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Great news! The movie I was in and that was filmed in our home, “House of Ghosts,” is up for The Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards!
The awards are determined via online votes. You can visit the site above and votes for any or all categories OR if you wish to cut to the chase, just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with this sentence cut and pasted into it:
8. Best Independent Feature of 2012 “House of Ghosts” by Christopher R. Mihm
Here’s the movie trailer if you haven’t seen the film yet: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3jBK2c0rJg
If that makes you want to see it (again), you can order the DVD at www.sainteuphoria.com. Also, please order your tickets to the May 22 premiere of “The Giant Spider” at that same site right away. It’s more than 3/4 sold out and the tickets only went on sale a week ago! You will lose if you snooze!
Voting ends in April, but why not get yours out of the way now, while you’re thinking of it.
Many thanks to the fine folks who worked so tirelessly to bring visual arts to the Pine City, Minn., public in their 2nd Annual Highway 61 Film Festival. We were honored to have been present on Day 3 of the screenings to introduce writer/director Christopher R. Mihm’s B&W 1950s-drive-in-style B-movie homage to William Castle (The Tingler, House on Haunted Hill), House of Ghosts. We were even more pleased to be able to accept on his behalf the award for Best Action/Horror Feature Film! Mihm was unable to attend because he was busy filming his upcoming movie, The Giant Spider. From the cast and crew of House of Ghosts, we say THANK YOU!!
I’m also pleased to announce that I was awarded Best Actress award for the Murder Mystery Company’s production of “‘Til Death Do Us Part,” an interactive dinner-theater comdedy production at which I, an audience member, was “cast” as Anita Goodman (phonetically: I need a good man) the maid of honor. A delightful time was had by all, and I got this really cool certificate as a souvenir:
Posted on June 27, 2012 by Nix
Saint Euphoria Pictures produces homages to the old style horror films of the 1950′s with “House of Ghosts” pays particular attention to William Castle. There was a decent bit of tongue-in-cheek humor, but it was done in fondness of the b-movie genre not as a form of ridicule. They shot in black and white with a classic style of special effects staying as true to the original format as possible. Over-acting, cheesy lines, and an abundance of swelling music sweeps the viewer along as the story unfolds.
I was not expecting to enjoy the movie as much as I did. I enjoy the old b-movies and have many chuckles as quips are thrown back at the screen, but I can’t really call myself a true fan. I can’t name off every actor, director, or producer of that genre. I am also unable to truly wax poetic about the many hundreds of films from that era. Yet this movie was engaging enough that even a mediocre fan could be enraptured.
The writing and acting in House of Ghosts was excellent, it could be quite dramatic at times but that was the style of that they sought to emulate. The suspense was built up gradually and slowly making the movie actually frightening. House of Ghosts will have a high replay value unlike many of the other films being produced that rely on the latest gadgets, big names, and media hype. I had fun watching it the first time and I had fun watching it the second time, I can’t say this of most other movies.
I was afraid I would laugh, I figured I would mock (in a friendly MST3K manner) an amateur attempt at a movie, and I believed I would find few redeeming qualities. I have been burned rather badly by other low budget independent movies. Yet I was amazed at the quality I found. There have been few independent movies that floored me, and this was one of them. The producer, writer, director of this piece could go on to bigger projects and perhaps he should. We need quality films like this again, not the tired tripe one normally finds in the theater.
Film Reviews: House of Ghosts (2012) – By Duane L. Martin
Posted on Thursday, June 07, 2012 @ 12:18:46 Mountain Daylight Time by DuaneAn eccentric couple, Leigh (Sid Korpi) and Isaac (Mark Scanlan), give a dinner party for some friends, and they’ve hired some entertainment for the evening as well, but when a severe snow storm sets in and traps them all in the house overnight, it’s uncertain as to whether or not whether their entertainment will show up at all. Fortunately for the rest of the film, he does.
The entertainment for the evening is a medium (J. Andrew Wilkins), who brings along a device that’s supposed to open a portal between our world and the land of the dead. The guests all gather around as the machine lights up and its parts spin around inside, but when it’s all over…nothing happened. The medium tells them that he’s opened the door to the other side, now it’s up to them to walk through it. Everyone is underwhelmed to say the least, and Isaac gets his money back after threatening him with legal action for fraud, but once the medium’s gone, things start getting a little creepy. Suddenly, Isaac has a horrible headache and needs to go lay down. Then the other guests start having creepy, ghostly encounters, and people start turning up dead. Will anyone survive this ghostly evening? You’ll have to watch the film to find out.
I had to really limit myself in the description of the film so as to not give away any of the good stuff, but that’s essentially what the film is about. So how was it? Well…
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the films of Christopher R. Mihm, he makes retro style, black and white b-movies. House of Ghosts is his latest film, and it’s a new genre for him. His previous films have revolved around mutants or outer space themes, and this one takes us into the William Castle style of ghost film.
Following in that style, Christopher himself introduces the film, much like William Castle would, and talks about a fear shield that’s given to people in the theater. William Castle was a master of theater gimmicks, and this totally pays homage to the days of the theater gimmick, which is awesome.
