It appears that we have hit the post New Year slump, everybody. There are only 6 releases coming to our local shelves this week. Next week is only bringing us 5 releases (so far), but after that things should pick up slightly.
Our two classics this week come in the form of The Alien Factor and The Alien Dead. Aside from those two the rest of our titles this week are new.
Probably the biggest title from 2017, Stephen King’s It is coming to Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD. Bill Skarsgård was so impressive as Pennywise that I actually hate him as a person now. If you’re out there reading this somewhere, Mr. Skarsgård: You did an incredible job. And I hate you.
Up next is Friend Request. I won’t lie; I didn’t think this movie was terrible despite the eye rolls it has received from friends of mine who have also seen it. Alycia Debnam-Carey is a great actress whom you may recognize from “Fear the Walking Dead.” I may even pick up the Blu-ray.
You can also grab Nails on DVD this week. You can check out an interview with the director, Dennis Bartok, and the star, Shauna MacDonald, here.
Check back next week for that release list; and as always, pleasant viewing.
Alien Dead, The (1980)
Filmed deep in the swamps of Central Florida, The Alien Dead (1980) barely squeezed by on its meager shoestring budget of $12,000. Graduating to 16mm color film from his earlier black & white effort The Brain Leeches (1978), burgeoning filmmaker Fred Olen Ray crafted an astonishingly crude tale of aquatic zombies and the characters who would become their victims. In what would later become a trademark of Ray’s work, the movie features serial icon, Buster Crabbe (Flash Gordon), a marquee star from the director’s childhood. The film has, at times, a strange gauzy, nightmare-like quality hanging over it: a surreal, netherworld of dream images that threaten to engulf the characters. Scratch your head in awe and wonder at The Alien Dead. Also included here is the director’s first feature effort, The Brain Leeches, along with a revealing commentary track, plus an unadvertised bonus, The Halloween Planet, an unaired children’s TV Special featuring serial Superman, Kirk Alyn and the cast and crew of Alien Dead, along with a new commentary track. Presented in 1.85 enhanced-widescreen.
Alien Factor, The (1978) (40th Anniversary Edition)
Don Leifert, George Stover, Dick Dyzel, Eleanor Herman
Director Don Dohler’s homage to the classic sci-fi 1950’s creature features, The Alien Factor (1978), has endured the passage of time to become the standard ”comfort food” of a generation of eager aficionados. Filmed in Baltimore, Maryland, the movie boasts a gaggle of monster suits, clever miniatures and even a stop-motion beast brought to life by then-aspiring animation wizard, Ernest D. Farino (The Terminator). Local actors Don Leifert, Dick Dyzel, Eleanor Herman and George Stover infuse the film with an enthusiastic zest that belies the film’s tiny budget, adding immeasurably to the charm that is The Alien Factor. This special 40th Anniversary Edition contains extensive bonus features including cast & crew audio commentary, behind-the-scenes featurette, blooper reel, alternate scenes, cast & crew reunion featurette, Retromedia Drive-in Theater episode wrap-arounds. Presented in 1.78 enhanced-widescreen.
Friend Request (2017)
Alycia Debnam-Carey, William Moseley, Connor Paolo, Brit Morgan, Brooke Markham
When a college student unfriends a mysterious girl online, she finds herself fighting a demonic presence that wants to make her lonely by killing her closest friends.
Bill Skarsgard, Jaeden Lieberher, Wyatt Oleff, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis
The horror thriller IT, directed by Andrés Muschietti (Mama), is based on the hugely popular Stephen King novel of the same name, which has been terrifying readers for decades. When children begin to disappear in the town of Derry, Maine, a group of young kids is faced with their biggest fears when they square off against an evil clown named Pennywise, whose history of murder and violence dates back for centuries.
Junk Bonds: The Return of Junkbucket (2012)
Erin Stewart, David Rollison, Graham Downing, Kate Jaeger
A sequel to the underground hit Junkbucket, Junk Bonds: The Return of Junkbucket lovingly satirizes the Texas Chainsaw Massacre series, as we witness the terror and butchery wreaked upon Lake Pakajanomo, Washington, at the hands of Junkbucket and his newfound family of phallic cannibals. As charmingly twisted as any movie you’ll see this year, Junk Bonds: The Return of Junkbucket is the antithesis of PG-13 horror and mindless remakes. He’s still not a garbage man, but he’s come back for your junk!
Shauna MacDonald, Leah McNamara, Ross Noble
Paralyzed after a terrible accident, Dana struggles to regain her life and family when she encounters a malevolent ghost in her hospital room.
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