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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Little Miss Innocence and Teenage Seductress (Vinegar Syndrome DVD)

Little Miss Innocence and Teenage Seductress just sound like exploitation titles. In effect they are fairly early pieces of the subgenre post-60’s cautionary tale. The Drive-In Collection from Vinegar Syndrome is hands down my favorite body of films containing pivotal and underappreciated genre titles that deserver proper releases. While I cannot say that either of these movies really carried me home on the shoulders of the subgenre of revenge films on which they stand, I can say that the work of Chris Warfield deserves recognition and preservation. These are sure to find an audience, both movies preserving the quality of the Drive-In label with beautiful grindy, imperfect perfection.

You can order this Drive-In Double Feature now:

http://www.diabolikdvd.com/category/Softcore/Little-Miss-Innocence-[sl]-Teenage-Seductress-DVD-(Vinegar-Syndrome)-(NTSC-All-Region).html

Little Miss Innocence

From Vinegar Syndrome: Two beautiful teenage hitchhikers are picked up by a wealthy older manand brought to his mansion with lustful intentions. However, his erotic dream soon turns into a horrifying nightmare as the seemingly innocent girls begins to reveal their own deadly intentions… Starring Sandy Dempsey in a career performance. Director: Chris Warfield 1972

The title card opening is great, but the shitty crooner music ruins it, almost comedic if it wasn’t pure beefcake music.

This is a softcore flick with plenty of full frontal nudity. It’s also a cautionary tale, the reverse of the prototypical hitchhike story popular from the 70’s. Instead of the hitchhiker as the victim, the hitchhikee must fear for his life.

The discussion of devirginization is intriguing, but aside from some whipping, not much going on.

Teenage Seductress

From Vinegar Syndrome: Sondra Currie stars as Terry, a young woman determined to find her estranged father, who abandoned her as a child. After arriving in the small New Mexico town where he lives, Terry sets about planning her revenge, seducing her living father. Director: Chris Warfield 1975

The opening is pure 70’s exploitation gold with a desert-scape with some funky music in the background. The movie is slow throughout and although it sounds like it’s going to have some solid revenge elements this one ends up feeling pretty dated and tame by modern revenge flick standards. You can appreciate it in a historical context and maybe even enjoy the debauch concept of a daughter seducing her father, but we’ve seen that in some recent Vinegar Syndrome offerings to pornographic end.

A time capsule film to be appreciated as an early piece of exploitation cinema but not much bite.

Includes original trailers for both films and an alternate tile card for Little Miss Innocence.



Both scanned and restored in 2k from 35mm negatives.

The New Erotic Adventures of Casanova 1 and 2 (Vinegar Syndrome DVD). - Double Your Period-Piece Porn

Vinegar Syndrome is Tobalina crazy. You’ve noticed. The forums are alive with discussions of the shear volume of Tobalina releases afforded by our favorite resto/preservation company. His work comprises more than any other director released so far by V.S. The good part is that they’re all fucktastic with clever stories, distinctive style and signature finisher moves. The bad part… Allah loves wonderous variety. We at least got some DeRenzy this month as well in the double feature. I’ve heard many prefer the prequel in the Casanova series to the original. I prefer the original. You decide.

You can order The New Erotic Adventures of Casanova 1 and 2 on DVD now at DIABOLKDVD

http://www.diabolikdvd.com/category/Adult-(Browse-All)/New-Erotic-Adventures-of-Casanova-1-&-2-DVD-(Vinegar-Syndrome)-(NTSC-All-Region).html

The New Erotic Adventures of Casanova

From Vinegar Syndrome: The great grandson of famous lover Cassanova discovers his erotic charms and embarks on a sensual journey. Director: Carlos Tobalina 1977

The first thing you have to ask yourself is whether you just saw Gene Wilder, Donald Sutherland and Roman Polanski in that carriage? The simple fact that you need to ask such a questions speaks to a strong effort by Carlos Tobalina whose enthusiasm for excessive orgies is the thing of legend. Casanova is more than a typical Tobalina movie that finished with group sex. It’s a period piece that evolves into a rather amusing tale of sexual adventure and intrigue. Sure we know that Tobalina likes to offer a tale of sexual evolution and exploration from time to time, but with an actor of John Holmes’ caliber in front of the lens, the story actually begins to take as much shape as his… best known appendage. he New Erotic Adventures of Casanova begins in the 1700’s, but the period piece is quickly revealed to be just a dream. The great grandson of Casanova finds his great grandfather’s papers and cologne and begins to use both to his advantage in pursuit of a great fuck fest. It’s clearly Tobalina with some orgies though I would say the use of that sexual mix is less exaggerated than in other Tobalina pictures. It’s in San Francisco… so it’s clearly Tobalina (look out for that wide angle shot of the city or surrounding attraction).

While the 1700’s bits are a bit funny with bad costuming that sort of looks like Doc Brown dressed John Holmes for an orgy and then popped him a Deloreon (instead of Marty going back to the Wild West). There are plenty of hot close ups, 69’s and blow jobs that go on straight on till morning. It’s a humorous tale but once you go “back to the future” the narrative falls away like so many clothes and good intenions.

The New Erotic Adventures of Casanova 2

From Vinegar Syndrome: Set in the renaissance era, this prequel to Casanova 1 finds the great lover battling villains and saving maidens in a variety of hilarious experiences. Director: Carlos Tobalina 1982

A porno prequel! This is a true rarity and undeveloped story category for adult features. The film opens on a recap of the first movie with bits and pieces thrown together haphazardly to tie the films together in more than name only. The film takes place entirely in the 1700’s until about an hour in which than tackles a flashback of the original picture. This almost feels a bit lazy.

John Holmes shtups some girl until she dies after being wounded. At least he doesn’t fuck her in the wound itself. That’s the high point of the film. Plenty of strange zooms and kaleidoscope with a mega orgy recap. This is Tobalina.

Both features look great and continue a positive trend in the Peekarama series both in quality and in offering Tobalina to the max. Folks have asked if we will ever see the end to the Tobalina-sploitation movement that Vinegar Syndrome has perpetrated recently. The answer is not likely or at least not until the late 80’s when Tobalina became victim to an industry aching for quantity and not quality.



Both features have been scanned and restored in 2k from 35mm negatives.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Companeros (Blue Underground Blu-ray)

I’ve had a great time this past year learning and appreciating Italian Westerns. It’s a learning process; you know what the “good” ones are. You’ve seen them a thousand times on network TV growing up and can sing the Ennio Morricone score that accompanies it even if you can’t remember the plot of the damn movie. But what about movies that may NOT star Clint Eastwood? You see I was raised on spaghetti, not Spaghetti Westerns. There is a learning curve and being exposed to new stuff including our featured title from Blue Underground as well as B.U.’s recent release of Man, Pride and Vengeance,  Grindhouse Releasing The Big Gundown and Arrow’s release of Day of Anger. A few years back I started to explore Shaw Bros movies and Kung Fu cinema and in that minor immersion I learned a great deal and came out with a serious desire to collect the available titles from the Bros. Companeros has inspired a similar sense of wonderment and intrigue. It is by far my favorite Italian Western so far though I must admit that my viewing scope has been limited.

