Thursday, April 27, 2017

Full Moon presents Jess Franco's SLAVES (1977) uncut on May 23rd!


Jess Franco’s rare and controversial erotic thriller coming to DVD fully uncut and totally remastered!

SLAVES (1977) 
Label: Full Moon
Region Code: 0 NTSC
Duration: 76 Minutes
Rating: Unrated
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 
Audio: German Dolby Digital with Optional English Subtitles 
Director: Jess Franco
Cast: Lina Romay, Martine Stedil, Vitor Mendes, Esther Moset, Jess Franco

Synopsis: Out of all the pictures Spanish exploitation maverick Jess Franco and Swiss producer Erwin C. Dietrich released, 1977’s SLAVES is perhaps the rarest and most sought after. The film (also known as SWEDISH NYMPHO SLAVES and DIE SKLAVINNEN) stars Franco’s wife and muse, the inimitable Lina Romay (MARQUISE DE SADE) in a rare villainous role as Madame Arminda, the owner a notorious high end brothel called The Pagoda, who oversees the kidnapping and sexual torture and humiliation of a young society girl (Martine Stedil, BARBED WIRE DOLLS). When the girl’s father pays the ransom but doesn’t get his daughter back, he and his nasty manservant (played by Franco himself!) raid The Pagoda and enslave Arminda, subjecting her to untold indignities while trying to find out what happened to his child.

As with all Franco/Dietrich productions, SLAVES packs a sleazy wallop but its grimy doses of sex and violence are juxtaposed by rich production values, gorgeous cinematography by Peter Baumgartner and lush music by Walter Baumgartner.  Filled with a enough female nudity to fill 10 films and bolstered by Romay’s intense performance, SLAVES is classic piece of Franco-philia that needs to be seen and is presented her totally uncut (in its original German language with English subtitles) and digitally remastered from Dietrich’s own negative.

SLAVES is available on Special Edition DVD on May 23rd.  It will also be available to stream via the official Full Moon Amazon channel and FullMoonStreaming.com.

THE WALERIAN BOROWCZYK SHORT FILMS COLLECTION (1959-1984) (Blu-ray Review)

THE WALERIAN BOROWCZYK SHORT FILMS COLLECTION (1959-1984) 

Label: Olive Films 

Rating: Unrated 
Region Code: A
Duration: 152 Minutes
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (1.66:1), Full Frame (1.33:1) 
Audio: French DTS-HD MA 2.0 with Optional English Subtitles
Director: Walerian Borowczyk

Polish-born filmmaker Walerian Borowczyk was a weird guy, a movie poster illustrator who moved to France in the 50's and became an avant-garde filmmaker whose later work were sometimes, and not wrongly, called artful pornography. Among these dirty works of cinema was the infamous Immoral Tales (1974), and while he never rose to prominence as did his fellow Polish filmmakers Roman Polanski (Repulsion) and Krzysztof Kieslowski (The Double Life of Veronique), his labors have had a recent reevaluations from the likes of Arrow Video, and now US distributor Olive Films. who are releasing a handful of the director's works, including Theatre of Mr. and Mrs. Kabal (1967), Goto, Isle of Love (1968), Blanche (1971) and this one, a compendium of 15 short films he made between 1959-1984, and they're just as weird and wild as I had imagined after viewing a few of his later films.

Borowczyk began his career as illustrator, and that comes through clearly in his early works, shorts made with still images and cut-out animations. I found hard to comprehend a lot of this to be honest, but something I did take away from it was the obvious influence his early animated work seems to have had on Terry Gilliam's animated works for comedy troupe Monty Python, he even does a brief introduction for the Blu-ray, acknowledging Borowczyk lasting impression.


The shorts:  

The Concert (1962) aka Le Concert de M. et Mme. Kabal (7 min) HD

An animated short about a married couple known as The Kabals, the Mrs. of which seems to be a concert pianist who doesn't appreciate her husband snoring his way through her recital. It all ends in bloodshed and dismemberment, wonderful use of music. These characters would be more fully fleshed out Borowczyk's animated film Theatre of Mr. and Mrs. Kabal (1967), also available on Blu-ray from Olive Films. 


