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The Holiday Haul

Hanukkah and Christmas brought me many fine presents this year, including these t-shirts from Alexa, a bottle of Grey Goose vodka from my brother and almost-sister-in-law, an amusing, antique grammar guide from 1922 called S.O.S. Slips Of Speech and How to Avoid Them from my sister-in-law, and many more. Among those many more were a hefty sum in Amazon gift certificates. Here’s what I spent them on:

Aickman Faber The four Robert Aickman collections recently released by Faber & Faber. Aickman’s “strange stories” have been recommended to me many times over the years by readers whose taste I trust, but it wasn’t until I attended a panel about him at this year’s World Fantasy Convention in Washington, DC that I finally decided to take the plunge.

Eiji Eiji Tsuburaya: Master of Monsters: Defending the Earth with Ultraman, Godzilla, and Friends in the Golden Age of Japanese Science Fiction Film by August Ragone. Because this is basically everything I loved as a child in one book filled with gorgeous photographs.

E-Space Doctor Who: The E-Space Trilogy. Season 18 of the classic series got off to a rather tepid start with serials like “The Leisure Hive” and “Meglos,” but then it rocketed into the stratosphere with three of the best serials of the Tom Baker era: “Full Circle,” “State of Decay,” and “Warriors’ Gate,” commonly known as the E-Space Trilogy. In my view, each of them is a masterpiece.

Horror of Dracula The Horror of Dracula. Christopher Lee. Peter Cushing. Hammer Studios. The launch of the greatest Dracula franchise of all time. ‘Nuff said.

KIng Kong King Kong. One of my all-time favorite movies, now on Blu-ray. It comes with a book of production photos and commentary by Ray Harryhausen, Ken Rolston, Fay Wray, and Merian C. Cooper. This was a no-brainer.

White Zombie White Zombie. One of my favorite Lugosi films, now on Blu-ray. With Kino, you always know you’re getting a high quality digital remastering and some fine special features. This one comes with a rare Lugosi interview.

Videodrome David Cronenberg’s masterpiece, Videodrome, on Criterion Blu-ray. Like Kino, Criterion usually does a bang-up job with their releases. This one comes packed with special features, including commentary by James Woods and Deborah Harry, but mostly I’m interested in watching it with a clearer picture and better sound than my old VHS tape offered.

Maltese Falcon The Maltese Falcon on Blu-ray. In many ways, it was this movie — not a horror film, as you might expect — that was the defining movie of my life. To me, it’s perfect from start to finish, and in the world of film noir it’s unmatched, except maybe — maybe! — by Double Indemnity. This one’s got lots of special features too, including, of all things, a blooper reel!

Now comes the hard part: finding time to read and watch them all!

One response to “The Holiday Haul”

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