What Companeros brings to the table is a sense of humor. This is a lighthearted film with a dark chewy center that evolves and plays from romance to espionage flick to revenge picture.  At the helm is a triumvirate of Western fame, Franco Nero who played the immortal Django, Tomas Milian and Jack Palance as the big ol’ bad guy. If watching movies from the 1970’s taught you anything, it’s that Jack Palance is one sadistic mofo, creepy and leathery even at his young age in the 1970’s I recall watching Ripley’s Believe It or Not as a kid, narrative by Palance followed by seeing him as a mobster in Burton’s Batman and finally in City Slickers. He never lost his creep, and in Companeros he is an evil bird toting, marijuana toking  madman. He’s like a snake that sneaks up through a pile of brush to constrict you.  Nero plays a Swedish arms dealer that comes off a little like a hapless James Bond with charm, mystery and an almost debonair quality. Quite the contrast from his role in Django or in Man, Pride and Vengeance.  Milian opposite Nero balances out the comedy with a more serious role playing the polar opposite of the Swedish arms dealer, a fighter engaged in an act of revolution for freedom.

There a near perfect slapstick counterbalance between Nero and Milian and yet by the end of the picture you can take all involved quite seriously.  Where as Nero plays the comic action anti-hero through the first two acts, he evolves into a strong moral character. Milian follows suite, becoming a romantic where a hoodlum might have stood earlier in the film. Where  Palance begins as a villain with a schtick, he ends with as a sadistic, powerful force of will, a madman to be reckoned with instead of a pushover.

Sergio Corbucci creates his perfect, Mexican fight for freedom balanced with love and the imperfection of man. The comedy may be a side show to the dramatic, action-packed presentation, but it helps to provide the viewer the chance to love the characters. Where Corbucci has shined with his creation of Django, Companeros is a complex picture put together of characters and not plot points.

The Blue Underground presentation includes the English and Italian versions (the Italian version being longer by 4 minutes). The disc includes an audio commentary with journalists C. Courtney Joyner and Henry Parke as well as interviews with Franco Nero, Tomas Milian and Composer Ennio Morricone whose score is brilliant as is the recurrent titular theme song. The international and Italian trailer are both included as well as a poster/still gallery. The picture is crisp, rich in color and contrast with good grain, minimal if any digital flaws (I did not notice any).

Companeros is an exciting picture that fills the screen with challenging landscapes and even more challenging, multi-dimensional characters. Companeros is more than spaghetti; this is tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce with Mexican spices and Swedish meatballs for desert. No Ikea here.

You can order the Blue Underground Blu-ray here:

Also available is the DVD with updated English language track:

Remember that Blue Undergound has specialized in bring you Italian Westerns from Four of the Apocalypse to the Django films to Keoma.  Make sure to bath in the sand and grit:


From Blue Underground:

Fate brought them together... Greed made them inseparable... Violence made them COMPANEROS!

Yodlaf Peterson (Franco Nero of DJANGO) is a suave Swedish arms dealer with a love for fast money. Vasco (Tomas Milian of TRAFFIC) is a trigger-happy Mexican bandit with a hate for suave Swedish arms dealers. But when the two men team up to kidnap a professor who holds the key to a fortune in gold, they find themselves hunted by the American army, stalked by a marijuana-crazed sadist (Academy Award winner Jack Palance) and trapped in the middle of a revolution about to explode. Can these two enemies blast their way across Mexico together without killing each other first?

Written and directed by the legendary Sergio Corbucci (DJANGO, THE GREAT SILENCE), COMPANEROS is a once-in-a-lifetime teaming of the two greatest European stars in 'Spaghetti Western' history. Fernando Rey (THE FRENCH CONNECTION) and Karin Schubert (BLACK EMANUELLE) co-star in this action-packed comedy classic that also features a remarkable score by Ennio Morricone (THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY). Now freshly transferred in gorgeous High Definition from the original negative, COMPANEROS is presented here in both its English and full-length Italian Versions for the first time ever! 

Extras:

 Audio Commentary with Journalists C. Courtney Joyner and Henry Parke

 In The Company Of Companeros - Interviews with Stars Franco Nero & Tomas Milian and Composer Ennio Morricone

 International Trailer

 Italian Trailer

 Poster & Still Gallery

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xQ5L2DZMd88" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Food of the Gods and Frogs (Scream Factory Blu-ray Double Feature)

In the second Scream Factory Animal Attack Horror double feature Blu-ray releases, we see more Bert I Gordon and the great Ray Milland in a strange case of the creepies crawlies coming out from the woods in a tale of animal revenge. When Food of the Gods is on the table, it's a must pick up for the discerning horror enthusiasts with a rich history surrounding it. Rat Horror from Deadly Eyes to Of Unknown Origin to Rats: Night of Terror all have a creepy, camp that plays well to make you laugh, but Food gets under your skin. A nice presentation by Scream Factory, even if the best thing about Frogs is that somewhat misleading cover.

You can order The Food of the Gods and Frogs from DiabolikDVD;

http://www.diabolikdvd.com/category/Cult-Favorites/Food-of-the-Gods-[sl]-Frogs-(Scream-Factory)-(Blu~Ray).html

The Food of the Gods

The Food of the Gods was a movie I enjoyed in cover art only for years. I'd go to the video store and have no clue what the movie was truly about. I never turned the damn thing over to read about it. Then came a fateful morning a couple years back where I had the chance to enjoy it in it's glory on Netflix. Giants rats in the middle of the woods and some strange substance that makes them grow beyond imagination. Yep, that's a damn good movie. That's a movie you can watch every day for a month and find something new to appreciate especially under the experienced eye of Bert I Gordon.

I have to say that this thing looks beautiful. It's the focal point of the release to be sure with Frogs taking a second seat to this masterpiece derived from the work of H.G. Wells. There's some interesting cigarette burn-like details toward the end of the movie, but nothing that impedes the viewing of the picture and is clearly something from the source material. It gives it grindhouse charm.

The Food of the Gods is part protest of capitalism's blind eye to consequence, part giant creature movie and first and foremost a look into the vengeful nature of Mother Earth. The rats will have their days (or maybe it will be the cows if the ending holds). What truly works for Food of the Gods are the oversized rat replicas. Sure Gordon is known for splitting images to create composites that show larger than life scale, but these rats attack human with beautiful Crayola red gore using physical puppets and heads. They're amazing and creepy and they'll get you running the other way.

This film has a strong finish with a great twist and an ultimate battle to survive on an isolated island that has some truly suspenseful moments. I typically would think that it would take more than one gun shot to put down a gargantuan rat, but I'll let it slide. Yes there's a sequel and that would have made a better companion for this double feature, but perhaps Scream Factory will offer it up late if this series continues. It clearly should.

Hey Freddy in Space and Frank Browning, when do we get a Food of the Gods Ben and Jerry's flavor?

