Galaxy of Terror (Blu-ray / DVD) - Dread Central
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Galaxy of Terror (Blu-ray / DVD)




Galaxy of Terror on Blu-ray and DVDReviewed by Uncle Creepy

Starring Sid Haig, Robert Englund, Edward Albert, Ray Walston, Robert Englund, Erin Moran, Grace Zabriskie, Taaffe O’Connell

Directed by Bruce D. Clark

Distributed by Shout! Factory

For many, many years Galaxy of Terror has only been available to serious collectors who bust their asses to make sure that whatever movie they’re seeking is lovingly burned onto a DVDr and placed into their collection. Why is it so hard to find? It may have something to do with the whole chick being violated by a giant maggot scene for starters. Folks tend to shy away from such subject matter as that. Thankfully, Shout! Factory has stepped in and not only given this flick an official release as part of its Roger Corman Collection, but a pretty friggin’ stellar one at that!

The story is simple, if not at times a bit convoluted. The future is here and its ruler, the glowy redhead known only as The Master, has sent a rescue ship to the planet Morganthus in search of the remains of some other explorers who encountered some pretty pissed off aliens when their ship crashed there.

Upon arrival our motley crew of space explorers, including Sid Haig, Robert Englund, Grace Zabriskie, and even Shortcake herself, Erin Moran, find the ship’s wreckage along with a giant pyramid-like structure that looks to be home to all manner of interstellar horrors. That’s right, kids, it’s hell on … well … not Earth for our wild bunch as whatever is existing on this planet has the power to manifest itself into whoever happens upon its greatest fear. And from there the body count piles up pretty damned high.

Galaxy of Terror on Blu-ray and DVDTruth be told, this is not a great movie by any of today’s standards, but it doesn’t have to be. There’s enough gore and sleaze to keep even the most jaded viewer thoroughly entertained, and for what the filmmakers lacked in budget, they more than made up for with ambition and imagination. At the end of the day Galaxy of Terror is a fun time, and that’s really all we could hope for from a film that features insect rape, is it not?

The DVD and the Blu-ray are home to prints of this flick that are literally to die for, and while of course the Blu edges out its standard definition cousin in terms of picture quality and sound, you really can’t miss either way. Especially since each package is home to the same set of stunning new special features put together by supplemental badass Michael Felsher and his crew at Red Shirt Pictures, some of whom are proud Dread Central alumni. We’re proud of ya, boys!

Things kick off with a lively commentary featuring star Taaffe O’Connell, creature effects guys Allan Apone and Alec Gillis, and moderator David DeCoteau. These folks have some tales to tell, and DeCoteau knows how to keep the conversation moving at a brisk pace.

Galaxy of Terror on Blu-ray and DVDThere’s also a bevy of behind-the-scenes featurettes that take us from production design to the film’s many visual effects though interviews, etc., and while good, they all pale in comparison to the crown supplemental jewel of this package, the hour-long documentary Tales from the Lumber Yard: The Making-of Galaxy of Terror. This bit of absolute goodness features anecdotes, stories, and more from all of the surviving key players with the exception of Erin Moran and now mega-director James Cameron, who served as the director of photography on this long buried gem. Of course the usual stuff like concept art and behind-the-scenes images are present and accounted for, but it’s the candidness of the participants that really keeps this one moving. No punches are pulled here, folks, as the interviewees simply let it all hang out in terms of what it was like not only making this flick but also working with Corman and Cameron. The results, I promise, are pretty damned amusing and nostalgic to boot.

Add on the screenplay, a kickass twelve-page essay by Rue Morgue’s former editor Jovanka Vuckovic, some massive photo galleries, and of course a trailer gallery; and we have one of the most extras stacked releases of the year.

The love and affection Shout! Factory puts into its products makes me wish the company was handling every DVD and Blu-ray release to come out. Still, they have a full enough slate ahead of them that’s littered with tons more horror movies waiting to creep into our collections. One thing’s for certain … it’s a great time to be a Roger Corman fan.

