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also known as Face of Fire

The Mask1961

  • 3.6
If there is a presumption that Canadian horror began with David Cronenberg, think again! THE MASK tells the tale of an unusual mask which allows the wearer to achieve hallucinatory visions of a surreal and supernatural world. Like most fanciful opportunities, these benefits come with deadly side effects: the visions ultimately induce madness. Of notable merit is THE MASK's four brief 3-D sequences. Slavko Vorkapich was responsible for crafting these clever sequences of mild yet memorable terror (and function remarkably well whether you have 3-D glasses or not). "Put the mask on now!"

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2 members like this review

This is a pretty terrific little film. Very straightforward horror from the early 1960s for the most part, it turns into something special during each of the 3-D hallucination scenes. These have a wonderfully surrealistic feel. Even the lack of 3-D adds to the weirdness of the proceedings as the out-of-focus nightmares seem to cloud the viewer's mind. The direction and writing is tight — very few superfluous moments — and the acting is well done, especially the main character, the poor delusional doctor, Alan.

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Member Reviews (8)

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This is a pretty terrific little film. Very straightforward horror from the early 1960s for the most part, it turns into something special during each of the 3-D hallucination scenes. These have a wonderfully surrealistic feel. Even the lack of 3-D adds to the weirdness of the proceedings as the out-of-focus nightmares seem to cloud the viewer's mind. The direction and writing is tight — very few superfluous moments — and the acting is well done, especially the main character, the poor delusional doctor, Alan.

2 members like this review
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The early 1960’s were a great time for nightmares. This was an era of surreal, psycho-thrillers filmed in the eerie contrasts of black and white: “Carnival of Souls,” “Night Tide,” and “Confessions of an Opium Eater” flickering in the night at your local Drive-In; Alfred Hitchcock, Boris Karloff’s “Thriller and the legendary “Twilight Zone” haunting your television screen.

The Mask is a worthy companion to these shock films. It’s cinematic grand guignol, a tale of madness and doom with a bit of Lovecraft groove: heavy-handed, over-the-top, but memorable. The reverb-drenched command to “Put the mask on!” is a gimmick straight out of William Castles book of theatrics, but it still works, even after 50 years. The centerpiece, of course, are the 3D sequences: downtown art house meets carnival haunted house. Don’t just take my word for it, see it, experience it…PUT THE MASK ON!

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A GREAT druve-in flick from the best Premium content provider. FANDOR "gets" what the completion only guesses!

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You can view the movie pressbook here: http://www.zomboscloset.com/zombos_closet_of_horror_b/2014/05/movie-pressbook-the-mask-1961.html

1 member likes this review
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Rock bottom dross. Somebody had to tell you the truth.

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Strange how some horror movies, especially older ones when they explore fantasy dream states don't wear well in black and white. You do need chaotic color visuals to enhance the madness. The Mask, unfortunately, suffers from this. It seems a one-note hysterical story though in fact it was seminal for later versions on the same theme which did use color enhancements that did work out better.

It's so good to get to see this again! Too bad the 3-D information is missing, and I'll tell you why. Our family went to see this movie at the local drive-in, and each of us got a Mask to wear at the appropriate scenes. I remember it wasn't standard 'red-blue' 3-D, but used another color, which also made the movie more freaky. I can still remember how good their 3-D effects were, with those flames coming right out of the screen and seemingly right through the windshield, and that dude falling miles down through the screen to the nether world. The space in those scenes was carefully crafted, and was really vast--I've never seen 3-D effects as good, almost even today. What I wouldn't give for a restored 3-D version of the film. Even without it, the artistically-crafted dream sequences are totally too cool. I remember how much this movie tripped out my impressionable brain when I first saw it...almost as though I had put on the mask myself...

Put the mask on. Put the mask on.