Monday, October 28, 2013

Count Dracula (1970)

Count Dracula released in 1970 was a notable film. It was the first and only time veteran actor Sir Christopher Lee would portray the Count outside Hammer Films.

Sir Christopher had become tired of the Hammer series in which he felt the scripts were getting more and more repetetive. A year after this film was made, his feelings towards the series would sour further when Hammer made the decision to bring Dracula into contemporary settings. Despite bringing back old onscreen nemesis Peter Cushing as Professor van Helsing, Lee felt that Dracula didn't fit a modern setting and would ultimately leave the role for good after the second modern Dracula film.

This film was a welcomed break from the Hammer cycle for Lee. It meant starring in a Dracula film that remained true to Bram Stokers original story...

...for the most part.

There are really three reasons to watch this film. Some really great peformances from Lee in the title role, Herbert Lom as Professor Van Helsing and future Dracula actor Klaus Kinski as Renfield.

Given Kinski's volitile personality in real life, this might have possibly been the best casting of all time.

However, Jess Franco's vision of Dracula is EXTREMELY low budget. And the performance given by the rest of the cast is mediocre at best.

FYI, the actresses who played Mina and Lucy had both acted in soft-core porn.

Despite the costumes and sets, you never get the feeling that this film is taking place in the 1890's when the story was supposed to take place. And the special-effects, although clever in spots, hardly exist.

This is a film where you REALLY need to suspend your disbelief to enjoy. But despite all that it is worth seeing for Christopher Lee. Despite all the shortcomings of this film, he seems to put his all into the film. True, he doesn't make (and never has) made an effort to put on an accent as the Count. You forgive that just to hear his marvelous speaking voice.

Which shines its brightest as he speaks the immortal "Children of the night" speech.

I would definitely recommend renting this film on Netflix or Amazon.com if you're just wishing to see this film in passing. Unless you are a fan of Sir Christopher Lee and wish to have a complete collection of his work. It was released on DVD a couple years ago. Not a lot of special features. However, the interview with Jess Franco is very interesting.

Its worth checking out for those who wish to see Sir Christopher Lee's non-Hammer Dracula effort.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

SPECIAL AUCTION!! Doctor Who: The Time War (11x14 Color Art)

In celebration of the upcoming Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special DAY OF THE DOCTOR I am offering a special ONE TIME ONLY print titled THE TIME WAR.

At the end of this years series (or season for those of you in the United States) finale NAME OF THE DOCTOR, veteran actor John Hurt was introduced as a previously unknown incarnation of the Doctor. And there is speculation that he is in fact a regeneration between Paul McGann's Eighth Doctor and Christopher Eccleston's Ninth Doctor. Whether Hurt's Doctor is the actual Ninth Doctor or an interim regeneration much like Michael Jayston's Valeyard from Trial of a Time Lord or Tony Garner's interim Doctor between the Second and Third Doctor from the famed fan film DEVIOUS is unknown.

However, there are a few clues that Hurt's mysterious incarnation maybe the Doctor that indeed ended the Time War by destroying both the Time Lords and the Daleks.

But we will have to wait till November to find out just WHO is this Doctor.

I am going on the theory that John Hurt's incarnation is an interim regeneration of the Doctor. So I placed him in between the Eighth and Ninth Doctor respectively as they would have looked in their television appearances. Although, Paul McGann has gone on to redefine his look in a series of audio adventures. I thought people probably recognize him more in his "Oscar Wilde in Space" look rather than in the leather pea coat (which I think looks sharp on him) which his Doctor has recently been photographed in.

THIS IS A SPECIAL ONE TIME ONLY AUCTION!! What that means is once the winning bid is met a print will be made on 11x14 high quality glossy card stock and SIGNED PERSONALLY to the winning bidder.

Then the digital file which the image was on will be deleted. This will ensure the buyer will be getting a ONE OF A KIND ILLUSTRATION.

Not only will the winning bidder receive the color art, they will also receive the pen and ink original of "The Three Doctor" which this image was based on.

The original artwork measures 9x12 and is illustrated in Deleter Black Drawing Ink. Although I will have to send both images separately, YOU WILL ONLY HAVE TO PAY SHIPPING FOR ONE!!

Click on the link below and HAPPY BIDDING:



Monday, October 21, 2013

Out in November: FROM WILDTHYME WITH LOVE by Paul Magrs

I had been asked by one of my favorite writers Paul Magrs (last name pronounced "Mars") to do the cover for his latest book FROM WILDTHYME WITH LOVE which will be out in November. 

The cover concept was inspired by the Snoopy book IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT which was suggested by Paul. It was a book I absolutely loved as a kid and I must have borrowed from both the town and school library countless times.

The back cover was actually what was originally considered for the front cover.

For those of you who are not fans of Doctor Who, Iris Wildthyme was a trans-temporal adventuress created by Paul for a series of fiction he wrote. She traveled through time and space in a red doubledecker London bus. Later when he started writing original novels for BBC Books line of Doctor Who adventures Iris made her debut as an "old flame" of the Doctor. Later when Big Finish began to produce a series of original audio adventures featuring some of the actors who played the Doctor on television Iris made the transition to audio as portrayed by Katy Manning who had originally played the Third Doctor's companion Jo Grant.

Initially Iris traveled with a young man named Tom but later traveled with a sentient stuffed panda named... Panda.

Which brings me to the book you see above. The book is a cheeky collection of postcards sent between Iris and "Panda Lovey".

You don't have to be a Doctor Who fan or familiar with world of Iris Wildthyme to enjoy the book. After you read it, however, you might find yourself wishing to get acquainted with Iris and her adventures.

The book itself will be available from Snowbooks in November. So be sure to keep an eye on their website for details.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Talking shop at the Art Guild of Shrewbury tonight at 7PM

Photo of me taken by Steven King for Worcester Magazine's Fuzz Club issue in 2011
I will be the guest speaker for the Artist Guild of Shrewsbury taking place at Southgate on 30 Julio Drive in Shrewsbury MA tonight starting at 7PM. I will be discussing some of the methods behind my madness...

...well. Some of them.

Click on the link below for more information check out the article below from the Community Advocate:

If you're in the neighborhood, stop on by and say hello after I talk turkey. Hope to see you all there!!