BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

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Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

When Italians do American-styled action flicks, they usually hit the stereotypes AND the action a hell of a lot harder than we do.  Thought First Blood was a tough watch, especially when the entire town gets blown the hell up?  Think again.  Because Blastfighter, directed by Lamberto Bava (Demons) and starring Michael Sopkiw (After the Fall of New York, Monster Shark), is a non-stop rollercoaster of vicious violence deep in the American south. 

The film opens with the release of Jake Sharp (Sopkiw) from prison after murdering the bastard that killed his wife.  You see, Sharp isn’t the cleanest of all ex-cops but, man, he just wants to be left alone and so he heads back to the place of his upbringing.  No one will find him there, right?  Wrong.  Thanks to a group of deranged backwoods hunters led by Wally (Stefano Mingardo) and Tom (George Eastman, Ironmaster), his respite is short-lived. 

"It is an action film that operates like an old school western, making that rousing finale one hell of a shootout"


It doesn’t help that his estranged daughter, Connie (Valentina Forte of Cut and Run fame), has also come to reconnect with him.  And when she gets entangled with these poachers, well, his days of running are over.  It’s time to take a stand.  And he will do it with two feet planted squarely on the ground.  Sopkiw may look ragged and worn (he was lead in merely four B-movies and they all ROCK), but this relatively jangly looking dude is all about kicking major southern ass.

Full of over-the-top action sequences, cheeseball dialogue, and a ton of interesting character developments, Blastfighter, named because of the super AWESOME gun that gets stowed in “Tiger’s” house until the final 10-minutes of the movie, is a certifiable backwoods blast.  Part Deliverance and part First Blood, the movie is so packed with aggressive explosions that is bound to give some members of the audience PTSD.  Seriously.

While this Italian made regional actioner has some hilariously ludicrous dubbing, the film is a serious slice of high octane cinema.  The drive-in feel to this flick is real.  But it’s not all violence.  Bava wisely allows us time to see Sopkiw become his character.  He is, at the beginning, distant to all things but, as the movie goes on, his run-ins with the baddies – including his complicated relationship with Eastman’s character – become more and more threatening. 

Soon enough, these creeps are aiming their weapons at more than just the local wildlife.  They are plotting and scheming on how to get Sopkiw out of the picture.  These offshoots to the standard revenge flick gives this flick a bit more ammunition when it comes to the kickass finale that is so blazingly in your face with its bravado and its killing that, damn, we all stand up and cheer. 

Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

Blastfighter, presented on a blu-ray with a new HD master and extensive color corrections from Code Red, features a great electronic soundtrack from Zombi 2’s Fabio Frizzi, an early performance from Cemetery Man’s director Michele Soavi, and includes impressive stunts performed by Ottaviano Dell'Acqua.  It is an action film that operates like an old school western, making that rousing finale one hell of a shootout.  The film is obviously for fans of revenge tales, especially when the underdogs are as badass as Michael Sopkiw.

Watch poachers get peeled in Blastfighter.

4 beers

Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
Runtime:
87 mins
Director
: Lamberto Bava
Writer:
Luca De Rita; Massimo De Rita
Cast:
Michael Sopkiw, Valentina Forte, George Eastman
Genre
: Action
Tagline:
The Force Of Vengeance.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Where are your balls, Connie?"
Theatrical Distributor:
Almi Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
November 15, 1985
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
January 23, 2017
Synopsis: Michael Sopkiw (After the Fall of New York, Monster Shark) stars in this Southern-fried action thriller as an embittered cop just released from prison after serving a lengthy term for killing the man who murdered his wife. Wishing for a peaceful, serene change of pace and a chance to catch up with his daughter (Valentina Forte, Cut And Run), he moves to rural Georgia to live off the land. Alas, this pastoral existence is short-lived thanks to a sleazy group of poachers who supply an even sleazier scientist with live animals for sadistic biological experiments.

Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Code Red DVD
Available on Blu-ray
- January 23, 2017
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: None
Audio:
DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Code Red presents the newly minted transfer of Blastfighter with an aspect ratio of 1.78:1.  The 1080p transfer is minted from a new HD master from the original camera negative.  Details are fine and shockingly crisp.  Colors pop and shadows are bold.  Nicely saturated, there are no dents in its shiny armor.  Overall this a strong Hi-Def transfer that should look even better on Blu-ray. This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. The audio mixes are also in great shape as dialog is always clear, everything sounds balanced and robust when it needs too. Also the more ambient aspects of the soundtrack are well represented.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • Moderated by Nathaniel Thompson, a new commentary featuring Michael Sopkiw is included with the purchase.

Special Features:

Code Red goes all out in loading this release with NEW supplemental material.  Complete with a NEW HD Master with extensive color corrections, we get an audio commentary with star Michael Sopkiw, moderated by Nathaniel Thompson, NEW interviews with Michael Sopkiw, George Eastman, director Lamberto Bava, director of photography Gianlorenzo Battaglia, and a Theatrical Trailer.

  • Michael Sopkiw Interview
  • George Eastman Interview
  • Lamberto Bava Interview
  • Gianlorenzo Battaglia Interview
  • Theatrical Trailer

Blastfighter (1984) - Blu-ray Review

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