Raisin: Series 2
(1978/with DVD/*both MVD Blu-ray)/Gutterballs
(2019/Umbrella PAL Import DVD)/Zombi
(2019/Film Movement DVD)
B/B+/C & C-/B/B-/B- Sound: B/B+/C-/B/B-/B- Extras:
C/B/B/C/D/C+ Main Programs: B+/C/C/C/C+/C+
Parts You Lose
Import DVD is now only available from our friends at Umbrella
Entertainment in Australia, can only play on Blu-ray, 4K and DVD
players that can handle the PAL DVD format and can be ordered from
the link below.
are some new thrillers, from the classy to the exploitive...
on M.C. Beaton's best selling mystery novels, Agatha
is about an over the hill PR executive who retired from London to
Cotswolds, however where ever she goes she finds herself in another
bizarre mystery murder and along with her friends they solve what the
police fail to solve. Agatha
Raisin: Series 2
offers three more puzzles for her and you) to solve.
Raisin is an over the hill PR witch doctor who can sell anything and
make it into a profit, however she spends more time as a private
detective solving murders than working. She often solves the murder
through gossip and unorthodox methods and along with her posse of
friends more often annoy the police by solving the murder before they
do. But because she does solve the cases she is somewhat famous (and
the town celebrity) so the police cannot stop her or her friends from
interfering on the investigation scenes.
is accompanied by James and Sir Charles who serve as her love
interests (who fight over her constantly) and at they times sleep
with other women to get insider information, Bill is a Japanese
British man is her inside man with the police, Roy is Agatha's gay
best friend, and along with Gemma and Sarah they serve as Agatha's
gossip girls in weeding out all the town gossip.
was another British murder mystery series, but it was like a cross
between Martha Stewart and Scooby-Doo, never really understood why
the bad guys always had to explain their reasons for killing after
they get caught. It was comical to watch a bunch of gossiping old
ladies solve a murder case with an inept police task force.
anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image and the lossy Dolby Digital
5.1 sound are as good as they can get for the older format and up to
Acorn's higher-than-many standards. Extras include Agatha
Raisin: Behind the Scenes,
Wizard of Evesham
- Agatha suspects a salon's hairstylist is secretly blackmailing rich
women, but when he is found dead, who really killed him?
Fairies of Fryfam
- Agatha goes for a getaway vacation in a town that believes in
fairies, but suddenly find herself frame for theft and murder.
- The new town curate is found murdered and turns out to be a thief
and gigolo who has been targeting rich women and Agatha's friend
Sarah is the prime suspect.
is a dark voodoo horror film featuring James Earl Jones in a sinister
role. The film takes place on a Greek Island where a treasure hunter
(Jones) unearths an ancient sea monster in hibernation. In turn, the
sacrificing of virgins becomes once again necessary and a strange
cult emerges. A young couple, Neil and Sherry (Jose Weller and Lila
Kedrova), also arrive on the island in search of Neil's missing
sister, Madeline, who isn't the same as she used to be, as she has
been brainwashed upon discovering a cave.
film also features Lila Kedrova, Mary Louise Weller, Martin Kove, and
Lydia Cornell with direction by Richard Jefferies (1988's
It is written by Nico Mastorakis (Island
is presented in 1080p high definition with a widescreen aspect ratio
of 1.85:1 and an original uncompressed mono audio mix. Richard
Jeffries utilizes underwater photography in some scenes that are
heavily reminiscent of Jaws,
however, the monster here isn't as terrifying. This is a nice scan
and there's lots of detail in the image here, however, there's a bit
of noise in the total blacks in some of the night scenes.
new audio commentary with director/co-writer Richard Jefferies
interview with producer/co-writer Nico Mastorakis
sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham
Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Mike Gingold
has an interesting plot and a fine performance by James Earl Jones,
but is a bit campy though it tries real hard to be serious. It has a
little bit of a H.P. Lovecraft vibe and should have gone more in that
darker and more profound direction.
Li (not the actual Bruce Lee, pronounced 'lee' by some and 'lie' by
others, the latter to distinguish between the two with no insult
intended) stars in the classic film Dynamo
(1978), the film is part of the Bruceploitation film movement, in
which there were close to a hundred films. When Bruce Lee tragically
died, the Hong Kong film market mourned his loss by making him
immortal in countless features starring different Bruce Lee clones
that do their best to mimic the legendary master's work. This
particular clone, Bruce Li, has been hailed by many as being the best
of the bunch and this film, Dynamo,
is a lot of fun to watch.
film also stars Feng Ku, James Griffith, Mary Han, Steve Sandor, and
film acknowledges Bruce Lee's actual death using some archival
footage near the beginning, which I found pretty cool. The plot is
pretty simple. A badass martial artist is cast to be a Bruce Lee
lookalike. At first he is hesitant, but after getting in fights with
multiple dudes and prevailing, he becomes more confident. Let's face
it, this movie is more about the fight scenes than anything else and
in this regard, it certainly delivers!