From Scream Factory:

Legendary director Bert I. Gordon (The Amazing Colossal Man, Attack of the Puppet People) – the father of the "gigantic creature" genre – delivers this spine-tingling tale of ecology gone berserk. Based on H.G. Wells' classic horror novel, The Food Of The Gods predicts a terrifying future where oversized animals are suddenly at the top of the food chain and ready to take over!

On a remote island, a mysterious substance is oozing from the ground. A farmer sees that it acts as a growth hormone and thinks his fortune is made. But when rats, chickens, worms and wasps begin sampling the potent substance, they morph into bloodthirsty giants! Now, it's up to the island's few residents and visitors to destroy "the food of the gods"... before the animals take over for good!

Extras:

New Audio Commentary With Director Bert I. Gordon
New Interview With Actress Belinda Balaski
Radio Spot
Photo Gallery
Theatrical Trailer



Frogs

Despite being a big Ray Milland fan, Frogs didn't sit well with me. Sure Milland is a genius in X TheMan with the X-ray Eyes, but in this film he's not quite the energetic protagonist he once was. Did I like Frogs? Well, I didn't find it frightening. I kept verbally rushing the animal attacks because I was so out of touch the characters. At least you can always root for mother nature. Frogs has always been described to me as a tragically bad movie; to watch it might be considered torture and it should be the victim of MST3K. 

A strong performance by an exceptionally young Sam Elliot combined with Milland's classic Hollywood charm carries the viewer through some varied animal attack scenes including a rather out of place tarantula attack sequence. It pops up so randomly, you'll think you're watching Fulci's The Beyond. I wish I could say that a majority of Frogs kept my attention, but it feels an opportunity to riff and not a movie to be entertained by even with my man with the X-Ray eyes playing the old, creepy fella. In all fairness this is from 1972 which is pretty early on in the Animal Horror uprising.

These things end in one of three ways: the animals win. the human win. the world explodes. I'm not sure which really happened here.

From Scream Factory:

"A shocker reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds" (Variety), Frogs is an amphibious horror flick teeming with thousands of nasty-tempered creatures that are hopping mad – and murderous.

Jason Crockett (Ray Milland, X: The Man With The X-ray Eyes) is an aging, physically disabled millionaire who invites his family to his island estate for his birthday party. The old man is more than crotchety... he's crazy! Hating nature, Crockett poisons anything that crawls on his property. But on the night of his shindig, it's nature's payback time, as thousands of frogs whip up every bug and slimy thing into a toxic frenzy until the entire environment goes environ-mental. Sam Elliott (The Legacy, Road House) and Joan Van Ark (The Last Dinosaur) also star. New High-Defintion Transfer!

Extras:

New Interview With Actress Joan Van Ark
Radio Spot
Photo Gallery
Theatrical Trailer

Monday, May 4, 2015

Empire of the Ants and Jaws of Satan (Scream Factory Double Feature Blu-ray)

As the summer approaches, Scream Factory has set up a number of double features Blu-ray combos to keep us doubly entertained through the warmer months. The first two installments will be animal attack films. You know the ones; films where the evil baddy bad guy is an animal or insect or genetically modified death dealer on four legs. These are important releases for collectors and animal enthusiasts. Today we will discuss Empire of the Ants and Jaws of Satan. Coming soon… Food of the Gods and Frogs!

Preorder up now at DiabolikDVD: 


Empire of the Ants

When I was a kid I remember watching this and Phase IV on repeat, taped off TV and forever getting the two movies confused. Both ant movies. I think we even taped them around the same date. My dad had a thing about creature feature marathons and setting the VCR to record all day. Empire of the Ants has a great title, but looking back now Phase IV is probably the better movie; definitely the better soundtrack which is available on Waxwork Records for the first time.

Revisiting Empire of the Ants now without the hoakie, 80’s commercials, the first half hour is long. It feels like everyone is simply speaking forever with the occasional intercut of a faux, multi-eye meant to simulate “ant vision”. This works for about 15 minutes. Beyond that you simply feel like your watching your favorite horror movie actresses get together for a mixer, slightly darkened color density (probably to simulate early evening) and not much else. Of course when you hit the 27 minutes mark the entire movie transforms into one great big bug fest with some of my favorite Bert I Gordon cuts of ants and mine spliced together to create gigantic ants a plenty. It’s nice to enjoy Joan Collins outside of Tales from the Crypt (also released by Scream Factory within the last year).

This plays out like a Horror Sci-Fi almost alien invasion movie with tons of sugar being brought in to feed a ruling class of mega ants, the queen ant of which controls men via a smoky pheromone! It ends strong and although it isn’t a scary picture it’s great fun. A real treat to see this with your slightly older kids. This also pairs nicely with the iconic Bert I. Gordon picture, Food of the Gods (also coming from Scream Factory).

The movie looks good although I have mentioned that the initial 20 minutes or so looks a bit dark as if it could have used a couple densities taken out. This could just be the original intent of Gordon, but I truly don’t have a frame of reference having only enjoyed this on a VHS tape from my youth.  I did not otherwise note any issues with the release.

From Scream Factory:

Brace yourself for mutant mayhem and pestilent payback in this "scary" (Los Angeles Times) creature feature about good bugs gone BAD! Starring Joan Collins (Dynasty, Tales From The Crypt), this incredible insect extravaganza is swarming with flesh-crawling chills, hair-raising thrills and spine-tingling terror. Directed by the great Bert I. Gordon (Attack Of The Puppet People, The Amazing Colossal Man, Village Of The Giants), Empire Of The Ants is a towering H.G. Wells tale come to terrifying life!

Extras include:

New Audio Commentary With Director Bert I. Gordon
Photo Gallery
Radio Spots
Theatrical Trailer


Jaws of Satan

So Satan takes the form of a snake and tries to kill some folks. Eh, not the first time Satan took the form of the snake, but it’s the first time he took the form of a snake and went after one of my favorite actors, Fritz Weave of Creepshow fame. Jaws of Satan is a completely silly animals attack film meets supernatural thriller. You get a a variety of snakes, a star studded cast and some perfectly, unintentionally funny moments.

Jaws of Satan isn’t exactly a grade A animal attack movie (though we must admit all animal attack movies should be graded on a curve). The snakes are very realistic… when they are REAL SNAKES. When they are made up replicas, you might go to the dollar store to find the equivalent.  This doesn’t have the Bert I. Gordon team behind the creature effects and when viewed alongside Empire of the Ants, you can really tell that this is a somewhat of a throw away title. While I though I hadn’t seen Jaws of Satan before, I found that Commander USA screened it on the USA network on his program, Groovie Movies which means it is highly possible I saw when I was a kid.


I enjoy Occult Horror, and that means that I’m going to be keen to enjoy Jaws of Satan’s subtle, almost laughable stings and shocks, but I’m not sure this is going to resonate well outside of a nostalgic audience. No real blood to speak of, but a nice variety of snakes. Rattlers always give me the willies.

