Island of Death (Arrow Video Blu-ray / Movie Review)
Island of Death is a hard movie to review. On one hand, I hated the damn thing, but on the other hand, the Blu-ray from Arrow Video is fantastic. The movie is filled to the brim with gross, over the top scenes of bestiality, brutality, rape, and a story that is beyond pointless. However, the disc is filled with special features, that will keep this in the player for hours on end, but it all comes down to whether you like the movie or not. For me, I did not, but opinions are just that… butt-holes.
SUBTITLES: English SDH REGION: Free RATING: 18 PRODUCTION DATE: 1976 RELEASE DATE: May 25th, 2015
THE LUCKY ONES GOT THEIR BRAINS BLOWN OUT!!
Welcome to Mykonos, the holiday destination of choice for sun, sea and slaughter! From cult director Nico Mastorakis, Island of Death is a travelogue of atrocities with scenes so strong that the British Government was once compelled to ban it as a “video nasty”.
Arriving on the idyllic Greek island, Christopher and Celia appear to be every inch the perfect, handsome young couple. Little do the welcoming locals realise that they are in fact a pair of murderous degenerates, determined to spread their own particular brand of perversion across the island. DIY crucifixions, opportunistic bestiality, sexual peeing and murder by all conceivable forms ensue – including death by makeshift blowtorch, samurai sword, dump truck and more!
Shocking, brutal and totally politically incorrect in its outlook, Island of Death is a gruelling cinematic experience devised by director Mastorakis to out-do the excesses of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, which he was hugely inspired by. Now fully uncut and newly-restored from the original negative, fans can enjoy Island of Death in all its sleazy, lurid glory.
The only reason this movie exists was because the director Nico Mastorakis knew a sure fire way of making loads a money. Make a movie that is so obscene, that word of mouth will spread and you just have to check it out. Hence why 39 years later, we are getting a high definition, full blown awesome edition of a movie that shouldn’t of even made it pass the story development stage.
The biggest problem with Island of Death is that it’s just one awful scene after another, that’s barely tied together with a plot about a couple visiting an island in Greece. The couple quickly get on with their murdering spree to rid of the island of filth and perverts. Funny enough, the main man doing the killing, Christopher (Robert Behling,) is way more of a pervert than any other person he is killing, which consist of drug addicts, gays and lesbians, a couple of hippies that deserve it, and a french painter (cause you know, french.) The other half of the murdering couple is Celia (Jane Lyle,) who’s main job is to flirt, look confused, be nude, and stare off into space. She looks good doing it, but that’s the entirety of her character.
Island of Death is the kind of movie that you would only watch if you’re in the mood for goat sex, peeing on old women, uncomfortable nudity, and hilarious raping hippies. I’m going to take a wild guess that most of those things should turn you off from watching this… but if not, more power to ya!
No matter the film subject, Arrow Video seems to go out of their way in making up a Blu-ray package that is fantastic beyond all words. The video quality for the film is well done, with only a few scenes where there is some noticeable damage to the print, and colour distortion. The audio does have some issues with a constant buzzing sound that will drive you a little crazy at first, but you should get it over it, if you can make it through the movie that is. There is only one audio option and that is MONO.
The special features side of the disc is phenomenal, with hours and hours of interviews to go through. I’ll be honest here and tell you I didn’t bother to go through much of them, as the movie turned me off enough to just want to be done with it. In fact, I even struggled with spending more time on it with this review, but that’s what I do for you, my wonderful readers. I take the bullet, so you can survive another day of not having to see something bad.
BLU-RAY SPECIAL FEATURES
Brand new 2K restoration of the film from the original camera negative, approved by writer-director-producer Nico Mastorakis
High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
Original Mono audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
Exploring Island of Death – film historian Stephen Thrower on the making of a cult classic
Return to Island of Death – Mastorakis returns to the original Mykonos locations
Archive interview with Mastorakis
Alternative opening titles
Island Sounds – five original tracks from the Island of Death soundtrack
Original Theatrical Trailer
The Films of Nico Mastorakis – four-part documentary charting the director’s filmmaking career [Blu-ray only]
Nico Mastorakis Trailer Reel [Blu-ray only]
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys
Fully-illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing by academic and film historian Johnny Walker
For any fan out there, whoever you are, I won’t judge, as people’s tastes are different and Arrow Video knows that, so they made a wonderful Blu-ray for you. As for anyone else, you can pass on this one.