Special Features

  • Commentary with Cast and Crew
  • Tales from the Lumber Yard: The Making-of Galaxy of Terror featurette
  • New Worlds featurette
  • The Crew Of The Quest featurette
  • Planet Of Horrors featurette
  • Future King featurette
  • Old School featurette
  • Launch Sequence featurette
  • Extensive photo galleries
  • Theatrical trailer with commentary from writer/director Joel Olsen
  • Twelve page collectible booklet written by Jovanka Vuckovic
  • Original screenplay


    3 1/2 out of 5

    Special Features

    5 out of 5

    Discuss Galaxy of Terror in our forums!


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    Prodigy Review – This Kid Is Killer



    Starring Richard Neil, Savannah Liles

    Written and directed by Alex Haughey and Brian Vidal

    From the minds of Alex Haughey and Brian Vidal, Prodigy could have easily debuted as a stage play instead of an intimate sci-fi horror film delivered straight to your television. Told with a confident grasp, the story unfolds in only one location with two characters responsible for carrying the entire narrative. Good performances, sure-handed directing, and a solid script highlighting tense moments make the claustrophobic setting seem much bigger in scope. A little telekinesis thrown in to good effect and a creepy killer kid don’t hurt the momentum either.

    Under constant surveillance at a remote black site, an aging psychologist named Fonda (Neil) is tasked with assessing a dangerous young girl called Ellie (Liles), who is highly intelligent and possesses supernatural powers. Fonda attempts to inject some humanity into Ellie, but she is cold and calculating and seems to be toying with him at times and the onlookers watching from behind the glass. The back-and-forth between both characters is competitive and often riveting, with Ellie slowly revealing her abilities to her wide-eyed new audience. Wrapped up in a familiar setup, the decision to study or dissect this meta kid is the central question of Prodigy; but the execution of a simple premise is what keeps the story afloat.

    On a very small scale, Haughey and Vidal make the setting feel cinematic with crisp images and smart shot selections that help maintain the tension. There’s a strong backbone in place that allows both actors to bounce off of each other in a well-choreographed mental dance as the dangerous game they’re playing begins to unravel.

    Several scenes where Elle demonstrates her powers are the standouts in Prodigy with chairs and tables flying and glass breaking to great effect. These sequences diffuse some of the tension for a moment, only to fully explode late in the film when Elle’s emotions unleash. It’s only then that there has been any kind of breakthrough that could possibly help to save her life.

    That gets to the heart of the real question posed in Prodigy: Is an extraordinary life still worth saving if it threatens ordinary lives in the process? Also, does the fact that this potential weapon is housed inside the body and mind of a young, lonely girl make a difference to whether it should survive? These questions and how they’re answered make Prodigy a micro-budget standout in the indie horror genre well worth taking the time to rent this weekend if you’re not planning on attending a St. Patrick’s Day parade somewhere.

    Prodigy is now available to on iTunes, Amazon, and other On Demand platforms.

    • Prodigy


    The questions raised and how they’re answered make Prodigy a micro-budget standout in the indie horror genre well worth taking the time to rent this weekend if you’re not planning on attending a St. Patrick’s Day parade somewhere. 

    User Rating 0 (0 votes)


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    Cold Hell (Die Hölle) Review – Giallo Terror Invades Vienna



    Starring Violetta Schurawlow, Tobias Moretti, Sammy Sheik

    Written by Martin Ambrosch

    Directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky

    I have a serious soft spot in my horror-loving heart for serial killer films. Movies like Seven, The Silence of the Lambs, The Crimson Rivers, and the like draw me in with their cat-and-mouse mentality. Couple those kinds of movies with non-US settings and I’m 100% hooked. So when I was introduced to Die Hölle (aka Cold Hell), which just started streaming on Shudder, I didn’t hesitate to enter this giallo-inspired thriller.

    Cold Hell follows Özge Dugruol (Schurawlow), a Turkish taxi driver in Vienna who clearly lives a strained, almost broken life. The fares she picks up verbally abuse her, the Thai boxing gym where she lets go of her anger has banned her after a violent sparring incident, and her family has its own fair share of problems, including infidelity, lack of responsibility, and painful memories of early years.