From Scream Factory:

Satan takes the form of a cobra in this spine-chilling tale of terror. Commanded by the Prince of Darkness, snakes terrorize a small town in Alabama just as the town's new dog racing park is about to open. The local doctor, the town priest and a "snake expert" must band together to save the town from his evil scheme! Fritz Weaver (Creepshow), Gretchen Corbett (Let's Scare Jessica To Death), Jon Korkes (Syngenor) and a young Christina Applegate (Married With Children, Streets, Anchorman) star. New High-Definition Transfer!


Extras include the theatrical trailer which shouldn't exactly surprise our audience. 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 79 - Unfriended (2015)


This week on the show, Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD), Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ), Jesse (@DestroySuperman), and James (@DrHorrorSexy) talk about trailers, Jared Leto's secret Juggalo identity, R-rated teen horror, 3-D sharks, and the latest film to hit theaters from Blumhouse, UNFRIENDED.

Direct Download the mp3:
DeadAir-079-Unfriended.mp3 

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The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

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And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


Check out this episode!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Supersoul Brother (Vinegar Syndrome DVD) - The Serum of the Year is Here

The 1970's were the golden era of blaxploitation pictures. While classics like Shaft or Foxy Brown may be household names these days, movies like Supersoul Brother are known to only a relative few film-heads that like to truly dig into a genre. Director Rene Martinez started off with a revenge movie in Road of Death before moving on to a semi-urban examination film in The Guy from Harlem. Supersoul Brother was his last picture or as it is known more affectionately, The Six Thousand Dollar Nigger. Vinegar Syndrome is giving the blax audience a look 2k scan of this 35mm release print from the AGFA archive, an archive with which we hopefully will become more familiar as V.S. teams up to get the films into a physical medium to preserve it.

What Martinez unleashed was not a groundbreaking film but rather an amateur collection of popular exploitation tropes that came together in a parody of a popular TV in the U.S. mixed with enough debauch to keep it interesting. Supersoul Brother features some funny dialogue often intentional sometimes not so intentional. Yes, it plays off like a Shaft rip off at times, but the magic happens with the "mad scientist" being played by a little person. It makes for satisfying if highly inappropriate comedy, but isn't that the friggin point of a good blaxploitation film? Test the boundaries and create humor out of traditionally uncomfortable taboos and discussion topics.

The music is funky and appropriate but nothing new to hear. Did you cats see that Joe Tex poster in the background? I sure did. How about those super groovy cars?

The presentation is pure grindhouse with plenty of juicy scratches. This should easily be a fan favorite for those who enjoy not-so-serious blax flicks and want a laugh. I hope that the Vinegar Syndrome release draws attention to this under-scene, late 70's entry into a great period of transition in cinema. A good many of you haven't seen or heard of this film. It's definitely worth your time with a tricky ending that may leave you feeling just a little sad.

You can order Supersoul Brother from DiabolikDVD.

ORDER NOW

From Vinegar Syndrome:

Austin’s American Genre Film Archive houses one of the world’s best collections of 35mm exploitation prints and now Vinegar Syndrome is digitally restoring and releasing the weirdest, rarest and most outrageous movies in their archive!

When a duo of criminals pay an evil doctor to create a serum that gives people superhuman strength, they fool a naive wino named Steve (Wildman Steve) into getting an injection to help them pull off a jewel heist. When Steve discovers that the serum kills whoever takes it within a few days of its ingestion, he hides the stolen jewels and begins a frantic quest to create an antidote as the thieving masterminds are in hot pursuit! Part low-rent comedy/crime caper, part sci-fi weirdness, and all Miami shot regional filmmaking insanity, Rene Martinez’ SUPERSOUL BROTHER blasts onto home video in its first ever authorized DVD release!
Director: Rene Martinez / 74m / 1978 / Color / 1.85:1


Features Include:

+ DVD-9 Anamorphic | Region Free | 1.85:1 OAR
+ Scanned and restored in 2k from rare 35mm release print

Little Sisters and Powder Burns (Vinegar Syndrome DVD) - deRenzy Gone Fable-Porn

As Alex deRenzy started off his career as a filmmaker, he dabbled in documentaries. It wasn't long before he began to focus on another kind of film: adult film. That first entry into this nearly 200 film plus career was Powder Burns shortly followed by Little Sisters, the two movies we bring to you tonight courtesy of Vinegar Syndrome and their indulgent Peekarama series (2 big ol' units for you libido to feast upon). We aren't saying that DeRenzy would always make a quality porn flick. His later work is littered with generic smut that features the word "anal" in the title, but early on, Alex was one creative fella. This is never more evident than these two pictures. I have been seeing social network mini-reviews say the exact same thing over and over again about this disc. It's just plain weird. That's absolutely true, but it's also foundational. From the font of deRenzy and other mad, experimental dirty peddlers we see true narrative pornography evolve. Folks had been making dirty movies for decades, but it's movies like these two features that bring a sort of cohesive bond to the boners.

First off, you can pick up Little Sisters and Powder Burns on DVD from DiabolikDVD. These are adult features. Porn. Make no mistake.

ORDER NOW

+ DVD-9 | Region Free | 1.33:1 OAR
+ Scanned and restored in 2k from 16mm vault elements
+ Completely uncut versions of both films
Little Sisters

From Vinegar Syndrome:

Alex deRenzy’s hippy themed fairy tale tells the story of Mom and her two young daughters who live in a trailer in the woods. Although warned to stay out of the dark and dangerous forest, the sisters do not heed their mother’s advice and are kidnapped by a gang of pirates who live in an abandoned swimming pool. When she discovers that her daughters are gone, Mom goes on a journey to find them, meeting singing cross-dressers, a lesbian gang, gay monks and an elf named Derek. Will she save the day and bring her daughters home safely? Find out in what may be the weirdest film deRenzy ever made.
Director: Alex deRenzy / 65m / 1972 / Color / 1.33:1

The year is 1972. Free love isn't quite as free as it once was but it is in abundance and beginning a truly grand tenor on the legit big screen (or at least as legit as it could be hiding in plane sight).  The themes of Little Sister is cautionary. It's almost fable. Go out into the woods and shirk your responsibilities, and you'll be raped by strange forest pirates in bad costumes... even if you state that you're only 12 years old. Obviously the actress in question is older than 12 and complies with all legal statutes concerning adult film star age which probably were not in place at the time of filming, but to even suggest a thing in the modern era would create a vomitorium of parents groups. You have to ask yourself who made this picture. A young Charlie Manson? Groups of orgiastic hippies looking to film their fuckfests? 

The whole gosh darn thing seems like a great big political statement by deRenzy fresh out of his documentary filmmaking (that seem to focus purely on legitimizing adult film even in the early 70's). For his early years, deRenzy seemed obsessed with creating "real movies" that happen to have adult content. To this effect he is quite successful. 

The movie features The Who likes guitar riff and keyboard scores that stand out, but mostly you just get an hour of strange orgies. It's a damn weird one with plenty of deRenzy genital closeups and hot steaming young hairy folk to fuck your way to a moral conclusion. The damn thing starts of with a reading of Caroll's Jaberwocky! This is truly the gypsy cautionary tale the post-McCarthy era parents were warning their children at over breakfast and cartoons each morning. 

