Monday, April 23, 2018

S.F. Brownrigg Dbl. Feature on BLU


   VCI has announced a Blu/DVD double feature for two of S.F. Brownrigg's low budget Texas horror oddities for release in HD on Aug. 14. Working in Texas during the 70's (he'd cut his teeth working for bottom-of-the-barrel auteur Larry Buchanan) Brownrigg made a fascinating series of horror thrillers that played under various titles on triple and double features that snaked through the drive-in circuit.
    Usually featuring claustrophobic settings, dysfunctional families and close-ups of sweaty faces they've been fixtures and low budget labels and those multi-pack horror DVD ("50 Chillers for $9.95") and have been long over due for upgrade. DON'T LOOK IN THE BASEMENT (1973) has been the subject of a couple of blu-ray releases in the past couple of years and VCI's previous double feature DVD of that and DON'T OPEN THE DOOR (1975) were the best looking these vfilms have ever looked, so it'll be interesting to see what VCI's blu turns out to be. Here's hoping!





    

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

THE REINCARNATION OF PETER PROUD 1975



    Kino has released the final specs for their upcoming release of THE REINCARNATION OF PETER PROUD. Directed by J. Lee Thompson (THE GUNS OF NAVARONE) it was based on a bestselling book of the the time by Max Simon Elrich - who also wrote the screenplay for the film.
   Released in 1975 it's been long OOP on home video with only bootleg DVD's floating around all derived from the ancient VHS release. Kino will be releasing a new 4K transfer from Paramount along with a slew of extras.
   Although it does have its faults with a plot sometimes slipping into romantic melodrama it is a long missing and interesting piece of 70's horror. One of the best things going for it is the presence of actor Michael Sarrizan. One of the most under rated actors of his time he seemed to have an infallible knack for picking interesting movies such as THEY SHOOT HORSES DON'T THEY, HARRY IN YOUR POCKET and THE FLIM-FLAM MAN and bringing a unique presence to each role.
    The film also stars the wonderful Margo Kidder (who that same year was also in 92 IN THE SHADE and THE GREAT WALDO PEPPER) and a drop dead gorgeous Jennifer O'Neill.




Friday, March 23, 2018

FRANKENSTEIN'S BLOODY TERROR in 3D



   Garagehouse has announced some more dates for their 35mm 3D print of FRANKENSTEIN'S BLOODY TERROR. Originally titled LA MARCA DEL HOMBRE LOBO, it was the first of Paul Naschy's Walemar Daninsky films featuring the lycanthropy curded nobleman. Directed by Enrique López Eguiluz and written by Naschy (under his real name Jacinto Molina) it was shot in Hi-Fi Stereo 70 3-D.
   Picked up for American distributing by Al Adamson had it converted to 35mm over & under 3D by optical & special effects artist Linwood Dunn. Needing a "Frankenstein" co-feature for his DRACULA VS. FRANKESTEIN, Adamson slapped an animated prologue on the movie tying the Frankenstein family in with lycanthropy and titles it FRANKENSTEIN'S BLOODY TERROR (even though Frankenstein never actually appears in the movie).
    The following three showings are announced and since one is in my neck of the woods, I'm stoked!

Miami, FL - Nite Owl Theater - Part of the “Tales of the Third Dimension” series - March 28-April 1 

Huntington, NY - Retro Picture Show at the Cinema Arts Centre - “Terror! In 3D” triple feature (w/ FRIDAY THE 13TH 3D & AMITYVILLE 3D) - Friday, April 13th.


Durham, NC - Carolina Theater - Part of October’s Splatterflix series — October 12-13. 


Thursday, March 22, 2018

Happy (Belated !!) Birthday Russ Meyer

    


    With much apologies a belated Birthday & Remembrance goes out for the big-bust king Russ Meyer. Born on March 21 1922 he served in the U.S. Army during WWII as a combat cameraman. Working as a still photographer in Hollywood and as a photographer for the early years of Playboy he made his first "nudie-cutie" in 1959 THE IMMORAL TEAS in 1959.
    During the coming decades he wrote/produced and directed such classics as FASTER, PUSSYCAT KILL! KILL! (1965), MUDHONEY (1965), SUPERVIXENS (1975) and BENEATH THE VALLEY OF ULTRA-VIXENS (1979) among others most featuring dominant big breasted woman and weak ineffectual men. Always fiercely independent in the early 70's he hooked up with 20th Century Fox which spawned the gloriously over-the top BEYOND THE VALLEY OF THE DOLLS ("This is my happening and it freaks me out !!") in 1970 followed up by SEVEN MINUTES in 1971.
    He sadly passed in 2004, but left behind a magnificent (in more ways then one) body of work. He is sorely missed.


