The Halloween movie train keeps rolling, but this year in HD! Arrgh! That would have been a much better intro for Terror Train. Oh well. Last night I finally watched one of the latest releases from Scream Factory, the 1981 Tobe Hooper horror film, The Funhouse. The film is uneven at times but I have always enjoyed it, mainly because the premise of the film is brilliant.
Some teens go to the carnival and are having a great time. Then, they have a great idea, lets hide inside and spend the night in the Funhouse. I have to admit that as a kid, my friends often came up with the same sort of idea about amusement parks in general. Although I think we thought we could do things like ride the Ferris Wheel and other more action packed rides (and that somehow no one would notice). Ahhh to be a kid.
Well once the park closes things go south for our teens as they are stalked by a murderer in a Frankenstein mask. It is creepy and as well done as any of the slasher films of their time, which it is why it is surprising that it was not a bigger hit or at least not big enough to warrant a sequel of some sort. It was certainly the right era for masked killers.
The movie is great and Scream Factory delivers on the presentation. Clear, clean audio and high quality widescreen transfer and a surprising number of extras, including:
• Audio Commentary With Director Tobe Hooper, Moderated By Filmmaker Tim Sullivan
• Interview With Executive Producer Mark L. Lester And Composer John Beal
• Audio Interview With Actor William Finley
• Theatrical Trailer
• TV Spots
One thing I learned from watching The Funhouse again is that Tobe Hooper is a talented director. The pacing and artistic choices in this film are downright interesting and only get more so on repeat viewing. So do yourself a favor this Halloween season and pick up a copy of The Funhouse on Blu-Ray.