The Astronauts (1959) aka Les Astronautes (13 min) HD. A man invents a spaceship, made from cardboard and newspaper, uses it to fight a space-war, sneak a peek of a nude woman, and surreal weirdness ensues. A mix of cut-out animation, illustration and stop-motion, this one is yet again very surreal, and the music cues and sound effects brought to the early LSD-fueled psych outs of Pink Floyd.   

Angels’ Games (1964) aka Les Jeux des Anges (12 min) HD. This one begins with some static shots of a train ride, it looks like we are looking out the window of a train in the dark, hearing the rhythmic clack and clank of locomotion, before we move into some sparse, dark rooms, there are organ pipes and organ music, then the Angel wings begin to be sawn off. Dark, weird and affecting, and again the music cues are essential to the cinema of the piece. 

Renaissance (1963)(9 min) HD. In this one a series of photographs depict a roomful of destroyed objects, which include fruit, an own, paintings, a doll and a horn, reconstituting themselves, until we see what caused the mayhem to begin with, this one has a great sound design, including the use of typewriter keys and rhythmic sound.

Joachim’s Dictionary (1965) aka Le Dictionnaire de Joachim (9 min) HD. A crudely drawn man illustrates a word for each letter of the dictionary with a nice muted horn accompaniment. 

The Greatest Love of All Time (1978) aka L’Amour Monstre de tous les temps (9 min) HD. A sort of wordless documentary French surrealist painter Ljubomir Popović accompanied by the soaring music of composer Wagner, nine minutes of the painter on the streets and painting on close-up, ending with the a view of his finished work.  

Diptyque (1967) (8 min) HD. In this film an elderly man is seen farming his land, enjoying the company of his dog, and driving into town from his rural estate. Then we are treated to a series of images of attractive flowers arrangements intercut with a kitten playing with a ball of yarn.  

Grandma’s Encyclopedia (1963) aka L’encyclopedie de Grand-Maman
(7 min) HD. A fun journey through time and illustration depicting three modes of transportation with some fun mishaps along the way. 

Venus on the Half-Shell(1975) aka Escargot de Venus (4 min) HD. Along the lines of The Greatest Love of All Time (1978) this one is a mini-doc of sorts from Borowiczyk documenting the erotic colored pencil artworks of artist Bona Tibertelli de Pisis with her narrating over it,its gorgeous, erotic and surreal. 

Gavotte (1967) (11 min) HD. A 18th century costumed dwarf  struggles for a comfy seat while a second dwarf endeavors to ruin his day, it's a brief bit of farce. 


The Phonograph (1969) aka Le Phonograph (6 min) HD. An antique phonograph which plays wax cylinders in both real-time and stop-motion photography, we glean the portrait of a young girl throughout, the piece ends with the sounds of gunfire and the wax cylinders and portrait being destroyed in the process. 


Rosalie (1966) (15 min) HD. With this one we have a harrowing confession by a woman on trial for the murder of her baby, very effecting, a powerful performance from Borowczyk's own wife Ligia. Powerful stuff, this is the most affecting and emotional short in the collection, adding punctuation to the emotion are images presented as evidence during the trial, including cloth that wrapped the baby, pillow, and a shovel.   


Scherzo Infernal (1984)(5 min) HD. A fun and blasphemous animation about an Angel named Purea and a devil down in Hell named Mastro, both coming of age and proving to be disappointments to their respective families, with Mastro fleeing to Heaven where he meets Purea and red-cocked sex ensues. This was my favorite of the animated shorts, loved the style and execution, good stuff that showcase some of Borowczyk's artful smut, and to be honest, that's the stuff i tend to enjoy the most about his work.   


A Private Collection Long Version Censored aka Une Collection (14 min) HD. This 14-min doc is a collector walking s through his private collection of vintage and antique erotica and erotic devices. We get everything from vintage prints and photographs, illustrations, and coin-operated machinations, and we get quite an eyeful of vintage smut, including imaged hidden with seemingly innocuous illustrations, an ivory dildo, vintage film reels, smutty pics, and a censored scene involving Victorian era bestiality! All proving that there have been pornography obsessed people since, forever! There's also a shorter version of the same film, running 12-min.  

