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The Devil's Honey aka "Il miele del diavolo" aka "Dangerous Obsession" [Blu-ray]
(Lucio Fulci, 1986)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Selvaggia Film
Video: Severin Films/ 88 Films
Region: 'A'/ FREE (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Runtime: 1:22:47.879 /1:22:49.881
Disc Size: 37,732,671,268 bytes / 43,219,324,143 bytes
Feature Size: 18,537,185,280 bytes / 25,993,580,544 bytes
Video Bitrate: 24.98 Mbps / 34.99 Mbps
Chapters: 12 / 12
Case: Transparent Blu-ray case / Transparent Case w/ slipcase
Release date: September 26th, 2017 / May 18th, 2020
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
LPCM Audio Italian 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48
kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
Dolby Digital Audio English 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps
• The Devil's Halsey: an Interview with Brett Halsey (17:26)
• Wild Flower: interview with Corinne Clery (12:13)
• Producing Honey: interview with producer Vincenzo Salviani (13:22)
• The Devil's Sax: interview with composer Claudio Natili (9:51)
• Stephen Thrower on The Devil's Honey (21:43)
• Fulci's Honey: Audio Essay by Troy Howarth (16:55)
• Alternate Opening (2:33)
• Trailer (2:40)
Audio Commentary by Critic and Writer, Samm Deighan
Description: In perhaps his most rarely seen film, Godfather Of Gore Lucio Fulci takes on the thriller genre and unleashes the ultimate onslaught of glossy sperficiality: Brett Halsey (ROY COLT AND WINCHESTER JACK, TOUCH OF DEATH), Corinne Cléry (THE STORY OF O, HITCH-HIKE) and Blanca Marsillach star in this insane saga complete with a jaw-dropping cavalcade of kink that Beyond Terror: The Films of Lucio Fulci calls "Demented and hot...good sleazy fun and perhaps Fulci's last truly enjoyable film." Stefano Madia (BODY COUNT), Bernard Seray (HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD) and Fulci himself co-star in which is also known as DANGEROUS OBSESSION newly scanned from the original negative and transferred in HD for the first time ever!
Horror legend Lucio Fulci directed this outrageous adult thriller about revenge. Jessica (Bianca Marsillach) loses her kinky boyfriend Johnny when he dies on the operating table after a motorcycle accident. She holds Dr. Wendell Simpson (Brett Halsey) responsible and takes him captive at a beach-front house.Excerpt from B+N located HERE
THE DEVIL'S HONEY is an odd outlier in the later years of Fulci's filmography, primarily because it's a Skinemax-ready 9 1/2 WEEKS knockoff that isn't the kind of film one usually associates with the beloved Godfather of Gore. Essentially a sort-of Fifty Shades of Fulci, THE DEVIL'S HONEY is an extraordinarily trashy, adult thriller that took five years to get a straight-to-video US release in 1991, shorn of several minutes and generically retitled DANGEROUS OBSESSION.Excerpt from GoodEfficientButchery located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The Devil's Honey comes to Blu-ray from Severin and is advertised as "Newly scanned from the original negative and transferred in HD". Unfortunately it can look inconsistent and noisy with background artifacts occasionally surfacing. It was transferred to a dual-layered disc with a reasonable bitrate so its hard to know what the issues are unless the source was compromised to some degree. Colors look rich and deep, and after a while, you get used to the rough, disparate, textures. The visuals are flat without much depth. The Blu-ray 1080P presentation is imperfect but seems to advance upon SD.
88 Films advances on the Severin Blu-ray being advertised as a "2K Scan from Original Vault Materials with an exclusive dust and scratch Restoration carried out in the UK". This definitely improves on the 2017 transfer with about a 50% high bitrate producing more prominent film textures - which I no longer see it as 'noise'. It's quite a step up with warmer, less orange, skin tones (see subtitle capture comparison directly below.) It is still flat having only minor depth but the overall appearance is a notable upgrade looking 'more like film' and 'less like video' than the Severin.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
More Blu-ray Captures
Typically flat,linear PCM mono tracks at (16-bit) in the option of English or Italian. The infrequent effects actually sound quite buoyant at times. The score is by Claudio Natili but is unremarkable. There are optional English subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A' disc.
88 Films also advances on the audio transfer. While they include both Italian and English tracks in uncompressed linear PCM like the Severin, it is 24-bit on the UK rendering as opposed to 16-bit and both the Natili score and effects carry more bass. It produces a more effective presentation of the film. It has newly translated optional subtitles and is REGION FREE, playable worldwide!
Extras include an Interview with star Brett Halsey entitled The Devil's Halsey, plus a dozen minutes with ex-hottie, but still bright and expressive, Corinne Clery entitled Wild Flower. Producing Honey is a new 14-minute interview with producer Vincenzo Salviani and The Devil's Sax gets input from composer Claudio Natili for 10-minutes. the last three in Italian with English subtitles. I appreciated Stephen Thrower's 22-minute take on The Devil's Honey and a revealing 17-minute audio essay by Troy Howarth. Included is the alternate opening 'Dangerous Obsession' title credit and a trailer.
88 Films includes an audio commentary by critic and writer, Samm Deighan. She discusses her love of Fulci's work, how she sees the opening as one the best (simulated oral sex with a saxophone), how it is not trademark Fulci film, an unrestrained erotic thriller, not a horror, how it has a lot of sexual content, which could be seen as kinky or sleazy. She discusses the state of Italian horror in the 80's and much more including being Fulci's return from hepatitis - always excellent analysis from Samm! It really advanced my appreciation of both the film and Fulci as a director. The rest of the supplements duplicate the Severin Blu-ray with the Brett Halsey, Corinne Cléry, Vincenzo Salviani and composer Claudio Natili interviews, the Stephen Thrower piece and audio essay by Troy Howarth (author of Splintered Visions – Lucio Fulci And His Films). There is also the alternate opening and trailer plus 88 films include the alternate Italian titles and credits. The package has a reversible cover art with a limited edition "Soft Touch" slipcase.
Severin- Region 'A' - Blu-ray
88 Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Thanks to Samm Deighan's commentary - I enjoyed many facets of The Devil's Honey that I had only viewed on a surface, exploitation, level. My improved appreciation could also be credited to 88 Films' new transfer with improved a/v. It wins in all categories and Fulci fans should certainly indulge. Great job!
October 7th, 2017
June 2nd, 2020