- Reviewed by means of: Tim Salmons
- Review Date: Dec 21, 2021
- Format: Blu-ray Disc
1978 (November 17, 2021)Studio(s)
Umbrella Entertainment (Ozploitation Classics #8)
- Film/Program Grade:B+
- Video Grade:B+
- Audio Grade:B-
- Extras Grade:A-
Review[Editor’s Note: This is a REGION-FREE disc.]
Call it what you will—documentary, mockumentary, rockumentary—however nobody word completely describes the insanity and entertainment cost found inside Stunt Rock. Brian Trenchard-Smith’s wildly over-the-top slice of rock and roll exploitation, which changed into made previous to Christopher Guest’s and Rob Reiner’s seminal This Is Spinal Tap, become filmed at smash-neck speed and finished in some short months, from script to display screen. It didn’t find its footing upon its preliminary theatrical release and went via a number of name changes, along with Sorcery and the tasteless-as-water Crash, but it became a cult favourite a few years later thanks to repertory screenings and its inclusion inside the Australian filmmaking documentary Not Quite Hollywood.
The thin-as-paper plot revolves round actual life stuntman Grant Page traveling to Los Angeles for stunt paintings in a film, befriending reporter Lois (Margaret Trenchard-Smith) alongside the way, as well as his get-up-and-pass co-megastar Monique van de Ven (as herself). In among jobs, he tells them break up-screen stories approximately the various extreme stunts he’s finished through the years, a few no longer working out that properly, however constantly pushing the boundaries of sanity and safety. His Amercan-based totally cousin introduces them all to the band Sorcery, a Peter Gabriel’s Genesis meets Kiss spectacle of heavy steel and magic wherein the King of the Wizards for ever and ever battles the Prince of Darkness even as their emblem of electrifying hard rock plays in the heritage.
In other words, there’s no want to comply with a plot in this movie. It’s not involved with tale mechanics or fleshing out characters, though it on occasion attempts to remind you which you’re looking a film with the aid of shoehorning in a love tale among Grant Page and Lois. The actual stars of the show are the incredible stunts and Sorcery’s stage show, and the very last movie is jam-packed with each. Stunt Rock managed to gain middle of the night film repute ala The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but it nonetheless flies under the radar of many genre fans who’ve never even heard of. But if you’ve made frequent journeys to festival screenings or an Alamo Drafthouse, or purchased a trailer compilation disc, you’ve more than probably been uncovered to Stunt Rock.
Stunt Rock was shot by means of cinematographer Robert Primes (as Bob Carras) on 35 mm movie the use of Todd-AO 35 cameras and anamorphic lenses, completed photochemically, and framed at the 2.35:1 aspect ratio. Umbrella Entertainment brings the film to Blu-ray for the first time with what is advertised as a “trendy 4K test of the original movie factors,” the supply being an interpositive. Minor flaws aside, Stunt Rock has by no means seemed better. Because the movie uses numerous bits of footage of Grant Page’s stunt work, in addition to a few opticals, it has a tendency to have choppy grain and a piece of softness, but it appears organic and genuine to its supply. Detail is boosted over the now twenty-12 months-antique DVD launch, specifically at some point of the live performance sequences. The colour palette in the scenes offers a huge variety of colorings, especially the diverse coloured lights and costumes. Swatches of inexperienced, pink, and blue across the metropolis are also amazing. Blacks are deep with suitable shadow detail and the picture is strong with right assessment. Only mild scratches and frequent speckling are leftover. It’s a less than excellent-looking film, however it seems incredible on Blu-ray.