    One night, after coming home from a long shift, Özge opens the window in her bathroom only to see across the way into the home of another woman who is lying on the ground, flayed and burnt, her dead eyes staring at Özge. Stunned into shock, she can only look on before realizing that the man responsible for this woman’s death is standing in the shadows, looking at her. So begins Özge’s journey of terror as this killer makes it his mission to find and end her life.

    Cold Hell has an interesting juxtaposition running throughout the film where cinematographer Benedict Neuenfels’ gorgeous visuals are used to highlight the near-squalor and seedy underbelly of Viennese life that Özge lives in. Each scene is bathed in vibrant colors, streetlight reds and neon greens painting the frames. Marius Ruhland, who composed Ruzowitzky’s Academy Award-winning film The Counterfeiters, lends beautiful and thrilling music that knows when to coil up and provide tension before exploding to mirror the chaotic frenzy of the on-screen events.

    A direct commentary on religion’s antiquated view of the place and purpose of women, Cold Hell doesn’t shy away from making nearly everyone in this movie a flawed character. People who were unlikable become understandable once the breadth of their circumstances becomes more clear, as is the case with detective Christian Steiner (Moretti), who originally treats Özge with an almost xenophobic attitude only for us to later see that he cares for his dementia-ridden father. While not excusing his previous behaviors, such a revelation gives his irritation and frustration a more justifiable foundation.

    When the action strikes, we are treated to breathtaking car chases, blood splashing across the screen, and believable reactions. The characters in this film get hurt and they show it, limping painfully with their cuts and bruises open for the world to see.

    The film is certainly not flawless. Some characters feel shoe-horned in and there are rather lengthly segments where the film comes to a crawl. However, the engaging and nuanced performance from Schurawlow easily kept me glued to the screen.

    • Cold Hell


    With beautiful music and gorgeous visuals, Cold Hell is an engaging, albeit slow burn, serial killer thriller. This is one film that should not be missed.

    User Rating 5 (1 vote)


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    Butcher The Bakers Review – Even The Grim Reaper’s Got His Slow Days



    Starring Sean Walsh, Ryan Matthew Ziggler, Mike Behrens

    Directed by Tyler Amm

    When someone passes away, all anyone ever thinks of is the one that’s been lost – no one, and I mean NO ONE gives any consideration to the one responsible for reeling in those wayward souls…I’m talking about The Grim Reaper, and what happens when he hits a bit of a dry spell. Let’s cross on over to the other side and give a look at Tyler Amm’s Butcher The Bakers.

    This horror/comedy centers around a couple of slackers (Walsh and Ziggler) who are both whiling away the hours working at a bakery, and their motivation is about as stagnant as frozen tree sap. One day the hapless duo are chosen to perform quite a Herculean task – they’ve got to prevent a recently “discharged” reaper named Dragomir (Behrens) from mass-collecting souls so he can open a portal to another world…yeah, I’m not shitting you. Seems ol’ Drago liked to snag some undocumented souls which didn’t put him in the best graces with the Human Resources department…or whomever the hell these guys report to in the afterlife. His actions have cause him to be ostracized, basically, and this is his way of getting back at the powers-that-be, if you will. Bottom line is this: the reaper’s coming-a-callin’ and he’s not planning on making this trip back and forth solo, if you know what I’m sayin.

    The film, acting as part horror-fest and buddy-comedy, hits the mark on more than a few occasions, but falls flat on others – it’s all in the eye of the interpreter. There are some moments of beautifully-shot brutality, and the laughs are both subtle and pronounced, but if you’re not one of those people who dig a meshing of the two styles, you could potentially want to hit the kill-switch on this one in the early stages. Crisp editing and some seriously nifty camera-work are definite pluses, and while the acting could be a bit more stable, it’s adequate enough to support the presentation that it’s sandwiched into. Overall, I could see some horror aficionados giving this a singular peek just to break up the monotony of all that’s out there in the scope right now, but there’s not a whole lot more to go on with this one – if you’re in the mood to dissolve 94 minutes of your time, press play on this one.

    • Film


    Horror comedies are far too hit or miss in this day and age, and while this movie tries to resuscitate the dead, it eventually gets dragged off kicking and screaming.

    User Rating 0 (0 votes)


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