Friday, November 21, 2014

FULL SPECS REVEALED FOR 'THE BEYOND' BLU-RAY FROM GRINDHOUSE RELEASING!

Grindhouse Releasing is proud to announce the full specs for Lucio Fulci’s THE BEYOND Blu-ray, in stores February 10, 2015 and now available for pre-order exclusively at Diabolik DVD!
THE BEYOND arrives in a lavish 3-disc set with GLOW-IN-THE-DARK artwork housing two Blu-ray discs and a bonus CD of the classic Fabio Frizzi soundtrack, remastered from the original studio tapes. The release is packed with new bonus features – scroll down for complete detail
THE BEYOND (1981) 
The seven dreaded gateways to hell are concealed in seven cursed places… and on the day the gates of hell are opened, the dead will walk the earth!
From legendary Italian horror master Lucio Fulci comes the ultimate classic of supernatural terror. A cursed hotel, built over one of the seven gateways to hell, becomes a malevolent abyss that begins devouring both the bodies and the souls of all who enter in a graphic frenzy of gory crucifixions, brutal chain-whippings, eyeball impalements, sulphuric acid meltdowns, flesh-eating tarantulas, throat-shredding demon dogs and ravenous bloodthirsty zombies. THE BEYOND is a towering achievement in hair-raising, mind-bending cinematic terror!
SPECS
Color - 2.35:1 - 1981 - 89 minutes - UNRATED - Region A 

SPECIAL FEATURES
– Spectacular hi-definition digital transfer of the original UNCENSORED director’s cut
– Breathtaking 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio surround sound re-mix by Academy Award winner Paul Ottoman
– Provocative commentary by stars Catriona MacColl and genre superstar David Warbeck
– Optional Italian language soundtrack and original mono mix
– New in-depth interviews with stars Catriona MacColl, Cinzia Monreale and Giovanni De Nava, U.S. production manager Larry Ray, make-up artists Giannetto DeRossi and Maurizio Trani, cinematographer Sergio Salvati, writer Dardano Sacchetti, producer Fabrizio De Angelis, composer Fabio Frizzi, original U.S. distributor Terry Levene, and Antonella Fulci
– Rare archival interviews with director Lucio Fulci and David Warbeck
– Lost German pre-credit sequence in FULL COLOR
– Liner notes by legendary horror journalist Chas. Balun and EuroHorror expert Martin Beine
– Extensive still galleries and theatrical trailers
– BONUS CD – original soundtrack album by Fabio Frizzi newly remastered in stunning 96khz sound from the original studio master tapes
- AND OTHER SURPRISES!

Follow Grindhouse Releasing on Twitter @GrindhouseFilm
To request a screening at your theater, contact info@grindhousereleasing.com.
Stay tuned for complete specs on the February 10 Blu-ray/DVD  release of Duke Mitchell’s MASSACRE MAFIA STYLE, only from Grindhouse Releasing!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Kino Lorber Announces its December Studio Classics Releases


Kino Lorber Announces its December Blu-ray Releases on its Kino Lorber Studio Classics Label Including Films by Robert Altman, Sidney Lumet, John Boorman, Arthur Penn and others.

Ten Star-Studded Hollywood Classics Including Witness to MurderThe Emerald ForestThe PackageThe Offence,Hickey and BoggsThe Quatermass XperimentThe Missouri BreaksBuffalo Bill and the IndiansAvenging Force and Running Scared All Making their Blu-ray Debuts from Kino Lorber in December 
Kino Lorber is proud to announce the release, on its Kino Lorber Studio Classics label, of Witness to MurderThe Emerald ForestThe PackageThe OffenceHickey and BoggsThe Quatermass XperimentThe Missouri BreaksBuffalo Bill and the Indians,Avenging Force and Running Scared, all making their Blu-ray debuts in December.

Starring some of Hollywood's biggest names -- Barbara Stanwyck, Gene Hackman, Tommy Lee Jones, Sean Connery, James Woods, Marlon Brando, Jack Nicholson, Paul Newman, Burt Lancaster and Harvey Keitel, to name but a few -- this lineup of classic films come to Blu-ray for the first time from Kino Lorber, giving collectors the chance to own these sought-after classics in the best possible quality.

