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SLAUGHTER NIGHT: Kristel s dad died in a brutal car accident following an argument the two had on her prom night. Racked with guilt, Kristel takes some high school friends to a museum, located in an old abandoned mine, in hopes of retrieving the manuscript her father was writing about eighteenth and nineteenth century serial killers. Her dad was particularly interested in Andries Martiens, a man sentenced to death for slaughtering several youths. Martiens died in a massive explosion centuries ago, but it s rumored his spirit still haunts the mine and is ravenously hungry for another Slaughter Night.

SHEITAN: On Christmas Eve, a group of young guys meet two gorgeous girls who invite them to spend the weekend in the country, where they meet Joseph (Vincent Cassel, Ocean s Twelve, Irreversible), a creepy, unkempt man whose pregnant wife remains hidden in the large house. That evening, what begins innocently as Christmas dinner turns into disturbing conversations about sex, satanic possession, and incest. Joseph s behavior becomes increasingly erratic and the young friends realize their host has made a pact with the devil and all hell is about to break loose.

CARVED: THE SLIT-MOUTHED WOMAN: Thirty years ago, a suburban town was terrorized by the spirit of a woman whose beautiful face had been grotesquely disfigured by a jealous husband. Roaming the streets wearing a long coat and surgical mask, the spirit would approach young victims and, while removing her mask, ask Am I pretty? The victim s response would almost always lead to their violent death. Now, one by one, children are disappearing again. As teachers and officials desperately begin to investigate, a panic begins to build as the woman s spirit returns for some unfinished business and the town's dark secrets are exposed.

(aka "Kuchisake-onna" or "A Slit-Mouthed Woman")

 

directed by K˘ji Shiraishi
Japan 2007

 

CARVED: THE SLIT-MOUTHED WOMAN - The slit-mouthed woman is another of Japan's urban legends (besides this film and its part 3 prequel, there are three other recent adaptations) that dates back to the Heian period (794 to 1185) but was resurrected in the 1970's when a disfigured woman was thought to have been responsible for a series of child stalkings. The woman, wielding scissors, confronts her victims and asks "Am I pretty?" (there are variations on what will happen depending on what answer the victim gives). In this version, the legend has become popular enough among grade school kids in a small town that the woman begins making appearances in a nearby park and abducting children. The news says that it is a woman disguised as the slit-mouthed woman but when teacher Ky˘ko Yamasita (Eriko Sat˘) sees one of her students Mika (Rie Kuwana) taken right before her eyes by the slit-mouthed woman, she starts to investigate with the help of fellow teacher Noboru Matsuzaki (Haruhiko Kat˘) whose telepathic connection to the slit-mouthed woman enables him and Ky˘ko to try to stop any further abductions and search for Mika since one child as already been found dead and another mutilated and in critical condition. CARVED starts out well but goes downhill. The question as to whether the slit-mouthed woman is supernatural or insane is dispelled right away and none of the confrontations with her follow the urban legend as told by the children (then again, the original version of THE RING also shows a perhaps intentional disparity between the legend as told and how it is experienced by the victims). The slit-mouthed woman's origin story is rooted in the recent past and is clumsily paralleled with the troubled relationships of Mika and her mother and Ky˘ko and her daughter. Matsuzaki's psychic connection to the slit-mouthed woman is a lazy plot device that does away with the mystery and dread this ghost should provoke and the "evil never dies" ending is nonsensical. The film was popular enough to spawn a sequel and a prequel; then again, how many American horror franchises have given us uncalled-for and unnecessary sequels? Can an American remake be too far away?

SLAUGHTER NIGHT - After losing her father in an explosive car accident, Kristel (Victoria Koblenko) travels to an old factory where her father was doing research to get his effects. She takes a tour of the mine with some other obnoxious young visitors. Legend has it that the mine is haunted by a notorious murderer in the nineteenth century who was sent into the mine to detect dangerous gas leaks. Fortunately, Kristel has brought along a Ouija board found among her father's things. No sooner do the group have a seance then one of their number is possessed and begins picking off the rest of them in gruesome ways as they attempt to escape from the mine. There is little novelty to be had in a slasher horror film whose only variation is that it is in Dutch (the same could be said of the Norweigian COLD PREY). The mine setting has been explored before to better effect in THE BOOGENS and MY BLOODY VALENTINE (the original). There are some gory murders of uninteresting characters but it's all captured in shakycam bleach-bypassed darkness with loud surround sound musical stingers. Mildly entertaining but don't rent it expecting it to be the highlight of your evening.

SHEITAN - On Christmas Eve, three guys and two girls meet up at the Styxx nightclub and decide to take the party back to the country estate of Eve (Roxane Mesquida of Catherine Breillat's FAT GIRL and SEX IS COMEDY) after an altercation between drunken Bart (Olivier Barthelemy), a bouncer, and a broken bottle. Although Eve and her chateau are elegant, everything else around is decidedly "Deliverance" country, including grinning groundskeeper Joseph (Vincent Cassel in an incredibly hilarious performance) and his very pregnant wife and nympho niece. As the five settle in, they find their partying constantly disrupted by the expected wierdisms, including Joseph's "special" attention to Bart. As midnight approaches, Joseph skulks around and his unseen wife assembles a doll from disparate parts (including a lock of Bart's hair, torn out by niece Jeanne) - "All that's missing is the eyes." Not as transgressive or brutal as it makes itself out to be, especially when compared to the almost concurrently released CALVAIRE, Capiron's film is still entertaining even if the director seems to run out of ideas at the end. Cassel and the other lesser-known actors all give good performances (Barthelemy makes the sulky and loutish Bart rather endearing actually) and its nice to see an ethnically diverse cast without calling attention to the element (except for some of Cassel's racist remarks). Monica Bellucci also makes a brief cameo.

