looking for a few good B-films...

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Jeff Swearingen, Apr 25, 2004.

  1. Jeff Swearingen

    Jeff Swearingen Second Unit

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    I've spent a good deal of time over the past few months studying the Roy Rogers and Gene Autry B-Westerns from Republic Pictures. They were initially hard to find, but then I started digging through the bargain bins at BB, Wal-Mart, etc and quickly amassed a large collection for little money at all.

    The picture and sound quality on these releases (mainly Goodtimes, Alpha, and Platinum) are questionable at times. But I can live with that, given the film elements are probably in terrible condition and were from day one because of the treatment B-films traditionally get.

    Now I've run across a whole new set of B-films I'm starting to enjoy. I just grabbed a set of Roger Corman flicks and spent Thursday night in my film course watching Detour and Glen or Glenda (yes, I had a serious discussion about an Ed Wood film!).

    Does anyone have any good leads on B-films to check out from the 20s-50s? I've already dug through a lot of the 60s monster sci-fi, but I'm interested in finding new things to watch with long summer nights coming soon!
     
  2. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    Alphas Impact is a very good film noir, and also a good looking disc.

    i've heard good things about [/b]Kansas City Confidential too.
     
  3. Matt_H

    Matt_H Stunt Coordinator

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    well criterions releases of the Blob and Fiend without a Face is a good place to start.
    Synapse did a nice release of Beast from Haunted Cave
    Elite Entertainment's Horror Hotel,Jesse James Meets Frankenstein's Daughter, Drive-In Discs Vol. 1and 2 might be up your ally.
    there's a bargain bin release of the legend of boggy creek out there
    since you have an intrest in roger corman flicks you should check out Piranha.
    You might want to check out larry cohen's stuff(it's alive,q the winged serpent) out but it's a little more recent.
    might want to check out some of the MST3k discs too.
    most of these i heard about through horrodvds.com so check there if you need a review.

    hope this disjointed post helps you out!
     
  4. Shaughan

    Shaughan Stunt Coordinator

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    The Val Lewton produced b-films are actually very good - As to serials, check out Nyoka and the Tigermen (elements of her character were used to define Indiana Jones).
     
  5. Brian Thibodeau

    Brian Thibodeau Supporting Actor

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    By far one of the best deals right now on great B-titles is Deep Discount's pricing on two-packs of the Image/Wade Williams/Corinth series of classic (and not so classic) B-movies at $7.98 (per set). These all feature excellent prints and usually included trailers. The sets are broken down as follows:

    Bride of the Gorilla/Bride of the Monster
    Teenage Monster/Teenagers From Outer Space
    Stranger from Venus/The Cosmic Man
    Astounding She Monster/She Demons
    Kronos/Spaceways
    Missile to the Moon/PRoject Moonbase
    Beach Girls & The Monster/Brain From Planet Arous
    Mesa of Lost Women/Beast of the Yucca Flats
    Cat Women of the Moon/Devil Girls from Mars
    The Crawling Eye/Invaders From Mars 50th Ann. Edition
    Plan 9 From Outer Space/Robot Monster

    These sets all consist of two individual amaray-cased movies shrink-wrapped together.

    All in all, it's an excellent collection of sci-fi and horror from the 50's, and a fantastic deal if you love old B-movies.

    ALSO

    Since you're accustomed to buying the public domain stuff from the bargain bins, you might want to check out the Brentwood 10 Packs and 20-Pack collections that are usually quite cheap at Best Buy and even cheaper online at Deep Discount (with free shipping). I've been thoroughly surprised by the quality of many of the prints in these sets, many of which may or may not be surreptitiously sourced from better companies who don't have the resources to sue them (but then again, many of the Alpha discs look just as good, so who knows). The films run the gamut from the 30's to the 80's, but there's a lot of genuine B-movie gems in these sets. Anyways, here's a link to a recent thread about the 20-packs, with plenty of details about both the 20- and 10-pack sets:

    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=178193
     
  6. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    it's a shame DDDs search function is so lame.
    i just ordered Crawling Eye from them about a month and 1/2 ago and paid $5.99 for that one alone.

    i just tried a search for it agian, and it still only came up in that one listing, however when i searched under Invaders, i finally got Invaders from Mars/crawling ey - $7.98

    i still haven't opened it up so i hope they'll let me exchange it.
    i remember apying $20 for Invaders from Mars all by itself when it first came out (and i think i got about $12 when i ebay'ed it recently).
    wouldn't mind having it agian, especially for just $2 more than what i already paid for TCE.
     
  7. Brian Thibodeau

    Brian Thibodeau Supporting Actor

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    I gotta agree with you there, Paul.

    I thought I found them all, until I saw two additional sets in the store. When I went back to Deep Discount, I found that these titles, like the ones you mention, were listed with partial titles, like "Devil Girl from Mars/Women of the." What the frigg?!?

    I guess the safe bet for everyone interested in getting these is to type the first couple words of any title I've listed above and locate them that way. It seems to work with only one or two tries.
     
  8. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    Touch of Evil is often referred to as the ‘greatest ‘B’ movie ever made’.

    Many of Sam Fuller’s movies were considered ‘B’ movies at the time they were made. Criterion has a couple: Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss.
     
  9. WillardK

    WillardK Second Unit

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    ...make that three Sam Fuller's, including Pickup on South Street. Also... there is one now available and another upcoming Fuller dvd from Fantoma.

    I second the recommendation of those Image double features, though they are mostly more like Z-films. There's also a few cheapo B-noir sets coming out. Questar's entry looks interesting. They aren't generally known for great transfers, but the advert brags about new ones for this set.
     
  10. Jeff Swearingen

    Jeff Swearingen Second Unit

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    Funny...I heard someone say that Detour was the greatest B-movie ever recently...
     
  11. Brian Thibodeau

    Brian Thibodeau Supporting Actor

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    For my money, they'd be right! Sure, there may be better noir films out there, and certainly TOUCH OF EVIL plays like a B-movie sometimes, but DETOUR's got everything that makes for great 'B' and great noir, and no one, and I mean NO ONE, has ever topped Ann Savage's portrayal of a bitter, cynical, manipulative, animalistic, paranoid, psychotic man-hater from hell! An absolute joy to see an actress nail a part so perfectly.
     

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