The SRP for each of these releases is $29.95 for the Blu-ray edition, and $19.95 for the DVD edition (except for Witness to Murder and Avenging Force, which are $24.95 each for the DVD editions). The OffenceHickey and Boggs and The Quatermass Xperiment are available on Blu-ray only.

Witness to Murder stars the great Barbara Stanwyck as a woman who must convince the police that she was a witness to a murder. George Sanders co-stars in this film noir, which comes to Blu-ray and DVD on December 2nd, in a newly remastered HD transfer.

The Emerald Forest is John Boorman's adventure classic starring Powers Boothe as an engineer desperately searching the Amazon rainforest for his lost son, who has been adopted by a native tribe and raised as one of their own. This film from the director of Deliverance will become available on Blu-ray and DVD on December 2nd in a newly remastered HD transfer.

Also streeting on December 2nd is Andrew Davis' (The Fugitive) gripping thriller, The Package, starring Gene Hackman and Tommy Lee Jones as two military men who uncover a government conspiracy. Bonus features include audio commentary by director Andrew Davis and actress Joanna Cassidy, an on-camera intro by director Andrew Davis, an on-camera interview with actress Joanna Cassidy, and the original theatrical trailer.

The Offence is Sidney Lumet's acclaimed crime drama, starring Sean Connery as a detective tracking down a child molester. Co-starring Trevor Howard, this powerful film will become available on Blu-ray December 2nd.

Hickey and Boggs reunites I Spy stars Bill Cosby and Robert Culp as a couple of detectives who have a run-in with an especially vicious gang while investigating a kidnapping case. James Woods co-stars in this action-packed crime drama that comes to Blu-ray on December 2nd.

Also streeting on Blu-ray on December 2nd is the sci-fi horror classic The Quatermass Xperiment, starring Brian Donlevy and directed by Val Guest, about a spaceship that lands on earth containing a horrifying creature that is set loose. This edition comes packed with bonus features including Carpenter on Quatermass: Interview with legendary director, John Carpenter; The Quatermass Xperiment: From Reality to Fiction, a featurette with director Val Guest; The Quatermass Xperiment: Glenn Erickson Comparing the Versions featurette; on-camera Val Guest interview by Hammer film historian Marcus Hearn; audio commentary by Director Val Guest and Marcus Hearn; "Trailers From Hell" with Ernest Dickerson; alternate main title; and original theatrical trailer.

The Missouri Breaks is a western classic, directed by Arthur Penn and notable as the only screen pairing of acting legends Marlon Brando and Jack Nicholson. Co-starring Frederic Forrest, Harry Dean Stanton and Randy Quaid, it will become available on Blu-ray and DVD December 9th.

Robert Altman's revisionist western satire Buffalo Bill and the Indians also streets on December 9th, with bonus features including "From the Prairie to the Palace" featurette. Paul Newman, Harvey Keitel, Burt Lancaster, and Geraldine Chaplin star in this classic from the celebrated director of such films as The Long GoodbyeMASH andNashville.

Michael Dudikoff stars in Avenging Force, about a secret service agent protecting his friend from a group of extremist right-wing terrorists. This thriller streets on Blu-ray and DVD December 9th, with bonus features including audio commentary by director Sam Firstenberg and Star Michael Dudikoff, an on-camera intro by director Sam Firstenberg, an on-camera interview with star Michael Dudikoff, and the original theatrical trailer.

Also streeting December 9th on Blu-ray and DVD is the 1986 action comedy Running Scared, starring Billy Crystal and Gregory Hines as a couple of tough Chicago cops who run up against a notorious drug kingpin. Bonus features include audio commentary by director Peter Hyams, a featurette, Billy Crystal outtakes, selected electronic press kit scenes, and the original theatrical trailer.

