Monday, October 21, 2019

Tag: 1940s

The Vampire's Ghost horror movie
The Vampire's Ghost is a vintage horror movie from Republic Pictures that, like most horror movies from Republic Pictures, has slipped through the cracks of public consciousness, overshadowed by Universal's classic monsters. That doesn't mean they aren't quality films, though. Take The Vampire's Ghost, for instance. Not only is it...
Meeting at Midnight Charlie Chan movie poster
This Charlie Chan outing (Battle of the racial stereotypes!) isn't really horror, but Mantan Moreland's role is limited -- even in light of the time period -- to being spooked at the mere prospect of there being ghosts...which there weren't. Too bad, because the gag gets old quickly, with...
Midnight Menace horror movie poster
Midnight Menace is a 24-minute all-black musical showcase for Lollypop Jones, who apparently was a vaudeville singer and dancer back in the '40s. Unfortunately for us, he wasn't an actor. Jones stars as himself, a performer who shows up for a gig and goes to his dressing room (he...
Mighty Joe Young movie poster
Mighty Joe Young is basically "King Kong lite", from its tone (decidedly lighter) to the size of its gorilla (decidedly smaller) to the role of its black cast (decidedly less important). Like King Kong, the role of the black people in Mighty Joe Young is peripheral -- natives sharing...
Lon Chaney Jr. in The Mummy's Curse horror movie poster
This mummy film takes place not in Africa, but in Louisiana. Why? Gumbo perhaps? Napoleon Simpson plays (eesh) Goobie, who speaks in the exaggerated, stereotypical "massa" and "sho' 'nuff" style -- though not for comedic effect, which may be more offensive, depending on your point of view. He's not...
Revenge of the Zombies horror movie poster
A semi-sequel to King of the Zombies, Revenge of the Zombies is more like King of the Zombies Redux, with Mantan Moreland reprising his role as bug-eyed servant Jeff, albeit in a different location (Louisiana instead of the Caribbean) and with a different (albeit equally rigid) cast of characters....
The Scarlet Clue Charlie Chan movie poster
Like Meeting at Midnight, this is a Charlie Chan mystery that's marginally horrific, with its masked killer plot line (not to mention the Caucasian Asian speaking pidgin English and his bug-eyed, scaredy-cat black manservant). Somehow, I find Mantan's being scared of a tangible killer here more acceptable than his...
Lon Chaney Jr. in Son of Dracula horror movie poster
Son of Dracula is notable in its unusually large number of black characters -- five speaking parts -- although all of them are marginal, not even important enough to be neck-bite victims. It's indicative of the time: all of the black people are servants, but at least they're not...
Son of Ingagi horror movie poster
Son of Ingagi is a somewhat stuffy all-black horror flick featuring somewhat stuffy newlywed couple Bob and Eleanor Lindsay (Alfred Grant and Daisy Bufford), who, besides having corny names and sleeping in separate beds, befriend lonely scientist Helen Jackson (Laura Bowman). As scientists tended to do in the 1940s,...
Topper Returns movie poster
In the third and final film in the Topper series of supernatural misadventures featuring lovable ghosts, Eddie “Rochester” Anderson is featured as Topper’s chauffeur, with his raspy, yelling voice (much more animated than Willie Best/Stepin Fetchit, and perhaps even slightly more than Mantan Moreland). Bug-eyed double takes are the...