Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Blu-ray Review: CURTAINS
Directed by Richard Ciupka (as Jonathan Stryker)
Distributed by Synapse films / CAV Distributing Corp
The only thing I love more than watching one of my favorite 80's slasher flicks, is watching an 80's slasher flick nowadays that I have never seen before! Such was the case with the 1983 classic, CURTAINS. I had never really heard much about this movie, but I remember always seeing the VHS box back when I worked at a video rental store. For some reason I just never checked it out. I hate I missed out on seeing such a great film so long ago, but I love that I get to see it now on Blu-ray thanks to Synapse films! If you are unfamiliar with this film like I was, here is the synopsis courtesy of the Synapse films website:
A group of women gather for a weekend casting call at the secluded mansion of director Jonathan Stryker (Vernon). He’s searching for the perfect woman to play the role of the crazed character “Audra”, and these women are just dying for the chance to play her! Stryker’s last star, Samantha Sherwood (Eggar), is so determined to get the part, she committed herself to an asylum to prepare for the role. Unfortunately for all, a crazed killer in a disgusting “hag” mask is viciously murdering everyone one by one. Who will survive the final curtain call?
This is a great film, and while it is a slasher film, it feels more like an Italian Giallo film, which makes sense being an early 80's slasher. The modern slasher film derived from the Giallo sub-genre, so I guess this is a bridge piece where you can see the two horror sub-genres crossing paths. There is not much blood/gore which is more the Giallo characteristic, but it has all the makings of a Slasher film as well, with some very unique and crazy kills. One in particular involves the killer wearing an ultra creepy "old lady" mask as she ice skates across a frozen pond to get to her victim. The close up of her skates in slow motion really builds the tension, and I just can't get over how creepy of an image this is.
Another creepy aspect of this film (as if the creepy old lady mask wasn't enough), is the presence of a creepy doll throughout the film (as seen on the Blu-ray cover). Killer dolls in movies always scare me, so this was a nice added feature to go along with the already creepy vibe given off by this film. The film is also a mystery, or a "who-done-it" type film, as we don't know who the killer is until the very end, although I have to say I have seen enough of these type films by now, I caught on to who the killer was very early in the film, as you will probably too. Regardless, it is still a very enjoyable film that I am very glad to have finally got the chance to view.
This film is a must see for 80's slasher films. CURTAINS is available now on DVD and Blu-ray from Synapse films, and contains the following special features:
* Brand-New 2K High-Definition Transfer from Original Vault Materials
* 5.1 Surround Remix Specifically Created for This Release
* THE ULTIMATE NIGHTMARE: THE MAKING OF “CURTAINS” – An All-New retrospective featuring interviews with Director Richard Ciupka, Stars Lesleh Donaldson & Lynne Griffin, Editor Michael MacLaverty, Special Make-Up Effects Creator Greg Cannom, and Composer Paul Zaza
* CIUPKA - A FILM-MAKER IN TRANSITION - Director Gordon Thornes vintage documentary short, featuring rare behind-the-scenes footage from CURTAINS (Blu-ray exclusive)
* Audio Commentary with Stars Lesleh Donaldson & Lynne Griffin
* Audio Interview with Producer Peter R. Simpson
* Audio Interview with Star Samantha Eggar
* Theatrical Trailer
CLICK HERE to purchase the DVD
CLICK HERE to purchase the Blu-ray