Now we get to the film, and immediately you’ll notice several things. First, he knows how to make his films look like classic films. Everything from the set design and props to the costumes all give his films a very classic look, and this one looks absolutely wonderful. Something else you’ll notice is the great selection of music that he uses in his films. He uses various selections of music from the period, so it not only adds to the whole vibe of the film, it also makes it a more fun and enjoyable experience.
Something else that’s a lot of fun in this film are the references to various things in his previous films. They’re done in a way where it doesn’t really matter if you get the references or not, but it’s more fun if you do.
The real fun in this film though comes from the encounters with the ghosts. There’s a skeleton in a dress and a wig (one of the guest’s dead mother). Another guest sees her dead son’s ghost, only…he’s changed into something she doesn’t recognize. Yet another guest is attacked by spiders (really fun and goofy looking fake spiders). Then there’s the Angel of Death. This is far and away the most creepy and impressive looking thing I’ve seen in any of Mihm’s films, and it’s used in such a way as to maximize the creep factor.
This film, like other of Christopher’s films, include both an English and an Esperanto dialogue track, as well as subtitles in both languages. I have no idea who speaks Esperanto, but hey, if there’s someone out there who does…there ya go. In any case, I’ve never made it any secret that I think that every movie should include optional subtitles, and all of Christopher’s films do, which is awesome. What makes it even more awesome, is that they’re more than just your normal run of the mill subtitles. He really has fun with them, including adding in little descptive things like “Star Trek close-up” and various sound effect noises and reaction descriptions that are both funny and entertaining. If you watch the film without subtitles, you’re really missing a fun aspect of the experience.
From a production standpoint, Mihm’s films started out great and just keep getting better and better. There are people out there who make retro films, but they’re usually just a one off. For Christopher Mihm, that’s his thing. It’s all he does, and when you watch one of his films, you can really see the love and appreciation he has for those great old classics from the 50′s, and he has a whole lot of fun with the genre in his own films. This particular film is perfectly paced, filled with great camera shots, makes use of some cool editing and effects, and is lit perfectly. I mention the lighting, because in a film of this nature, especially in black and white, it’s easy to end up with scenes that are too dark. The whole film is lit exactly as it needs to be, and makes really great use of shadow in a very expert way in various scenes.
The DVD of this film includes several special features, including a blooper reel, the trailer, “The Real House of Ghosts” featurette, an alternate ending, which will be particuarly funny if you’ve seen his previous films and get the reference, a photo gallery, previews, and a film introduction by horror host, Dr. Ivan Cryptosis. It also includes a behind the scenes commentary with Christopher Mihm, Mitch Gonzales and Cherie “Rhuby” Gallanti, and a separate director’s commentary with Christopher Mihm.
I’ve come to expect great films from Christopher R. Mihm, and I absolutely loved this one. I highly recommend picking yourself up a copy, and while you’re at it, get yourself copies of his previous films as well. Classic b-movie fans will probably get the most enjoyment from them, but they can be enjoyed by anyone who wants to just kick back, relax and have a great time with a film.
If you’d like to find out more about this film, you can check out its page here, and while you’re there, check out his other films as well. You won’t be sorry.
Info 101: At the movies 168: House of Ghosts-an eerie thriller
The newest film by local director/producer/writer Christopher R. Mihm has a flaw which is not shared by any recent Hollywood production. It’s too good. This opinion can be twisted sideways to mean it’s not cheesy enough for someone whose reputation is built on cheesiness. “House of Ghosts” is intended to be a tribute to the films of Willim Castle (“The House on Haunted Hill”). It is that and more, featuring the talents of several local actors with whom Mihm has worked in previous films.
In keeping with an established ‘NO SPOILERS’ policy, the film’s outline will be very basic. Isaac (Mark Scanlan) and Leigh (Sid Korpi) are a wealthy couple who delight in throwing parties for their circle of friends. On this particular evening, they have contracted a spiritual medium (Andrew Wilkins). Although this idea is scoffed at, the medium proceeds to open a portal to the afterworld. He warns his audience that there is no way to control who-or what-comes through. His departure is almost heralded by the arrival of a massive winter storm that prevents anyone from leaving the house.
Things take a severe left turn from there as the guests are forced to confront their own demons and mortality. This is where Mihm’s true talent as a director takes over. He has worked with most of these actors so often he doesn’t have to direct so much as guide. More than any other film, Mihm allows the action to dictate the story and the cast to dictate the action. This allows the audience to feel like they’re watching it live and in person.
That is the essencer of what makes this film “too good”. Mihm stays faithful to all of his signatures–a personal appearance, a “Star Wars” reference, backward hints to his previous films and music that is integral to the storyline. Time cannot move quickly enough toward next Memorial Day and the release of his next project-“The Giant Spider”. “House of Ghosts” can be purchased on DVD at www.sainteuphoria.com.
