The Masque of the Red Death review – horribly apt Poe adaptation

Roger Corman’s 1964 cult classic about a medieval pestilence closing in on a decadent count played by Vincent Price has uncomfortable resonanceRoger Corman’s 1964 movie The Masque of the Red Death is taken from Edgar Allan Poe’s eerie tale from the medieval mist, about a plague closing in on the castle of a cruel and wealthy sensualist.

Disease is the implacable god.

It’s a horribly appropriate moment for this film’s reappearance.This is an expressionist horror-ballet, extravagantly shot by cinematographer Nicolas Roeg, and for all its theatricality and Grand Guignol, there is really nothing absurd in it.

In fact, Corman’s formal artistry and conviction on a limited budget look more impressive than ever, and with his iconic Poe adaptations he did more than anyone in academe to establish the author’s position in the literary canon.

That disturbing red-clad figure, and the villain’s horror of the colour red,

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