Christopher Lee is gone, but not forgotten, not by us and not by TCM (Turner Classic Movies). The TV channel, which specializes in older films, is interrupting its schedule to present a Christopher Lee marathon on June 22.
Fans will be able to watch the most important Hammer Horror movies -- The Mummy, The Curse of Frankenstein and The Horror of Dracula -- as well as other Lee classics. We have a look at each of the movies for you below.
Fourteen hours is quite a long time to sit watching movies, but we strongly recommend you stick around for the last two films, The Three Musketeers and The Four Musketeers. Although Lee appeared only in a few scenes, the films themselves are classics that deserve your attention.
6:15 AM The Mummy (1959)
The Mummy is about a small team of archaeologists who unwittingly bring a mummy (Lee) back to life -- a mummy who loves the Princess Ananka as much as he loves to kill.
Note: Just as Sir Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen have a famed bromance, Christopher Lee was besties with his co-star, Peter Cushing.
8:00 AM The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)
In the Mary Shelley novel, as in the 1932 Boris Karloff version, Frankenstein’s Monster is a creature the audience comes to sympathize with. Because it’s a Hammer Horror movie, the Monster (Lee) is an indiscriminate murder machine.
This was Hammer’s first color movie, and according to Wikipedia, “The use of colour encouraged a previously unseen level of gore.”
Also starring Peter Cushing.
9:30 AM Horror of Dracula (1958)
Known only as Dracula in the UK, this version takes liberties with Bram Stoker’s novel, turing Jonathan Harker from a lawyer into a vampire hunter with an agenda.
Lee, who plays Dracula, walks slowly but purposefully -- the kind of villain from whom the hero runs at top speed but who always manages to catch his prey in the end.
Also starring Peter Cushing.
11:00 AM Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966)
Dracula (Lee) had died at the end of the first movie. No matter. Just reincarnate him with a blood sacrifice. Dracula, Prince of Darkness: Now with more dismemberment!
12:45 PM Dracula Has Risen From the Grave (1969)
More spilled blood = more Dracula. Here, Dracula (Lee) is barred from his castle by a do-gooding monsignor. Drac decides to take revenge by turning his beautiful niece into a blood-sucking demon from hell.
2:30 PM Horror Express (1972)
In Horror Express, an ancient evil comes to life aboard a speeding train, and it’s up to our hero (Lee) to stop it. Not only does Lee play the hero, but also he teams up with Cushing, who typically plays his archnemesis. (Also starring Peter Cushing.)
4:00 PM The Three Musketeers (1972)
In this adaptation of Alexander Dumas’ swashbuckling novel, Lee plays the Count du Rochefort, a minion of the powerful Cardinal Richelieu and the cool-headed antagonist of D’Artagnan.
6:00 PM The Four Musketeers (1975)
The second part of this epic tale features a fabulous fight scene in which Count du Rochefort and D’Artagnan are so intent on skewering each other with rapiers that they don’t see where they’re going.