With its fog-shrouded graveyards, heaving bosoms, period trappings and ensemble casts, Hammer Films was one of Britain's few international cinematic success stories.
The Studio That Dripped Blood dragged horror, staked and screaming, into the Technicolor age by lacing tired old formulae with blood and a bevy of femmes fatal.
Alongside the vampires and Frankenstein monsters, Hammer's prodigious output also took in sci-fi, prehistoric fantasy, crime thrillers and comedies.
This enjoyable series comprised 13 thematically grouped 30-minute episodes hosted by the sonorous tones of Oliver 'Curse Of The Werewolf' Reed which delve into every area of the studio's activities.
Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee rightly get a special each while others focus on all aspects of Hammer's output (sci-fi, fantasy, crime, psychological thrillers, historical epics, comedy) and its history.
Reed's narration doesn't do much more than link together a welter of scenes but that's just fine because the meaty clips are a treat.
As singularly British as Ealing comedies, this is a great chance to relive a golden age of domestic film-making the like of which we'll never see again.
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