Ending a porn with God Bless America... isn't that what Larry Flynt would do? Innovation!


Powder Burns

From Vinegar Syndrome:

In Alex deRenzy’s meta western, a trio of outlaws, The McNasty Brothers, wreak havoc on a frontier town in the desert. With the help of the former sheriff, will a buxom go-go dancer be able to save the day?
Director: Alex deRenzy / 72m / 1971 / Color / 1.33:1

I suppose we can look at Powder Burns the way we look at John Carpenter's Assault on Precinct 13. It's a bit of a siege movie, but wrapped in the cloak of modern times (even if it is set in the wild west). Of course in Carpenter's vision a group is trapped in a left-for-dead police station in the midst of a white hot night of hate. Powder Burns is more lighthearted. Go-go dancers left to fend for themselves among the McNasty Brothers in the middle of nowhere. Precinct 13 goes for a violent battle while Powder Burns take a more seductive and naughty approach. 

For an early 70's piece of smut this is an innovative film. Unfortunately it is not executed well and ends up being a long, drawn out 72 minutes as we wait for some naughty bits to excite us over some underwhelming banter. No hardcore until 45 minutes in. Even then the action lasts for a short time. It's funny, but not funny enough to go without skin for 45 minutes. The trippy music throughout makes the whole watch palatable. 

The ending is ridiculous... if you didn't already know it would be from the costuming.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 78 - Backcountry (2015)


This week on the show, Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD) and Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ) talk about secret nerd identities, film festivals, abandoned houses, angry ass bears, and the new movie from IFC Midnight, BACKCOUNTRY.

Direct Download the mp3:
DeadAir-078-Backcountry.mp3 

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The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

Looking to order any of the titles we discussed on this show? Head on over to Amazon for the best prices and help support our show.

 

And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


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Dead Air: Episode 78 - Backcountry (2015)

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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 77 - It Follows (2015)


This week on the show, Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD), Jesse (@DestroySuperman), Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ), and James (@DrHorrorSexy) talk about possessed Internet browsers, Chad's wrestling name, old naked people, and David Robert Mitchell's film, IT FOLLOWS.

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The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

Looking to order any of the titles we discussed on this show? Head on over to Amazon for the best prices and help support our show.

And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 76 - Spring (2015)


This week on the show, the crew is all here! Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD), Jesse (@DestroySuperman), Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ), James (@DrHorrorSexy), and Shawn (@TheLiberalDead) talk about horror at the box office, James' Rondo nomination, Jesse's disdain for grown men rolling around together (aka Professional Wrestling), and to review Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead's latest film, SPRING.

Download the MP3 Directly here 

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iTunes listeners: Please take a moment to leave us a rating/review

The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

Looking to order any of the titles we discussed on this show? Head on over to Amazon for the best prices and help support our show.

And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


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Rabbit Hole (You've Been Robbed/DVD) - The Rabbit Hole is Deeper Than the Rabbit Hole

Let’s get a couple things out of the way. I’m a huge fan of You’ve Been Robbed Films. I’m a fan of Rob Dimension as a Director , Actor, Podcaster, Writer… He’s a great guy who embodies the positive spirit that is not only essential to being a member of the horror community but for an artist to strive to make meaningful work. Thus I support Dimension’s work. I’ll contribute to a fund raising campaign or share his work with peers. I encourage you to do the same and put your cash where your indie spirit is. This is not a disclaimer as such because I don’t feel that contributing to a project including the one I’m about to review means that you will necessarily love the outcome, but I truly enjoyed You’ve Been Robbed Films’ latest effort Rabbit Hole. I’m glad to have contributed to it by purchasing it during its fundraising campaign. I’m ecstatic that the spirit of independent horror and dark fantasy is alive and well. Both Rob Dimension and Mike O'Mahony at the helm makes for a disturbing, mind scrabbling piece of tripadelic, horror fiction.

Synopsis from You’ve Been Robbed Films:

RABBIT HOLE is a twisted tale of a young mother, Dottie, who upon waking, discovers her child is missing. For Dottie the truenightmares happen when she isn’t sleeping. Can she be saved? If so, from who or what?

May HE have mercy on her soul.

How far will you go down the Rabbit Hole?

What works for Rabbit Hole? The performances by Megan Cunard, Rob Dimension, Kim Dimension and Lexi Lebo are all outstanding. Each actor gives it his or her all conveying emotional characters fraught with turmoil the origin of which comes from a rather unknown direction. The origin is a very real, non-fantasy based sourced though I’ll leave it to your viewing eyes to see just from where it raises its seductive head. The whole thing feels like it takes place in the same world as Carnival of Souls. It’s as if Kim and Lexi’s characters are responding to a force beyond reality; almost reacting to a nightmare that is their lives and wandering through a strange fever dream that may not be their own dream or their own doomed reality. Rob Dimension’s role as a religious, psychotic zealot bent on a ritual based moral salvation is full televangelism-gone-creep-out. Great makeup job on Rob and some good special effects work all around with makeup and costuming that is pure 70’s eerie.

Dimension mentions that he was strongly influenced by David Lynch in the commentary for Rabbit Hole, and it shows. The connection Eraserhead in choice of color palette, dialogue that is cryptic and indirect and a deeper underlying metaphor create a surreal world. The metaphor is a decipherable one, but you have to wait for the climax to feel its full impact. This is a film that you can take as an allegory or you can watch it for the pure visual horror of the thing. It’s important to watch Rabbit Hole twice. Once as a pure horror film. Once as with meaning beyond the visual presentation. Feel just how dark this movie can go on a superficial level and then allow yourself to attach to it emotionally by feeling the deeper meaning.

As luck would have it I watched Rabbit Hole on Easter Eve and though I’m not a religious fella, some of the religious imagery conveyed in Rabbit Hole may be moderately offensive to those of you who don’t want to look for the underlying message in the film and take it for face value critique. In keeping with that strange coincidence of watching Rabbit Hole so close to Easter there happens to be a anthropomorphized rabbit in the movie! The bunny in the film, masterfully puppeteered by the Dimensions and company is beyond freaky. That thing has the best eyes! It works from a metaphorical perspective to create an idea, but as a piece of visual horror, this thing isn’t the fun loving muppet you may be used to in some of Dimension’s other work. I haven’t been this disturbed by a puppet since Meet the Feebles.

Rabbit Hole isn’t entirely a straight forward piece of horror fiction. It’s a deeper hole. It has subtle and not so subtle messages that will prompt discussion and thought. This combined with its surreal elements may not make it accessible for all viewers including those who are simply looking for a monster or hack and slash film. I encourage those viewers to appreciate it for the deeper meaning and enjoy some of the visual queues that provide excellent moments of dread and terror.

The Rabbit Hole DVD that I reviewed is a double disc with some fantastic extras that really make this more of a package rather than just buying a mere short. As I watched the commentaries and additional short films, I realized that the whole package felt like a makeshift anthology picture each movie, though not all directed by Dimension, conveyed a socially relevant concept with deeply dark overtones.

