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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

directed by Richard Friedman
USA 1987

 

Four annoying teenagers (including pre-SEX AND THE CITY Kristin Davis) decide to trespass at an abandoned insane asylum but the lesbian-communist punk band already trespassing in the area is the least of their problems as they and the band are stalked and killed by a gruesomely disfigured ex-lawyer nicknamed "The Coroner" just because his weapons of choice happen to be the readily available autopsy instruments left over in the hospital. There is much wandering through hallways (as pointed out by the filmmakers in the commentary) but it largely comes to naught as potential suspense is killed off by cutaways to the Coroner sitting in his basement hideout watching Tod Slaughter movies (the distributors owned the rights to his films at the time) whose action is used to parallel that in the film proper. This uncut edition features the gore missing from the VHS release and it is unrated but the gore itself is too outrageous to be taken seriously. Once you get past the horrid acting and even worse New Jersey accents and realize that a certain degree of its cheesiness is intentional, its rather enjoyable (Ruth Collins as the band leader is a hoot as is Farin as she repents her communist beliefs as she tries to avoid getting killed).

Eric Cotenas

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Comparison:

Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the DVD Review!

Box Cover

 

    

 

    

  

 

Distribution

Code Red DVD

Region 0 - NTSC

Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:18:45 1:18:46.054 (both)
Video

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.46 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,212,522,098 bytes

Feature: 21,767,120,256 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.97  Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

1.78:1

Feature: 21,767,120,256 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.43  Mbps

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

Bitrate

Bitrate Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono)

BOTH:

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Code Red DVD

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Audio Commentary with director Ricahrd Friedman and production manager Bill Tasgal
• Interviews with Friedman, Tasgal and producer Alex Kogan Jr. (10:54)
• BOARDINGHOUSE trailer (4:3; 1:14)
• THE DARK RIDE TV spot (4:3; 0:30)
• THE FARMER trailer (4:3; 2:07)
• SILENT SCREAM trailer (4:3; 1:10)
• THE FOREST trailer (16:9; 1:06)
• DEVIL TIMES FIVE trailer (16:9; 2:11)
• HUMAN EXPERIMENTS trailer (4:3; 2:27)
• NIGHTMARE trailer (4:3; 2:31)
• STINGRAY trailer (4:3; 3:04)
• LOVE ME DEADLY (4:3; 0:50)

DVD Release Date: July 15, 2008
Amaray

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Studio:
Arrow

 

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,212,522,098 bytes

Feature: 21,767,120,256 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.97  Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

1.78:1

Feature: 21,767,120,256 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.43  Mbps

 

Edition Details:

• Brand new audio commentary with screenwriter Rick Marx
• Brand new audio commentary with The Hysteria Continues
• Tina’s Terror - a brand new interview with actress Ruth Collins (17:51)
Movie Madhouse - a brand new interview with director of photography (18:55)
• Larry Revene Morgues & Mayhem - a brand new interview with special make-up effects creator Vincent J. Guastini (17:34)
• Archival Interviews with producer Alexander W. Kogan, Jr., director Richard Friedman and production manager Bill Tasgal (10:52)
Still Gallery (03:01)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Justin Osbourne
• FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Fully-illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing by Amanda Reyesp


Blu-ray
Release Date: July 16th-17th, 2018
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 12 + 12

 

 

Comments

"Doom Asylum is presented in both the 1.85:1 and 1.37:1 aspect ratio with mono audio.

The original 35mm camera negative was scanned in 2K resolution, graded and restored at OCN Labs. The original video masters were sourced for the video inserts. The grade was supervised and this restoration was approved by director of photography Larry Revene.

The soundtrack was sourced from a set of original " tape masters. The audio sync will appear slightly loose against the picture, due to the fact that the soundtrack was recorded partly in post-production.
"

Arrow Video presents Doom Asylum in either the fullscreen 1.33:1 or widescreen 1.78:1 aspect ratios. The widescreen seems to be a matted version of the fullscreen version, with no extra information of the sides of the frame. Both films have a high bitrate, with the fullframe version having a slightly higher one. The image is rich in detail and the colors look great. The title sequence, and various Tod Slaughter movie footage is of video-transfer quality. There is a fair amount of grain in the image, giving the movie a theatrical filmic appearance. Contrast is quite an improvement over the Code Red DVD as well. Overall, fans of the film will be very pleased with the transfer here.

The film is presented in its original mono on a 24-bit linear PCM audio track. The various horror noises are present here, and come through sounding pretty clean. There isn't any noticeable damage. As stated by Arrow, the sync can be slightly off occasionally but this is hardly an issue. The music in the film is thanks to Dave Erlanger and Jonathan Stuart. And who can forget the Tina and the Tots performance. There are optional English SDH subtitles on this Region Free
Blu-ray.

The extras start with an audio commentary with "Doom Asylum" screenwriter Rick Marx. The track is moderated by Howard Berger. This is an interesting track with lots of information on the film. For a more fun and laid back track, we have another audio commentary with The Hysteria Continues podcast team (Erik Threlfall, Joseph Henson, and Nathan Johnson, lead by Justin Kerswell, author of "The Teenage Slasher Movie Book"). Next up is Tina’s Terror, a new 18-minute interview with actress Ruth Collins discussing her work on Doom Asylum. Movie Madhouse is another new extra, a 19-minute interview with the director of photography Larry Revene. We also get, "Morgues & Mayhem", a new 18-minute interview with special make-up effects creator Vincent J. Guastini. There is also the option to watch 11-minutes of archival interviews with executive producer Alexander W. Kogan, Jr., director Richard Friedman, and production manager Bill Tasgal. These interviews were previously available on the Code Red DVD. We also get a 3-minute animated stills gallery, and a 24-page insert booklet with the essay “To the Denizens of Doom Asylum: A Love Letter” by Amanda Reyes.

Doom Asylum is a fun pastiche of slasher tropes from the 80s, from the abandoned mental hospital to the wise-cracking driller killer. Fans of the film will be happy with this upgrade. The Arrow Blu-ray visuals are a huge improvement over the previously available DVD from Code Red. And ya, that is "Charlotte" (Kristin Davis) in her first film role. Highly recommended to genre fans.

Colin Zaivitz

***

ON THE DVD: Code Red's DOOM ASYLUM was previously released in 2007 with a different cover but this edition under review is the 2008 reissue now that Code Red releases are being distributed by Navarre Corporation (they were previously handled by Media Blasters). The shot-on-film, edited-on-video image necessarily comes from a video master but looks good on an interlaced TV but soft on flat panel monitors.

Director Friedman and production manager Tasgal provide a loose commentary in which they express constant amazement at their luck in finding such a genuine, atmospheric location and how many of angles of Kristin Davis in a bikini they managed to capture. They also point out the footage that was cut from the video release (for better or worse, this footage looks as good as the rest of the film). Friedman and Tasgal appear in an on-camera interview with producer Alex W. Kogan Jr. Trailers for several upcoming Code Red releases round out the package.

 - Eric Cotenas

 


DVD Menus - Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC
 

 

Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 


CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

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2) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

 

1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Code Red DVD - Region 0 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Arrow (1.33:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray  - MIDDLE

3) Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

More Arrow (1.78:1) - Region FREE - Blu-ray Captures


Box Cover

 

    

 

    

  

 

Distribution

Code Red DVD

Region 0 - NTSC

Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 




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