A spooky treat for Halloween, as the louche ‘League of Gentleman’ star, ‘Sherlock’ mastermind, walking film encyclopedia and owner of the most creepily avuncular smile in showbiz takes a moonlight stroll through European cinema’s century-long fascination with the macabre. As with his recent, English-language-centric, three-parter on the history of scary movies, ‘Horror Europa’ is far from comprehensive, with Gatiss hand-picking a small selection of personal favourites rather than bombarding the viewer with titles. But there are plenty of juicy morsels here, even for the initiated. Movies like ‘Nosferatu’, ‘Eyes Without a Face’ and ‘Suspiria’ may be familiar, but Gatiss digs deeper than you’d expect, unearthing some real treats including a fascinating overview of the career of tortured German icon Conrad Veidt and a rare interview with Spanish director Narciso Ibàñez Serrador. The result should increase awareness of this all-too-often misunderstood and overlooked continental canon – though viewers are advised to keep a pen and pad handy to jot down the most intriguing titles. Time for ‘Horror Asia’, Mark?
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