What to Watch on Shudder: Blood and Black Lace and More

Looking for some scares? This week’s guide of what to watch on Shudder features Blood and Black Lace, Mirror Mirror, and The Home

What to Watch on Shudder: Blood and Black Lace

Mario Bava’s 1964 Blood and Black Lace is surely one of horror’s most visually arresting films. Starring Eva Bartok and Cameron Mitchell, the film is about models who are killed at a fashion house by a masked figure. Visually, the film is a joy to watch. The use of colour, the composition of shots, and the art direction are all spot on. Coupled with this are the costumes and great sets. Blood and Black Lace mixes these wonderful aspects with a suitably satisfying slasher narrative. There is a great sequence early on with numerous suspicious parties keeping their eyes on a bag which contains a diary. This acts as a succinct preview of what is to come.

What to Watch on Shudder: Mirror Mirror

Mirror Mirror fulfils the cult 90s movie trope; the television aspect ratio of Shudder’s version merely adds to this. Released in 1990, Marina Sargenti’s film is very much of its era. A teenage outsider moves to a new home, where she gains magical power through an antique mirror. Mirror Mirror combines supernatural horror with a teen movie. There are definite allusions to Carrie (1976), and Sargenti’s film can certainly be seen as a precursor to The Craft. Whilst not the scariest of movies, Mirror Mirror works as a supernatural teen movie, with some decent sequences. The film stars Rainbow Harvest, Karen Black (Family Plot, Five Easy Pieces), and Yvonne De Carlo (best known as Lily from The Munsters).

What to Watch on Shudder: The Home

L. Gustavo Cooper’s 2016 short The Home is brief, yet unnerving. Set in an Irish home for pregnant young women, the period-set-set film is about an evil that descends on the convent. There is very little by the way of narrative, but this does not matter as The Home is atmospheric, and offers a great final sequence.

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What to Watch on Shudder: Black Sunday and More

Looking for something scary to watch? Here is this week’s guide of what to watch on Shudder features Black Sunday, The Canal, and short Consommé

What to Watch on Shudder: Black Sunday

Black Sunday (also known as The Mask of Satan and Revenge of the Vampire) is a bonafide horror classic. Directed by genre royalty Mario Bava, the 1960 film was originally banned in the UK. The film is about a witch who returns from the grave to threaten her lookalike descendant. Bava is pretty near pitch-perfect with Black Sunday. The setting, the lighting, and editing are all on point. Special effects are great for the era, and Bava does not shy away from gore. The film was the breakthrough for horror queen Barbara Steele, who is enchanting in a dual role. The film has influenced filmmakers for decades, including Francis Ford Coppola and Tim Burton. Black Sunday is a paean to gothic exuberance.

What to Watch on Shudder: The Canal

Writer-director Ivan Kavangh’s 2014 film The Canal is a nerve-racking and engaging watch. The film is about an archivist whose life starts to fall apart after viewing old footage of a murder that occurred over a century ago. Kavangh astutely combines supernatural elements with a psychological horror. There is a mystery at the centre of the film, and the director keeps viewers guessing as protagonist David slowly breaks down. The 16mm footage is used exceptionally well. The Canal ramps up tension in the second half, delivering sufficient scares. Unlike so many recent horror films, the conclusion is not a disappointment. After a gentle start, The Canal delivers a frightening and memorable climax.

What to Watch on Shudder: Consommé

Writer-director Catherine Fordham’s short Consommé is an inventive twist on the rape-revenge sub-genre. The 2015 film does not shy away from gore, yet the build up is subtle and well-paced. Actress Monica West (who also stars in Fordham’s Best Thing You’ll Ever Do) is striking in the central role. Consommé is a rewarding five-minute watch.

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What to Watch on Shudder: I Vampiri and More

A look at some of the highlights on horror platform Shudder. Here’s what to watch on Shudder this week…

What to Watch on Shudder: I Vampiri

Riccardo Freda and Mario Bava’s I Vampiri (also known as Lust of the Vampire) is an Italian gothic classic. The film combines a detective story with a horror movie. Like many gothic films, the scares do not come thick and fast. However, the wonderful atmosphere and gothic excess make up for this, particularly in later scenes. I Vampiri is about an investigation into a spate of murders of young women. Each of these women are found with the blood drained. Set in Paris, Pierre Lantin is the journalist hot on the trail of the perpetrator. The film combines a modern setting with some classic gothic tropes. Moreover, the visual effects are great for the period.

What to Watch on Shudder: Raze

Josh C. Waller’s Raze offers an enticing premise and a brutal execution. The film is about kidnapped women who are forced into fighting each other for survival. Raze combines a terrifying premise with some fantastic fight sequences. Waller injects a ferociousness to these sequences; the violence is hard to watch at times. He is ably assisted by the skills of actress and stunt woman Zoë Bell (a Quentin Tarantino favourite, and star of Whip It), who plays protagonist Sabrina. There are similarities with The Purge: Anarchy (released the following year), yet Raze is very much its own film.

What to Watch on Shudder: Venefica

Maria Wilson directs, produces and stars in short film Venefica. The film is about a modern-day witch who must complete a ritual to see how her magic will be used. Venefica offers sufficient intrigue and good production values. Maria Wilson’s film is worth eight minutes of your time.

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