Don’t Try This at Home, from Mike O'Mahony who co-directed Rabbit Hole, is a perfectly engrossing and disturbing short about what happens when you leave your kids alone with a VCR and a mysterious tape. Having ben in that situation before (I Spit on Your Grave was the movie in my case), it’s always a crap shoot. You’re going to love the darkly comedic, gross out of a picture Mahoney delivers with a bit of eroticism and a whole lot of “what the fuck did you just put in my brain”.

M is for Memories, directed by one of my favorite gore-smiths Adam Ahlbrant, was an entry for ABC’s of Death 2 that did not make it. It stars Ahlbrant and Dimension in a strange tale of murder by proxy. It’s beautiful and dirty. It’s the kind of filthy gorgeous we have come to expect and love from Ahlbrant. Both actors offer awesome performances. If you’ve ever wanted to watch Rob Dimension shave, here’s your chance.

Boob Tube, also directed and starring Dimension is a brilliant commentary on relationships, our relationship to the physical and most importantly, our incessant need to be interconnected and dependent. It’s humorous and vulgar without being gratuitous. I mean… I too have though about having relations with a television, and as a tapehead of old my VCR almost lost its virginity when I first saw Sleepaway Camp 2.  Boob Tube also has a commentary track for your enjoyment.

Once you finish disc 1, you have to change your viewing hat. Disc 2 features an episodic documentary following Curt Robinson’s ascension into the world of professional wrestling. This is not a horror picture, but rather a heartfelt love note to Dimension’s son who is an inspiration in his attempt to break into the world of sports entertainment. His journey is not over and it is tremendous. A must watch for folks who love professional or amateur wrestling or enjoy impassioned tales of heroics not unlike a young Rocky Balboa.  I am proud of Robinson’s efforts, and I only wish I had had the chance to see this before meeting Curt at Monster Mania in March. I hope to see him again soon and congratulate him on achieving part of his dream. There’s more greatness in Robinson than we know now, but I suspect he knows just how much greatness he has inside judging by the maximum effort, sacrifice and commitment to his goal.

You can pick up Rabbit Hole now on DVD or a Rabbit Hole t-shirt: http://youvebeenrobbedfilms.blogspot.com/p/merchandise.html

Follow You’ve Been Robbed Films for the next project from Dimension and company here (currently selling preorders of Moritmor Tromblay):

Support indie horror because it really can change the world and your mind.

Full release details from You've Been Robbed:

Disc 1 -

DVD cover may vary

RABBIT HOLE (also w/commentary by Rob Dimension and Mike O'Mahony)
Boob Tube (also w/commentary by Rob Dimension, Kim Dimension and Matt Barnes)
M is for Memoirs
Don't Try This At Home

Disc 2 -
The Journey
Steps 1-5 plus additional match featuring Curt Robinson vs Mr. Sozio

Details:

Rabbit Hole - RABBIT HOLE is the story of a young Mother named Dottie, who upon waking, discovers her child is missing. For Dottie, the true nightmares happen when she isn't sleeping. Can she be saved? If so, saved from who or what? May HE have mercy on her soul. (17 mins)

Boob Tube - Everyone loves television. For some, it becomes an obsession. (This short was something Kim, Matt and I wanted to do since we reached and passed our fundraising goal as a thank you). This film was directed by Rob Dimension and Matt Barnes (6 mins)

Don't Try This at Home - In an attempt to spice up their love life a young couple may have bitten off more than they can chew. This film is directed by Mike O'Mahony

M is For Memoirs - this was an entry into the ABC's of Death from filmmaker Adam Ahlbrandt and stars Rob and Kim Dimension (5 mins)

The Journey Steps 3-5 - This documents the story of a 14 yr old amateur wrestler, who chases his dream to become a professional wrestler. Each episode has been labeled as a "Step", this event will be the World Premier of Step 5. In this Step, Curt Robinson faces juggling school, wrestling season, injuries and more. This film is directed by Matt Barnes and Rob Dimension. You can watch the other "steps" at www.CurtRobinsonPro.com

Monday, April 13, 2015

Long Weekend (Synapse Blu-ray) - Marriage, Animals, the Great and Powerful OZ(ploitation)

As much as I’ve enjoyed the Ozploitation classics that I’ve seen from the mid 70’s and 80’s, I’m afraid that I haven’t seen them all. In fact, I’d say my first real experiences with this subset of movies came about two years ago and in direct relation to the documentary Not Quite Hollywood that featured the films from the area somewhere in the vicinity of “down under”. That makes me a happy newbie, exploring much charted territory with fresh, Aussie hungry eyes. These features may have the common nexus in the region from which they were created, but the dark, daring and often exploitative elements of the film are just as common. The Ozploits are just a likely to make well groomed children the murderer as they are to make animals. Last year we saw Thirst and Patrick from Severin and just before that Australia After Dark and The ABC of Love and Sex: Australia Style from Intervision. Within the last year we also saw Lady Stay Dead hit from Code Red. It’s also important to note that the Turkey Shoot score was given a limited edition vinyl release just this year. With a new Mad Max coming and Dead End Drive-In on Netflix, it’s the perfect time to catch up with as much Oz-tainment as you can. Enter the new Synapse Blu-ray of Long Weekend and it's a shining of example of how this company creates a great product.

Long Weekend on Blu-ray is a treat. It is sharp in quality while maintaining a film-like presence that is respectful of the original print. While I have not be privy to a 35mm print of this feature, the color looks warm and rich with beautiful contrast and dark blacks. The film grain is appropriate and adds to the overall enjoyment of the picture. The cover art is a vast improvement on some of the DVD releases featuring a swatch of blood with animals lurking just overhead of our two weary protagonists of the picture. Synapse continues it’s trend of excellent packaging and transfers with this release which has me even more excited for the upcoming releases of Popcorn and Suspiria. The disc features an audio commentary from Producer Richard Brennan and Cinematographer Vincent Monton as well as a motion still gallery featuring an audio interview with John Hargreaves as well as the theatrical trailer.

The movie itself is a creeper featuring plenty to be scared of. From animals to unsettled humans there is a perfect tension that builds through the entire movie that has all the hallmarks of the some of the best psychological thrillers of the 70’s. As I watched the movie, I was worried less about the animal attack aspect of the picture and more about the “sound minds” of the protagonists. After reading the advertising and various accounts of the picture I found it strange that folks look at this as a nature vs. man film rather than primarily a metaphor for the inhumanity visited upon human beings by the false comfort of long term relationships. Don’t get me wrong. The animal vengeance is truly frightening, suspenseful and surprising, but the underlying tension of the film best comes from the conflict between husband and wife and not from the animals on the prowl. It’s a deeper truth about relationships, and it’s one that any married couple who have managed to stick it out can attest to. Just ask my wife about our trip to Disney World a couple years ago. We almost didn’t make it out of the Animal Kingdom alive (and no it wasn’t due to the safari).

