Monsters of Schlock

Monsters of Schlock

Aug 26, 2009

He may not have created the movie gimmick, but producer/director William Castle will be remembered for concocting some of the most outrageous stunts in theater history. For 1959’s The Tingler (pictured), for example, certain seats in the theater were rigged to give a mild electric shock during key scenes. Imagine how well that would go over today in large urban areas where the average teen is packing some kind of weapon, and you’ll understand why 3-D remains the final frontier in movie gimmickdom. Maybe you can channel Castle and try to replicate his audience-participation stunts in the safety of your home with Sony’s William Castle Film Collection, available October 20 on DVD. The set contains eight of his most notable films, including The Tingler, 13 Ghosts, Homicidal, Mr. Sardonicus, and Strait-Jacket. The three remaining films are disc debuts: Zotz!, The Old Dark House and the deliriously awful boarding school escapade 13 Frightened Girls that is ripe for a remake starring Lindsay Lohan. In addition to bonus features containing alternative opening and viewing sequences, vintage footage and those over-the-top original trailers, the five-disc set contains the acclaimed 2007 documentary Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story that won the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the 2007 AFI Film Festival. Yes, even William Castle is somehow getting posthumous recognition and—dare we say it?—maybe even a little respect. Do you hear that Uwe Boll?

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Which one of these people is in the movie Frank Miller's Sin City: A Dame to Kill For?

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Ray Liotta