burn witch burn
This new Blu-ray version of Burn Witch Burn looks great. Charles Beaumont and Richard Mathewson wrote the script to this movie based on Fritz Leiber’s classic Conjure Wife. Originally titled Night of the Eagle, Burn Witch Burn is a good movie to put you in the Halloween spirit. What movies put you in the mood for Halloween?

34 thoughts on “BURN WITCH BURN [Blu-ray]

  1. Sergio (Tipping My Fedora)

    Just one of the best films of its kind ever – and of course based on Leiber’s wonderful CONJURE WIFE. Worth pointing out that George Baxt wrote the British shooting script (the original script, entitled TORMET apparently, was set in the US) but is only creditred on the NIGHT OF THE EAGLE prints not the ones released in the US in what was clearly an arbitratin wrangle (Baxt was also a bit of a blackliost victim, so that didn’t help either).

    1. Todd Mason

      I think it’s not quite up to the novel, but is so much closer than the first loose adaptation (WEIRD WOMAN) or the even looser comedy take-off later (WITCHES BREW, oddly enough).

    2. Todd Mason

      My note here disappeared as well into Moderation Hell: This version isn’t up to the novel, but it is a much better try than either the earlier loose adaptation WEIRD WOMAN, or the later attempt at a comic take-off, WITCHES’ BREW (oddly enough).

  2. Dan

    I spend October reading old spooky books and watching old monster movies. This year included CAT GIRL, I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE, MONSTER ON THE CAMPUS, THE HIDEOUS SUN DEMON…. Tonight I have to decide between THE FLY (’58) and THE BODY SNATCHER (’45.)

  3. Deb

    Anything from Roger Corman’s “Poe Adaptations” series (The Raven, The Pit & the Pendulum, etc.) or something from the golden age of Hammer Films (Christopher Lee as Count Dracula, atmospheric sets, scream queens wearing anachronistically-low-cut necklines–all the ingredients of a classic Hammer). I don’t want to see anything too gory or modern (nothing in the Saw or Paranormal Activity line).

    Generally, I will put on TCM while I’m hanging out candy (you can see our tv–barely–from the front door and I wouldn’t want to scare the little trick-or-treaters too much); they’re generally airing some good but not gory stuff from the forties & fifties. A few years ago, VH1 ran The Rocky Horror Picture Show throughout the evening; I kept that on all night.

    “Let’s do the time warp again….”

    1. george Post author

      Deb, the weather forecast for Halloween here looks very mild for this time of year. I may have to buy more candy. Usually we have about a 100 Trick-orTreaters if the weather is good. If it’s raining or snowing, that number dwindles fast.

  4. Jeff Meyerson

    They did a really good job with this one. I don’t bother with Halloween movies but if I did it would probably be THE HAUNTING.

    In recent years we’ve had exactly zero trick or treaters. Even the people with little kids in the building (not many, but there are some) don’t seem to bring them around any more. Instead, the parents take their kids to Third Avenue in the afternoon where almost all the stores and restaurants (even the Chinese take out places) have buckets of candy to hand out to kids. We always have something on hand just in case – last year it was mini-Kit Kats – but I’m the one who ends up eating it.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that, right?

    When we were kids, the son of our landlady who lived upstairs from us would dress as Zacherle every year, decorate the house with cobwebs, etc., play spooky music, and generally go out of his way to try and scare the crap out of kids.

    As Bill would say, I miss the old days.

    1. george Post author

      Jeff, Halloween is big in our area. Lots of parties and Trick-or-Treaters. The only variable is the weather. Little kids don’t like to be out in freezing weather.

  5. Patti abbott

    Oddly enough, I used to enjoy the ROSEANNE episodes where they celebrated Halloween. It was one of the first shows I remember really getting into that. Now it is a huge holiday on TV,

  6. Jeff Meyerson

    Yes, Patti, those were among the best ROSEANNE episodes. They always reminded me of our neighbor upstairs. He rigged up a fake skeleton on a wire that would go down the stairs towards the kids. It was like something out of a William Castle movie. We thought it was great.

  7. Beth Fedyn

    We have lots of kids trick or treating in our neighborhood. Happily, Waukesha’s time is always 5-7 pm on actual Halloween so the kids get a chance to run around in the dark.

    When I was a kid, my Grandpa would dress up like a crazy old man and scare the kids. Today he’d be arrested.

    Halloween is a chance to break out an old favorite – The Spiral Staircase (which still gives me goosebumps) – and a couple of new ones – The Woman in Black and The Orphanage.

  8. Richard R

    Halloween isn’t a “holiday” at all, of course,just an excuse to buy, eat and give out candy, none of which I need! No candy for me, an overweight diabetic. We get very few kids, maybe 4 or 5. We buy one small bag of fun size bars and if they go we turn out the light. We have one pumpkin out front as a Fall decoration. George, I can’t believe Halloween is that big of a party day, we don’t know anyone who does a thing except hand out a little candy.

    As for a film, JOHN CARPENTER’S THE THING would be my choice. Except I’ll be reading.

    1. george Post author

      Rick, there are Halloween parties galore around here this week. All the schools have Halloween parades. Plenty of decorations in people’s front lawns. Like you, I’m a low-key Halloween kind of a guy. I’d rather be reading, too. But I’ll be handing out candy Saturday night. Hopefully, we won’t have many Snickers bars or bags of Peanut M&Ms at the end of the night. I can’t resist them!

      1. maggie mason

        I don’t have trick or treaters and in my neighborhood, wouldn’t open the door, but in years past, only bought candy I didn’t like to give out

  9. Wolf Böhrendt

    Halloween greetings from Hungary!
    It’s funny that this American custom found its way here (via Germany and Austria) so our supermarkets already stocked up and sold a lot of t-shirts with skeletons printed on them, witches’ brooms etc …

    Though here in the village we probably won’t see too many children on the street – it gets dark by 5 pm …

    Leiber is also one of my favourite authors – I still remember how I got to know his stories in the early 60s. I bought all the magazines I could get: Amazing, Astounding, If, Galaxy … – so I got all of his SF which I actually prefer to his fantasy stories ….
    Also the breadth (or width?) of his writing is enormous! – the wiki on him is really good:

  10. maggie mason

    this is so lame, but I really enjoy Hocus Pocus with Bette Midler, Kathy Najimi, and Sara Jessica Parker. Side note, one of my classmates in elementary school was Najimy’s older sister Ramona, later called Mona

  11. Patti Abbott

    Watched it last night. Reminded me of an extended TWILIGHT ZONE episode. But that makes sense given the screen writers and the year it is made. I would have liked more back story about how she so easily came to believe in witchcraft and a little less chasing around on rocks. The atmosphere and acting were good.

    1. george Post author

      Patti, I”m with you on the chasing around on the rocks. Yes, BURN WITCH BURN does remind me of a TWILIGHT ZONE episode, too. And, that’s a Good Thing.


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