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The House on Sorority Row (1983) - Blu-ray Review

5 beersA killer cult classic gets cleaned up for its HD debut!  And, no, I am not clowning around.  Heh heh.

Written and directed by Mark Rosman (The Blue Yonder), The House on Sorority Row is a slasher film about a wicked prank gone horribly wrong by seven sorority sisters in law school.  It was wildly successful on its modest budget at the time of its release and, in the years since its debut, has grown to become a certifiable cult classic and now, thanks to Scorpion Releasing, this underrated gem of slice and dice horror arrives on blu-ray.

Katey (Kathryn McNeil), Vicki (Eileen Davidson), Liz (Janis Zido), Diane (Harley Kozak), Stevie (Ellen Dorsher), Jeanie (Robin Meloy), and Morgan (Jodi Draigie) are celebrating the very end of their college journey.  They plan, however cruel it may seem, a nasty little prank on their cane-crippled housemother, Mrs. Slater (Lois Kelso Hunt) after she catches one of them breaking the rules and decides to rip a hole in her waterbed as a consequence.

The prank winds up killing her and the girls, freaking out on the day of their graduation, decide to hide the body until AFTER the celebrations.  They are in for one hell of a surprise because someone saw what they did and that someone – having to do with the film’s black-and-white beginning will carry out Slater’s revenge.  Oh, yes, there will be blood and lots of floating things in the pool behind the house…like a fat boy in tighty whities who utters hilarious lines like, “I’m a sea pig.”

With a hefty dose of humor and horror, The House on Sorority Row is easily right up there with the very best of the rest in the slasher genre.  It simply does not disappoint in its thrills and its spills.  Tight and economical, the film serves its audience a solid serving of freshly baked horror thanks to a mysterious killer that starts offing the party guests one by one as the incredibly shitty house band, Four Out Of Five Doctors, soldiers on with one new wave crooner after another. 

And there will be no stopping the attacks.  Several of which are memorable; the shadows against the boiler room wall kill being a standout.  We see the girl slammed against the wall.  We see the sharp object as it is thrust into her stomach and then her fore head.  All brought to us by heavy, cascading shadows.  It’s a solid moment in a move that stands at the forefront of a lot of copycats.  It’s no Halloween, mind you.  Hell, it’s not even Friday the 13th but, as far as slashers go, this one goes the distance. 

The girls think they run Theta-Pi sorority.  They don’t.  The House on Sorority Row explains why.  Time to get scared and do what sea pigs do and float away from the scene of the crime.  The cult classic is now available on blu-ray thanks to Scorpion Releasing.  It is the absolute best this movie has ever looked.


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The House on Sorority Row (1983) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: R.
91 mins
: Mark Rosman
Mark Rosman, Bobby Fine
Kate McNeil, Eileen Davidson, Janis Ward
: Horror
Seven graduates of sorority sisters stalked as they hold a guilty secret.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Slater is a dying breed. When she goes the whole species will be extinct."
Theatrical Distributor:
Artists Releasing Corporation
Official Site:
Release Date:
January 21, 1983
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
April 22, 2014
Synopsis: Flirtatious young sorority sisters who are days away from graduation set out to throw one last decadent celebration. Unbeknownst to them, the strict matron of their house hides a horrendous secret thought long buried. A gruesome accident is witnessed by a hideous fiend, hidden within the once nurturing dwelling, which triggers a rampage of death and destruction. Before the end, the peril faced by this sisterhood will push them to the brink of annihilation. And rivers of blood will drown all who enter…The House On Sorority Row.


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The House on Sorority Row (1983) - Blu-ray Review


Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Scorpion Releasing
Available on Blu-ray
- April 22, 2014
Screen Formats: 1.78:1
: None
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set
Region Encoding: Region-free playback

Scorpion Releasing presents The House on Sorority Row with a 1:78:1 aspect ratio and a crisp 2.0 DTS-HD MA sound mix.  Both obviously have their limitations.  Filmed mostly in interiors, shadows and details loom large.  As most of the film is shot in the evening, it is important to note just how vibrant the black levels are throughout.  Edges are clear and varied.  Colors are strong.  This release preserves the cinematic look of the film with a new crispness that used to be lost to time.  Well, no more!  The film looks bloody brilliant.  



  • We get two great commentaries with purchase of the blu-ray release.  The first features writer/director Mark Rosman and actresses Kate McNeil and Eileen Davidson as they talk about the making of the movie.  The second commentary features Rosman again.  This time he is with host Katarina Leigh Waters.  There is some repetition in the commentary.

Special Features:

This two-disc release is quite loaded with supplemental items.  With extended interviews from cast and crew – some clocking in at over 45-minutes – we get quite the picture of the making of this movie.  All the interviews are filled with candid recollections.  Also included are storyboards, an alternate opening, a theatrical trailer and some television spots.

Disc 1 (Blu-ray)

  • Original Pre-Title Sequence (2 min)
  • Harley Jane Kozak Interview (42 min)
  • Alternate Ending/Storyboard Comparisons/Production Stills (7 min)
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Three T.V. Spots

Disc 2 (DVD)

  • Kate McNeil Interview (14 min)
  • Eileen Davidson Interview (7 min)
  • Mark Rosman Interview (21 min)
  • Richard Band Interview (45 min)
  • Igo Kantor Interview (10 min) 


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The House on Sorority Row (1983) - Blu-ray Review