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Cinema

Frank Sidebottom The Home of the Retrospective

ON DVD & BLU-RAY

Cujo (1983) dir: Lewis Teague Blu Ray (Eureka!)

This solid adaptation of Stephen King's killer St. Bernard story of the same name really picks up during its tension-filled second half. It stars Dee Wallace, Danny Pintauro, Daniel Hugh-Kelly, Christopher Stone and Ed Lauter.

Stephen King adaptation Cujo (1983)

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Black Moon Rising (1986) starring Tommy Lee Jones Blu Ray (Arrow)

This sci-fi action-thriller is notable for being one of John Carpenter's writer-only credits. It's not bad but it's hard to escape the feeling that he should have directed it too. It also stars Linda Hamilton, Robert Vaughn, Richard Jaeckel and Bubba Smith.

Robert Vaughn in Black Moon Rising

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Wheels on Meals (1984) dir: Sammo Hung Blu Ray (Eureka!)

The so-called Three Brothers - Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung and Yuen Baio - team up for this kung fu action-comedy set in Barcelona. While it's not their best outing, it's still plenty of fun. Both the car chase and climactic castle fight are fabulous setpieces.

Jackie Chan and Benny Urquidez in Wheels on Meals

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Parents (1989) Blu Ray (Vestron Video/Lionsgate)

Bob Balaban's black horror comedy about cannibalism within the Suburban American Dream is a subversive, surreal gem. Randy Quaid gives the finest, creepiest performance of his career. Also starring Mary Beth Hurt, Sandy Dennis and Bryan Madorsky.

Bryan Madorsky in Parents (1989)

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Gardens of Stone (1987) Blu Ray (Indicator)

Francis Ford Coppola's little-seen look at the Vietnam War from the home front is a worthy, sombre effort which never quite delivers the emotional sucker punch that it aims for. However, there are sterling performances by James Caan, Anjelica Huston, James Earl Jones and D. B. Sweeney.

Gardens of Stone (1987)

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Elvira: Mistress of the Dark (1988) Blu Ray (Arrow)

This feature-length spin-off for Cassandra Peterson's vampy, campy horror hostess persona is lightweight, disposable fun, filled with innuendoes and sight gags. While the actress was nominated for a Razzie award, she carries the slender film on her shoulders well enough.

Cassandra Peterson as Elvira

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Escape from New York (1981) Blu Ray (Studiocanal)

John Carpenter's cult classic sci-fi adventure receives a beautiful 4K restoration and plenty of extra features. The great cast includes Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Isaac Hayes, Harry Dean Stanton, Donald Pleasance and Adrienne Barbeau.

Kurt Russell in Escape from New York

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Rats: Night of Terror (1984) Blu Ray (88 Films)

Bruno Mattei and Claudio Fragasso's sci-fi horror cheapie fails spectacularly in its endeavours to make rats terrifying. On the other hand, it's often accidentally hilarious and never boring. The cast, adopting anglicised pseudonyms, includes Ottaviano Dell'Acqua, Geretta Geretta and Massimo Vanni.

Rats: Night of Terror (1984)

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Jackie Chan's Project A & Project A Part II Blu Ray (Eureka!)

The Hong Kong superstar is at his absolute finest in this pair of period action adventures. The first film is more consistent and features welcome appearances by his fellow dragons Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao, whereas the second is more ambitious and spectacular.

Sammo Hung and Jackie Chan in Project A

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Night of the Creeps (1986) Blu Ray & DVD (Eureka!)

Fred Dekker's directorial debut is an affectionate, gory, predictable but likeable homage to sci-fi, zombie movies, frat boy comedies and umpteen other genres besides. Tom Atkins is the undoubted highlight here as the film noir style detective investigating the mysterious goings-on.

Jason Lively in Night of the Creeps

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More DVDs and Blu Rays

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CINEMA

ARTICLES

Vampyres directed by José Larraz

RETRO

Erik the Conqueror directed by Mario Bava

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