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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka Seed of Terror' or 'Raise the Dead')

Directed by John Hayes
UK
1972

 

Considered by many as one of the greatest cult movies of all time, GRAVE OF THE VAMPIRE finally arrives in a Wide Screen anamorphic edition from a 35mm High-Definition transfer. Starring B-movie icon William Smith (Maniac Cop, Red Dawn), this film shocked audiences 40 years ago when the young mother of a vampire baby began nursing it with her own blood! Grim and grisly, it quickly became a cult favorite through frequent midnight movie showings and television airings. Also starring Michael Pataki, Lyn Peters, and Diane Holden.

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This dark, violent British production stars Michael Pataki as a brutish vampire apparently lacking in Dracula's powers of seduction, since he finds it necessary to brutally rape a young woman (Kitty Vallacher) in order to sire a child. The product of this unholy mating is a half-human, half-vampire baby boy, bottle-fed on the blood of his now-insane mother (a truly sickening sight) until her eventual death from anemia. Later as a young man, the son (William Smith) is able to spend short periods in daylight, and his bloodlust is considerably lesser than that of his father. Tormented nevertheless by his evil condition, he curses his bloodline and defies his vampire heritage, tracking his father down to the university where he teaches occult sciences. Aside from Pataki's coarse but imposing performance, this low-budget film is a fairly routine genre entry, but the climactic, bloody duel between father and son vampires is quite gripping.

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Theatrical Release: September 13th, 1972

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DVD Review: Bayview - Region 0 - NTSC

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Distribution Bayview - Region 0 - NTSC
Runtime 1:29:42 
Video 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.6 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 None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Bayview

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1

Edition Details:

• Restoration Demonstration
• Trailer
• Bayview 'Coming Attractions'

DVD Release Date: March 19th, 2013

Keep Case
Chapters: 12

 

 

Comments:

Grave of the Vampire is passive Grindhouse fodder. It has the wonderful 'Our Feature Presentation' quirky animated title card before the film, a William Castle-style 'Warning' and all the telltale vertical scratches that identify its genre-specific charisma of low-budget flaws (made for 50K). The single-layered Bayview transfer has edge-enhancement (see example below) and inconsistencies in the visual presentation with plenty of extensive vertical scratches.  Read this how you may but the film is probably as poor as the image quality of the SD rendering. On the positive it is anamorphic in the, original, 1.85:1 aspect ratio and is progressively transferred.

Audio has its share of crackles, but this only adds to the Grindhouse effect. Some of the dialogue is scattered but for the most part is audible. There are no subtitles offered on the region FREE disc.

Supplements consist of a brief restoration demo (sans EE), a trailer for the film and some Bayview Previews.  

The 'star' William Smith doesn't appear till after 1/2 hour of the film is passed. There isn't much to extol here, unless you are find the Grindhouse unintentional effects appealing. I enjoyed it as the epitome of 'bad', but I am a sucker for crap like this. Most won't be as enamored as they are with the cover's misleading potential. Pass.   

Gary W. Tooze

 


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DVD Box Cover

   

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Bayview - Region 1 - NTSC



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