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FILM RETROSPECTIVES

A nostalgic (but not blindly nostalgic) look back at some cult and classic movies. Are they worth checking out once you take off the rose-tinted glasses? Find out in this retrospective section.

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) directed by Robert Aldrich

Bitter real-life rivals Bette Davis and Joan Crawford play two erstwhile celebrity sisters caught in a downward spiral of faded glories and an abusive/controlling relationship. This cult classic is as relevant now in its ugly dissection of the cult of celebrity as it was when it was released.

Bette Davis Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

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Aguirre, Wrath Of God (1972) directed by Werner Herzog

Herzog's historical account of the hopeless delusion of the 16th-century Spanish conquistador expedition to the fabled land of El Dorado is a chaotic but masterful stream of cinematic bolts out of the blue. A genuinely deranged Klaus Kinski stands at the film's centre.

Klaus Kinski in Aguirre, Wrath of God

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The Exorcist III (1990) directed by William Peter Blatty

This second sequel wisely ignores the John Boorman abomination and tries to craft a true horror masterpiece. While marred by too many talky stretches, it manages some memorably creepy and scary sequences.

The Exorcist III

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Videodrome (1983) written and directed by David Cronenberg

James Woods plays a dealer in cable TV sex and violence who meets his match in the shape of a bizarre and perverse new show. Sonja Smits and Debbie Harry also star in a bodily horror tale which is now widely regarded as being one of the director's best.

James Woods in Videodrome

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Black Christmas (1974) starring Olivia Hussey and Keir Dullea

Director Bob Clark's tense and atmospheric prototype slasher wasn't a major hit in its day but has gone on to be regarded as a horror classic over time.

Olivia Hussey in Black Christmas

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The Masque of the Red Death (1964) directed by Roger Corman

Vincent Price turns in one of his finest performances as Prince Prospero in this adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe's short story.

Masque of the Red Death poster

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Duel (1971) - Steven Spielberg’s first major hit

This made-for-TV killer trucker movie was such an eye-opener that it got extended and put in cinemas. It's a film loaded with cat-and-mouse tension and terror ably bolstered by Dennis Weaver's fine performance.

Truck in Steven Spielberg's Duel

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Zombie Flesh Eaters (1979) directed by Lucio Fulci

This video nasty was conceived as a cash-in on George Romero's Day of the Dead but has become something of a cult classic in its own right thanks to its excellent practical gore effects.

Lucio Fulci's Zombie Flesh Eaters

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Blue Velvet (1986) written and directed by David Lynch

Don the gas mask for this analysis of the surreal director's subconsciously disturbing classic starring Kyle MacLachlan, Isabella Rossellini and Dennis Hopper.

Blue Velvet (1986) titles

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The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989)

Welsh director Peter Greenaway's most controversial yet accessible film: a scathing and gruesome satire of Thatcher-era consumerism.

Alan Howard, Helen Mirren and Michael Gambon in The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover

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