[31 Days Of Horror ’22] Mini Reviews: The Theatre Bizarre (2011) and Ghost Ship (1952)

Mini Review
Day 07: ‘Catch Up’
The Theatre Bizarre (2011)

It is no secret that I am a fan of the horror anthology, there’s a reason why there is a podcast on this network dedicated to the horror anthology sub-genre. One I was going to check out a couple of years ago but didn’t make it was The Theatre Bizarre (2011) and this year it made the list for ‘catch up’. The film features six segments: The Mother Of Toads, I Love You, Wet Dreams, The Accident, Vision Stains and Sweets directed by (in order) Richard Stanley, Buddy Giovinazzo, Tom Savini, Douglas Buck, Karim Hussain and David Gregory with the wrap around segments Theatre Guignol directed by Jeremy Kasten.

The wrap-around segments take place in an old theatre, a woman enters and is greeted by the host and human puppet (Udo Kier) shows the woman the six short films and as she watches on she starts to change as does the host. The six stories have some similarities, but they remain very separate entities from each other as well as the wrap around segments. There is not anything that ties them together and there is a disjointed feeling throughout the film.

The wrap around segments are the best ones, the visuals are eerie, Udo Keir is great and the makeup effects are fantastic. Some segments are better than others, with The Accident being the most unique and Vision Stains perhaps being the most uncomfortable to watch. Each director brought their own flair, giving each segment its own feeling, perhaps like shorter episodes of Masters Of Horror. Overall The Theatre Bizarre is a decent horror anthology, worth seeing for fans of the sub-genre.


Mini Review
Day 08: ‘From the 1950s’
Ghost Ship (1952)

Visiting horror from the 50s is generally quite fun and enjoyable, some true classics have come from that decade with a different feel. Ghost Ship is a different kind of ghostly film, an almost noir story with some twists and turns along the way. Whilst it isn’t a frightening film, it is an interesting one.

A married couple (Dermot Walsh and Hazel Court) are looking to buy a ship and find one they are interested in called ‘Cyclopes’. They are warned against the purchase but are not told why, ignoring any warnings they proceed with the purchase and fix up the ship. Soon there are rumours swirling around that the ship is haunted and the couple are going to find out the truth.

Dermot Walsh and Hazel Court are absolutely delightful in the film, their chemistry is great and they both bring a warmth to the film. Even with a short running time, the film does drag on in parts and some story moments do not entirely make sense. The mystery is a good one with a very solid reveal, although it is low on scares or much tension. Ghost Ship is a fun and enjoyable film, with two lovely leads and that classic 50s feel.


Reviews written by Marcella Papandrea


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