Audio/Video: The Walerian Borowczyk Short Films Collection (1959-1984) arrives on region A Blu-ray from Olive Films on a single-disc release looking very nice, preserving the original aspect ratios. I do believe this is the same restoration work that Arrow Video released in the UK as part of their Walerian Borowczyk Short Films and Animation release in 2014, restored from the 35mm elements. The DTS-HD mono French audio sounds just fine, it's limited in how dynamic it can be, but the dialogue and score sounded just fine, the music accompaniments are integral to the shorts, optional English subtitles are included.   


Looking at the extras, we begin with an introduction by filmmaker and animator Terry Gilliam, plus the 28-min Film is Not a Sausage documentary about Borowczyk’s animated work featuring Borowczyk, producer Dominique Duvergé-Ségrétin, assistant André Heinrich and composer Bernard Parmegiani. Both the intro and doc are straight from the Arrow Video release, though, notably, Olive's release also contains Venus on the Half-Shell (1975) and A Private Collection, both the Long Version Censored and the short versions. Arrow's collection did not have either, though both versions of A Private Collection are available on Arrow's  Immoral Tales (1974) Blu-ray release. Fairplay, missing from the Olive release is the Blow Ups, a visual essay by Daniel Bird about Borowczyk’s works on paper, and the Borowczyk directed commercials Holy Smoke (1963), The Museum (1964), Tom Thumb (1966), which are found on arrow's shorts collection, so there's some give and get between the two releases, though I am quite happy with the Olive release, which is more affordable, minus a few bells and whistles. 


Special Features: 

- Introduction by filmmaker Terry Gilliam (1 min) HD 
- Film is not a Sausage: Borowczyk’s Short Films – Interview program featuring Borowczyk, producer Dominique Duvergé-Ségrétin, assistant André Heinrich and composer Bernard Parmegiani (28 min) HD

The Walerian Borowczyk Short Films Collection (1959-1984) is a wild ride, a stupendous and surreal compendium of the shorts from the very unusual mind of Polish born filmmaker Borowczyk. I wouldn't recommend this as a starting point for your entry into his filmography, this is surreal and abstract stuff that can be an assault on the senses and values at times, but if you've had a taste for his cinema and crave more, you might want to dip into this collection, or just throw yourself in and go for it you brave cinema-loving soul. 3/5 



THE AMITYVILLE HORROR (1979) COMES TO LIMITED EDITION STEELBOOK ON JUNE 26th 2017 FROM SECOND SIGHT

UK distributor SECOND SIGHT FILMS are bringing the classic fright flick THE AMITYVILLE HORROR (1979) to Blu-ray in the UK for the first time! Of course they're classing it up with brand-new interviews with star James Brolin, screenwriter Sandor Stern and composer Lalo Schifrin. Look for this on June 26th! 

THE AMITYVILLE HORROR (1979) 
Limited Edition Steelbook 

Label: second Sight Films
Release Date: 26 June 2017
Region Code: B
Rating:Cert. 15 
Duration: 117 Minutes 

It’s one of the all-time horror greats, it spawned numerous sequels, spin-offs and inspired numerous haunted house copycats. It even became the subject of a top 20 hit single – Lovebug Starski’s Amityville (House on the Hill). And now, almost 40 years after it scared homeowners everywhere witless, The Amityville Horror is finally getting its first ever UK Blu-ray release in a limited edition Steelbook courtesy of Second Sight.

Stuart Rosenberg’s seminal shocker The Amityville Horror starring James Brolin (Westworld), Margot Kidder (Superman) and Rod Steiger (On the Waterfront), is a genuine horror classic based on terrifying true events, and makes its Blu-ray debut complete with brand new bonus features on June 26th 2017.

When George and Kathy Lutz and their children move to Amityville, Long Island they believe they have found the perfect family home. But the house has a shocking history and within its walls a demonic presence lies in wait that will turn the Lutz’s lives into a living nightmare. Their only hope is to get out before it’s too late.


