Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Dial Up 'M' For Murder

Those of you not familiar with the substantial collection of copyright free films available from The Internet Archive should hunt them out right now. Being a fan of MST3K, I found a mass of films that they have used to riff over. There are also a few classics such as The Last Man On Earth, Carnival Of Souls, Night Of The Living Dead and The Phantom Of The Opera.

One of my greatest finds is Fritz Lang's 'M', a beautifully disturbing film. Way before Chris Morris (1931 infact!), Lang was using the fear of pedophilia to strike a reaction from the viewer. Known for his stunning sets and clever long drawn out shots, Lang was a master of suspense and horror for his time. Those who have not witnessed 'Metropolis', Lang's Frankenstein's bride of the future film, need to see it to believe it. It was probably one of the most jaw dropping sights I had ever laid my virgin retinas on as a teenager. A far cry from bad CGI and poor dialogue, 'Metropolis' is all about imagery and atmosphere, which it has in abundance. Although 'Metropolis' sits as Lang's finest work 'M' has been unapologetically overlooked. It remains deeply under marketed and mostly unseen. 'M', like Metropolis, relies on a heavy atmospheric tension and the breakdown of the human community. Like all great horror, it uses the mystery that surrounds ourselves to show a true horror caused by the unknowing, mistrust and suspicion. If I had a daughter, I'd lock her up.

It was adapted to graphic novel my Jon J. Muth in fine photo-realistic charcoal images and came with a flexidisc soundtrack to listen to while reading the book. The smell of a new book, the feel of crisp printed pages. It really was an all senses encompassing experience. I recommend it.(Buy It Cheap From Amazon)


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