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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Richard Franklin
Australia 1981

 

Stacy Keach is Pat Quid, a lone trucker who plays games to keep his sanity on long hauls through the desolate Australian Outback. Jamie Lee Curtis is a free-spirited hitchhiker looking for excitement with a game of her own. And somewhere up ahead is a maniac in a van whose game may be butchering young women along the highway. But when the killer decides to raise the stakes, Quid's game becomes personal ... and the rules of this road are about to take some very deadly turns.

Director Richard Franklin (Psycho II) packs plenty of Hitchcock-like twists and suspense into this sly shocker that was nominated for four Australian Film Institute Awards and remains one of the most surprising thrillers of the '80s.

***

Hollywood's Stacy Keach stars in Australia's Road Games. Keach is a truck driver who takes the law in his own hands to capture a serial killer. When the police fail to nab the murderer of hitchhikers, Keach takes to the road, conducting his own search. En route, he picks up hitcher Jamie Lee Curtis--and it is her presence that brings the killer out of hiding and into the bloody finale. Director Richard Franklin's fondness for Hitchcock, which would come to full fruition in Psycho II (1982), is very much in evidence throughout Road Games.

Excerpt from B+N located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: June 8th, 1981

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Shout! Factory (Collector's Edition) - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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There is also a Region FREE Umbrella Blu-ray version:

   

Distribution Shout! Factory - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:40:38.073         
Video

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,173,287,719 bytes

Feature: 28,738,738,176 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.003 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1654 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1654 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 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 English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Shout! Factory

 

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 37,471,315,571 bytes

Feature: 30,857,963,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• NEW Australian Long Haul – An Interview With Actor Stacy Keach (13:25)
• NEW Audio Commentary With Cinematographer Vincent Monton, Production Coordinator Helen Watts, And Costume Designer Aphrodite Kondos, Moderated By Filmmaker Mark Hartley
• NEW 1980 Script Read With Producer/Director Richard Franklin And Actors Stacy Keach And Marion Edwards (1:56:30)
• NEW Composer Brian May Music Demos Accompanied By Stills And Poster Gallery (4:15)
Audio Commentary With Producer/Director Richard Franklin
• Kangaroo Hitchcock: The Making Of Road Games – Featuring Interviews With Director Richard Franklin And Actor Stacey Keach (20:23)
• Extended Interviews From Mark Hartley’s Documentary Not Quite Hollywood Featuring Jamie Lee Curtis, Stacy Keach, Director Richard Franklin, Stunt Coordinator Grant Page, Screenwriter Everett De Roche, Cinematographer Vincent Monton, And Assistant Director Tom Burstall (1:03:19)
• Lecture On The Making Of Road Games With Richard Franklin, Co-producer Barbi Taylor, And Composer Brian May, Introduced By Critic Tom Ryan (2:10:22)
• Profile On Richard Franklin (1981 - 23:25)
• Audio Interview With Richard Franklin (2001 - 23:28)
• Audio Interview With Actor Stacy Keach (2016 - 9:10)
• Audio Interview With Stunt Coordinator And Actor Grant Page (2016 - 32:48)
• Gallery Of Stills, Production Shots, Storyboards, Newspaper • Reviews, Promotional And Artwork Materials (32:11)
• Theatrical Trailer (2:11)


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 12th, 2019
Standard Blu-ray Case inside slipcase

Chapters 12

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Shout! Factory Blu-ray (November 2019): Shout! Factory have transferred the 80's Ozploitation flic Road Games to Blu-ray. in a stacked 'Collector's Edition'. It looks fairly weak digitally, but this would be a reflection of the original production values, and probably some less effectual film stock. This is in 1080P on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate. It is a dark film, the visuals are gritty - not much depth, in fact, can look flat but I do see some texture. I think we just have to put this down to the fact that not all films look tight and glossy on Blu-ray. I didn't see strong damage (a bit in the last frame of some scenes - and it looks consistent in-motion.

On their Blu-ray, Shout! Factory use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track (24-bit) in the original English language. It is akin to the video with imperfect audio but a decent tense score by Brian May who composed for other Ozploitation films like Snapshot, The Survivor, Turkey Shoot, and Nightmares sounding deeper with suspenseful atmoshere. Shout! Factory offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

What a totally loaded disc of supplements. Shout! Factory include 2 audio commentaries including a new one with cinematographer Vincent Monton, Production Coordinator Helen Watts, And costume designer Aphrodite Kondos, Moderated by Filmmaker Mark Hartley (Not Quite Hollywood). They discuss Richard Franklin not having control of casting, compromises etc. the toxic shooting environment, running behind schedule, unrealistic budget, first time rear-projection had been used in Australia, originally Sean Connery was an option over Stacey Keach, Franklin wanted Cliff Robertson, turned down Mel Gibson when suggested, poor costumes and other interesting back-details of the production of Road Games. The commentary even has some conflict! There is also an older commentary with producer / director Richard Franklin as found on the past DVDs. There are plenty more new extras; Australian Long Haul is a 14-minute interview with actor Stacy Keach recalling the film, the 1980 script read with producer/director Richard Franklin and actors Stacy Keach and Marion Edwards running almost 2-hours, a brief piece on Brian May music demos accompanied by Stills and Poster Gallery. I liked Kangaroo Hitchcock: a 20-minute Making Of Road Games featuring interviews with Franklin Keach and others. There are over an hour's worth of extended interviews from Mark Hartley’s documentary Not Quite Hollywood featuring Jamie Lee Curtis, Stacy Keach, Director Richard Franklin, stunt coordinator Grant Page, screenwriter Everett De Roche, Cinematographer Vincent Monton, and Assistant Director Tom Burstall. We get a two hour Lecture On The Making Of Road Games with Richard Franklin, Co-producer Barbi Taylor, and Composer Brian May, introduced by Critic Tom Ryan, a 20-minute Profile On Richard Franklin from 1981, and audio interviews with Richard Franklin, Stacy Keach and Stunt Coordinator and actor Grant Page running shy of an hour in total. There is a 1/2 hour gallery of Stills, Production Shots, Storyboards, Newspaper clippings with reviews, Promotional and Artwork Materials and lastly, a theatrical trailer. Phew.

One of the more interesting of the Ozploitation pics with Franklin's Hitchcock influences showing through. Road Games is an above-average murder-thriller. It has plenty of undisclosed details (Jamie Lee Curtis as an heiress hitchhiking in the middle of the desert?) but Keach was a great, final, choice for the lead and it has some engaging suspenseful sequences. If you are keen on the genre or the film, specifically, this Shout! Factory Blu-ray is the way to go - tons of value here.

Gary Tooze

 


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Box Cover

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There is also a Region FREE Umbrella Blu-ray version:

   

Distribution Shout! Factory - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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