Prepare to be scared when you visit the original haunted house in The Amityville Horror.

Special Features:
- NEW! Brolin Thunder’ – Interview with actor James Brolin
- NEW!‘Child's Play’ – Interview with actor Meeno Peluce
- NEW!‘Amityville Scribe’ – Interview with screenwriter Sandor Stern
- NEW! ‘The Devil's Music’ – Interview with soundtrack composer Lalo Schifrin
- ‘My Amityville Horror’ - feature-length documentary with Daniel Lutz
- ‘For God’s Sake, Get Out’ – featuring James Brolin and Margot Kidder
- Intro by Dr. Hans Holzer, PhD. in parapsychology (author of ‘Murder in Amityville’)
- Audio commentary by Dr. Hans Holzer
- Original trailer, TV spot, radio spots
- Four reproduction lobby card postcards (SteelBook Exclusive)
- New optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing


Creepy Retro Thriller "Beyond The Gates" Makes its Blu-ray Debut May 2nd from Scream Factory

BEYOND THE GATES (2016) 

Available May 2nd, 2017 from Scream Factory

Welcome, curious viewers…have you the courage to go Beyond The Gates?  A creepy homage to ‘80s horror, Beyond The Gates makes its Blu-ray and DVD debut on May 2nd, 2017 from Scream Factory, in conjunction with IFC Midnight.  Filled with gory fun, this love letter to the VHS Golden Age of home video contains a number of bonus features, including audio commentaries with director Jackson Stewart, actress Barbara Crampton and the cast and crew, a behind-the-scenes featurette, deleted scenes, the theatrical trailer, and a retro-style Beyond The Gates commercial. Fans can pre-order their copies now by visiting ShoutFactory.com

After their father's unexplained disappearance, two estranged brothers – responsible Gordon (Graham Skipper) and reckless John (Chase Williamson) – reunite to sift through the contents of his stubbornly anachronistic VHS rental store. Among the inventory, they find an old interactive VCR board game. Intrigued, the brothers pop in the tape… and soon discover that this video is no ordinary game, but a portal to a nightmarish alternate reality, one with deadly consequences for anyone who dares to press ‘play.’

Featuring horror legend Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator, From Beyond), Beyond The Gates is a retro-cool tale of hex, dies, and videotape from director Jackson Stewart!

Special Features
- Audio commentaries with director Jackson Stewart, actress Barbara Crampton and the cast and crew
- Behind the scenes featurette
- Deleted Scenes
- Theatrical Trailer
- Retro-style Beyond The Gates commercial


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

CALTIKI THE IMMORTAL MONSTER (1959) (Blu-ray Review)

CALTIKI THE IMMORTAL MONSTER (1959) 

Label: Arrow Video

Region: A
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 76 Minutes
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (1.66:1)
Audio: Italian LPCM Mono 1.0, English LPCM Mono 1.0 with Optional English, Italian Subtitles 
Directors: Riccardo Freda, Mario Bava, Gérard Herter, John Merivale, Daniela Rocca,Didi Perego    
Cast: John Merivale, Didi Perego


Caltiki The Immortal Monster (1959) is an Italian knock-off of the American science-fiction film The Blob (1958), directed by Riccardo Freda (Murder Obsession) and lensed by Mario Bava (A Bay of Blood), who also completed the film when Freda walked off the project a few days before filming wrapped. Notably Bava also did the gooey special effects for the movie, which for '59 were mighty visceral. A nice touch is the addition of a Mayan back story involving a vengeful Mayan goddess Caltiki, who was ceremonially presented with human sacrifices by ancient Mayans. 

