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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Thriller > Blackout (1978)

Blackout (1978)

 

Picture: C     Sound: C-     Extras: C-     Film: B-

 

 

Blackout (1978) is a serviceable little B movie made to exploit New York City's famous 1977 blackout.  Produced in Canada (Ivan Reitman was one of the executive producers before he hit it big the following year with Meatballs), Blackout played mostly drive-ins and grindhouses in 1978-79, the kind of now obsolete venues where such a film would have felt right at home.

 

It's about what happens when a storm causes a city-wide power failure at night, while a group of criminally insane men are being transported from a mental institution to prison.  When the power goes out, four of the most dangerous ones escape and hole up in a nearby apartment building.  Led by soft-spoken mad bomber Robert Carradine, the quartet of criminals steal from and terrorize the residents including Ray Milland, Belinda J. Montgomery and June Allyson, while a dedicated cop (Jim Mitchum, Robert's son) risks his life to save them.  With all of this excitement, hopefully Miss Allyson remembered to wear her Depends.

 

While I'm grateful that even long-forgotten exploitation films like Blackout are now becoming available on DVD, the anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 picture quality is fair at best, and there's definitely problems with background hiss and shrill sound that cuts out completely for a second or two three times during the movie via the Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono track.  The special features include a photo gallery and biographies of the lead actors and director Eddy Matalon (for anyone wondering what ever became of Eddy).

 

 

-   Chuck O'Leary


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