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Rasputin - The Mad Monk

UK 1966
produced by
Anthony Nelson-Keys for Hammer
directed by Don Sharp
starring Christopher Lee, Barbara Shelley, Suzan Farmer, Richard Pasco, Francis Matthews
written by John Elder (= Anthony Hinds), music by Don Banks

Rasputin

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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When monk Rasputin (Christopher Lee) heals an innkeeper's wife with the power of his own hands, they do have a celebration, but when he then seduces the innkeeper's daughter, this is just bopund to spell trouble - & soon Rasputin is expelled from his convent. Freed of his duties, he heads for St. Petersburg to use his powers for his own good. Soon, he starts an affair with Barbara Shelley, one of the Tsarina's ladies-in-waiting, & uses his hypnotic powers over her, making her cause an accident of the Tsarina's son, & by healing him gain the Tsarina's trust. But as his power over the Tsarina grows, he treads over just a few heads too many, thus some of his enemies are just bound to decide on killing him. In the end, he is poisoned by Dr. Zargo (Richard Pasco), the only man he thought harmless enough to be his friend & associate - in best horror-tradition, he just lives long enough to kill Zargo too, though.

 

Rather a step away from Hammer's (then) traditional field of horror-movies into historic drama-territory - but sitll filled with enough mystery & gruesome scenes (e.g. Christopher Lee chopping off the hand of an adversary, throwing acid into the face of another) to not fall out with Hammer's output entirely. The movie itself is pretty much Christopher Lee's though, giving a solid performance as the mad & maddened monk, the film's story on the other hand is pretty weak, with the proceedings unfolding just a tad too slowly & the supporting characters seeming pretty lifeless, not at all helped by pretty mediocre performances.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
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special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

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Vimeo

 

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
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Tales to Chill
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the new anthology by
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Out now from
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