|William Castle and his signature stogie!|
That was Castle, guru of gimmicks, who could make even bad movies fun with his shenanigans. Most of his low-budget horror movies were pretty darn good, though, in my eyes. Two of my special favorites, besides the ones I already mentioned, are the double feature I have created for myself, and will enjoy at home with my own DVDs this weekend. The movies: Mr. Sardonicus and The Tingler.
|Vincent! LSD? Wow, the colors!|
Like Hitchcock, Castle liked to appear in his own movies, and his scenes are the ones I look forward to the most. Because only Castle can really showcase Castle, I'm providing here the funny prologue Castle filmed of himself explaining what might happen to certain audience members during the showing of The Tingler:
|Mr. Sardonicus wearing his special mask|
Castle loved to engender fear. Besides the audience shills who would scream on cue, Castle would also hire professional fainters, who would be carried out of the theatre on stretchers by fake nurses. He once offered a $10,000 insurance policy to any audience member who might die of fright. Castle said of himself: "We all have a common interest, bigger and more horrible monsters - and I'm just the monster to bring them to you." I doubt if this fun and creative father of 3 was a monster, but boy did he know how to make memorable movie experiences and scare everybody while they had the time of their lives!