Synopsis from Severin Films
The original Ozploitation classic is back like you’ve never seen it before:Robert Thompson (THIRST) stars as a comatose killer seeminglyunresponsive in a small private hospital. But when a hot new nurse (SusanPenhaligon of THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT) begins to question his condition, Patrick will unleash a waking nightmare of psychokinetic carnage.
Why does Patrick evoke such strong emotive responses from its viewers? There's little action but it's backed by an intriguing, unique story that keeps the audience curious while forcing them to make their own assumptions. If you let your mind run wild by theorizing over what you see in the first half of the film you'll probably end up like a conspiracy theorist of horror, pondering the subtle nuisances of Patrick's mysterious spittal. Those of you who have seen Patrick know the rub, enjoy the twist and undoubtedly come back for more despite it's relatively slow burn. Perhaps Robert Thompson's eyes have it. His ten mile stare into the great void is unsettling. It'd be damn near iconic if you could attach a one liner to his visage. Confession: I always look at the cover of Patrick and think Gerrit Graham. There was a time where I would have actually made claim that he was in the picture. While all performances are good, there are no truly breakout illustrations of acting. Maybe it's the score performed by Goblin and Brian May that helped cement the reputation of this "comatose killer".
I simply enjoy the mood of the film. There's a bleak quality to Patrick that make it feel realistic even with the mostly fantastic surrounding each psychic occurrence or unexplained phenomena. Until the last quarter of the movie, most of this picture feels like it could very much happen with an eye on superstition and coincidence and dumb luck. Yes, there are driven doctors that strap coma patients in beds and want to experiment on them for years. I'd by that no matter what ethics code is violated. Patrick isn't rich on violence or sex, but it does manage to create a mystery that generates a healthy dose of tension and suspense that resolves with an ending that is as sensationalistic as the opening hour felt rather normal.
The Blu-ray itself looks just great. 1080p Full HD. The extras as perfect for the Richard Franklin fan boys out there. Richard Franklin is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to the world of Ozploitation having directed Patrick, Road Games (another iconic Oz pic), Link and, this may surprise you, Psycho II to name just a few. His work is strong. He does the audio commentary for this release. You'll also get interviews with Franklin as well as Everrett De Roche (screenwriter), Anthony I Ginnane (producer), Susan Penhaligon and Rod Mullinar (actors). The disc also includes TV spots, a theatrical trailer and a vintage TV interview with Richard Franklin. This release comes with both a Blu-ray and DVD. Oh, and there is an Easter Egg. I won't spoil it for you.
Severin's treatment of Patrick is a fan-ready disc. You really get into the world of Richard Franklin with quite a bit of time devoted to his perspective on the film while including both screenwriter and producer in the extras. It looks good. Watches and great and shouldn't feel dated or irrelevant. The social issues raised in Patrick are just as prominent today as they were in 1978. My advice would be to watch Patrick with a little coffee to get yourself ready for a movie that will get your heart racing all be it at a gradual pace.
Pick up Patrick now along with the rest of the Ozploitation releases from Severin. Also make sure to check out the remake for a slightly different perspective on this now familiar story.