Author Tom Fowler of Overland Park, Kansas, is a big B-movie fan…and that’s really lucky for us in the Mihmiverse because he recently watched and loved Christopher R. Mihm’s B&W 1950s-drive-in-style creature feature, House of Ghosts. In fact, he loved it so much, he has purchased the entire set of Mihm’s seven movies (also including: Monster of Phantom Lake, It Came from Another World, Cave Women on Mars, Terror from Beneath the Earth, Destination: Outer Space, and Attack of the Moon Zombies), and he plans to review each in turn throughout the summer. He’s calling this the Christopher R. Mihm Summer Reading Festival.
Be sure to check his website frequently to catch his reviews.
Or better yet, join him in his quest to immerse himself in the Mihmiverse by purchasing your own full set of his films for the special LOW PRICE of just $49.99 + $9.99 shipping and handling. That’s more than a $27 savings!
Visit http://www.sainteuphoria.com/merch.html#dvds to pick up your set!
This latest movie is a bit different from its predecessors, which all focused on the monster or sci-fi genres. This one is an homage to William Castle, master of the cinematic gimmick. My copy has been pre-ordered for a while, so I hope to have it by the long weekend. I’ll post a detailed review here as soon as I watch it.
Okay, I have now seen House Of Ghosts and it has exceeded my expectations. Which is pretty amazing, because I had very high expectations. At this point, I’ve gotten used to them exceeding my expectations, but even when I allow for that, they still exceed my expectations.
This one, as I said, is an homage to the works of William Castle, and it is a labor of love for all concerned. Mihm does not produce parodies (like, for example, Larry Blamire [whose movies I love]), but fond pastiches of the old B-Movies that we remember from the Drive-Ins and Creature Double Features of our youth. Our younger youth. Whatever. His films are done for pocket money, but look like they cost the mortgage and are far more entertaining than studio efforts that cost hundreds of millions. They are like homemade cookies. They’re just better than store bought.
And the main reason this movie, like all the others, is so great– even beyond the lovingly recreated ambiance of 50s low-budget cinema– is that Mihm respects his characters. You’ll watch and smile at the nostalgia and the stylized storytelling, you’ll even be creeped out from time to time– and then, out of nowhere, you’ll be blindsided by moments of genuine sentiment, such as when you realize why one character is drinking herself to death or when you see how much another character cares for her pet. And there’s one relationship in the film that, in the context of a 50s horror movie, is just wonderful.
All of Mihm’s movies take place in the same universe and this one has a surprisingly strong tie to his first movie. And they are all made with the same integrity and respect for characters, and I recommend that you get them all. I strongly believe in supporting independent creators and nobody I’ve met to date deserves that support more than Chris Mihm.
I thought I had emailed you last week after the movie ["House of Ghosts"] but I never sent it! We all had a great time and loved the movie! You are a SUPER STAR J!!!! You really did a great job Sid, everyone did, but you in particular shine very bright. The kids just think you are the best movie star! Anthony couldn’t be a bigger sweet heart! He did great too and those babies of yours….so funny the way they kept getting switched out, and I laughed my fool head off when the scene where one of the dogs [SPOILER REMOVED!!!]…seriously!
Everyone thinks Christopher is fabulous, myself included. I brought an assortment of my friends who I thought would enjoy it and they ALL LOVED IT!!
Please tell Christopher we all love his sense of humor and appreciate his vision, he has gained another bunch of groupies with this lot and they will be telling their friends I assure you.
Can’t wait for the next one!! Giant Spider..HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!
House of Ghosts
House of Ghosts is a great little homage to William Castle produced by Christopher and Stephanie Mihm of Minneapolis, Minnesota. The DVD is a delight. Besides the feature film, which borrowed heavily from the 1959 version of House on Haunted Hill, (which most of my friends and fans know is my all-time favorite film of any genre), the DVD contains a number of special features, including a tour of the home the story was filmed in. After a William Castle like prologue from Mr. Mihm, warning of the risk the viewer incurs when viewing such a frightening film, the story begins when several friends gather in a very atmospheric old house and a spiritual medium is hired to provide the evening’s entertainment. The partyers are quite disappointed when nothing happens during the séance. But, soon they experience more than their money’s worth when strange things begin to happen. House of Ghosts is part House on Haunted Hill, part Night of the Living Dead and all parts fun. A twist ending of sorts pays homage to the science fiction films of the 1950s.
More on House of Ghosts is available at www.houseofghosts.com The DVD includes something I have needed for many years. The Fear Shield has already proved to be invaluable in protecting me from excessive fright when viewing horror and science fiction films. I am certain this free gift from Mr. Mihm will add 5-10 years to my life expectancy.
I first became aware of Christopher Mihm’s work through his advertisements in Scary Monsters magazine. Needless to say, he has a new fan. Great old school stuff for 62 year old kids like me!
Oh, did I mention House of Ghosts is filmed in glorious black and white? However, the tour of the wonderful old Victorian house, built in 1886 and owned by two of the actors in the movie, Sid Korpi and Anthony Kaczor, is beautifully done in color.