Review: Death Screams
Blu-ray: Death Screams (1982)
Anyway, onto the movie…
Beginning with a young couple making out on a motorcycle (certainly makes a change from the usual “groping in cars” scenario), they are brutally killed and their bodies fall into the adjacent river.
This is not the last you see of the dead couple, as intermittently throughout the movie they are shown floating unseen downstream…until of course they inevitably bump into a young woman skinny dipping who has to run screaming out of the water for yet another obligatory nude scene.
The main characters are high school students and all live in small town America, and as always in these movies are played by actors whose high school years are definitely behind them.
They are the usual array of people seen in low budget 80’s slashers…the handsome jock, the annoying twat who thinks he’s constantly funny, the shy girl, the slutty girl, the ‘weird’ kid who everyone takes the piss out of. So the game while watching of course is to guess (A) In which order they are going to be killed, and (B) Who is doing the killing.
After the initial killing at the very beginning, a large chunk of the running time is spent with these characters as they go about their day to day lives, and while the acting is never award winning, there’s a certain charm to them all which kept me entertained even while nothing very much was happening.
There is of course the usual “WTF” scenes that I love in low budget movies, a prime example being one character who is shot with an arrow, and instead of running where people are for help, stumbles to an abandoned merry-go-round, gets on one of the wooden horses, acts a bit surprised when it starts to spin, and then even more surprised when a plastic bag is put over their head to kill them…doesn’t even bother to poke a breathing hole in the bag with their fingers either!
The majority of the deaths come in the final 15 minutes, and while not up to the gory standard of a lot of 80’s slasher movies, are still good enough to make you smile…if watching people being beheaded is your “smile” type of scene of course!
Slow paced and as corny as the Green Giant’s underwear, Death Screams has an innate charm that makes it well worth watching…especially when accompanied by the following great special features.
LIMITED EDITION CONTENTS
- Brand new 2K restoration from an archival 35mm print
- Original uncompressed mono audio
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
- Brand new audio commentary with producer Charles Ison and special effects artist Worth Keeter moderated by filmmaker Phil Smoot
- Brand new audio commentary with The Hysteria Continues
- All the Fun of the Scare: The Making of Death Screams – newly-produced making-of documentary featuring interviews with producer Charles Ison, special effects artist Worth Keeter, writer Paul Elliott, actors Hanns Manship and Curt Rector, actor/producer’s assistant/assistant supervising editor Sharon Alley and actor/talent wrangler Robert “Billy Bob” Melton
- TV and Radio Spots
- Image Galleries
- House of Death Alternate VHS Opening Titles
- Two versions of the screenplay under the original title of Night Screams [BD-ROM content]
- Reversible sleeve featuring original artwork and a newly-commissioned reimagining of the original VHS artwork by Sadist Art Designs presented with die-cut slipcover
- Fully-illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing by Brian Albright
Review by Dave from a disc kindly supplied by Arrow Films via Fetch Publicity.