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Category:    Home > Reviews > Horror > Supernatural > Monster > Murder > Mystery > Drama > Surrealism > Slasher > Haunted House > Exploita > Amityville Uprising (2022/Lionsgate DVD)/The Dry (2020/IFC Blu-ray)/Santa Sangre 4K (1989/Severin 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray + CD*)/Superhost (2021/RLJ Blu-ray)/Surf Nazis Must Die! (1987/Troma Blu

Amityville Uprising (2022/Lionsgate DVD)/The Dry (2020/IFC Blu-ray)/Santa Sangre 4K (1989/Severin 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray + CD*)/Superhost (2021/RLJ Blu-ray)/Surf Nazis Must Die! (1987/Troma Blu-ray/*both MVD)

4K Ultra HD Picture: A Picture: B-/B+/B+/B+/B Sound: B-/B+/A/B+/B Extras: C-/C+/A+/B/C Films: C-/C/A+/C/C

Wild genre films of all kinds are up next...

An ultra low budget zombie movie where acid rain is the cause of the outbreak, Amityville Uprising (2022) is a low budget direct to video effort that has some cool zombie moments, but not much else going for it. Directed by Thomas Churchill, Amityville Uprising doesn't really have anything to do with the Amityville Horror series and instead just uses the name for its general setting and for marketing purposes. Some of the creative choices made, like ugly looking digitally animated title cards for each character, the digital 'acid' rain itself, and much of the camera placement screams amateur.

The film stars Scott C. Rue, Michael Ferguson, Troy Fromin, and Joycelyne Lew.

It is all is presented in anamorphically enhanced, standard definition on DVD with a 1.78:1 widescreen aspect ratio and a 5.1 Dolby Digital mix, both of which are of the norm for the format. The film is shot okay, but feels ultra low budget and not very cinematically crafted at all.

No extras except trailers.

Amityville Uprising is a low budget effort that has some fun zombie moments but isn't original at all, and has a very ultra low budget feel to it that it can't escape.

Eric Bana stars in The Dry (2020), which is pretty much what it title implies... a dry, boring, film. Revolving around the drowning of a teenage girl that happened in his teen years, Bana's character returns to his hometown where things have changed and he is still haunted by this young murder he witnessed. The film is based on a best selling novel by author Jane Harper.

The film also stars Genevieve O'Reilly, Keir O'Donnell, John Polson, and Julia Blake.

The Dry is presented on Blu-ray disc with a 1080p transfer, an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit) lossless mix. The film cuts in and out of cinematically shot moments and others that are supposed to be part of the show that they are making. Overall, the filmmaking is professional.

Special Features include: Homecoming, Page to Screen, Jane Harper's Day on Set, Two Timelines, Falk and Gretchen and Filming in the Wimmera Region.

Santa Sangre 4K (1989) is a film that is beautiful, strange, and operatic. With it, Alejandro Jodorowsky marries sublime visuals, cunning storytelling, and a killer soundtrack to craft a masterpiece. While Dario Argento first elevated the slasher into high art with Suspiria, here Jodorowsky pokes and prods, finding ways to outmaneuver the master.

The story centers on Fenix, who grew up with his mother and father in a traveling circus. He is left shattered after a violent confrontation between his parents - the result of which leaves at least one of them dead. Now an adult, we find that this trauma has left him locked away in an institution. One night, he hears the voice of his mother calling out to him. He escapes, and a string of murders begins to occur.

The films and filmmakers who have impacted the look and tone of Santa Sangre are numerous. Jodorowsky crafts a mosaic that draws from German expressionism, Fellini, Universal Monster movies, Italian Giallo, and beyond. This collision of styles results in a kaleidoscopic experience, complementary to the story on screen.

Video quality has improved much since the previous Severin Blu-ray from 2011, which now looks muted and gray by comparison. The new transfer reveals more vibrant colors and finer detail on the Blu-ray and UHD discs, with the latter edging out as the clear winner. The 4K disc is presented in 2160p (but without any form of HDR for some reason), the Blu-ray in 1080p; both with a 1.85:1 aspect ratio.

The sound quality is also excellent overall. This release features a newly mixed 5.1 DTS-HD English audio track, in addition to the 2.0 DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) Stereo lossless mixes found on the earlier release. Options for Spanish and Italian are available in DTS-HD 2.0 Mono.

