Hammer House of Mystery & Suspense!

November 5, 2013 | By

In addition to editing reviews, I spent this past weekend finishing up on editing the teaser trailer for my video store documentary BSV 1172, which will feature a short sampling of the analogue and digital images I’ve concocted for this experimental short film. Expect an update in a day or two at the Big Head Amusements blog about its completion and upload, with an overview of what gear was used to capture and treat footage for the trailer.

Two vintage cameras and one digital were used during the doc’s principle photography, while two more were used for images exclusive to the teaser, which includes footage captured by a saticon tube camera, recorded to DVD, played through analogue gear, recorded to MiniDV, dumped to the hard drive, and processed using layered effects in Adobe Premiere. As with anything arty-farty, from viewers I expect some silence, some critiques, but (hopefully) a few intrigued with my obsession with textures and warm analogue colours.

The overview will also include some screen shots of the editing timeline in Premiere, so you’ve an idea how one shot is actually composed of spliced up and recombined parts with very different manipulations to make everything flow well. That’s all I’ll say for now, but here are two teasing images:


Looped feedback through a Sony SEG-1 video mixer (1968).

Layered footage from a Canon VC-50 Pro saticon tube camera and analogue distortion via assorted 1980s Showtime Video Ventures processors and a Sony SEG-1 video mixer (1968).


Now then.

Since Synapse Films released the anthology series Chiller [M] (1995) and Hammer House of Horror [M] (1980), I tracked down the studio’s last big stab at original TV production.

Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense [M] was a co-production with Fox, and the 1984 series has yet to appear on DVD in Region 1 land. It’s worth reviewing because it’s part of Britain’s long line of horror / thriller anthology series, of which many have been marginalized if not forgotten due to zero or poor distribution. Series that immediately come to mind are Roald Dahl’s Tales of the Unexpected (1979-1988) and Thriller (1973-1976), both of which similarly balanced U.S. and U.K. talent in starring roles, and did receive DVD releases a while ago but aren’t easy to find on this side of the pond. They represent the good 20-30 years worth of eerie tales which aired on U.K. networks and sometimes enjoyed airings in Canada and the U.S. on TVOntario, the CBC, and PBS.

Coming next: soundtrack reviews of four TV soundtrack compendiums released by La-La Land Records – Bear McCreary’s Caprica, J. Peter Robinson’s Charmed, Mark Snow and Louis Febre’s Smallville, and Brian Tyler’s Terra Nova.





Mark R. Hasan, Editor
KQEK.com ( Main Site / Mobile Site )

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