Witness to Murder
Newly Remastered in HD!
Blu-ray and DVD Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $24.95
1954/USA/English/Film Noir/83 mins/NR/B&W/1.75:1
Director: Roy Rowland
Cast: Barbara Stanwyck, George Sanders, Gary Merrill, Jesse White, Juanita Moore

Synopsis: A woman fights to convince the police that she witnessed a murder. One sleepless night, Cheryl Draper (Barbara Stanwyck, Double Indemnity) witnesses a young woman being strangled to death in an apartment across the street. She reports the killing to the police, but when the police arrive there's no body to be found. The policemen are convinced that Cheryl probably dreamt the murder and leave ignoring her pleas. Similar to Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window, which opened less than a month later and overshadowed this top-notch film noir featuring great direction by Roy Rowland (The Girl Hunters) and beautiful black-and-white cinematography by legendary John Alton (He Walked by Night). Co-starring George Sanders (A Shot in the Dark) and Gary Merrill (All About Eve).

Bonus Features:
Original Theatrical Trailer

Emerald Forest 


Newly Re-mastered in HD!
Blu-ray and DVD Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $19.95
1985/UK/English-Portuguese/English subtitles/Adventure/114 mins/R/Color/2.35:1
Director: John Boorman
Cast: Powers Boothe, Meg Foster, Charley Boorman, Estee Chandler

Synopsis: From John Boorman, the director of Deliverance comes a wildly ambitious parable that transports us to a singularly imaginative realm. The Emerald Forest is an exotic and erotic nightmare replete with one lushly enrapturing scene after another. For ten years, engineer Bill Markham (Powers Boothe, Extreme Prejudice) has searched tirelessly for his son, Tommy, who disappeared from the edge of the Brazilian rainforest. Miraculously, he finds the boy living among the reclusive Amazon tribe who adopted him. And that's when Bill's adventure truly begins. For his son (Charley Boorman) is now a grown tribesman who moves skillfully through this beautiful-but-dangerous terrain, fearful only of those who would exploit it. And as Bill attempts to "rescue" him from the savagery of the untamed jungle, Tommy challenges Bill's idea of true civilization...and his notions about who needs rescuing. Co-starring Meg Foster (The Osterman Weekend).

Bonus Features:
Original Theatrical Trailer

The Package
Blu-ray and DVD Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $19.95
1989/USA/English/English subtitles/Thriller/108 mins/R/Color/1.85:1
Director: Andrew Davis
Cast:Gene Hackman, Tommy Lee Jones, Joanna Cassidy, John Heard, Dennis Franz, Pam Grier

Synopsis: From Andrew Davis, the director of The Fugitive comes a brilliant, explosively entertaining action/thriller featuring powerful performances by screen legends Gene Hackman (The French Connection) and Tommy Lee Jones (No Country for Old Men). Featuring a superb supporting cast that includes Joanna Cassidy (Blade Runner), Dennis Franz (TV'sNYPD Blue), Pam Grier (Foxy Brown) and John Heard (Cutter's Way), this top-notch thriller really delivers. Sergeant Johnny Gallagher (Hackman) thinks he's been given a routine assignment: to escort a rebellious American soldier (Jones) from Europe to the U.S. for a military court martial. Gallagher soon learns, however, that the assignment is anything but routine, when he uncovers a terrifying military conspiracy. The clock is ticking down to a historic superpower summit, and Gallagher must stop the deadly plot before it's too late...for him and his country.

Bonus Features:
Audio commentary by director Andrew Davis and actress Joanna Cassidy
An on-camera intro by director Andrew Davis
An on-camera interview with actress Joanna Cassidy
Original theatrical trailer

The Offence 


Blu-ray Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
1972/UK-USA/English/Crime Drama/112 mins/R/Color/1.85:1
Director Sidney Lumet
Cast: Sean Connery, Trevor Howard, Vivien Merchant, Ian Bannen, Peter Bowles

Synopsis: When is the accuser the accused? Sidney Lumet (Prince of the City) directs Sean Connery (The Great Train Robbery) as a British police detective whose 20 years of handling murder, rape and other violent cases culminate in a deadly loss of control during a routine interrogation. A harrowing and compellingly constructed chamber drama of police brutality and mental anguish, The Offence takes director Lumet's obsession with the policeman's conflicted position as his brother's keeper into the realms of the psychological thriller. Connery is devastatingly desperate as Officer Johnson on the trail of a serial child molester. The Offence was based on a play by John Hopkins entitled This Story of Yours. The stellar supporting cast includes Trevor Howard (The Third Man), Vivien Merchant (The Homecoming) and Ian Bannen (The Hill).

