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akatanaka

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31 Jan 2013, 7:01am

This is one of Hammer's most atmospheric gothic horrors, if not THE most! It would be up there with Dracula if it wasn't for the ending! The look of this film is just amazing with rich, warm interiors and cold blue, violet exteriors. The story is good, if a bit predictable and lacking surprise, and has one of the most downbeat, cynical commentaries on star-crossed lovers. It's wonderful to see the role reversal for Peter Cushing as a sympathetic villain and Christopher Lee as the out and out hero of the piece. Christopher Lee browbeating everyone in sight is a delight to watch! Cushing and Lee's confrontation in the studio cottage is a highlight. This movie also has the most distinctive score by James Bernard with an awesomely chilling female voice solo as the gorgon's siren call! This film was parodied hilariously by Roman Polanski, an apparent Hammer fan, in his "Dance of the Vampires" with a twisted version of the gorgon's call. Concerning the ending, Barbara Shelley apparently was willing to play the part of the gorgon as well with real snakes in a wig on her head! No go because of time and money. Which was unfortunate because, as Christopher Lee has stated, "The only thing wrong with 'The Gorgon', is the gorgon."

Related to: The Gorgon (1964)

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