Scream Factory’s double feature Blu-ray releases are a great way to enjoy two movies for a fraction of the price (unless you’re buying from Amazon Canada, in which case you pay double the price). Their latest double feature release is probably one of the better double features lately, giving us two highly enjoyable movies by the way of Destroyer and Edge of Sanity. The Blu-ray itself doesn’t feature any special features save for a couple trailers, but both movies have a high entertainment value that more than makes up for any features that are lacking. With that being said, let’s continue on and see what the two films are all about…
RUN-TIME: 94 / 91 min
ASPECT RATIO: 1.78:1, 1.85:1
AUDIO: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
PRODUCTION DATE: 1988 / 1989
RELEASE DATE: April 12, 2016
A DOUBLE FEATURE OF HORROR STARRING ANTHONY PERKINS
1080p High-Definition Widescreen (1.78:1)/DTS-HD Master Audio Stereo/1988/NEW HD Transfer
When Ivan Moser (football great Lyle Alzado), a convicted serial killer, is set to be electrocuted, a devastating prison riot erupts on the day of the execution. In the wake of the destruction and mayhem, the prison is shut down and Moser becomes a legend. No proof of his death exists.
Eighteen months later, a film director (Anthony Perkins) intrigued by the legend of Moser, decides to use the prison as a film set. One the last night of filming, the truth of Moser’s fate is about to be revealed. The film crew, trapped inside the prison, begin to disappear one by one. This electrifying thriller also stars Deborah Foreman (Valley Girl) and Clayton Rohner (I, Madman).
EDGE OF SANITY
1080p High-Definition Widescreen (1.85:1)/DTS-HD Master Audio Stereo/1989/Uncut Version
Anthony Perkins (Psycho) stars as an outwardly rational Dr. Jekyll who rapidly descends into a world of sexual obsession and murder as Mr. Hyde… and who may also be Jack the Ripper! A shocking new twist on one of the most infamous crime stories of all time, this terrifying thriller will keep you on the cutting edge of fear!
After a lab experiment unleashes mysterious fumes, Dr. Henry Jekyll undergoes a horrifying transformation into a savage alter ego who calls himself “Jack Hyde.” Meanwhile, the depraved killer Jack the Ripper is slicing his way through the alleys of Whitechapel, leaving mutilated streetwalkers in his wake. Is there a connection between Jekyll/Hyde and Jack the Ripper? And can anyone stop his reign of terror?
First up is the slasher film Destroyer, starring the muscled up Lyle Alzado as Ivan Moser, the psychotic killer on the loose in a dilapidated prison. A film crew is shooting a women’s prison film at the old abandoned prison, and before you can scream shower scene, Moser is wreaking havoc on the crew.
Years earlier, Ivan Moser’s death sentence didn’t go exactly as planned and he has been living inside of the prison for all of these years. It isn’t until writer David Harris (Clayton Rohner – April Fool’s Day) comes up with the idea of shooting a movie in the prison, that Moser comes out of his slumber. It’s all because of the beauty of Susan Malone (Deborah Foreman – April Fool’s Day yet again), which reminds Moser of his previous victims. He makes a connection with her and wants her all to himself, meaning he needs to kill everyone else to obtain that.
It takes a while before the crew to start noticing people disappearing, but when the prerequisite women’s prison shower scene comes around, with an excited Anthony Perkins as the director controlling the scene, all hell breaks loose. Unfortunately, we don’t get to see the actual hell breaking loose, but just the aftermath instead, which is the film’s biggest faux pas. They had the chance to really go balls to the wall with this scene, but for some odd reason, they decided to skip it completely, which is a damn shame. I do want to point out, though, that the shower scene is by far the most epic shower scene I’ve ever seen in women’s prison movie. If you want full frontal nudity, (and who doesn’t?) this movie will have you covered. I’m actually having a hard time finishing this review as my mind keeps drifting back to that lovely, lovely shower scene. Uhhh….
Ahem, anyway. The biggest highlight in Destroyer, is the fantastically maniacal performance from Lyle Alzado. He is absolutely insane in this movie, dispatching people left, right and center, and when the movie actually decides to show you the murders, it’s in gory fashion. Because Lyle Alzado is such a big highlight in the flick, it’s a shame the movie takes so long to get to him and all the good stuff, but when it finally does, it kicks into overdrive and delivers an ‘80s slasher film to get excited about.
Edge of Sanity
Normally with these Scream Factory Double Features, one of the movies is not as good as the other, but this isn’t the case with this release, as Edge of Sanity is a film that is really worth checking out.
Starring Anthony Perkins as both Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the film takes the story you thought you knew and throws in a few twists and turns along the way. The biggest, of course, is the inclusion of tying in the Jack the Ripper murders with the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde story. Another interesting idea is that whenever Mr. Hyde is around, the movie serves up this alternate reality London, full of prostitutes with crazy makeup and ‘80s style clothing and so much sexuality, the film is bursting at the seams. Honestly, you haven’t lived until you’ve seen Mr. Perkins looking like a goth wannabe and masturbating in the corner while a topless chick high on opium is gyrating on top of a man with one eyebrow painted black, who is also high on opium.
Okay, that probably sounds like something you don’t want to see, but Anthony Perkins does such a wonderful job switching between the two different personalities. He is the gentle, kind Dr. Jekyll at first, but as the movie progresses and Mr. Hyde wants to come out and play more often, Perkins effortlessly switches back and forth between the two. His role does ring similar to his other “psycho” character that I don’t need to name, but there is enough different here to applaud his performance.
Edge of Sanity obviously takes a few liberties with both the Jack the Ripper and Dr. Jekyll story, but it manages to blend the two together in a way that I was able to immensely enjoy. My only complaint, which is a small one, is the lack of explanation as to what the character of Susannah (Sarah Maur-Thorp) really meant to Mr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. His obsession over her stems from a traumatic experience when he was younger, but it’s never truly explained why his Mr. Hyde persona has such an attraction to her. Is it love or repressed anger? Maybe I missed the boat on that one, but I felt the movie didn’t explain it all that well.
As previously mentioned, the Scream Factory Double Feature Blu-ray of Destroyer / Edge of Sanity doesn’t offer any special features, save for the trailers of each movie. It does, however, offer two solid transfers. There is nothing noticeably wrong with each movie and if you compare the transfer to the trailers provided, you can see how much better they’re looking. Audio is also in the same boat, giving a solid performance. I did feel that the opening of Destroyer came through louder than the rest of the movie, but besides that oddity, everything else was A-OK.
Edge of Sanity Trailer
Both films on this double feature come easily recommended. Destroyer gives us some nice ‘80s slasher cheese, with a fantastic women’s prison shower scene, and Edge of Sanity provides a sexually charged story that was both entertaining and original. Pick up this Blu for sure!