Bonus Features:
Original Theatrical Trailer

Hickey and Boggs
Blu-ray Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
1972/UK-USA/English/Crime Drama/111 mins/PG/Color/1.85:1
Director: Robert Culp
Cast:Bill Cosby, Robert Culp, James Woods, Michael Moriarty, Vincent Gardenia, Ed Lauter

Synopsis: I Spy stars, Bill Cosby and Robert Culp are united again in this modern film noir about two detectives investigating a kidnapping and running into a gang of vicious criminals responsible for a string of murders. The world of Private Investigators is thoroughly exposed by Hickey & Boggs in this action-packed crime thriller scripted by the great Walter Hill (The Long Riders) and directed by Culp, his one and only directorial effort. When the deadly duo is called upon to find a missing girl they inadvertently stumble upon something far bigger, and end up chasing down a gang of thieves and a $400,000 loot. Featuring a top-notch supporting cast that includes James Woods (The Onion Field), Michael Moriarty (Report to the Commissioner), Vincent Gardenia (Death Wish 1 & 2), Bill Hickman (Bullitt) and Ed Lauter (Breakheart Pass).

Bonus Features:
Original Theatrical Trailer


The Quatermass Xperiment 


(aka The Creeping Unknown)
Blu-ray Street Date: December 2, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
1955/UK/English/Science Fiction-Horror/82 mins/NR/Color/1.85:1
Director: Val Guest
Cast: Brian Donlevy, Jack Warner, Margia Dean, Richard Wordsworth, Gordon Jackson, Lionel Jeffries

Synopsis: Val Guest (The Day the Earth Caught Fire) directed this chilling film about a spacecraft returning to earth with a frightening surprise on board. Two of the ship's three astronauts have mysteriously vanished, while the third is sick with an unidentifiable illness. While doctors try to help the third man recover, an investigation takes place to figure out just what happened to his comrades. As it turns out, the survivor's body has been taken over by an alien fungus that needs blood to survive. After the astronaut escapes from the hospital, he transforms into a monster, attacking everyone who gets in its way. Meanwhile, Scotland Yard detective Lomax (Jack Warner, The Blue Lamp) and Professor Bernard Quatermass (Brian Donlevy, The Glass Key), a determined scientist, attempt to track down the creature before it finds new victims. Also known as The Creeping Unknown.

Bonus Features:
* Carpenter on Quatermass: Interview with legendary director, John Carpenter
* The Quatermass Xperiment: From Reality to Fiction - Featurette featuring director Val Guest
* The Quatermass Xperiment: Glenn Erickson Comparing the Versions - Featurette
* On-camera Val Guest Interview by Hammer Film Historian Marcus Hearn
* Audio Commentary by Director Val Guest and Marcus Hearn
* "Trailers From Hell" with Ernest Dickerson
* Alternate Main Title
* Original Theatrical Trailer

The Missouri Breaks
Blu-ray and DVD Street Date:December 9, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $19.95
1976/USA/English/English subtitles/Western/126 mins/PG/Color/1.85:1
Director: Arthur Penn
Cast: Marlon Brando, Jack Nicholson, Randy Quaid, Frederic Forrest, Harry Dean Stanton

Synopsis: In their only cinematic pairing, screen legends Marlon Brando (The Godfather) and Jack Nicholson (One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest) are a dynamic star combo who set the screens ablaze in this intense and startlingly realistic western classic from director Arthur Penn (Bonnie and Clyde). Montana Badlands rancher David Brazton is a self-made man, through years of tireless effort and determination; he has transformed his vast and rugged land into a thriving, prosperous empire. So when his livestock, fortune and family are threatened by a ruthless horse thief (Nicholson), Braxton takes matters into his own hands by hiring a sadistic bounty hunter (Brando) to track down the outlaw. Braxton intends to liberate the territory from crime, but what he initiates instead is a complex series of events that result in brutality and savagery far beyond anything he ever thought possible. Co-starring Randy Quaid (The Long Riders), Frederic Forrest (Hammett), John P. Ryan (Avenging Force) and Harry Dean Stanton (Paris, Texas), scripted by Thomas McGuane (92 in the Shade) and shot throughout majestic Montana, the Missouri Break is every bit as powerful and affecting as its dynamic leading men.

