Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Masque of the Red Death

The Masque of the Red Death is a 1964 film directed by Roger Corman and starring Vincent Price. Price plays a nobleman who terrorizes the local villagers. There's plenty here to spark quite a philosophical conversation about good and evil, life and death, love, sacrifice, and choices.

Senses of Cinema concludes:
A film that defies both categories and critics, The Masque of the Red Death is a unique work in the annals of Anglo-American horror. It sits more comfortably, perhaps, beside such Italian Gothic films as Beatrice Cenci (Riccardo Freda, 1956), La frusta e il corpo (The Whip and the Body, Mario Bava, 1963) and Suspiria (Dario Argento, 1977). All these films share its near-psychedelic visual exuberance, although they lack its underlying subtext of renewal and hope. Yet on its deepest and most visceral level, The Masque of the Red Death is precisely the sort of lurid and vulgar “bad” movie that – back when you were a child – your parents always told you not to watch. As a basic motivation for watching movies, it’s hard to improve on that!
Moria gives it 3 1/2 out of 5 stars and says,
The Masque of the Red Death is the most sumptuous of all Roger Corman’s Edgar Allan Poe adaptations with some expansive castle interior sets, most notably a series of interlocked rooms with each in a single colour scheme.... The film is also luxuriously photographed by a young Nicolas Roeg, who would later embark on his own directorial career with the likes of Don’t Look Now (1973), The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976) and The Witches (1990).
1,000 Misspent Hours calls it "mostly forgettable". British Horror Films begins a positive review with this: "It would be easy to dismiss Masque Of The Red Death as just another Corman/Poe film, but somehow, it's much more than that." TCM has some information.


  1. I love how rooms change colors so you know where (and sometimes when) you are. That's a definite photography trick I never get tired.

    1. The cinematography is nice in this one :)