The Little Shop of Horrors (1960) - Roger Corman
Related: Roger Corman - fantastic film - horror cinema - black comedy - biological horror - uncanny - grotesque - film - 1960 - American cinema
The Little Shop of Horrors (1960) - Roger Corman [Amazon.com]
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Talking plants, flesh eating plants and plants that can hypnotize humans make this a work firmly grounded in the tradition of the fantastic.
Wikipedia (which features an extensive write-up on the film) says:The Little Shop of Horrors is a 1960 black comedy film directed by Roger Corman. The film is famous for having been shot in two days. The film tells the story of a nerdy young florist's assistant who cultivates a plant that feeds on human blood and flesh. The film is also noteworthy for featuring a young Jack Nicholson in a small role as Wilbur Force, the dentist's masochistic patient. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Little_Shop_of_Horrors [Sept 2006]
The story of The Little Shop of Horrors is about a clumsy young man who nurtures a plant and discovers that it's a bloodthirsty plant, forcing him to kill to feed it. It was written by Charles B. Griffith who collaborated with Corman on more than 20 films from 1956 to 1967.
It is one of the funniest combinations of comedy and horror since Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) but also manages to be quite eerie at times. The idea of a plant which hypnotizes its owner to go out in the streets in order to kill is quite uncanny. The final scene is particularly unsettling: when finally the last buds of the plant open they reveal the faces of the people it has eaten.
The story has been remade several times but I suggest to stick with the 1960 Corman version.
From the publisher
Shot in two days by legendary B-movie king Roger Corman (House of Usher, The Raven), this 1960 cult classic inspired a long-running off-Broadway musical, filmed in 1986 with Rick Moranis and Steve Martin. Employed by Skid Row florist Gravis Mushnick (Mel Welles), the hapless Seymour Krelboined (Jonathan Haze) discovers that the weird Venus Flytrap hybrid he is raising not only thrives on blood, but also talks! Soon Audrey, Jr., named after his beloved co-worker (Jackie Joseph), is bellowing "FEED ME!", forcing poor Seymour to provide a series of unwilling "entrees"; Corman regular Dick Miller (A Bucket of Blood) co-stars. The young Jack Nicholson has a hilarious early role as a masochistic dental patient, Wilbur Force, while screenwriter Charles B. Griffith provides the voice of Audrey, Jr., and makes an unbilled cameo as a burglar. From the Back Cover
The Little Shop of Horrors (1960) - Fred Katz
What immediately struck me about Little Shop was the score for this cult black comedy, written by Fred Katz, an American composer working in the space age pop idiom, although this particular score is rather more jazzy than space age. It complements the film marvelously, giving it a very 'arty' feel which contrasts nicely with its subject matter. Fred Katz also scored Corman films Creature from the Haunted Sea (1961), The Wasp Woman (1960), Battle of Blood Island (1960), Ski Troop Attack (1960), Beast from Haunted Cave (1959) and A Bucket of Blood (1959).
See also: http://www.spaceagepop.com/katz.htm [Sept 2006]
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