Bonus Features:
Original Theatrical Trailer

Buffalo Bill and The Indians 


Blu-ray and DVD Street Date:December 9, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $19.95
1976/USA/English/English subtitles/Western/123 mins/PG/Color/2.35:1
Director: Robert Altman
Cast: Paul Newman, Burt Lancaster, Harvey Keitel, Joel Grey, Geraldine Chaplin, Kevin McCarthy

Synopsis: From director Robert Altman (The Long Goodbye) comes an uproarious, high-spirited look at "Buffalo Bill" Cody, the legendary Western adventurer. With a fine cast that includes Paul Newman, Harvey Keitel, Burt Lancaster, Joel Grey and Geraldine Chaplin, Buffalo Bill And The Indians is a hilarious yet poignant comedy that shows the "Old West" as you've never seen it before! Although Buffalo Bill (Newman) has fought Indians and Civil War battles, nothing can prepare him for his newest challenge; show business! His Wild West Show is hugely popular, but when he signs a former enemy, Sioux Chief Sitting Bull, for a featured role, a hysterical clash of cultures reverberates far beyond the boundaries of their sprawling outdoor theater. And the complications only multiply when the troupe discovers it must put on a special command performance - for none other than the President of the United States!

Bonus Features:
"From the Prairie to the Palace" Featurette
Teaser Trailer
Original Theatrical Trailer

Avenging Force
Newly Re-mastered in HD!
"Michael Dudikoff's style is reminiscent of a young Clint Eastwood" - The New York Times

Blu-ray and DVD Street Date:December 9, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $24.95
1986/USA/English/Action/104 mins/R/Color/1.85:1
Director: Sam Firstenberg
Cast: Michael Dudikoff, Steve James, John P. Ryan, James Booth, William Wallace

Synopsis: Matt Hunter (Michael Dudikoff, American Ninja) is an ex-secret service agent trying to protect his best friend from a super band of rightwing terrorists known as Pentangle. When the ruthless organization torches his ranch and kidnaps his little sister, Hunter is forced into Pentangle's barbaric "manhunt", played out in the remote swamplands of Louisiana. It's the ultimate game of cat-and-mouse, as Hunter employs an awesome array of martial arts skills in his desperate fight for survival... and revenge. Stylishly directed by action veteran Sam Firstenberg (Revenge of the Ninja) with a stellar cast that includes Steve James (Hero and the Terror), James Booth (Robbery) and John P. Ryan (Runaway Train).

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary by Director Sam Firstenberg and Star Michael Dudikoff
On-camera Intro by Director Sam Firstenberg
On-camera Interview with Star Michael Dudikoff
Original Theatrical Trailer

Running Scared 


Blu-ray and DVD Street Date: December 9, 2014
Blu-ray SRP: $29.95
DVD SRP: $19.95
1986/USA/English/English subtitles/Action Comedy/107 mins/R/2.35:1
Director: Peter Hyams
Cast: Billy Crystal, Gregory Hines, Steven Bauer, Jimmy Smits, Joe Pantoliano, Dan Hedaya, Darlanne Fluegel, Jon Gries

Synopsis: Peter Hyams (Busting) directs Gregory Hines (White Nights) and Billy Crystal (City Slickers) in the motion picture that asks the question, "How come the bad guys always drive the good cars?" The answer has them Running Scared in this lightning-paced comic thriller. Ray and Danny are the wild men of the Windy City's police force. The pair's unorthodox methods get results in a tough town - until they come up against Julio Gonzales (Jimmy Smits, TV's NYPD Blue), a smooth-talking drug dealer who is bucking to become Chicago's first Spanish Godfather. Trying to nail Gonzales, they blow a delicate undercover operation and are sent on a forced vacation to Key West - where they discover the good life of warm weather and warmer women. The new locale makes them decide to retire... but not before putting Gonzales behind bars first. The stellar cast includes Steven Bauer (Scarface), Darlanne Fluegel (To Live and Die in L.A.), Joe Pantoliano (The Fugitive), John Gries (Real Genius) and Dan Hedaya (Blood Simple).

