Criterion Close-Up – Episode 52 – Carnival of Souls


Mark, Aaron and Eric Ford begin a month of horror with the micro-budget cult classic, Carnival of Souls. We talk about what makes this such an enduring classic that has held up over time, the bizarre story about how it was made, its influences and what it has influenced, and what type of artistic aims the filmmakers tried to reach.

About the film:

A young woman in a small Kansas town survives a drag race accident, then agrees to take a job as a church organist in Salt Lake City. En route, she is haunted by a bizarre apparition that compels her toward an abandoned lakeside pavilion. Made by industrial filmmakers on a small budget, the eerily effective B-movie classic Carnival of Souls was intended to have “the look of a Bergman and the feel of a Cocteau”—and, with its strikingly used locations and spooky organ score, it succeeds. Herk Harvey’s macabre masterpiece gained a cult following on late-night television and continues to inspire filmmakers today.

Buy The Films On Amazon:



Episode Links & Notes

Special Guest: Eric Ford from The Burlington Film Society and the Vermont International Film Festival.

1:10 – Welcome Eric Ford from Burlington Film Society, Vermont International Film Festival.

4:10 – Vermont International Film Festival

11:20 – Short Takes (Angst, The Neon Demon, Son of Saul, The Brood, Neon Bull, Anomalisa)

31:45 – Carnival of Souls

Episode Credits

Next time on the podcast: The Vanishing

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