing.Green also appeared in a number of horror films including Corridors of Blood (1958), The Masque of the Red Death (1964), as the father of Jane Asher's character, The Skull (1965) also with Cushing, Let's Kill Uncle (1966) and Hammer's COUNTESS DRACULA with Ingrid Pitt(1971)
 

REMEMBERING Robert Urquhart. 'Quiet, well-read and a lover of classical music, Robert Urquhart was an actor who grew frustrated with his career as he grew older. It was, he bemoaned, an honourable profession but so much of the material he was offered did not deserve any respect...' Robert Urquhart Obituary. 'The Independent' newspaper, 24th March 1995. In the early 1950's Urquhart was building himself quite a reputation for his theatre work. A reputation that would eventually bring him to the attention of studio casting agents and land him supporting roles on the big screen. But it was in the medium of film, that Urquhart was not such a happy chap...


THAT ONE FILM WAS 'The Curse of Frankenstein' with Peter Cushing in 1957 for Hammer film. He detested it. It is said he left the premier screening, refused to make appearances to promote it and only in the last years of his revived career on television, could he find the stomach to even mention it, if it was brought up in interviews. By 1980, Urquhart had cooled off a little..and appeared in another Hammer production, the Hammer House of Horror' television series, in an episode entitled, - Children of the Full Moon. However, we remember him today for his sterling performance in The Curse of Frankenstein'!

Sunday, 13 October 2019

FULL REVIEW OF WARNER BROTHERS ARCHIVE COLLECTION : FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE BLU RAY



WHEN WATCHING WARNER'S release of 'FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE' you get to realise very quickly, like all their other Cushing / Hammer releases, THIS isn't going to be giving you ANY annoying specks, audio cracks or visual blips. Again, Warner has delivered us THE print we were all hoping and waiting for. . . .


LIKE THEIR PREVIOUS BLU RAY releases of DRACULA AD 1972 and THE SATANIC RITES OF DRACULA, it's an excellent job, of a super-cleaned up blu ray. The smae must also be said of superb FOUR FILM selection of the HORROR CLASSICS COLLECTION BOX SET which includes  FRANKENSTEIN MUST BE DESTROYED (1968) in it's FIRST release on Blu Ray, THE MUMMY (1959) TASTE THE BLOOD OF DRACULA (1970) and 'DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE' (1968). What we are getting, is a VERY good deal and when you think about it, how ALL remastered or cleaned up, restored BLU RAYS should be! If you are a Cushing, Pleasence or Amicus Horror films fan, this latest addition to the Warner Archive Collection and the Amicus portmanteau series is definitely one for your collection 😉


OUR PCAS FULL REVIEW of Warner Brothers Archive Collection of Hammer films 'DRACULA AD 1972' can be found HERE! 


THE PCAS FULL REVIEW of Warner Brothers Archive Collection of Hammer films 'THE SATANIC RITES OF DRACULA' can be found RIGHT HERE! 


OUR FULL PCAS FEATURE AND REVIEW OF 'WARNER BROTHERS : HORROR CLASSICS VOL ONE' you can find RIGHT HERE! 




SO WITH THAT BEING  SAID, I guess you can say we are VERY happy with the results of this release. The Warner Archive Collection release of this particular title, is the ONE all Amicus and Cushing fans have been awaiting on, a long time. THIS release, at last, completes the Amicus series of portmanteau films, available on blu ray. And WHAT A WAY to wrap it up!


THE VISUAL QUALITY: 
The good news is, as yet, the Warner Brothers Archive Collection of films that feature Peter Cushing, haven't put a foot or frame wrong. . . and I'll tell you why. Over the years, many a release on blu ray, just when the price, the anticipation and the viewing seems to be all that you wanted, the film begins a scene that suddenly, doesn't look right. It's a 'day for night' shot, and guess what ..  all the footage looks like it's mid day in Florida!! OR suddenly, the silent drama of the scene in the bedroom where, 'he's in the closet and he has a knife' is killed instead, by what sounds like someone has started frying eggs and bacon under the bed! You'll be pleased to read, that doesn't happen here. Great image quaily and no hiss, spit or crackle! Many of you regulars, will surprised that I haven't mentioned yet, one of my all time favorite scenes in an Amicus film. 