Thankfully, all of the relevant bonus features from the 2011 disc are back again. That includes the full-length documentary, Forget Everything You Have Ever Seen - The World of Santa Sangre, and a commentary track with Jodorowsky and journalist Alan Jones. Adding to this, Severin has included several newly conducted interviews with Jodorowsky, producer Claudio Argento, and other vital crew members. Exclusive to the limited edition is a 10-track CD, which features selections from Simon Boswell's soundtrack and sounds as good as I t can in the older format.

Though the film is less abstract than
El Topo or The Holy Mountain (reviewed elsewhere on this site, including the new 4K transfers in the new box set from Arrow,) it retains the dreamlike nature of Jodorowsky's earlier works. Subjectively, it is his best film and certainly my personal favorite. The new edition from Severin is a marked improvement over their older release and comes highly recommended. Even if you haven't made the leap to 4K yet, the new transfer and multitude of fresh content is reason enough for owners of the previous edition to double-dip.

To see the older Blu-ray, you can go to our coverage of it at this link:


Filmed during the pandemic with a limited indie cast and crew is the new film from Shudder/RLJE: Superhost (2021). A half hour too long and with so so acting, the film has a decent enough premise. The film kind of lacks in charismatic leads that simply don't really defend or stand up for themselves at all for the lot of the film. The psycho killer herself is a bit too hammy and fake to be convincing, and a cameo performance by Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator and '80s scream queen) isn't enough to make the film really recommendable.

A couple - Teddy and Claire - have a web show that is dropping in the ratings. They decide to rent out a supposedly haunted 'airbnb' house for the weekend to make for an interesting episode of the show. Once they get to their rented weekend retreat, they come face to face with the homeowner, who is a psychotic girl with major mental problems.

Superhost has a fine presentation on Blu-ray disc with a 1080p transfer, an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit) lossless mix. The film cuts in and out of cinematically shot moments and others that are supposed to be part of the show that they are making. Overall, the filmmaking is professional.

Special Features:

Behind-the-Scenes of Superhost

Shooting in a Pandemic


Superhost Visual FX

Behind-the-Scenes Photo Gallery

and "Scaredycats" Episodes 1 & 2

Superhost has a decent concept but is held back by mediocre acting, weak leads, and one too many predictable twists. It would have done better making Barbara Crampton, a seasoned actress, to be the killer instead of the actress they went with too. Considering it was made during the pandemic, however, it's not totally bad. Just a one timer when it could have been more.

Only a company like Troma could release a film as ridiculous as Peter George's Surf Nazis Must Die! (1987), which is campy, cult, and ridiculous. A mix of Hill's The Warriors, A Clockwork Orange, and Mad Max, this indie film is super '80s and was made in a time when audiences weren't as easily offended as they are now. If you take it for what it is, the film is pretty funny in retrospect, but certainly geared towards those with a more cult taste in cinema than strictly mainstream.

Surf gangs are at either other's throats and business is as usual until the leader of the Surf Nazis - Adolf - kills an innocent man. When his elderly mother, to whom he just admitted into a nursing home, mourns the senseless killing of her son, she buys a gun and goes on a Surf Nazi killing rampage to avenge his death!

The first act of the film is dated and pretty terrible. All of the acting is so hammy and silly and there isn't much to draw the viewer in until the second act when the elderly mother character takes charge. A staple of its time and definitely a Troma film in every way imaginable.

The film stars Gail Neely, Robert Harden, Barry Brenner, Dawn Wildsmith, and Michael Sonye.

Surf Nazis is presented in 1080p on Blu-ray disc with an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a full frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mix, despite having room for a lossless soundtrack. The transfer restoration to HD here looks pretty good on the whole as the production was originally shot on film, with the exception of some of the shadows which have a lot of noise in them. If you are a fan, then the transfer itself isn't terrible by any means.

Special Features, many of which are of crappy SD quality and recycled from a previous release no doubt:

New Intro by Lloyd Kaufman, President of Troma Entertainment

Exclusive Interview with Director Peter George

Hang 10 on Set! Interview With Producer Robin Tinnell

Deleted Scenes

The Projection Booth Podcast (Featuring Special Guest, Peter George!)

Scenes From the Tromaville Cafe

The ''Soul of Troma''

Troma Promos: Radiation March & Indie Artists vs. Cartels

Troma NOW Promo: Gizzard Face II: Return of Gizzard Face!

Troma Short: BLOOD STAB

PLUS More #FanTOXIC Featurettes!

- David Milchick (4K) and James Lockhart



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