Friday, October 26, 2012

Karloff

No Halloween could be complete without seeing this guy's face on the screen.  I don't care for 'slasher' horror movies.  Freddy and Jason can take the backseat to this guy.  Bela Lugosi turned down the roll of  the 'Monster' in 1931's 'Frankenstein' that launched the career of Boris Karloff.  From that day on, Boris became a household name, he could do scary.  Karloff had appeared in eighty films before he became famous playing Frankenstein's monster.

Karloff had injured his back during the making of Frankenstein and eventually had do perform most of his latter rolls in a chair/wheelchair due to it being so uncomfortable for him to remain on his feet for extended periods of time.  Some directors accommodated him by adapting the scripts to have Karloff's character seated.

In real life, Karloff was far from the sinister characters he portrayed on film.  He adored children.  He was known within the film industry for his kind and gentle manner.  Karloff gave generously, especially to children`s charities. Beginning in 1940, Karloff dressed up as Santa Claus every Christmas to hand out presents to physically disabled children in a Baltimore hospital.

I love those old Karloff movies.  Boris was in John Ford's WWI movie 'The Lost Patrol' (1934).  Baby-boomers will most definitely remember him as the narrator of 'How The Grinch Stole Christmas'.  A few nights ago Turner Classic Movies aired 'The Raven' (1963), produced by Roger Corman starring Boris Karloff, Vincent Price, Peter Lorre and Jack Nicholson.
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