YES, 'THE DOOR'! 'From Beyond the Grave, features a story starring actor Ian Ogilvy and the wonderfully looking Lesley Anne-Down. . . They are great, look very good, but not as breathtaking as the lighting and sets of the tale. As I hoped for, Alan Hume whose cinematography would be later greatly appreciated on a series of Bond films and Return of the Jedi, looks breath-takingly good...and certainly several steps up from the familiar DVD quality. And it's the clarity again, like many of the Warner Archive Collection, that is so special. There is LOTS of detail, lots of props, bits and pieces, textures and some of it you will see for the first time. Take a look at what has been the soft bundles and piles of junk and antiques in Peter Cushing's 'Temptations Ltd' shop. You can see why now, people were incited to go inside! 😉 Simon Wakefield's set design decor LOOKS quite different and here is the reason why these days he works on films like 'Batman Begins', 'Casino Royale' ... The definition of light and shadow also works so well now, it all now helps to create the suspense and drama. In 1974 when 'From Beyond the Grave' was in production at Shepperton Studios . . producer Milton Subotsky's favorite haunt fr production of the Amicus films . . the UK film industry was on its knees. However, not for this film. The production values are quite different from say, 'Tales from the Crypt' or 'Vault of Horror'. I have no idea where then lolly came from, but NOW you can see, it's ALL up on the screen...as THEY intended 😀  This is the best the film has ever looked, and probably ever will look. It's ANOTHER outstanding job from the Warner Archive! 



THE AUDIO QUALITY: 
BACK IN 1974, mono audio on films like 'Beyond the Grave' was still all the rave! Hard to believe now. It's just as difficult to believe that the audio on this film truly is from a DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio (Mono) track root! The film sounds unlike many you may be used to from this era. It's quite a feat to mix such a track and get what accompanies the beautiful visuals, so both compliment each other so well. But, Warner has indeed done that.  Douglas Gamley's music score, for the first time in my personal experience, has impact . . you can feel it! All shock sound effects and atmosphere enhancing sounds and notes, are just as you want them to be. HEARD, IN SYNC, MIXED and don't crackle or buzz! A supernatural event in itself, for a film of this age! The dialogue is very clear and crisp. Put your headphones on, you won't miss a trick. It's mono, but not as we know it, for sure!      





SO TO SUM UP. Warner has done an excellent job. One can only hope they have MORE Hammer, Amicus, Peter Cushing Christopher Lee titles in their locker. If they do, we are onto a winner. Good value for money, EXCELLENT results that would make the very dedicated and talent folk who produced these films, very proud indeed!


YOU CAN PLACE YOUR ORDER for Warner Brothers Archive Collection Blu Ray release of Amicus films, 'FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE' : CLICK AND ORDER HERE! 

The GIFS and images used in this feature do not contain footage from the Warner Brothers archive release . .


TEMPTED? IT'S COMING HERE SOON!

Saturday, 12 October 2019

ONE GOLF CART TO MOVE THEM ALL AND FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE BLU RAY REVIEW THIS WEEKEND!


#CHRISTOPHERLEE SATURDAY! ONE GOLF CARD to move them ALL ! I believe both Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee got around a few times on a camel, during the making of Hammer films 'She'... but this? I think Peter would have approved, MUCH more civilised 😊😉


HAVE YOU ORDERED? Waiting to find out more OR are you going to enter the PCASUK competition? Either way, you can get the low down on the Warner Brothers Archive Collection release of yet another, Peter Cushing classic blu ray 'From Beyond The Grave' ! HERE THIS weekend!


MEANWHILE, we ANNOUNCED the actual RELEASE of this great BLU RAY from Warner Brothers Archive, this week on OCTOBER 8th. Just a REMINDER, that we are launching our PCAS 'Beyond The Grave' COMPETITION, very soon   


If you are ordering your copy right now, I would recommend placing your order from the Warner Archive website..HERE! The BLU RAY release is region 0, making it playable on just about anyone's player.. unless you have a player like a 1920's biscuit tin driven by steam or clock-work... !

Thursday, 10 October 2019

LAUREL AND HARDY CLASSIC 80 YEARS OLD THIS YEAR AND ONE EXTRA IS NO CHUMP!


THIS YEARS MARKS the 80TH year of the release of Laurel and Hardy's feature film, 'A Chump At Oxford' . . a great anniversary for Stan and Olly . . but also quite an amazing quirk of fortune for Peter Cushing back then. If ever Peter Cushing comes up in conversation, pop this little nugget of info into your chat...and people wont believe you! 😃I find it strange also that this film features a comedy fright scene with a 'ghost'! Ironic or what?? đŸ˜‰


ABOVE IS A SHOT of Peter Cushing and the other scoundrel students of 'Oxford' getting their just deserves in the garden lake. He is one of the students singing 'Fee Fie Fo Fum' and appears in a couple of other scenes too. He was just 26 years old when this was made. When often asked about his time with Stan and Olly, Peter would fondly recall his experience as an extra on this film and said his outstanding memory was of how concerned Oliver Hardy was about the welfare of the extras in the film and demanded that the producers arrange for towels and fresh clothes be supplied for the extras who got soaked in the pond scene and personally brought in a large tray of doughnuts for the extras to enjoy during filming . . 