The audio is blanketed in English 2.zero DTS-HD with optionally available subtitles in English SDH. The film became at the beginning launched in four-tune stereo, that is alas now not represented here. What we have alternatively is a track that borders on mono. The mildest of stereo interest may be skilled, but you actually need to pay near attention to even word it, which defeats the cause. As is, it’s a respectable mono-type song with properly constancy, thinking about its source. Dialogue exchanges are mostly clean, however given the chaotic nature of the manufacturing, no longer all of it’s far front and center. There’s also some sibilance issues, but nothing harmful. The nice of the sound outcomes and score push the needles into the pink, causing occasional distortion. It’s an in any other case nice soundtrack. Just don’t think about what you’re missing.
The following extras are blanketed:
- Audio Commentary with Brian and Margaret Trenchard-Smith, and Grant Page
- Audio Commentary with Brian Trenchard-Smith, Marty Fink, and Richard Blackburn
- Introduction to the Film (SD – 2:00)
- The Ultimate Rush: A Conversation with Brian and Margaret Trenchard-Smith (HD – eighty:07)
- Extended Not Quite Hollywood Interviews (HD – 17:34)
- 2009 Interviews (SD – sixty eight:34)
- Audio Interview with Perry Morris (HD – 22:21)
- Brian Trenchard-Smith’s Alamo Drafthouse Appearances (SD – 24:forty eight)
- Cannes Promo Reel (Upscaled SD – 19:30)
- Theatrical Trailer (Upscaled SD – 2:23)
- Brian Trenchard-Smith Trailer Reel (SD and HD – 40:55)
- Trailers from Hell with Brian Trenchard-Smith (HD – 3:fifty one)
Both audio commentaries were recorded in 2009 for the Code Red DVD release. They provide a wealth of facts approximately the making of the film, as well as retrospective emotions about it and the revel in making it. They’re both lively, insightful, and exciting. The Introduction to the Film, additionally from 2009, features Brian Trenchard-Smith and Richard Taylor. The Ultimate Rush is a brand new Skype/Zoom interview with Brian and Margaret Trenchard-Smith from their home with interviewer Justin King. Justin asks them many questions about the movie and its star. The Extended Not Quite Hollywood Interviews feature Grant Page and Brian Trenchard-Smith. The 2009 Interviews encompass Brian Trenchard-Smith, Marty Fink, Richard Blackburn, and Richard Taylor as individuals. The Audio Interview with Perry Morris additionally functions Brian and Margaret Trenchard-Smith, interviewing drummer for Sorcery. The Alamo Drafthouse Appearances characteristic Brian Trenchard-Smith in the course of numerous put up-screening Q&As. The Cannes Promo Reel is sourced from a VHS tape and capabilities pictures from the film with introductory observation. The Trailer Reel features trailers for The Love Epidemic, The Man from Hong Kong, Death Cheaters, Stunt Rock, Turkey Shoot, BMX Bandits, Frog Dreaming (aka The Quest), Dead End Drive-In, Day of the Panther, Strike of the Panther, Out of the Body, Danger Freaks, Night of the Demons 2, Leprechaun three, Leprechaun four: In Space, Britannic, Megiddo: The Omega Code 2, Operation Wolverine (aka Seconds to Spare), Arctic Blast, The Cabin, Chemistry, Absolute Deception, and Drive Hard. Missing from the Code Red DVD release is The Stuntmen documentary, additionally directed by Brian Trenchard-Smith.
The disc sits inner a blue amaray case with art work offering the film’s US poster paintings on the front and a poster presenting the exchange name Sorcery on the again; and the film’s French poster and some other poster for the film beneath the identify Crash on the reverse. Also included in the bundle is a 16-web page insert book proposing a comedian ebook version of the movie through Dark Oz, as well as the Italian poster art work at the back cover. Everything is housed inside a slipcover proposing a version of the film’s Australian one sheet poster art work.
Once you see the trailer for Stunt Rock, there’s no manner that you’re no longer going to want to click on the order button. It’s now not so much a film because it an revel in, and an excellent one at that. Umbrella Entertainment’s Blu-ray release in the end brings it to HD with a very great selection of extras to go along with it. For enthusiasts of exploitation cinema, it comes highly endorsed!
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