Not only have I heard the call, I’ve seen it as well. I’m not talking about the soon-to-be-released and almost certainly straight-to-video movie Cthulhu but the wonderful, magical adaptation of the original story by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society called, unsurprisingly, The Call of Cthulhu.
The guys who made this understand not only the structure and aesthetics of silent movies but understand silent horror movies! A very rare treat indeed! This movie looks exactly like a film one would see at the cinema in the 1930s and from the style I’d even set the fictional production date at about 1931-1934 — that’s how sharp their technique is. The only thing that spoils the illusion is that it is obviously shot on video and the saturation dropped to turn it into black-and-white.
This film is a must for all Lovecraft fans. It’s exactly what we’ve been craving all these long, long years.
The history of celluloid adaptations of Lovecraft’s work is both long and squamously disappointing. Here’s a brief list of forgettable horrors.
I know I’m an HPL fan-boy but I really don’t see why producers, directors and writers need to murder HPL’s work in order to put it on the big screen. If movies like Pan’s Labyrinth and the mini-series The Lost Room can be successfully produced and filled with low-key creepiness, surely the same can be done for the tales of the great man himself.
If I had the cash to sink into the project, I would love to see a story such as The Call of Cthulhu, the Shadow Out Of Time or The Whisperer in the Darkness put on the big screen. You could even run them against self-indulgent rubbish such as Dances With Wolves to great effect. HPL shows us that when the camera pulls back to reveal Kevin Costner standing alone against the background of the majestic wilderness, he does not look heroic or at one with nature but more than faintly ridiculous.