(aka 'The Beast')

Directed by Jack Woods and Dennis Muren (uncredited)
USA 1970

 

  Before he took you to a galaxy far, far away, before he brought you face-to-face with living, breathing prehistoric beasts, Dennis Muren, the future nine-time Oscar-winning visual-effects artist (Star Wars, Jurassic Park), joined forces with a group of talented young filmmakers to create an homage to the creature features of yore in the eerie monster mash Equinox. Deep within the woods and canyons of California, four teenagers happen upon an ancient book containing the secrets of a strange, malevolent world that coexists with that of mankind. This $6,500-budget wonder (originally called The Equinox . . . A Journey into the Supernatural) was picked up for distribution by producer Jack H. Harris (The Blob), who shot new footage for the film with writer-director Jack Woods and released it in 1970 as Equinox. Since then, the film has gained a passionate cult following and inspired succeeding generations of horror/fantasy filmmakers...

Posters + Promotional Material

Theatrical Release: October 1970

Reviews    More Reviews    DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Criterion (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

   

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Criterion Collection - Spine # 338 - Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:22:18 
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.37 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s  

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0) 
Subtitles English,, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion Collection

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Two audio commentaries: One by writer-director Jack Woods and producer Jack H. Harris, on the 1970 release. And one by effects photographer, producer, and director Dennis Muren; writer-codirector Mark McGee; and matte artist, cel animator, and ­effects technician Jim Danforth, on the 1967 version
• Video introduction by Forrest J Ackerman
• Interviews with Muren and actors Frank Bonner, Barbara Hewitt, and James Duron
• Deleted scenes and outtakes from the 1967 version
• Archival stop-motion test footage
• The Magic Treasure, a rare animated fairy tale by David Allen
• Acclaimed “Kong” Volkswagen commercial by Allen, including test footage
• Zorgon: The H-Bomb Beast from Hell (1972), a short film featuring Equinox crew
• Extensive gallery featuring rare stills, promotional material, and more
• Trailer and radio spots for the 1970 theatrical release
• Liner notes booklet featuring tributes from George Lucas and Ray Harryhausen and a new essay by Brock DeShane

DVD Release Date: June 20th, 2006

Double Thick Keep Case
Chapters: 18 in Equinox - 16 in The Equinox . . . A Journey into the Supernatural

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: This release is not pictureboxed - I repeat - NOT pictureboxed. We can assume that Criterion have abandoned this DVD production practice - hopefully for good. More on this as it surfaces.

***

Well, everything you always wanted to know about Equinox... and then some. Criterion have done such a thorough job in commentaries, supplements and detailed factoids revolving around the creation of this film (s), that it's almost impossible not to fully embrace it. The longer version (Equinox) has had the Criterion magic put to it, where the predecessor, the 1967 version of the film, The Equinox . . . A Journey into the Supernatural, sharing the same disc, looks a little rough around the edges bearing the earmarks of the original independent production (see comparison captures below). Actually I don't know that I can add too much more to the screen captures - it looks possibly better than it ever has - digital noise as faux-grain on a very clean image. The post-dubbing is quite poor, but that, of course, has nothing to do with Criterion, I didn't hear a pop or hiss through the entire film - once again - clean and consistent.

The extras - they are so encompassing I'll simply relate the ones I enjoyed the most - the commentaries are not the best I've heard but they are true and honest with loads of extraneous details. I might even have preferred The Equinox . . . A Journey into the Supernatural one the best - I kind of enjoyed Dennis Muren's manner. I also was entertained by the interviews with Frank Bonner, of WKRP in Cincinnati fame, and Barbara Hewitt (et all). Nothing overly special about them, they just added good flavor to the post film explorations. More decent fodder is the video introduction by crusty old Forrest J. Ackerman - this guy has been there forever and has a mitt-ful to say.

Although I wouldn't compare Equinox to the superior film productions like The Blob or Carnival of Souls - Criterion have duplicated the appeal by burrowing under the surface of a frugal venture to tell the hidden stories, which are rife with anecdotal fun and curiosities. Once you get into Equinox, you will remain a fan for life.

Gary W. Tooze

 





DVD Menus


Disc 2

 


Screen Captures

 

 


 

 


 

 


Equinox - TOP - The Equinox . . . A Journey into the Supernatural - BOTTOM
 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

DVD Box Cover

   

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Criterion Collection - Spine # 338 - Region 1 - NTSC

 





 

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Gary Tooze

Mississauga, Ontario,

   CANADA

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