The film opens with a group of archaeologists investigating ancient Mayan ruins located deep in a cave, where they discover a underground pool with a statue of the deity Caltiki presiding over it. One of the archaeologists dons some scuba gear and heads into the pool of water in search of a missing fellow archeologist. In the depths of the water he discovers human skeletons scattered along the bottom of the underground lake, each adorned with golden artifacts from the Mayan era. He emerges from the water, not having found the missing archaeologist, he does however appear with a handful of rare artifacts, and his greed sends him back to the bottom in search of more loot, only to be attacked by a blob-creature which melts his face off, and it is really gooey for a 50's film! The blob-monster emerges from the pool and attacks the remaining archaeologists, with Max (Gérard Herter) losing his arm to the blob in the process, it envelops his hand with its fleshy mass, dissolving skin and muscle, leaving behind just the gruesome bones - another gooey special effect, courtesy of Bava. His colleague Dr. John Fielding (John Merivale) saves him, pulling him to safety and destroying the creature with a huge fireball explosion, he also manages save and isolate a piece of the creature, which he hopes to study, and to use it to save his friend Max, who while recovering in the hospital goes a bit mad, having been infected by the creature Max begins to go a bit mad, believing himself to have diabolical powers, overcome by greed and paranoia, he turns out to be a baddie in the film. 

All the while the seemingly dormant piece of the blob monster begins to reanimate when exposed to various amounts of radiation, and wouldn't you know it - a comet hurdling towards Earth's orbit is returning after several hundred years, bringing with it a radiation signature which ignites the blob into a massive spate of reproduction and intense growth, unleashing the blob in it's full force, leading to a showdown with the Italian military armed with flamethrowers, and it a makes for a fun 50's sci-fi horror stuff, for sure. 

In true 50's fashion we have some melodramatic drama that bogs down the otherwise well paced movie, for instance we have Max's suffering and ultimately doomed girlfriend Linda (Daniela Rocca), a nice girl who tries to nurse Max back to health, but she cannot do much for his burgeoning insanity, and she is helpless to find his heart when he pines away for Fielding's wife Ellen (Didi Perego). The melodramatic stuff is a bit of a yawner, but I do love this creature feature for the drive-in era fun and 50's schlockiness. As a knock-off I loved the creative special effects. Bava created the blob-mass by animating cow stomach (tripe), and it's effective stuff, coming off as a bit leathery, gooey and slimy looking, a pulsating mass of doom. The effects of the creature dissolving people are pretty great, the flesh is dissolved, revealing gooey skeletons and skulls beneath, as said before, it seems much more visceral than what I am used to seeing in 50's creature features. The creature and mythology itself has a strong Cthulhu/Lovecraft vibe, which I loved. 

The story is a fairly shallow monster movie, typical of the 50's, but what I thoroughly enjoyed about this is the deep noirish lensing from Mario Bava, it's shadowy and moody stuff, plus his wonderful special effects work, including some ingenious use of matte painting, forced perspective, miniatures and cow guts to create something weird and gooey, it may not be a great movie, but I think it's pretty awesome.

Audio/Video: Caltiki The Immortal Monster has been out of print on home video for awhile now, there was a No Shame DVD, but this is the debut on Blu-ray, and it looks great to see the film in HD! Framed at the correct 1.66:1 original widescreen aspect ratio the source looks great, the moody Mario Bava lensed noirish black and white cinematography looks solid, all things considered. The new 1080p transfer is sourced from a dupe negative, it was shot a bit dark - which is mentioned in the extras as perhaps a choice to mask certain seams in the special effects - however, despite that the image looks very nice with good contrast, a nice amount of fine detail and the grain is intact. The disc includes the original mono Italian track and an English-dubbed track, with optional English and Italian subtitles. Both tracks have okay fidelity, it does the job, but the English dub is pretty awful, adding more schlockiness to the b-movie than is actually there, the kid is the worst - reminded me of times of that kid Bob from Lucio Fulci's The House By The Cemetery! The Italian track is clean and reasonably crisp within the limits of the source.     

Arrow port over all the extras from the now out-of-print No Shame DVD including a very brief 21-second introduction from film critic  Stefano Della Casa (in Italian), a 21-min conversation with director Luigi Cozzi (Wax Museum) about Italian sci-fi and this film in particular, with some nice anecdotes about conversations he had with Freda, Bava, and others in respect to the movie, in Italian. Stefano Della Casa  shows up again for a 19-million conversation about the career of director Riccardo Freda, also in Italian. additionally we have the US trailer and the alternate US opening title sequence for the film. 