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: 17 March 2007

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DVD Review: Palisades Tartan (Palisades Tartan Terror Pack Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Distribution

Palisades Tartan

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:30:09
Video

1.82:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.83 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 Japanese (DTS 5.1); Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1); Japanese (Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo)
Subtitles English, Spanish, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Palisades Tartan

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.82:1

Edition Details:
• The Making of Carved (4:3; 15:41; Japanese with English subtitles)
• Cast Interviews (4:3; 5:03; Japanese with English subtitles)
• Trailer (4:3; 1:35; Japanese with English subtitles)
• TV Spots (4:3; 1:03; Japanese with English subtitles)
• BLOODY REUNION trailer (4:3; 1:53; Korean with English subtitles)
• CINDERELLA trailer (4:3; 2:20; Korean with English subtitles)
• SHUTTER trailer (4:3; 2:36; Thai with English subtitles)
• THE RED SHOES trailer (4:3; 2:18; Korean with English subtitles)
• KOMA trailer (4:3; 0:50; Cantonese with English subtitles)

DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 13

 

Comments

CARVED - Although it does not appear to be a PAL-NTSC transfer (Tartan USA's Asian films are usually progressive while the Tartan UK Asian titles are mostly NTSC-PAL), CARVED is presented interlaced although it was shot on film. The film has an intentionally brownish color scheme that makes for gloomy exteriors and interiors. Some CGI-created blood looks more pinkish than red but the make-up blood looks the right color. The 5.1 and DTS tracks sound almost the same while the 2.0 downmix is an unnecessary home entertainment concession. A making-of segment on the film and cast interviews are included which do convey the popularity of the urban legend of the split-mouthed woman (as well as the usual "I didn't realize the movie would be this scary" EPK stuff).

SLAUGHTER NIGHT - Unlike most Tartan USA releases of European product, SLAUGHTER NIGHT is not a PAL-NTSC conversion. There is no noticeable ghosting or interlacing artifacts during the sequences of high motion; be it the shaking and whipping of the camera or the acrobatics of possessed characters. DTS and 5.1 audio options are strong. Besides the making-of featurette, there are also outtakes which subtitle the dialogue flubs and curses. Trailers for other Tartan product round out the extras.

SHEITAN - PAL-NTSC conversion with ghosting not helped by the softness of the low-light Super 16mm cinematography. Looks perfectly acceptable on interlaced televisions but hazier on progressive monitors. The soundtrack is available in 2.0, 5.1 and DTS tracks (little difference between the DTS and 5.1). With a making-of featurette, Tartan's R1 release has more extras than the single-disc R2 French release but there is also a 2-disc steelbook available in France with several extras including (presumably) the R1 featurette.

Palisades Tartan has taken over the Tartan library (after they went into administration a year ago). Other than the new slipcase, the discs inside are the same as the Tartan releases of these titles (they may even be old stock as there is no mention of Palisades or Vivendi Entertainment on the covers which bear the copyright years of Tartan's acquisitions of the titles). That said, there was a fear that some of the Tartan titles would become hard to acquire when Tartan folded but it looks like some (hopefully all) of the Tartan releases will still be available.

 - Eric Cotenas

 



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(aka "Sl8n8" or "Slachtnacht")

 

directed by Frank van Geloven and Edwin Visser
Belgium/Netherlands 2006

Poster

Theatrical Release: 5 October 2006

Reviews                                                   More Reviews                                                        DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Palisades Tartan (Palisades Tartan Terror Pack Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

(individual cover)

CLICK to order from:

 

 

 

Distribution

Palisades Tartan

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:29:36
Video

1.84:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.75 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 Dutch (DTS 5.1); Dutch (Dolby Digital 5.1); Dutch (Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo)
Subtitles English, Spanish, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Palisades Tartan

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.84:1

Edition Details:
• The Making of SLAUGHTER NIGHT (4:3; 24:30; Dutch with English Subtitles)
• Outtakes (16:9; 3:51; Dutch with English subtitles)
• Trailer (4:3; 1:04; Dutch with English subtitles)
• H6 trailer (4:3; 1:43; Spanish with English subtitles)
• HILLSIDE STRANGLER trailer (4:3; 1:28; English)
• SHEITAN trailer (16:9; 1:58; French with English subtitles)
• BLOODY REUNION trailer (4:3; 1:51; Korean with English subtitles)
• PERTH trailer (4:3; 1:35; English)

DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 15

 



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directed by Kim Chapiron
France 2006

Posters

Theatrical Release: 1 February 2006 (France)

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Palisades Tartan (Palisades Tartan Terror Pack Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

(individual cover)

CLICK to order from:

 

 

 

Distribution

Palisades Tartan

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:27:24 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.95 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 French (DTS 5.1); French (Dolby Digital 5.1); French (Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo)
Subtitles English, Spanish, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Palisades Tartan

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• The Making of Sheitan (4:3; 23:51)
• Original Trailer (16:9; 1:50; French with English subtitles)
• Trailers for H6, THE RED SHOES, THE MAID, and MAREBITO (4:3; 8:01)

DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 17

 



DVD Menus
 

 


Screen Captures


Subtitle sample (note PAL-NTSC artifacting)

 

 


 


 

 


DVD Box Cover

 

(Terror Pack cover)

CLICK to order from:

 

 

 

Distribution

Palisades Tartan

Region 1 - NTSC



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