Herk Harvey’s Carnival of Souls premiered 56 years ago today in Lawrence Kansas. This midwestern budget masterpiece was inspired by European surrealist art films, and I’m willing to bet took a bit of stylistic inspiration from Alain Resnais’ Last Year at Marienbad, released just seven months earlier. I maintain however, Harvey’s drive-in response to these surrealist Euro-dreamscapes is the superior film. It is weird, it is haunting, and dreamlike, beautiful, sad, and genuinely creepy. It sticks with you and has an odd way of coming to mind out of nowhere, running a chill down your spine in moments you find you are suddenly alone, and the world around you falls momentarily into silence. Like the film’s sad-eyed Heroine, one finds a part of themselves will always be dancing in that cavernous fairground hall.
It’s raining here where I am, and you can find the film free just about anywhere (including the link above) so sit down, turn the lights off, and enjoy. Come home, come home, come home, come home.
If I had directed this video it would be sung by a hostage negotiator over a megaphone.
It’s July 27th. That sweaty October Rust is starting to run already. If you haven’t seen Roger Corman’s Masterpiece, grab a cool drink and full screen this now. Watch the opening scene and tell me you’re not hooked. Have a wonderful Friday.