Arachnophobes (I am one of your great numbers), there is a scene of a rather large spider running that pretty much kept me awake all night. Be forewarned. Also, I may never go surfing… EVER after a scene featuring a large shape in the water approaching the male lead. What’s funny is that it almost bothered me more than the same image in Jaws. I suppose you know what Jaws is…a shark; You don’t know what might be at the heels of our fearless friend. This is not a humorous film that shirks its scare responsibilities based on budget like Day of the Animals (more comedic than horrific). Think that loveable animal is going to let you catch and pet it? Nope! The attack sequences are superb and they come at you from every possible angle. Long Weekend takes every chance to create long periods of tension prior to whipping the proverbial towel straight at your ass.

Director Colin Eggleston has a background in television and directed Fantasm Comes Again (sequel to the Ozploitation movie Fantasm) with Long Weekend being a strong full length feature movie that didn’t necessarily win the admiration of critics out of the gate. In retrospect we can appreciate the subtle, multi dimensional horror picture that offers a window into some truth into our own psyche, how we interact with our loved ones and how we interact with the planet. Long Weekend is terrifying. It is paced well to reveal scares and moments of shock.

You can pick up Long Weekend from Synapse Films now:


Synopsis from Synapse:

Attempting to resurrect their failing marriage, Peter (John Hargreaves, THE ODD ANGRY SHOT) and Marcia (Briony Behets) set out on a camping trip to a deserted stretch of the Australian coastline hoping a long weekend in the sunshine will help them patch their differences. They are a careless couple, littering the countryside with garbage, shooting guns and even driving away after wounding a kangaroo with their automobile. Their callous disregard for the environment soon becomes apparent when the animals start to seek vengeance. Marcia and Peter have proven themselves to be destroyers of nature. Will the animals allow them to leave or will they too be destroyed?
Features
  • High-Definition 1080p Transfer Supervised by Synapse Films
  • Re-mastered DTS HD-MA 5.1 Surround Soundtrack
  • Audio Commentary from Producer Richard Brennan and Cinematographer Vincent Monton
  • Motion Still Gallery Featuring an Audio Interview with Actor John Hargreaves
  • Original Theatrical Trailer

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 75 - Clown (2015)


This week on the show, Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD), Jesse (@DestroySuperman) and Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ) ask philosophical questions about Juggalo culture, discuss the rollout of IT FOLLOWS, try to figure out exactly how much alcohol Jesse consumed before the show, talk about Horror Conventions, and review the latest film to be produced by Eli Roth, CLOWN. Just how hungry is Peter Stormare? Tune in to find out...

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iTunes listeners: Please take a moment to leave us a rating/review

The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

Looking to order any of the titles we discussed on this show? Head on over to Amazon for the best prices and help support our show.

And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


Check out this episode!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Dead Air: Episode 74 - The Lazarus Effect (2015)


This week on the show, Jeff (@Jeff_FOTD), Jesse (@DestroySuperman) and Chad (@HorrorMovieBBQ) talk all about Mumblecore, Olivia Munn-Wilde, Angry Dogs, and the latest Blumhouse theatrical horror flick, THE LAZARUS EFFECT. Does Donald Glover deserve better? Tune in for the usual shenanigans and to find out if it's worth your time.

Download the MP3 Directly here 

Subscribe Via iTunes

iTunes listeners: Please take a moment to leave us a rating/review

The Dead Air Horror & Genre Podcast is brought to you by GenreWatch,The Liberal Dead, and Doc Terror. Be sure to visit the sites for more great content!

Looking to order any of the titles we discussed on this show? Head on over to Amazon for the best prices and help support our show.

And, as always, if you want to drop us a line to let us know what you think of any of the movies discussed tonight, or you just want to give us feedback on the podcast in general, please send an email to DeadAirHorrorPodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.


Check out this episode!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

The Babadook (Scream Factory Blu-ray)

The Babadook creeped me out. There are things I would change about the movie if I could, but I wouldn't change how the little boy in the film was portrayed as intolerably annoying. I wouldn't change the pacing or the look. I adore the choice of actors and think the premise is perfectly scary while invoking some cerebral processes that make the movie feel like more than just a monster picture. What the Babadook is, as a creature, is perfect. The way the Babadook looks is also near perfect, but the way the Babadook moves... at times it leaves quite a lot to be desired. That's my one pet peeve with the movie. The creature is almost too glitch. I wanted to get that off my chest because most people have a problem with one aspect of the movie or another. Mine is superficial and only minimally harms the suspension of disbelief I have while watching the Dook (as I affectionately call it).  Scream Factory has put out both a standard Blu-ray and a special edition that has my heart. I'm so glad that we see what appears to be a team up between IFC Midnight and Scream Factory. These labels should be friends.

Up until now I haven't written much about The Babadook because some of the negative fan reviews it gets bothers me. Sure there are the hipsters trouncing it, but they hate everything. It's the people who attack it because the kid is "annoying". Man, he's supposed to be annoying. The fact that he gets under your skin so perfectly both lends itself to brilliant direction by Jennifer Kent and a special performance by both Essie Davis and her son played by Noah Wiseman. There's something so real about how kids can do that and you feel it, like it or not as a parent. It isn't constant like it is in the Babadook and there are deep psychological reasons behind that. Occasionally I just like to enjoy a horror movie and not deal with defending it against folks who want to attack it. Sure I've raved about how much I liked it, but I haven't defended it or been critical of it. It deserves a pedestal. It is a horror picture, and it is also psychological.

Let's put this in perspective. How much did I like The Babadook? I've watched it several times. I put up cash as part of the funding raising project to have created the pop up book  from the movie become a real thing of pages and dooks. I'm happy to say that should be out soon. Will post pics. I'm terrified and elated. When Scream Factory send me the special edition to review, the version that look like the pop up book from the movie, I had an idea. The edition opens up and inside is a pop up Babadook. I got the idea to put a light activated, audio trigger in the card so that every time you open it, a sound clip of the Babadook screaming his name plays. You know... like those birthday cards that sing Margarittaville only it's the Dook, and it freaked out my wife. I encourage you to do the same.

After watching all the special features, I can tell you that there are juicy bits of info in this package, but they are more like morsels than full meals. The Deleted Scenes are few and somewhat bland. The Cast and Crew interviews are interesting, but the questions are somewhat ordinary and repetitive. The interviews don't pick up steam and are done with a typed questions and spoken responses. No organic flow, but at least you get everyone you'd want to hear from for the most part.The Behind the Scenes is brief but interesting especially the set design. I had no idea they build that house on a sound stage. It looked perfectly real. There's a stunt reel... of sorts... that is just watching Essie jump and run up stairs.

The gem in the features is Jennifer Kent's short film Monster. It's nearly as creepy as The Babadook. It is not identical, but you can see how it was the jumping off point for the feature length film with plenty of new ideas and pieces of character development added in. The quality of picture in the movie is excellent. This is a rich movie with plenty of blues and dark moments.