Of course Arrow throw in some pretty substantial new extras for the film, beginning with two brand new audio commentaries, the first with Tim Lucas, author of Mario Bava: All the Colors of the Dark, another with Troy Howarth, author of The Haunted World of Mario Bava and So Deadly, So Perverse: 50 Years of Italian Giallo Films - and these are dense with Mario Bava-centric infor, combined these are like a masterclass in Italian cinema, and a must-listen for fans of Bava. As if that was not enough we also get a 18-min conversation with one of my favorite horror talking heads,  author and critic Kim Newman who goes into some depth about the influence of classic creature features on Caltiki. Also, not to be overlooked is a full aperture version of the film, the full frame image opens up the image with additional on the top and bottom of the image, some of the edges can be rough and there's a hair in there for a bit, but this version was interesting, it made it feel more like watching it on a Saturday horror matinee n TV as a kid. The release also features a sleeve of reversible artwork, plus a collector's booklet with new writing on the film by Kat Ellinger and Roberto Curti.

Special Features:
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
- Original mono Italian and English soundtracks (lossless on the Blu-ray Disc)
- Newly translated English subtitles for the Italian soundtrack
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing for the English soundtrack
- New audio commentary by Tim Lucas, author of Mario Bava: All the Colors of the Dark
- New audio commentary by Troy Howarth, author of The Haunted World of Mario Bava and So Deadly, So Perverse: 50 Years of Italian Giallo Films
- From Quatermass to Caltiki, a new discussion with author and critic Kim Newman on the influence of classic monster movies on Caltiki (18 min) HD 
- Riccardo Freda, Forgotten Master, an archival interview with critic Stefano Della Casa (19 min) 
- The Genesis of Caltiki, an archival interview with filmmaker Luigi Cozzi (21 min) 
- Archival introduction to the film by Stefano Della Casa (1 min) 
- Original English Theatrical Trailer (2 min) HD 
- Alternate opening titles for the US version (2 min) HD 
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys
 - FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring  new writing by Kat Ellinger and Roberto Curti.

It is wonderful to have this Italian 50's creature feature in HD and packed with so many cool extras, this is a true treat for monster movie kids and fans of Mario Bava. Arrow have gone above and beyond yet again and knocked it out of the park with a superior release of a cult-classic.  3.5/5 

THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE (2016) (Blu-ray Review)

THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE (2016)

Label: IFC Midnight / Scream Factory
Region Code: A
Rating: R
Duration: 87 Minutes
Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1, DTS-HD MA 2.0 with Optional English Subtitles
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (2.40:1)
Director: André Øvredal 
Cast: Emile Hirsch, Brian Cox, Michael McElhatton, Olwen Kelly, Ophelia Lovibond

The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016) is the follow-up to director André Øvredal's wonderful found-footage fantasy film Troll Hunter (2010) wherein trolls turned out to be real, it's been a few years since that one and let me set you straight right up front - it is worth the wait. In this tense tale shrouded in weirdness we have a father and son mortician team, the gruff father Tommy Tilden (Brian Cox, Trick ’r Treat) and his son Austin (Emile Hirsch, The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys) who are called upon by the local sheriff (Michael McElhatton, The Hallow) to perform an autopsy on a jane doe victim, a young woman found buried in the basement of a local home which was the scene of multiple grisly murders, and the jane doe they found in the basement is just one of numerous weird things about the unnerving crime scene, so much so that the sheriff is visibly shaken and confounded by the whole thing.

With the jane doe now at the basement mortuary of the Tilden's the father and son go about methodically examining the corpse for a proper cause of death. The victim is a young woman in her twenties, and very quickly the pair begin to note irregularities that defy easy explanation and an accurate cause of death, beginning with that her body look nearly pristine, the skin it smooth, unbroken and not discolored, there are no signs of rigor mortis, her wrists and ankles are brutally broken, her tong has been removed, her internal organs shows signs of scarring and burning... and that's not even the weirder stuff. As the postmortem continues the older Tilden mentors his son, correcting him, challenging him to draw the right conclusions based on the evidence the corpse presents, but this corpse is shrouded in mystery and is  presenting all manner of creepy and contradictory findings, that even the seasoned medical examiner finds himself struggling to understand. 

