What Bank Holidays Are For

The Arts

Not for creeping around retail outlets or visiting flower shows, not for four-day-long knee-deep-in-mud rock concerts or dragging reluctant kids to museums, not waiting for British Airways to stop striking so you can spend a long weekend in a country that sees actual sunlight more than four times a year – no, Bank Holidays are for sitting at home and watching truly abysmal old movies, and none come any worse than this, The Giant Claw.

I used to own the film on Super-8, that’s how desperate we were for entertainment before DVD. Nobody ever found this stuff frightening, of course, but that didn’t stop do-gooders telling us that such ‘horror’ would rot our brains. Now, when I look back on magazines like ‘Creepy’, ‘Eerie’ and the EC comics they seem like masterworks compared to stuff like ‘Twilight’. Mind you, watching ‘The Giant Claw’ in a double bill with ‘Not Of This Earth’ (aliens looking like flying lampshades invade Earth, or at least one house) could make your brain fall out.


5 comments on “What Bank Holidays Are For”

  1. mikenicholson says:

    Well, I remember as I endlessly trawled through my issues of stuff like Famous Monsters of Filmland as a kid that I DREAMED of being able to see stuff like this. Because I KNEW NO BETTER. Another gem that I glimpsed one late, late night when allowed to stay up to watch Granada TV’s regular horror film slot was ‘The Trollenberg Terror’ – essentially a gert big eyeball with tentacles menacing a backlot ‘n’ backscreen Alpine location (with, I think, that renta-Yank Forrest Tucker milling about looking suitably earnest). I remember it as rivetting stuff – it was probably as menacing as this creature from ‘Claw’, which looks like nothing so much as the bastard offspring of a giant Japanese monster and Rod Hull’s Emu.
    Some of the old stuff – notably the marvellous ‘Them!’ – retains a genuine level of quality, thankfully.

  2. Mary says:

    Ooohh…that is one nasty old chicken. Don’t want him landing on my roof!. I was extremely frightened by ‘The Blood Beast Terror’; in fact, he still stalks out local Tesco Express, especially on Bank holidays.

  3. Reuben says:

    Or you could have been listening to Part 1 of Edmund Crispin’s Frequent Hearses on BBC7.

  4. Martha says:

    I remember seeing ‘The World’s Collide’ at the Saturday cinema and having nightmares for weeks. To this day I still can’t watch horror or creepy sci-fi movies of the Alien genre. The Twilight’s are just silly

  5. Alan says:

    Professor Quatermass and the giant Bowl of Sage and onion stuffing.

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