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary by Director Peter Hyams
Featurette
Billy Crystal Outtakes
Selected Electronic Press Kit Scenes
Original Theatrical Trailer

'WHAT THE PEEPER SAW' (1972) - Exclusive Blu-ray Offer from VCI Entertainment !

WHAT THE PEEPER SAW (1972) 

In this stylish and atmospheric psychological thriller, a wealthy author's wife's comfortable life turns into a terrifying nightmare when her young stepson starts exhibiting strange behavior. The fiendish child is out to destroy all the trust and love between his father and stepmother with his surreptitious pranks. Horror unfolds as the boy devilishly plots to drive a wedge deeper and deeper between them. But is the child really a fiend, or is he the victim of his neurotic stepmother's paranoia
  
SRP: $29.99
WEB PRICE: $19.99

ONLY AVAILABLE THROUGH www.vcientertainment.com or by calling 800-331-4077


Cast: Britt Ekland, Hardy Kruger, Harry Andrews,Mark Lester, Lilli Palmer 
Directed by: James Kelly
Produced by: Graham Harris
Written by: Andrea Bianchi, Erich Kröhnke, Bautista Lacasa, Trevor Preston
Cinematography by: Luis Cuadrado, Harry Waxman
Music by: Stelvio Cipriani

SPECS
Blu-ray | 1 DISC | 95 minutes | 1972 | Color | English language | English subtitles | Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1) | Dolby Digital Mono | All

FEATURES: 
- Original Theatrical Trailer
- Original TV Teaser Spot

Scream Factory Presents 'Supernova' on Blu-ray January 13, 2015


SCREAM FACTORY™ PRESENTS

SUPERNOVA

ON BLU-RAY JANUARY 13, 2015

In the farthest reaches of space, something has been waiting…

Scream Factory has announced the release of sci-fi thriller Supernova on January 13, 2015. Arriving for the first time on Blu-ray, this release comes complete with bonus content, featuring The Making of Supernova¸ with new interviews with actors Lou Diamond Phillips and Robert Forster, producer Daniel Chuba and filmmaker Jack Sholder.

Beyond comprehension, beyond imagination and beyond the deepest regions of this galaxy...life as we know it is about to end! James Spader (The Blacklist), Angela Bassett (American Horror Story) , Lou Diamond Phillips (Bats),  Robert Forster (Jackie Brown), Peter Facinelli (Twilight) and Robin Tunney (The Craft) star in this terrifying sci-fi thriller.

In the farthest reaches of deep space, the medical vessel Nightingale keeps a lonely vigil for those in trouble. When a frantic cry for help pierces the void, the crew responds with a near fatal, hyper-space dimension jump into the gravitational pull of a dying star. The disabled ship rescues a shuttlecraft containing a mysterious survivor and a strange alien artifact. Now the crew must unravel a chilling secret and escape the nearby imploding star before the rapidly forming supernova blasts them and the entire galaxy into oblivion!

Bonus Features:
· The Making of Supernova featuring new interviews with actors Lou Diamond Phillips and Robert Forster, producer Daniel Chuba and filmmaker Jack Sholder
· Deleted Scenes
· Alternate Ending
· Theatrical Trailer

METRO-GOLDWYN-MAYER PICTURES presents
A SCREENLAND PICTURES/HAMMERHEAD Production
JAMES SPADER ANGELA BASSETT “SUPERNOVA” ROBERT FORSTER LOU DIAMOND PHILLIPS
PETER FACINELLI ROBIN TUNNEY WILSON CRUZ Music by DAVID WILLIAMS Special Visual Effects and Digital Animation by DIGITAL DOMAIN
Costume Designer BOB RINGWOOD Film Editors MICHAEL SCHWEITZER MELISSA KENT
Production Designer MAREK DOBROWOLSKI Director of Photography LLOYD AHERN II A.C.E.
Executive Producer RALPH S. SINGLETON Produced by ASH R. SHAH DANIEL CHUBA JAMIE DIXON
Story by WILLIAM MALONE and DANIEL CHUBA Screenplay by DAVID CAMPBELL WILSON Directed by THOMAS LEE

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

THE THING ON THE DOORSTEP (2014)

THE THING ON THE DOORSTEP (2014) 

Label: Leomark Studios
Duration: 89 mins
Region Code: 0 NTSC 

Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
Video: Anamoprhic widescreen

Director: Tom Gliserman
Cast: David Bunce, Susan Cicarelli-Caputo, Mary Jane Hansen



"It is true that I have just sent six bullets through the head of my best friend, and yet I hope to show by this statement that I am not his murderer."... so begins this low-budget adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's THE THING ON THE DOORSTEP from director Tom Gliserman. 