  
    

Monday, March 19, 2018

WHO CAN KILL A CHILD ? From Mondo Macabro

    


     Next month Mondo Macabro releases classic piece of Spanish horror WHO CAN KILL A CHILD ? from 1976 on Blu. Directed by Narciso Ibáñez Serrador (who also directed the fantastic THE HOUSE THAT SCREAMED aka LA RESIDENCIA from 1969) this is a great work from film from the golden age of Spanish horror.
   Also known as ISLAND OF THE DAMNED (and a variety of other titles), the plot concerns an English couple (Lewis Fiander & Prunella Ransome) who while vacationing in Spain decide to take a side trip to an isolated island off the coast. Upon arriving they find the island populated entirely by children and soon discover the shocking truth of what happened to the adults. While the film looks ahead a bit to Stephen King's CHILDREN OF THE CORN the film goes to places unimaginable involving the children including sexual sadism and rape along with the expected bloodshed and a still jaw-dropping climax.
   Mondo's release as per their usual practice will be initially releasing a limited edition followed by a standard retail release. There's a great batch of extras and here's the full scoop from their Facebook page:

The Region Free disc itself will feature:

*Brand new 4K restoration from the original negative
*Two different English language tracks - the Spanish export version and the US"ISLAND OF THE *DAMNED dub- as well as the Spanish track with optional English subtitles
*Two options for the opening credits; the longer "mondo"-style opening of the Spanish/export version and the shorter US ISLAND OF THE DAMNED opening 
*Brand new audio commentary by Kat Ellinger and Samm Deighan of the Daughters of Darkness podcast
*Brand new interview with horror historian and critic Kim Newman
*Archival Spanish TV documentary on the film
*Archival interviews with director Narciso Ibáñez Serrador and cinematographer Jose Luis Alcaine
*Trailers and radio spots




Tuesday, March 13, 2018

FUGITIVE GIRLS 1974 on Blu




    After his directing career petered out, Ed Wood Jr. turned to writing and hooking up with fellow scribe Stephen C. Apostolof (working under the name "A.C. Stephens") they collaborated on seven film projects with Stephens directing. Starting off with the infamous ORGY OF THE DEAD from 1965 and concluding with 1972's THE SNOW BUNNIES they put forth this effort in 1974 - their second to last. 
   Taking its cue from the glut of woman-in-prison movies that proliferated during the 70's (in particular the Roger Corman New World Filipino productions), it was also known as FIVE LOOSE WOMEN and remains one of the duos more over the top productions - consequently making it the "best" (so to speak...). 
    For the most part a vehicle for sexploitation goddess Rene Bond (here with fading in & out southern accent as hardened inmate Toni) who befriends newcomer convict Dee (Margie Lanier) after Dee has been set up to take the fall for a liquor store robbery initiated by her sleazy boyfriend and then sent to typically grungy female prison. Escaping with four fellow prisoners they embark on crime spree in route to a cache of hidden loot whose whereabouts is known only by Toni.
    With the barest & flimsiest excuse for a plot the movie exists only for various excuses to get the three leads undressed (including a protracted "lice inspection"!) with the crime element of the plot coming to a screeching halt every 10 minutes or so for the bare skin quota to kick in. Moving between both soft and hardcore during her career cute & bubbly Bond was one of the prettiest women in the early 70's sex genre and looks gorgeous here. 
   Vinegar Syndrome's recent combo Blu/DVD package is taken from the original camera negative and presentation wise puts many major Hollywood films from the same period to shame.





    



Saturday, March 10, 2018

SEVEN 1979 Andy Sidaris on Blu !!


   If you were a devotee of late night cable during the 90's there was a couple of things that were a given - soft core sex and Andy Sidaris films. Featuring a bevy of explosions, guns, exotic locals and Playboy Playmates in various states of (un)dress his films are sorely in need of an upgrade from the various budget multi-packs that are out there. 
   Kino comes to the rescue in May with a Blu of Andy's second film SEVEN from 1979. Featuring the great William Smith, Barbara Leigh (almost Vampirella for Hammer), Susan Kiger and Reggie Nader it will released with it's uncut (!!) 110 min. version intact. 
    Like Russ Meyer, Andy made most of his movies as an independent, but also like Meyer he did a couple for major studios with SEVEN and his first STACEY being distributed by MGM - which explains its acquisition by Kino (with hopefully STACEY to follow).