BLU-RAY REVIEW: REQUIESCANT

Hey there creepies! Continuin’ my trend of bein’ a horror-hound that seems to only review spaghetti westerns for this site; let’s take a look at the new release from those beautiful lil’ devils at Arrow Video entitled REQUIESCANT!

Let me tell ya, REQUIESCANT is a strange one as far as yer typical pistols and pasta flicks are concerned. At it’s core it’s a basic revenge picture; there’s this dude played by Lou Castel (named Requiescant…go figure) that’s a peacenik, raised by a preacher after Confederate soldiers murdered his family that discovers he has a natural talent for sharp shootin’. Now it doesn’t take a braniac to figure out which die-rection this lil’ yarn is takin’. But, while the path is well tread, the way there is not. Die-rector Carlo Lizzani takes a ramblin’ road tellin’ this tale…a road laced with heavy philosophical pondering…especially in regards to the Communist movement in Italy (so class struggle is front and center). Also of note is that the villain of the piece, George Ferguson (Mark Damon) that looks for all the world like he would be at home in a Gothic vampire flick playin’ the main fang banger. It’s an odd aesthetic choice that stands out in an already off-kilter flick.

Now this bein’ an Arrow release, I was a bit shocked that it was so light in the extras department (a few interviews and a trailer is all you get), as usually their releases are packed fat with a bonanza of bonuses; but the transfer is as beautiful as can be, so that is a huge plus. All in all, REQUIESCANT will make a fine addition to anyone’s spaghetti western collection; it’s different enough to stand out from the crowd but well made enough to take it’s place next to your Leone’s and Corbucci’s!

Head here to pick up REQUIESCANT when it’s released on October 13th!

BLU-RAY REVIEW: DAY OF ANGER!

day-of-anger1

Hiya creeps! Let me tell ya, yer ol’ pal Daniel XIII is as excited as a Brony on Free Pony Ride day that the amazingly amazin’ UK video distributor Arrow Video has decided to give the ol’ U.S. o’ A. some lovin’ by releasin’ some great genre titles in the comin’ months, like the subject of this here review, DAY OF ANGER!

Now, while you might be all agog, sayin’ to yerself; “But Uncle Mr. Sexy Daniel XIII; I thought you were strictly a horror hound, what are you doing reviewing a western!” Well, kiddos, I do loves me some grue and gore fer sure, but I am a connoisseur of other fare that wouldn’t be outta place in yer local grindhouse or drive-in; Spaghetti Westerns, sleazy crime films, far out sci-fi…I dig ‘em all! And lo and behold; DAY OF ANGER is a western of the pasta and sauce variety! So, let’s dig in our spurs and head out on the ol’ dusty trail and turn our putrid peepers on Tonino Valerii’s 1967 gem (I kinda gave away that the flick is good right there, but yer just playin’ Trivia Crack anyway, so just keep readin’! By the way, the answer is “Ziggy Stardust”…not that I’m starin’ in yer windows or anything…’cuz I ain’t).

Sooo, DAY OF ANGER; what’s it all about? Well, the long and short of it is this; our hapless hero Scott Mary (Giuliano Gemma) is a bullied street cleaner in a desolate western town called Clifton. It isn’t long before a master gun slinging bad@$$ named Talby (the legendary Lee Van Cleef) blows into said town, as is the spaghetti western way. Soon ol’ Scotty decides to change his lot in life and becomes Talby’s student; and the two of them proceed to tear Clifton a new one. Some other junk happens as well, but honestly if I told ya everything you’d drink that free milk and ne’er buy this cow!

And what a cow…err, flick this is! Packed fat with colorful characters, insane-o action (there’s a horse stunt in here that’ll blow yer lil’ mind) and a joltin’ jazzy score; DAY OF ANGER is a real gem of a picture! And while the film in and of itself is 10 gallons o’ fun, the folks at Arrow have really gone all out delivering a gorgeous transfer full of vivid color and crisp images…not to mention you get a few different cuts of the film and a bevy of interviews!

Trust me on this one cats, if ya dig on spaghetti westerns this release of DAY OF ANGER will truly blow ya away! Head here and grab a copy today!

BLU-RAY REVIEW: BRAZILIAN WESTERN

I don’t know what the hell is in the air lately, but for some reason or another, ol’ Daniel XIII is getting’ a fistful of westerns to review; case in point today’s review, BRAZILIAN WESTERN.

Brazilian-Western-Blu-ray
BRAZILIAN WESTERN concerns the misadventures of João do Santo Cristo (Fabrício Boliveira) who makes his way to Brazil in the hopes of startin’ a better life…which of course heads further south than the location of this yarn! João becomes involved in drug trafficking (as well as landing in the arms of sweet sweet love), and soon finds himself at odds with rival drug-dealers, the police and a heapin’ helpin’ of yer good ol’ fashioned civil unrest. As you can imagine, these elements form a volatile mix for our hero.

While a more modern film than we usually cover here (the film was released in 2013), there are plenty of elements that plant it firmly in retro territory besides the story being set in the 1980’s. Director René Sampaio is obviously a huge fan of the Spaghetti Western’s that filled theaters in the late 60’s. The hero with a troubled past caught between various warring factions under a backdrop of social turbulence immediately brought to mind Corbucci’s DJANGO (1966), and the cinematography, stark open vistas, gritty locales and score were all highly reminiscent of Sergio Leone’s Man with No Name Trilogy. Sampio does add a great deal of his own unique visual style to the proceedings though; as the imagery presented is lush and beautifully filmed (the quality of Shout Factory’s transfer accentuates these qualities as well) and the film is graced with a lyrical quality (no doubt abetted by the fact the film is based on a popular song of the same name by Brazilian rock band Legião Urbana recorded in 1987…see retro relevance!) while displaying almost mythological overtones.

So there ya have it, if ya dig on some Italian Westerns, I think BRAZILIAN WESTERN will be right up your alley! Why not head here and pre-order a copy today?

De Angelis Brothers Appreciation Day

Two wild and crazy guys

Two wild and crazy guys

Hey creeps, did you know that today is De Angelis Brothers Appreciation Day? Well, it isn’t…but it should be. Who are the De Angelis Brothers? Well simply put, they are responsible for some of the most outrageous music ever to grace a movie screen. Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look (and listen):
First up is the theme from Sergio Martinos 1977 spaghetti western Mannaja, or as it’s known in the States, a Man Called Blade.

Well, how about that? If nothing else you have to admit you’ve never heard anything quite like it…unless you’ve seen Enzo G. Castellari’s Keoma (1976), where the gravel voiced Guy is joined by the warbblin’ wonder Sybil to present us with a duet unlike any other.

But for me the pinnacle of the Brothers musical output was the theme song to Antonio Margheriti’s 1983 Reb Brown starring barbarian epic Yor the Hunter From the Future (believe me, if you only know Mr. Brown from Space Mutiny, ya ain’t seen nothin’ yet). This piece of music (or at least the chorus refrain) plays roughly 4,692 times during the film’s 88 minute runtime.

So now I ask you dear readers, do you have a favorite tune by the De Angelis Brothers that I haven’t mentioned above? Probably not. But, please feel free to leave your thoughts on these themes in the comments section!