Tuesday, 8 October 2019

WARNER BROTHERS ARCHIVE LATEST! ARE YOU TEMPTED? DONT MISS OUT!


TEMPTED? It looks like Peter Cushing's, shop proprietor of 'Temptations Ltd, has been restocking his store! 😉😊



WARNER ARCHIVE COLLECTION released the remastered blu ray of Amicus films, 'From Beyond The Grave' yesterday . . . 😃starring Peter Cushing, Donald Pleasence, David Warner, Ian Ogilvy, Diana Dors, Lesley-Anne Down, Jack Watson, Ian Carmichael, Ian Bannen, Margaret Leighton and many more . . we'll be launching our PCASUK competition very SOON. 🙂 It's your chance to win yourself a copy of this REGION FREE, remastered Amicus films, classic 🙂 DON'T miss out . . it's a BARGAIN 😉 - Marcus




Sunday, 6 October 2019

ONE MAN AND HIS PASSION FOR TOYS WITH THEATRES FULL HOUSE AND SOLD OUT!


PETER CUSHING was certainly a man of hobbies. MANY hobbies. Collections, books, stamps, coins, figures, soldiers, trains, cigarette cards, models .. and toys! After Peter's passing, it took two major auctions and several smaller charity sales, to clear a vast collection of passions. Toys were something he had a great love for and the older and simpler it was, the more he liked it 😀 Eighty years after it was purchased and given to him . . he still owned his first and most favourite toy... Piglet!






This weeks quote is taken from Peter Cushing: Past Forgetting' Weidenfeld and Nicolson 1988.

Saturday, 5 October 2019

DONALD PLEASENCE CENTENARY: BORN 100 YEARS AGO TODAY!


BORN ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO TODAY!... Today marks the centenary birthday of actor Donald Pleasence on October 5th 1919. Born in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, England, he was the son of Alice (nÊe Armitage) and Thomas Stanley Pleasence, a railway stationmaster.


TODAY, AFTER HIS PASSING... you can read all about Pleasence service during WW2, his capture as a prisoner of war, humbleness kept that under wraps for most of his life.. but he would talk and share about a fateful day and television broadcast, where both he and Peter Cushing received positive critical attention for their roles in the BBC version of Nineteen Eighty-Four (1954) from the novel by George Orwell. Pleasence played Syme, to Cushing's Winston Smith. BOTH terrified the British public! I could write much here about the amazing Pleasence career, the films, the TV and theatre.. but I have left plenty of space and thread, for everyone to do that, in this post at the FACEBOOK PCASUK FAN PAGE and leave that to you to share . . 😉


 DONALD PLEASENCE AS SYME IN THE BBC LIVE PRODUCTION OF '1984' IN 1954.


PLEASENCE IN the 1959 'FLESH AND THE FIENDS' as William Hare 


 A FULL FEATURE REVIEW WITH VINTAGE LOBBY CARD GALLERY! HERE!


AS JACK SEWARD in the 1979 version of 'DRACULA'





ABOVE: CUSHING AND PLEASENCE TOGETHER in 'Trial by Combat' 

DONALD PLEASENCE bumped along with Peter in several roles on the big screen, mostly co starring in films like 'The Flesh And The Fiends' 'Suspect' 'From Beyond The Grave' 'The Uncanny' 'Trial By Combat' and 'The Devil's Men'. In several of his roles, Pleasence was able to with little dialogue reach and un-nerve the audience, using something his actress daughter once referred to as 'Pleasencing' . . it worked. It ALWAYS worked.


TO DO DONALD PLEASENCE justice it would take several days, many, many posts to even scratch the surface of his amazing talent and presence. I am sure everyone here, can name three if not FIVE of their favourite Pleasence performances, because each one was different, a different character... but off screen, Donald was always one... charming, gentle and always entertaining... A VERY Happy Birthday Donald Pleasence... you are missed by many and celebrated by all who were entertained by your sensitivity and brilliant talent! 😉 - Marcus 

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