We have Daniel Upton (David Bruce) narrating a story the possible possession or maybe just mental illness of his best friend Edward Derby (Rob Dalton) whom after marrying hypnotist Asenath Waite (Mary Jane Hansen) with whom he moves into a dilapidated mansion and becomes a bit enigmatic. Upton upon noticing these changes in his old friend's behavior he attempts to find out exactly what is happening but cannot begin to imagine what secrets await in the darkness. 


The story stays pretty damn true to the original short story written by Lovecraft in 1933 with only a few subtle changes to the setting and story and it makes for quite a compelling watch for the those who can appreciate a low budget slow-burn such as it is. 


The visual aesthetic appears to be somewhat limited and the filmmaker has opted to go with a slightly soft image favoring green hues and it suits the Lovecraftian tale quite nicely, giving it an eerie quality. Director Tom Gliserman handles editing and director of photography duties on the film and I enjoyed his framing of the scenes, proving low budget does not necessarily mean cheap looking. 


David Bunce does a fine job as Daniel Upton and at times brought to mind Paul Giamatti with his performance anchoring the film for me, at times the dreamy atmosphere could have lost me but his quest to save his friend kept me plugged in from beginning to end even though I had read the source material and new the ending.


Not a groundbreaking film but a damn decent Lovecraft adaptation with some good atmosphere and solid performances. Your mileage may vary depending on your tolerance for low budget filmmaking but I found this to be a compelling and creepy Lovecraft tale. 


IN THE LAND OF THE CANNIBALS (2003)

IN THE LAND OF THE CANNIBALS (2003)

Label: Intervision Picture Corp
Region Code: 1 NTSC
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 91 Minutes
Video: Full Frame (1.33:1 )
Audio: English Dolby Digital Stereo
Director: Bruno Mattei
Cast: Claudio Morales, Lou Randall, Cindy Jelic Matic

Shot back to back with MONDO CANNIBAL in the Philippines this is another cannibal film from Italian sleaze-master Bruno Mattei and largely rips-off CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST yet again. This time around Mattei has created a genre mash-up of Italian cannibal films and the testosterone fueled action films of the 80s - most notably PREDATOR.  

A team of commandos are sent to the South American jungle to rescue the daughter who has fallen prisoner to - you guessed it - a tribe of cannibals. There's just not a lot new under the sun here but as a fun mash-up shot on the cheap there's some fun to be had. Masculine soldiers armed to the teeth up against hordes of cannibal tribesman who aren't quite prepared for what they're about to encounter.


This one is not as gut-churning with the cannibalism as MONDO CANNIBAL and instead is quite action-packed with loads of testosterone fueled gun battles and acts of sweaty machismo pouring off the screen. Thing borrowed from PREDATOR: A group of commandos flown by helicopter to a hostile territory - check. A musclebound white commando - check. A musclebound black commando - check. An indigenous tracker - check. Arm severed while shooting machine gun - check. Scorpion stabbed with survival knife - check. Watching this I laughed to myself at just how much stupid and fun it was turning out to be, while certainly not original or keenly directed there's no denying the pure entertainment value of this genre mash-up.


Claudio Morales from MONDO CANNIBAL reappears here as a morally challenged jungle guide tasked with leading the commandos through the jungle providing a lot of exposition as he explains the strange tribal rituals and cannibal etiquette we witness. Also returning are Cindy Matic as the politician's daughter turned white cannibal queen who dances drugged-up and topless in a few choice scenes. 


Shot in the Philippines which makes for a decent substitute for South America jungle and Mattei makes nice use of the locations squeezing as much production value out of it as he can on a limited budget. The gore is not front and center but we do get some gruesome cannibal corpses and bloodletting throughout - staying true to the cannibal film aesthetic we do get a brief scene of animal cruelty as a snake is killed onscreen and rather needlessly as that so be prepared for that. 

