Tuesday, 14 June 2011

The Monster Club (1981)

 Written by Happywax     June 2011
Rating 8 out of 10

Director  - Roy Ward Baker

Vincent Price - Eramus
John Carradine  -  R.Chetwynd-Hayes
Donald Pleasence - Pickering
Stuart Whitman - Sam
Barbara Kellerman - Angela

Hey Hey all you Horror Hounds, Happys back with yet another classic for ya. Throughout the mid 60s and early 70s Amicus Productions churned out a series of wonderful horror anthologies including: DR. TERROR'S HOUSE OF HORRORS (1965), TORTURE GARDEN (1967), THE HOUSE THAT DRIPPED BLOOD (1970), ASYLUM (1972), THE VAULT OF HORROR (1973, second best of the bunch), FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE (1973), and TALES FROM THE CRYPT (1972, which is my all-time favorite horror anthology!)

THE MONSTER CLUB features the legendary actors Vincent Price, John Carradine, Donald Pleasence, and the dazzling Britt Ekland.

The film begins as Vincent Price, as vampire Eramus puts the bite on fiction writer R. Chetwynd-Hayes (played by John Carradine). Price is in top-form, as usual. He is, without a doubt the best horror actor of all time.
  MONSTER CLUB is an anthology, comprised of only three stories plus a wraparound (the wraparound is the 'in-between' story that ties the rest together). I love anthologies; both for the hits and the misses… my general feeling is that about half of the stories work; and, the others not so well. This is truly an exception to that rule!

The Shadmock Story involves a couple looking for their next big score. It comes in the form of Angela taking a position of cataloging antiqes for an odd-looking man, who rarely leaves his large estate. He seems nice enough, despite his ghoulish appearance; and, he has a tempting amount of valuables ripe for the taking. The man becomes enamored with Angela; and, proposes marriage. Things soon sour during the engagement party, as we learn that the odd-looking fellow possesses an interesting method of dealing with those who anger him.

The Vampire Story deals with a shy, young boy and his parents. His father has a job that requires him to stay out all night, and sleep during the day. The boy learns that his father is a count who fled another country under distressed circumstances. Obviously, the story deals with vampires and vampires hunters; but, with a surprise twist!

The Humgoo Story tells a tale of a director scouting locations for a horror film. Sporting about the countryside in his Porsche 911 SC Targa. He is looking for a village with lots of atmosphere. It turns out that the village he finds is populated by ghouls. And, they have plans for him. The notes from the long-deceased village pastor offer an amazing means of telling the story of how the town was besieged by ghouls. It's a wonderful tale…

The wraparound story takes place in the Monster Club itself. It features entertaining dialogue between Vincent Price and John Carradine, as a lead in for the stories. The new wave 1980s rock music is great. There are terrific special effects during the second or third act, which features a stripper, and believe you old pal Happy this is one stiptease not to be missed, " Beutiful bones" as Vincent Price says

For me, Amicus really defined the horror anthology. Overall the stories in MONSTER CLUB are an absolute hoot. And anytime you get to see Vincent Price and John Carradine on the screen you just know something great is going to happen. Make sure you deffinatly check this one out!!!!!


  1. Excellent review, I definitely have to see this one soon, I love anthologies and Amicus productions...didn't realize it was a Roy Ward Baker pic, love his stuff! If you haven't seen Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde yet you must...soon!!!

  2. One of my favorite movies from Elvira's Movie Macbre, also one of my favorite Roy Ward Baker movies. I get the feeling that he resented having to direct horror movies, which is a shame, because he gave us some great ones. Also, Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean looks like a Shadmock http://www.zombielogicblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/march-madness-gets-even-madder.html