unfortunately looks a bit rough here, despite being advertised as a
'new 2K restoration of the original 35mm English print' with a not
very detailed transfer. The film is presented in 1080p high
definition on Blu-ray with a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.35 X 1 and
a LPCM 2.0 mono mix with English dubs and with optional English
subtitles. There's also a Spanish language track too, which I was
surprised to not see the native language mix.
image isn't too clear and particularly looks bad in darker moments
and the sound is at times peaking and a bit distorted. While one
can't expect too much for a film of this nature, this still is a
lackluster presentation. Compression issues are more evident in the
DVD version, which is also included in the mix, but that comes to be
expected. Some signs of print scratches and wear, but all in all, a
better scan needs done here. Though watching a film like this in bad
quality seems appropriate, I was still expecting a sharper image and
better overall. Yikes.
16mm Alternate Version
Insert booklet with linear notes by Michael Worth
(2008) gets a second life on Blu-ray courtesy of Unearthed Films. A
graphic play on the I
Spit on Your Grave
revenge formula, the film takes place mainly in a bowling alley where
a woman is graphically gang raped by a group of jerky jocks. The
next night, a crew of (most the same) horny foul mouthed jerks
(responsible for that incident) return to the same bowling alley,
only this time a vicious masked killer takes revenge by brutally
murdering them in horrific ways. Could it be the woman who was
assaulted... or someone else?
film stars Nathan Witte, Mihola Terzic, Candice Lewald, Trevor Gemma,
Scott Alonzo, Nathan Dashwood, Dan Ellis, and Ryan Nicholson.
film is definitely a member of the 'underground' film movement and
has more graphic and extreme violence than most cult movie fair. In
short, there's lots of nudity, bad language, and intense gore. While
the plot has more than one holes and some of the acting is iffy at
times, the underground film succeeds in being a graphic dark gore
fest that will make most gag. There aren't any relatable characters
here and some of the dialogue will be a bit crude to today's
standards, especially if you're delicate on the transgender issue.
(In that regard, this film is a bit dated.) A second film was
2: Balls Deep,
but Nicholson tragically died in 2019 before it could be completed.
is presented in 1080p high definition on Blu-ray disc with a
widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 (original aspect ratio is 1.78:1)
and an audio mix in English LPCM. The film was obviously shot on
video of some kind with a lower budget and so with that taken in
consideration, it looks fine on Blu-ray, which I believe this is its
first time in HD. If you're a fan of the film then getting this
edition is a no brainer as the image is substantially better than
with the late Director Ryan Nicholson
the Balls: Making of Gutterballs
Parts You Lose
an interesting thriller that fell under the radar last year for
reasons unknown... as it's not too bad. The film has a strong cast
with Aaron Paul (Breaking
Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Birds
Scoot McNairy (Batman
and a great child actor Danny Murphy. The film is directed by
Christopher Cantwell (the underrated TV series Halt
and Catch Fire).
thriller revolves around a kind deaf child (Murphy), whom by chance
finds an escaped convict (Paul) hiding outside his snowy home. The
boy gives the injured criminal shelter in secret in the family's barn
and the two form an unlikely bond. However, once the police get
involved and his family discovers their son's dangerous new friend,
things come to a heated conclusion.
Parts You Lose
is presented here in standard definition on DVD with a widescreen
aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and a nice sounding lossy 5.1 Dolby Digital
surround mix. The film is nicely photographed and produced, however,
compression issues native with the format intrude.
French award winning drama, Zombi
is an interesting slow burner based on a true life account of a
zombified persons as a result of Haitian voodoo. The film is an
interesting exploration into the young female psyche and some great
scenes involving voodoo rituals I'd compare to VVitch
(reviewed elsewhere on this site).
film stars Louise Labeque, Wislanda Louimat, and Katiana Milfort with
direction by Bertrand Bonello. A teenage girl Fanny (Labeque) makes
friends with Melissa (Louimat), who moved from Haiti to France after
the 2010 Haiti earthquake. It is revealed that Melissa's family is
associated with voodoo culture.
is presented here in standard definition on DVD disc with a
widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and a lossy French 5.1 surround mix
with English subtitles. The film was obviously shot digitally and
could be enhanced with a 1080p presentation to avoid some of the
compression issues here evident in the aging format.
Child of the Sky,
Directed by Philip Montgomery (16 min)
for other Film Movement films
a feature length audio commentary by the Director Bertrand Bonello
Parts You Lose
Umbrella import DVD, go to this link for it and other hard to find
Ricky Chiang (Agatha)