The movie started winning me over right away with it's craftsmanship, I love a well crafted movie, and this has a nice pace, it strings you along with moments of tension, and I loved the visual nuance and precise cinematography of Roman Osin (Pride & Prejudice)with the moody and atmospheric lighting of the basement mortuary set, but it is the father and son dynamic that glued it all together for me. The team-up of Hirsch and Cox is key, along with a rather good scene with the son's girlfriend Emma (Ophelia Lovibond, Guardians of the Galaxy), who is indulged her morbid curiosity by Tommy to peak at a corpse in one of the cadaver fridges, only to throw in a fun fright involving a bell strapped to the ankle of a corpse, it's good stuff. The character-bonds certainly help to make the weirder stuff more real, and there's some real gut-punch moments peppered throughout this one, which kept me on my toes, and plugged-in through to the end. Going into this one I had some preconceived notions about what the movie would be, though I had avoided all the trailers before viewing it, and while I was not completely surprised by what it turned out to be, I think the brooding and tense execution left we totally satisfied. I found it affecting and consistently creepy, this was one of my best home viewings experiences in quite a while, and by far my favorite of the IFC Midnight releases this year. 

Audio/Video: The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016) arrives on Blu-ray/DVD Combo courtesy of another IFC Midnight/Scream Factory team-up, looking very nice all the way through. Blacks are deep and inky, colors are vivid and nicely saturated, and the fine detail is robust, some of those autopsy dissection scenes with Cox slicing into the corpse are uncomfortable to watch, good stuff. Audio on the Blu-ray includes choice of DTS-HD MA English 2.0 and surround 5.1, the track exports the creepy and atmospheric score crisply with some nice punch when the more visceral stuff begins. Optional English subtitles are included. 

The extras are slim with just a selection of TV spots, teasers and a theatrical trailer, but I wanted more, this is a movie I wanted to dive into the extras, and there were none. The DVD/BD combo pack, and includes a standard definition DVD with the same extras and lossy audio. The release comes in a standard blue keepcase with a slipcover (O-ring) featuring the same artwork as the sleeve. I also like that the DVD and Blu-ray discs have different artwork. 

Special Features: 
- TV Spots (1 min) HD 
- Teasers (2 min) HD 
- Theatrical Trailer (2 min) HD 

The Autopsy of Jane Doe(2016) is tense and claustrophobic with some icky and visceral body horror elements, the two leads are wonderful as the father/son mortician team, and the movie is well-crafted and keenly executed, I love this movie, this comes highly recommended, must-see fright cinema. Looking forward to what comes next from director André Øvredal, which according to IMDB is a project titled Mortal, about a young man who discovers he has God-like powers based on ancient Norwegian mythology, I'm down. The Autopsy of Jane Doe will be available as a WalMart exclusive on May 2nd and available everywhere June 27th, it is also currently streaming on numerous VOD platforms. 4.5/5

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

American Exorcism premieres on VOD this May from Uncork'd Entertainment!

Just your average, All-American, small town girl… possessed.

AMERICAN EXORCISM  

On VOD May 2, DVD August 1st

Studio: Uncork'd Entertainment
Cast: Braxton Davis, Michael Filipowich

Director: Tripp Weathers

Uncork’d Entertainment yields the cross and garlic this Spring, with the release of American Exorcism, premiering On Demand 5/2.
Damon Richter thought he left the world of possessions, exorcisms, and evil behind until an old friend arrives with frightening information about his estranged daughter knowing that only his otherworldly skills can save her.
Produced by Thriller Films in association with Master Key Productions.

Written and directed by Tripp Weathers, and starring Braxton Davis (The Butchers), Michael Filipowich (24), Sicily Fontaine, Jessica Morris (Lucifer), Kate Tumanova and William McKinney,  American Exorcism possesses VOD May 2 and DVD August 1.