I kept hoping right up till the end that there would be an alien life form thrown into the mix but it didn't happen. No aliens with infrared vision and shoulder-mounted lasers appeared but as a cannibal-action mash-up this is a damn fine piece of trash cinema and a thoroughly entertaining watch. 

MONDO CANNIBAL (2003)


MONDO CANNIBAL (2003) 


Label: Intervision Picture Corp
Region Code: 1
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 90 Minutes
Video: 4:3 Full Frame (1.33:1 )
Audio: English Dolby Digital Stereo
Director: Bruno Mattei
Cast: Claudio Morales, Cindy Matic, Helena Wagner 

Infamous Italian exploitation director Bruno Mattei was making sleazy movies straight up until his death in 2007 at the ripe old age of seventy-six. These later years found the director churning out familiar gut-munching gore and sleaze but on a smaller shot-on-digital budget. Lucky for is Intervision Picture Corp have just released two of his late-era cannibal films for the first-time in the US!

One of these is the sensationally re-titles MONDO CANNIBAL (2003) wherein driven TV reporter Grace Forsyte (Helene Wagner) finds her weekly ratings plummeting in light of competition from more sensational tabloid programs. In a last ditch effort to pull her ratings out of the toilet she enlists the help of a scumbag jungle guide Bob Manson (Claudio Morales) travelling to the jungles of South America to capture the gut-munching exploits of the indigenous people. Along for the ride are a cameraman and a busty blond assistant played by Cindy Matic. 


Once on location in the jungle the crew find that the poor indigenous tribes want nothing to do with cannibalism as the unscrupulous reporter and her scumbag cohorts commit a string of unsavory atrocities upon them. The film quite unashamedly rips-off Deodato's CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST from start to finish, Mattei manages to squeeze in pretty much everything from that film into this shot-on-video cheapie, even the scenes of TV execs back in the US viewing the vile footage captured by the crew That Mattei would shamelessly steal the premise of an entire film should surprise absolutely no one, the man was a one-man copyright menace with a camera crew and he provided a string of pilfered exploitation throughout the 70s and 80s with such films as HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD (1980) and RATS - NIGHTS OF TERROR (1984). Not an original idea in the bunch but they're just so much fun and filmed with a genuine gusto that it's hard not to enjoy.


With this one we have an endless parade of gut-munching, rape, murder and exploitation of the indigenous people.  The crew is willing to set fire to an entire village in the name of capturing a few sensational images to drive viewer ratings. The entire film is really just regurgitating the who-are-the-real-savages question raised by the superior films which came before it. A trashy slice of cannibal fun from dripping with enough guts, gore and nudity to please fans of this particular brand of exploitation cinema. Surprisingly the film really captures the sleazy aesthetic of the cannibal films from the genres glory days, and while he shot-on-digital images won't win any awards for cinematography it fully delivers the cannibal goods from start to finish with some great locations shot in the Philippines. 


The cast is damn decent with Claudio Morales as the guide who begins the film as the moral compass but is quickly drawn into the cynical world of TV personality played by Helena Wagner who turns in a decent performance as the unscrupulous reporter who will do anything to drive her TV ratings. Of course all the performances are cranked-up to ten and I wouldn't have it any other way, cannibal films were never really known for subtlety. Aside from some requisite indigenous nudity both the attractive Helena Wagner and Cindy Matic offer up some bare-chested nudity to enjoy and it was fun to see each of the culprits .


SPECIAL FEATURES: 

- Trailer (2 Minutes) 

VERDICT:

MONDO CANNIBAL (2003) is short on inspiration and long on gut-munching gore making this shot-on-video cannibal entry from Bruno Mattei a bit rough and unsavory - which suits me just fine. Not having been familiar with Mattei's post-80s filmography I went into it not expecting much from such a recent shot-on-video production but I walked away from it thoroughly entertained and surprised just how authentic to the vintage cannibal films this was - loaded with gore, guts and vintage Mattei sleaziness!

A heads-up that in early 2015 Intervision are releasing Bruno Mattei’s zombie swan songs: ZOMBIES – THE BEGINNING and ISLAND OF THE LIVING DEAD plus the women-in-prison film THE JAIL – A WOMEN’S HELL.