Midnite Movies is a line of B movies released first on VHS and later on DVD by MGM Home Entertainment. The line was begun by MGM in March 2001 following its acquisition of Orion Pictures, which bought out Filmways, the owner of American International Pictures. AIP had a library of B movies from the 1950s and 1960s that were science fiction, horror, and exploitation films. The Midnite Movies collection was primarily derived from the AIP library (including most of Roger Corman and Vincent Price’s horror films) but also included Hammer Film Productions, Amicus Productions, United Artists, Cannon Films, and Empire International Pictures films as well. The DVDs were first released as single films, but most later releases would be double features on single double-sided discs. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment later became owners of the MGM library and continued the Midnite Movies line with distributor 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. All double feature titles released on the 20th Century Fox label were two-disc packages. By 2011, no new titles were forthcoming; the previous catalog titles slowly went out of print and the Midnite Movies website was taken down.
I started collecting this series as soon as I started to see them on the market. I immediately fell in love with the double-feature concept and the variety of movies, including some rarities from the 1950s, were very enticing. Fifty double-feature releases were made, many of which are now out-of-print. The ones in print, can still be found on Amazon and the out-of-print ones show up all of the time on eBay. The quality of the films themselves vary from disc-to-disc but they are all in very watchable condition. I actually find them nostalgic with the older films having scratches and blemishes, as you would expect to see in films of these ages. One of the highlights of Midnight Movies is the Edgar Allan Poe Vincent Price double features.
There have been no Blu-rays released under the Midnite Movies label; however, MGM is/has been licensing many of the MM titles to independent labels for Blu-ray release. Companies such as Shout! Factory, Scream Factory, and Kino Studio Classics, have slowly been releasing many of these classic films, often with new prints.
The fifty double features released are:
The Abominable Dr. Phibes / Dr. Phibes Rises Again
Angel Unchained / Cycle Savages
Attack of the Puppet People / Village of the Giants
The Attic / Crawlspace
Beach Blanket Bingo / How to Stuff a Wild Bikini
Beach Party / Bikini Beach
The Beast Within / The Bat People
A Blueprint for Murder / Man in the Attic
Chosen Survivors / The Earth Dies Screaming
The Comedy of Terrors / The Raven (1963)
Count Yorga, Vampire / The Return of Count Yorga
Countess Dracula / The Vampire Lovers
Cry of the Banshee / Murders in the Rue Morgue (1971)
Crystalstone / The Boy and the Pirates
Deranged / Motel Hell
Devils of Darkness / Witchcraft
Die, Monster, Die! / The Dunwich Horror
Empire of the Ants / Tentacles
The Fall of the House of Usher / The Pit and the Penduium (1961)
Fireball 500 / Thunder Alley
Fortunes of Captain Blood / Captain Pirate
Ghost of Dragstrip Hollow / The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini
Gorilla at Large / Mystery on Monster Island
The Haunted Palace / Tower of London
The House on Skull Mountain / The Mephisto Waltz
The Incredible 2-Headed Transplant / The Thing with Two Heads
Invisible Invaders / Journey to the Seventh Planet
Invasion of the Star Creatures / Invasion of the Bee Girls
The Land That Time Forgot / The People That Time Forgot
The Masque of the Red Death / The Premature Burial
The Mini-Skirt Mob / Chrome and Hot Leather
Morons from Outer Space / Alien from L.A.
The Monster That Challenged the World / It! The Terror from Beyond Space
Muscle Beach Party / Ski Party
The Oblong Box / Scream and Scream Again
Panic in Year Zero! / The Last Man on Earth
The Phantom from 10,000 Leagues / The Beast with a Million Eyes
Psych-Out / The Trip
The Return of Dracula / The Vampire
Strange Invaders / Invaders from Mars
Tales from the Crypt / The Vault of Horror
Tales of Terror / Twice-Told Tales
Theatre of Blood / Madhouse
The Tomb of Ligeia / An Evening of Edgar Allan Poe
Voodoo Island / The Four Skulls of Jonathan Drake
War-Gods of the Deep / At the Earth’s Core
The Wild Angels / Hell’s Belles
Wild in the Streets / Gas-s-s-s
What’s the Matter with Helen? / Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?
Yongary, Monster from the Deep / Konga
In an age where everything is getting re-mastered and upgraded to 4K, it is actually nice to be able to go old school and watch movies as they would often appear in the theater or on television during their original releases. It’s a great collection to own and there are movies for every type of taste. The Midnite Movies DVDs make for a great night’s entertainment for you and your friends!
Don’t forget to read other entries in my BASEMENT BACK IN TIME series!