The Hammer Story

The Hammer Story

by Marcus Hearn, Alan Barnes
     
 

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Fifty years ago, Hammer Films released The Curse of Frankenstein. The now-legendary British company went on to make such classics as Dracula (and its many sequels), making international stars out of Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, changing the face of horror cinema, and inspiring a generation of Hollywood filmmakers, including George Lucas, Martin

Overview

Fifty years ago, Hammer Films released The Curse of Frankenstein. The now-legendary British company went on to make such classics as Dracula (and its many sequels), making international stars out of Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, changing the face of horror cinema, and inspiring a generation of Hollywood filmmakers, including George Lucas, Martin Scorsese and Tim Burton.

Now, for the first time, Hammer have given their active backing to an authorised history of the company, and have provided unlimited access to their archives.

The Hammer Story provides a film-by-film dissection, dripping with rare promotional material and previously unpublished photographs.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

From the 1950s through the mid-1970s, Britain's Hammer Films churned out a plethora of low-budget yet solid-quality films in a style similar to the old Hollywood studio system. Next to Universal Studios in the 1930s and 1940s, Hammer released the longest string of horror thrillers in film history. As Universal launched stars Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, Hammer's horror catapulted character players like Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee to fame. Despite the product's thrift, there's tremendous craft in these films, from the writing and acting to set design and cinematography, and they still enjoy a cult following among horror aficionados. Ultimately, they're fun and entertaining. Originally released in 1997, Hearn and Barnes's deep history of Hammer has been updated and revised with extended info and many new, rare color pix.

Davies's 2001 Holmes title also has been updated to include new productions and now encompasses all Holmes-based films, from the silents up to 2005, with background detail, critiques of performances, and more. There also are portraits of favorite actors who have played the role, e.g., Basil Rathbone, Peter Cushing, and the creme de la creme, Jeremy Brett. The Holmes book is a bit of a specialty item (although there are lots of fans who'll love it), while the Hammer volume is solid for all film collections.


—Michael Rogers

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781845761851
Publisher:
Titan
Publication date:
09/25/2007
Edition description:
REV
Pages:
192
Sales rank:
606,937
Product dimensions:
9.81(w) x 11.70(h) x 0.77(d)

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Meet the Author

Alan Barnes has written features for Hammer Horror, as well as scripts for 2000AD.

Marcus Hearn was the editor of Hammer Horror magazine, and with co-author Alan Barnes, he has written Tarantino A-Zed, The Cinema of George Lucas and Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang.

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