The Vincent Price
Double Feature: House On Haunted Hill/Last Man On Earth (Legend DVD)
Picture: C+ Sound:
C+ Extras: B+ Movies: B
Presenting both “restored color” and black and white
versions (of films shot in black and white) of The Last Man On Earth
and House On Haunted Hill, the two-disc Vincent Price Double Feature
delivers a lot of value. In addition
to having a choice between watching the colorized versions and the traditional
b&w releases, fans can also activate a hilarious Mike Nelson (MST3K,
commentary for House on Haunted Hill.
House is indeed a film best watched
while listening to Mr. Nelson’s funny and often biting ribbing of the rather
threadbare script and weak special effects.
In it, Mr. price stars as a wealthy man who offers five people the
chance to win $10,000 if they can survive a night in his haunted mansion. Hey, it was 1958, and ten grand was a lot
more money then! Both guests and host
get more than they bargained for in this schlocky fright-fest.
The real gem of this two-disc package is The
Last Man On Earth, the first film adaptation of the classic Richard
Matheson novel, I Am Legend. This
1964 film could be considered the forerunner of the zombie apocalypse
genre. Four years before Night
of the Living Dead this movie burst onto the scene with Mr. Price
cast as Dr. Robert Morgan, the seeming sole survivor of an airborne plague that
turns the world’s populace into blood-craving zombies. By day, Morgan hunts them in their shelters
across a ruined city, as they cannot abide the light. By night, he shelters in his own home, now
little more than a battered fortress against the walking dead.
Price’s performance shows great range in this often
underrated film. He is truly alone, missing his dead wife and daughter, and
trying to fill his days and nights with some kind of hope for a future grows
ever grimmer. When he does find other
signs of life, the momentary joy becomes tinged with tragedy. In the end, Dr. Morgans leaves the world not
the last man on Earth, but perhaps it’s eventual savior.
A fun feature with Mr. Price exploring the Western genre
rounds out the offerings Last Man On Earth disc,
and will give fans of one of Hollywood’s greatest horror actors even more
reason to seek it out. The folks at
Legend Films made a very cagey decision in offering both colorized and
traditional b&w on this set, and fans will not be disappointed on the
quality of the restored images.
For more on this set and related releases, including the
picture and sound quality details on this set, try this link:
- Scott Pyle