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The Tractate Middoth

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Showing 1-14 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 26 Dec 2013 00:41:37 GMT
Adam Jackson says:
On BBC2 this evening; much better than I expected, an improvement on the Whistle adaptation with John Hurt a few years back.

Posted on 26 Dec 2013 11:16:10 GMT
Stuart M B says:
Yes, I watched that and enjoyed it, can't comment on Whistle has I haven't seen that one must try and get the original on dvd.

Posted on 26 Dec 2013 11:37:47 GMT
Arch Stanton says:
I watched it, thought it was very well done. Probably not creepy enough but certainly entertaining. Could have afforded to be a little longer maybe. The malignant entity was suitably horrific. Enjoyed. Well done those involved.

Posted on 28 Dec 2013 11:21:38 GMT
JONESY says:
If you enjoyed this retro-type horror as much as i did, may i recommend "The Whisperer in Darkness"
It is done by the HP Lovecraft society.
It is quite pricey, but worth it as it is awesome.
( See also "The Call of Cthulhu")

If there's anyone out there still, Happy New Year to you.

Posted on 28 Dec 2013 12:41:51 GMT
Arch Stanton says:
I hadn't heard of them, as I am completely out of touch with most modern horror films, but they (Cthulhu especially) sound very interesting, so if I ever save up enough spare pennies, I might just pick em up. Thank you for bringing these to my attention Jonesy.

Posted on 28 Dec 2013 17:36:07 GMT
JONESY says:
My pleasure Arch.
Both films I've mentioned are quite recent, but they're done with the kind of care and attention to detail that you'd expect from a society devoted to Lovecraft.
Both are black and white
"Call of Cthulhu" is realised as a silent film, while "Whisperer in Darkness" is done as a film you might see at the advent of the "talkies"
You can check out the trailer on GOOGLE.

Posted on 28 Dec 2013 19:21:51 GMT
Stuart M B says:
Cheers for those Jonesy will check them out,and a happy new year to you too,and indeed to anybody else who is still around

Posted on 29 Dec 2013 14:49:04 GMT
AlanK47 says:
The Call of Cthulhu is an excellent film and would recommend to any Lovecraft fan. Not seen Whisperer in Darkness yet (as I'd forgot all about it. So thanks for the reminder Jonesy).

Posted on 30 Dec 2013 20:42:06 GMT
JONESY says:
Hi AK47 HNY to you.

Posted on 31 Dec 2013 09:30:02 GMT
AlanK47 says:
And a Happy New Year to you Jonsey. And everyone else who posts on here.

Posted on 6 Jan 2014 06:13:45 GMT
Last edited by the author on 12 Jan 2014 11:36:26 GMT
Neal Vincent says:
Tractate Middoth was a quality adaptation and ticked all the right boxes for that M R James "Ghost Story at Christmas" feel. It's a shame that the original story was such a slight tale, and the adaptation so brief, but I think Mark Gatiss made the right choice to keep his version (fairly) faithful, with minimal embellishment.

That 2010 adaptation of Whistle went completely the other way: embellishing, altering, and updating the story out of all recognition - to the point where the author might as well just have called it something else. If he'd done that, he might've taken credit for serving up an interesting and original ghost story, rather than taking flak for tampering so much with what claimed to be an M R James story.

Anyway, I'm in no doubt about which approach I preferred. The moral of the tale is: Don't mess with the Master's work any more than is absolutely necessary to get it to work on screen ;-)

Posted on 14 Jan 2014 14:36:06 GMT
I missed it :( :( :(

Posted on 21 Feb 2014 01:50:28 GMT
Neal Vincent says:
Nice to see those mentions of Call of Cthulhu and The Whisperer in Darkness up there - they're both quality productions. And (of course) those films are the audio-visual stablemates to the wonderful Dark Adventure Radio Theatre audio-play CDs. Andrew Leman and the HPLHS guys absolutely nail the Lovecraft-done-right thing in my humble opinion. (sparks up a Fleur-de-Lys)

I had to wait absolutely ages for my copy of The Whisperer in Darkness to come via Amazon USA - they were out of stock and I was convinced my order was eventually going to be cancelled on me, but I left the order open, kept the faith, and a copy did finally dispatch. And, boy, was it worth it. Cthulhu was "only" a short (about 45 mins, IIRC) and (if you've seen the making-of material) was pretty much filmed on a shoestring in people's back-yards (not that any of that should put you off - it's great) - but Whisperer is a full-length, full-on feature film with surprisingly extensive effects-work.

I really wasn't expecting Whisperer to be as ambitious and professional as it turned out to be: there's a lot of location work and exteriors, great acting, and very canny use of genuine-article vintage planes, trains and automobiles (yes, really) that lend it production-values far beyond anything I expected - easily on a par with the real 1930s horror films whose look and feel it emulates.

The making-of material on Whisperer is a hoot as well. I particularly recall the bit where they discuss how they pulled off the impressive period train-station scenes, which involved shooting around a real vintage train that's run for tourists - shooting the departure from one station, then literally jumping in their cars and racing the train to another station, and setting up again in time to film the train's arrival, all the while carefully shooting around the real (modern-day) tourists. Guerilla film-making at its finest. Really impressive stuff, and the on-screen pay-off was well worth the effort.

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Feb 2014 22:52:54 GMT
You should've ordered "The Whisperer in Darkness" via as they had them sent out no problem, speaking of which they had a decent German film adapted from Lovecraft I bought about the same time, "The Color out of Space", as a B&W film it'll have limited appeal to most but Lovecraft fans will lap it up, definitely one of the better adaptions.
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Discussion in:  horror discussion forum
Participants:  8
Total posts:  14
Initial post:  26 Dec 2013
Latest post:  25 Feb 2014

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