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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

A Cat in the Brain aka "Un gatto nel cervello" aka "Nightmare Concert" [Blu-ray]

 

(Lucio Fulci, 1990)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Executive Cine TV

Video: Grindhouse Releasing

 

Disc:

Region: FREE (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:32:50.815

Disc Size: 24,573,140,412 bytes

Feature Size: 23,507,348,352 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.72 Mbps

Chapters: 44

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: July 12th, 2016

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.66:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1095 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1095 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio Italian 1114 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1114 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit)

 

Subtitles:

None

 

Extras:

• Italian Trailer (1:28)

• US Trailer (1:59)

 

2nd Blu-ray

In-depth interviews with director Lucio Fulci and star Brett Halsey (46:04)
New interviews with composer Fabio Frizzi (Frizzi and Fulci - 30:32), screenwriter Antonio Tentori (27:13), cinematographer Sandro Grossi (27:55) and poster artist Enzo Sciotti (17:53)

Frizzi 2 Fulci North American Tour (7:35)

Antonio Tentori interviews Lucio Fulci - radio show, 1987 (16:25)

• Lucio Fulci - The Television Years (40:53) / Genre Terrorist (40:18)

Memories of Lucio (5:00)
Stills Gallery and Lucio Fulci's heroic appearance at the 1996 NYC Fangoria Weekend of Horrors (23:32)

Bio text screens
Original Italian theatrical trailer & gallery of stills and poster art
Liner notes by Antonella Fulci, David J. Schow, Eli Roth and Martin Beine
BONUS CD - the original soundtrack by Fabio Frizzi!
Chilling GLOW-IN-THE-DARK slip cover - limited to first 3000 copies
Mini portrait of Lucio Fulci - suitable for framing - limited to first 3000 copies

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: In this Italian splatter film, director Lucio Fulci plays a horror filmmaker who goes to a psychiatrist because the types of films he makes are starting to disturb him, he suspects that his German producers are Nazis, and he believes he may be a killer himself. Much of the movie consists of clips from Fulci's previous films.

***

Grindhouse Releasing has set a July 12 street date for the new deluxe 3-disc Blu-ray edition of Lucio Fulci’s nightmare classic CAT IN THE BRAIN. The movie will be touring theaters all over the U.S. this summer, starting June 2.

CAT IN THE BRAIN is a psychological masterpiece in the tradition of such cinematic classics as PSYCHO, STRAIT-JACKET, ERASERHEAD and Fellini’s 8 1/2. Acclaimed Italian horror maestro Lucio Fulci, director of ZOMBIE and THE BEYOND, stars in this blood-soaked epic as a director being driven insane by his own movies. Fulci is thrust into an ultra-violent nightmare of death and depravity where murder and madness consume his sanity in a vortex of violence.

CAT IN THE BRAIN is my favorite Fulci movie,” says Grindhouse Releasing co-founder Bob Murawski. “How could it not be? It’s wall-to-wall gore and stars Lucio Fulci playing himself. It delivers on all levels.”

 

 

The Film:

The cerebellum is Lucio Fulci’s: The high-angle camera descends on the maestro’s dome and dissolves from his fervid brainstorm of cinematic punishments ("hacked to death... drowned in boiling water... sawed in half...") to the actual grey matter, which here is pulsating red. (A kitty -- Lewis Carroll’s? -- feasts greedily on it.) Cinecittà is the setting, a misogynistic cannibal opus is being shot, the director steps out for lunch only to find himself plagued by visions of the gore he’s orchestrated. Fulci helplessly takes a hatchet to cans of crimson paint at home and mistakes a German documentary crew for the Nazisploitation orgy he had just been filming, he can’t turn on a faucet without precipitating images of dismemberment. "A kind of identity crisis." The psychiatrist (David L. Thompson) has clogged-id issues of his own and uses the hypnotized cineaste on his divan to go on a merry slaying spree. Fulci’s splatter meta-comedy is founded equally on sardonic censor-baiting ("Doesn’t that stupid theory say that seeing violence on screen provokes violence?") and the true confessions of a conflicted auteur...

Excerpt from CinePassion.org located HERE

 

Cult Italian horror filmmaker Lucio Fulci stars as himself in this wildly uneven but entertaining flick. It seems that all of the horrible guts and gore that Lucio has been putting into his movies has slowly started to drive him crazy, so Lucio goes to see a shrink to get his head straight. As it turns out, the shrink is a deranged maniac who gets his jollies by murdering people. He hypnotizes Fulci into thinking that he actually committed the crimes, which makes poor Lucio even more bananas.

Too much of this movie is filled with scenes where you don't know what is "reel" and what's "real". That shit gets pretty irritating rather quick. Luckily, Cat in the Brain is filled with so much gore and nudity that you just have to like it. Numerous heads, eyes, tongues, hands, arms, legs, and guts get ripped off, cut off, or chopped up throughout the course of the film and lots of willing Italian babes show off their enormous assets too.

Excerpt from The VideoVacuum located HERE

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

Grindhouse Releasing's Blu-ray of A Cat in the Brain looks a shade inconsistent but I would guess that would be on-par with the original production. The beginning shows weaknesses but once the plot is in flight - it seems to settle down with a few impressive sequences in terms of detail via close-ups. No doubt thought, the overall visuals are modest considering the format but it seems to have been transferred adeptly.  This Blu-ray gave me a watchable viewing in regards to the 1080P picture quality.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Grindhouse Releasing offer the option of DTS-HD Master mono track 24-bit in both English or Italian language. There are effects in the film - mostly gore-violence-related, but that do carry some depth. They sounds quite deep and ominous at times. wonderful score by Fabio Frizzi, composer for Fulci's The Beyond, Zombie (1979) and City of the Living Dead (1980) and Sergio Martino's The Scorpion with Two Tails (1982) to name a few.  The dialogue was sometimes cloudy and less consistent to distinguish - which would probably on-par with the production. There are optional English subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region FREE.

 

Extras :

Grindhouse Releasing stack the package with extras starting with on the first Blu-ray disc (single-layered) that houses the Italian and US Trailers. There is a second Blu-ray - solely for the other supplements which include in-depth interviews with director Lucio Fulci and star Brett Halsey running 3/4 of an hour, there are also new interviews with composer Fabio Frizzi (Frizzi and Fulci - 30:32), screenwriter Antonio Tentori (27:13), cinematographer Sandro Grossi (27:55) and poster artist Enzo Sciotti (17:53) plus 7-minutes of Frizzi 2 Fulci North American Tour. Antonio Tentori interviews Lucio Fulci from a 1987 radio show running over 1/4 of an hour. There are two vintage video pieces; Lucio Fulci - The Television Years and Genre Terrorist - each running over 40-minutes. Memories of Lucio has a brief 5-minutes with 3 stars reminiscing. There is a stills gallery and Lucio Fulci's heroic appearance at the 1996 NYC Fangoria Weekend of Horrors for over 20-minutes, some Bio text screens and the package has liner notes by Antonella Fulci, David J. Schow, Eli Roth and Martin Beine and there is included a bonus CD with the the original soundtrack by Fabio Frizzi.

 

Blu-ray 2

 

BOTTOM LINE:
A Cat in the Brain not your typical Fulci. It's an odd one. It's certainly bizarre bordering on the ridiculous - but that can be part of its charm. The director's fans will get the most out of this, I think. There hints of his other work but it's hard to exist as a sole entry simply on the extensive gore. The value of the Blu-ray
is certainly escalated by the supplements - but it further appeals to the fan-base or completists. Recommended to that niche!

Gary Tooze

July 5th, 2016

 

About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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