Film for a Friday: Viy

Get spooky with this adaptation of a Gogol story:

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Song for a Saturday: Witches’ Multiplication Table – Holger Czukay

It’s not an abacus. #RIP

Song for a Saturday: I’d Rather Be Burned as a Witch – Eartha Kitt

Song for a Saturday: Suspiria

There are witches and then there are witches; the trope of making them acolytes of the devil persists, though my gals in Satan’s Sorority would never want to be confused with witches. Devil or no, one of the finest films in that vein is Dario Argento’s masterpiece Suspiria which features an equally legendary soundtrack by Goblin. If you’ve never indulged, I suggest you grab your black cat and sit down for a spell.

That’s what’s in my mind as I eagerly anticipate the Occult Humanities conference next weekend.

Song for a Saturday: Isobel Goudie

Isobel Goudie feels so good,
She does not do the things that she should…

A little historical witchcraft via The Sensational Alex Harvey Band. If you’re more of a classical mind, try James Macmillan’s orchestral take on The Confession of Isobel Gowdie.

Very sad to hear of the death of the legend William McIlvanney: his stories will live on. I never got to shake his hand.

Noir Carnival Wm McIlvanney

TOA/V: Burn, Witch, Burn!

BURN, WITCH, BURN (AKA Night of the Eagle) 1961
Directed by Sidney Hayers
Screenplay by Charles Beaumont/Richard Matheson/George Baxt
Based on Conjure Wife by Fritz Leiber
Starring Peter Wyngarde, Janet Blair, Margaret Johnston, Anthony Nicholls, Colin Gordon

This is a fairly good adaptation of Leiber’s Conjure Wife (a brilliant little novel if you’ve not read it), dramatically retitled for American release complete with exclamation point. Snooty psychology professor studies superstitious beliefs with condescending rationality — until he discovers that his wife Tansy has been working magic to build his career. Well, if there’s one thing a guy like him hates more than magic, it’s the idea that his wife might be responsible for his success.

So he makes her burn all her workings and talismans and what do you know? Things start going badly for them both. Seems there’s a rival whose wife also uses magic…

This is a fun film that didn’t get near enough attention on its release (or since really). I love the mixture of academia and magic — obviously one of the things in the cauldron of my mind that helped conjure Satan’s Sorority.

See all the overlooked gems at Todd’s blog.