Bonus Features
  • Limited-Run "Pop Up" Packaging
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Cast And Crew Interviews
  • Behind-The-Scenes Of The Making Of The Film
  • Jennifer Kent's Short Film, "Monster"
  • Theatrical Trailers
Make sure you get the pop up packaging. It's limited and a must own for collectors and fans of cool Blu-ray art. Get it now before you can't. The still you see cannot let you know how unique this edition feels. Next, make sure to watch Monster. It's absolutely worth the few minutes it takes, but I'd say watching The Babadook first is paramount. Get the movie in before the short dissects it for you by building quickly and perhaps being more obvious.

You can order The Babadook now from Scream Factory available in April:

https://www.shoutfactory.com/film/film-horror/the-babadook

Synopsis from Scream Factory:

Amelia (AFI Award winner Essie Davis, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, The Slap) is a single mother plagued by the violent death of her husband. When a disturbing storybook called Mister Babadook turns up at her house, she is forced to battle with her son's deep-seated fear of a monster. Soon she discovers a sinister presence all around her.A chilling tale of unseen and otherworldly horror in the haunting tradition of The Orphanage, Jennifer Kent's visceral journey into the heart of fear itself is as terrifying as it is believable.

Class of 1984 (Scream Factory Blu-ray) - Beware the Savage Jaws of 1984

Recently a buddy of mine told me that he some punk ass kids were throwing rocks at this window while hiding in bushes behind his house. It wasn’t once. It wasn’t twice. It was frequent. This included calls to the police who were “powerless” to stop these guys from damaging my friend’s property. In one of the more recent attacks the kids broke the damn window which could have done some serious damage to my friend’s family. In talking to him I offered many a solution to this problem, all of them violent having been trained in the art of 70’s cult cinema justice, and then I said told him about Class of 1984 which seemed to fit his situation the best. A young group of kids, a gang of sorts, with a  mission… to torment without mercy good people. Relentless. Unafraid of the repercussions of their actions. I urged him to watch the movie and take notes as to how one might handle a seemingly unstoppable attack on this house and family. Mind you or course the last time I had watched Class of 1984 was on 35mm at Exhumed Film’s ExFest last year, but lo and behold the new Scream Factory Blu-ray came in the mail immediately following the conversation. I rewatched it, and then I called him back to tell him that it would be okay if he decimated their red Mustang, but perhaps to avoid cutting off their arms or lighting them on fire.

Class of 1984 is as relevant now as it was when it was first released. The same problems plague well meaning teachers who are on the front line of a strange battle with youth. The same tactics are employed whether it be students understanding the limitations of a teacher disciplinary authority or a rather sophisticated game of passive aggressive brinksmanship, kids know how to get teachers in trouble, how to rule the school and how to commit criminal acts with their apparent innocence as a cloak to their parents and the police. What teacher hasn’t imagine taking matters into his own hands to seek justice and unburden the marginalized, “good kids”?  Some of these school are demilitarized zones. Some are prim and proper with narco underground regimes spilling money into lockers as if Scrooge MacDuck himself got into the drug biz. Say nothing of the school shootings, stabbings and hate crimes not to mention the buzz word du jour, bullying. Kids have it tough. Teachers have it touch and sometimes the A-Team isn’t around to save the day. There are no real life Dirty Harry’s at your public high school to save you from the wild world of sports known as juvenile delinquency.

Take that notion and then offer your favorite educator Class of 1984. A movie that understands the difficulty in being a public figure at the mercy of an intelligent, internet savvy, entitled youth population. This movie will likely strike close to home with them in some way great or small. For parents, this might be the time to watch and listen and then realize that your child isn’t the honor student you though he was (maybe… I’m sure there are plenty of good eggs). No one is saying that a teacher should go into a classroom with a gun and teach with a pistol in hand of course. We’re simply saying that the frustrations  and fears of teachers are real. This movie is on a fundamental level, a statement of truth and that despite a sequel that didn’t quite live up to the merit of the original that laid out changes that have happened since 1984 release, no update was necessary. The issues are the same.

The movie itself is wonderful from the 80’s high school aesthetic turned dark and gloomy. These are the punks of your nightmares turned into evil caricatures of themselves. I remember my friends having this same uniform, the same attitude and the same basic feel as the gang fronted by Peter Stegman with one fundamental difference. My friends were fun and funny and, aside from some petty vandalism, were quite harmless. The war that ensues between Mr. Norris and Stegman’s rabble is monstrous and no holds barred. For awhile you can laugh at Class of 1984 until you can’t, until it becomes dark and feels a little too real thanks to some over the top performances that are so gonzo you believe them. While I love Perry King playing the lead good guy in Norris, the character played by Roddy McDowall as the science teacher whose last straw has just been pulled is tremendous. The dialogue that man delivers is something of magic, emotive and sad. It’s one of my favorite roles for McDowall next to his work in the Twilight Zone and Night Gallery.  Get ready for some exquisite violence and a shocking ending that shows why  1984 one of the pitch perfect revenge-sploitation films.

There are plenty of new extras for this release including interviews with Mark Lester, Perry King, actresses Lisa Langlois and Erin Noble as well as Lalo Schifrin (the composer).  Your obligatory TV spots, still gallery and trailer are included as well as an audio commentary with Lester and some older interviews with Lester, King and Merrie Lynn Ross. This is a collector’s edition with reversible artwork and newly commissioned art with slipcover. It’s a great looking disc with no immediate issues to report though I cannot comment on how much of an upgrade it would be from the previously released DVD, it looked damn fine with comparing it to the film print I saw a year ago.

Full extra list:

  • New High-Definition Transfer Of The Film From The Interpositive
  • New Interviews With Director Mark Lester, Actors Lisa Langlois And Erin Noble And Composer Lalo Schifrin
  • New Career Retrospective Interview With Perry King
  • Audio Commentary With Mark Lester
  • Blood And Blackboards Featurette – Featuring Interviews With Director Mark Lester, Actors Perry King And Merrie Lynn Ross
  • Original Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spots
  • Still Gallery


If you have kids and want something to scare the shit out of you, pick up Class of 1984. If you’re  a teacher or future teacher and you want to see just how bad it could be, see Class of 1984. Fans of punk rock music, punks and rebels without a clue, see Class of 1984.  This is a great release, and is sure to impress serious fans and newcomers alike. It will jar you and excited you and fill you with intense hatred. You’ll want revenge. You’ll get your revenge!

Note: Michael Fox in an early role minus the J. Check out that babyface.

Pick up Class of 1984 now from Scream Factory:


Synopsis from Scream Factory:

Andrew Norris (Perry King, Lipstick, Mandingo), an idealistic and naive music teacher, has moved into a new community with his pregnant wife, Diane (Merrie Lynn Ross, General Hospital), only to find his new job is an academic abyss. Appalled by the crime-infested school, Norris soon crosses paths with its teenage kingpin, the shrewd and sadistic Peter Stegman (Timothy Van Patten, Catacombs, Zone Troopers). With Norris setting his sights on reforming Stegman and the young punk declaring war on his teacher, the duo is on a collision course for a fateful showdown.