The Masque Of The Red Death

The Masque Of The Red Death

Blu-Ray Rating: *****

Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode

Read Jennie Kermode's film review of The Masque Of The Red Death

The restored print of Roger Corman's classic is a thing of beauty. Few intact films have benefited this much from the process, which has given Corman's colours new life and thereby added fresh energy to the already spectacular images. If you haven't watched it for a while, you'll also be impressed by how much it benefits from today's high quality televisions. Use the biggest one you can. Both Blu-ray and DVD sets are available but this time it really is worth spending a bit extra for the former.

The extra features are a bit of a mixed bag. If you can't figure out what Keith Johnston has to say about colour for yourself and you don't have an existing colour blindness diagnosis, you should probably see an optician. His discourse on censorship is more interesting but not nearly substantial enough for the running time of the piece, so he just keeps repeating himself. The audio commentary is of variable quality but benefits from Kim Newman's encyclopaedic knowledge of horror cinema. The gallery s small but will have some appeal to completists.

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What really shines here is the lengthy interview with Corman himself. Always an entertaining speaker with a rich understanding of the wider context of his work, he discusses his career in horror at length, going right back to the books he fell in love with as a boy and highlighting such gems as A Bucket Of Blood and The intruder as well as explaining how he pitched the first of his Edgar Allan Poe adaptations, The House Of Usher. There's little reflection on his later work as a producer - the interview was recorded in 2013 - but it's still a fascinating account and one that fans will love.

Reviewed on: 27 Feb 2021
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The Masque Of The Red Death packshot
A cruel prince devotes himself to Satan and lives a life of excess, but just beyond his castle gates lurks a deadly plague.
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Product Code: B08GM9VXKZ

Region: 0

Extras: Audio Commentary with Kim Newman and Sean Hogan; Colour and Censorship in The Masque of The Red Death - interview with Keith Johnston; Roger Corman in conversation with Kim Newman at the BFI; Behind The Scenes stills gallery; booklet written by film preservationist at The Academy Tessa Idelwine; art cards.


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