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Michael Reed is best known as a frequent collaborator on the iconic Hammer B-movie horror films, such as "Dracula: Prince of Darkness" and "The Gorgon." The Hammer films were often mocked for their contrived storylines and clunky dialogue (as Dracula, Christopher Lee opted to perform an entirely silent role after reading the reportedly dreadful script!). However, critics lauded Michael Reed's atmospheric photography, especially given his budgetary constraints. Reed got to display his signature style in the much more commercially successful "On Her Majesty's Secret Service," the sixth film in the Bond franchise. Again, while some critics had issues with the movie (George Lazenby's casting, for one), they reserved their praise for Reed's cinematography. In no small part due to Reed's unique approach, many fans and critics alike consider "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" to be one of the best Bond films, even despite Sean Connery's conspicuous absence. Indeed, Reed's calculated use of darkness, which evoked his earlier work in the horror genre, lent the film a level of realism and gravitas unprecedented in the Bond series. That same moody tone was apparent in his later work for the TV series "Philip Marlowe, Private Eye." Based on Raymond Chandler's noir-ish novels about a private detective, the series made good use of Reed's penchant for gloomy and foreboding photography.
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