BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

Twilght People (1972) - Blu-ray Review

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Twilight People (1972) - Blu-ray Review

4 beersDescribe to me the most boring movie ever. Go ahead. I will wait. Is it 90-minutes of a man staring at paint drying on a wall? Do people pass in front of that wall trying to get him to look away? Does he? No? Okay. Whatever. Sounds pretty dull, but if there happens to be a panther woman passing by and you have already cast Pam Grier in the role, you can be damned sure that I will be there in the front row with a bag of popcorn, chomping away happily as I wait for her to crawl by.

And that’s exactly why Twilight People earns bonus beers from me; a growling Grier will always get my motor humming.

To be fair, this film, directed by one of the best filmmakers to come out of the Philippines, Eddie Romero, isn’t the greatest of clean tears from the pages of The Island of Dr. Moreau, yet it remains a favorite due to its willingness to show us a man-bat, a goat-boy, and a hunter who gets a sexual charge from hunting another man. So, yes, Grier in a ripped dress, creeping around like a cat might be the best thing ever, but it’s merely one of the three highlights in this warped Filipino-American horror film.

John Ashley (Brides of Blood), who also co-produced the movie, stars as Matt Farrell, the film’s leading man. He’s not much of one, though. Who cares? In this sick flick, he’s a scuba diver who gets abducted underwater - in an awkwardly hilarious sequence that sees him attacked by two other scuba divers and then hoisted out of the water by his legs courtesy of a chain – and winds up held captive by Dr. Gordon (Charles Macaulay of Blacula fame) on a strange island out on the middle of nowhere.

Dr. Gordon and his team of hunters are all about creating a brand new race of humans through risky surgeries in which humans are combined with animals. We get a whole slew of new monsters, yet there’s one out there in the jungle that is loose and all sorts of wild. What or who could it be?

Farrell, who is busy making eyes at the GORGEOUS Pat Woodell (best known for her performance as Bobbie Jo Bradley on Petticoat Junction), feels the best way off the island is through her, the doctor’s daughter. And then the manimals get involved and all hell breaks is released upon the island and its inhabitants, whether they are armed or not.

This film wasn’t Romero’s first foray into H.G. Welles either. The first horror film from the Philippines was his and in it, the same territory is mapped out. Terror is a Man, about a scientist doing the same thing on yet another remote place, was well received before Twilight People. In fact, Romero would explore time and time again. He seems to be taken by the subject of island experiments.

But when the results are this consistently twisted, why stop the march toward the blood island sea? Twilight People is now available on blu-ray thanks to VCI’s remastering in 2K from the 35mm negative. This is also the first time the film has been presented in widescreen. This release is a must own.

It’s time to go back to the island.

Twilight People (1972) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: PG.
Runtime:
84 mins
Director
: Eddie Romero
Writer:
Eddie Romero, Jerome Small
Cast:
John Ashley, Pat Woodell, Jan Merlin
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
Animal desires... Human lust. Test Tube terrors... Half beast... all monster.
Memorable Movie Quote: "You are to participate in the single most important scientific event in the history of life on this planet."
Theatrical Distributor:
Dimension Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
June, 1972
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
January 23, 2018
Synopsis: Matt Farrell (John Ashley) is plucked from the sea while skin-diving and taken to the foreboding fortress of Dr. Gordon. He is to become part of the doctor's diabolical experiment to create a race of super people. This twisted and maniacal doctor's experiments have so far only created terrifying and hideous creatures. His human guinea pigs, freed by the doctor's own daughter, turn the island hideaway into a bloodbath of revenge and terror!

Twilight People (1972) - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: VCI Entertainment
Available on Blu-ray
- January 23, 2018
Screen Formats: 1.78:1
Language
: English
Audio:
Dolby Digital 2.0 track
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Presented by VCI Entertainment, the 2K 1080p transfer – while does have its weaker aspects – is quite good. The crisp transfer, while a bit rough in areas, is presented in a 1.78.1 aspect ratio and looks quite warm in the color department. Reds are the dominant colors. Black levels are solid, though. The film looks crisp and colors are bold, with special attention paid to the animal meets man effects. It’s unlike any other version of the movie released thus far; focused and detailed. The sound is presented in an adequate Dolby Digital 2.0 track.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • The fun and informative audio commentary by film historian David Del Valle and director David Decoteau is a great addition to this release, giving the film a historical perspective as the two commentators appreciate its horror elements with nice detail.

Special Features:

There’s not a lot included. It is; however, enough.

  • Video Interview with director Eddie Romero
  • Original theatrical trailer

Twilight People (1972) - Blu-ray Review

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