Blu-ray/DVD Reviews

Category

Currently showing posts tagged Drive-In

  • They're Playing with Fire (1984) Blu-ray Review

    They’re Playing with Fire (1984)

    Director: Howard Avedis

    Starring: Sybil Danning, Eric Brown, Andrew Prine & Paul Clemens

    Released by: Kino Lorber Studio Classics

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Combining skin and thrills, They’re Playing with Fire stars Sybil Danning (Howling II: Your Sister Is a Werewolf) as a sultry college professor who seduces a horny student (Eric Brown, Private Lessons), entangling him in a dangerous plot to obtain her in-laws wealthy inheritance.  Andrew Prine (Amityville II: The Possession) and Paul Clemens (The Beast Within) costar.

    Shrouded as a wild sex-romp in tune with most young men’s desires, They’re Playing with Fire, albeit being very tantalizing, pulls the carpet under its audience in one of the oddest genre switch ups of the decade.  Incessantly drooling over his foxy professor, Mrs. Diane Stevens, and performing odd jobs aboard her luxurious yacht, college student Jay Richard’s lusting pays off when seduced by the blonde bombshell.  Unknowingly plotting a scheme with her husband Michael (Prine) to inherit his family riches from her in-laws, a virtually harmless crack at prowling to scare off the elderly Stevens’ backfires on Jay when a masked assailant ruthlessly knocks off Michael’s mother and grandmother instead.  Trapping him in a seductive love triangle with life or death stakes, Jay’s hormonal jackpot grows grayer by the day.  Regarded as exploitation royalty, Sybil Danning makes mouths water with her fiercely flirtatious performance and sizzling nude sequences that, much to the delight of teenage boys during the video boom, are plentiful.  In a deliriously unexpected spin for viewers assuming the plot from its provocative poster art, They’re Playing with Fire morphs into an erotically-charged thriller with slasher elements that pollinate the film with bloody bursts of violence catching first time watchers off guard.  Helmed by Howard Avedis (Scorchy, Mortuary), They’re Playing with Fire, rightly earning Danning one of her finest performances in a career of countlessly sexy and sleazy roles, is a wild effort right down to its even kookier reveal of the true murderer that is as unusually different as it is libido driving.

    Newly remastered, KL Studio Classics upgrades They’re Playing with Fire with a 1080p transfer, sporting a 1.85:1 aspect ratio.  Revealing satisfying layers of detail in facial features, skin tones are sound with Danning certainly showing off her fair share during the film’s many moments of passion.  Meanwhile, costumes, background pieces and bolder colored vehicles pop quite decently with the film’s source material arriving in tiptop shape and generally free of any unsavory scratches.  Equipped with a DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mix that handles character exchanges, both in intimate, hushed tones and louder barroom environments, nicely while, music cues are well orchestrated and ear-pleasing.  Special features include, Sun & Seduction with Sybil Danning (18:25) where the still mightily attractive lead reveals she landed the role based on her appearance in Playboy Magazine and her initial concerns that the script was overly convoluted.  Furthermore, Danning recalls many a fan encounters where the film played heavily into their puberty and instances of teens stealing the videotape from their fathers!  The genre titan, although finding him cute, reveals costar Eric Brown made the shoot difficult due to his unwillingness to be nude in the film.  Lastly, Trailers for They’re Playing with Fire (1:25), The Bitch (2:38) and The Stud (2:52) conclude the disc’s supplements.

    Beloved by Mr. Skin himself and most young men who experienced the film’s sumptuous offerings during its heyday, They’re Playing with Fire offers plenty of bare-breasted Sybil Danning and a chameleon-like plot that supplies an alarmingly fun touch of slasher elements for fans of the decade’s body count pictures.  A career high for the buxom B-movie queen, carnal delights never tasted this sweet or deadly before her voluptuous college professor wraps her legs around such impressionable hound dogs.  KL Studio Classics’ high-def handling of the sexy sizzler is a solid boost in quality with Danning’s newly recorded chatty sit-down a fine inclusion.

    RATING: 3.5/5

    Available now from KL Studio Classics, They’re Playing with Fire can be purchased via KinoLorber.com, Amazon.com and other fine retailers.

  • Drive-In Massacre (1976) Blu-ray Review

    Drive-In Massacre (1976)

    Director: Stu Segall

    Starring: Jake Barnes, Adam Lawrence, Douglas Gudbye & Verkina Flowers

    Released by: Severin Films

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Although bearing a glorified grindhouse moniker further personified by its gritty photography, Drive-In Massacre falls short of living up to its promise of exploitation excess.  Co-scripted by Back to the Future’s quintessential hobo George “Buck” Flower, a sweltering California drive-in is targeted by a sword-wielding madmen with a penchant for necking couples.  Kicking off with an impactful opening leaving the heads of unsuspecting lovers literally rolling, Drive-In Massacre quickly veers off course as a dull duo of detectives investigate the murders leading them down a rabbit hole of red herrings ranging from public ejaculators and bumbling maintenance men to no avail.  Unsurprisingly shot in less than a week, this smartly marketed indie effort makes little case in the realm of appealing characters and a slim body count that can’t only help but disappoint based on the film’s tagline deeming itself too terrifying for the average moviegoer.  While its classic drive-in and latter carnival filming locations make for nostalgic eye candy, Drive-In Massacre ultimately dawdles for much of its barely hour-long runtime before the coppers zero in on a warehouse where yet another machete-wielding red herring withholds a young woman.  Completely unrelated to their actual unknown suspect, the film’s “killer is still out there” sendoff not only feels cheap but, lacks any sort of punch actual drive-inners may have had shifting their ride into reverse by the end credits.  Notable for preceding the slasher craze and boasting an uncompromisingly eye-catching title, Drive-In Massacre can be appreciated for its humble efforts but, hardly leaves a true developmental mark on the genre.

    Newly restored from the original camera negative, Severin Films presents Drive-In Massacre with a 1080p transfer, sporting a 1.78:1 aspect ratio.  Although sporadic instances of scuffs, scratches and reel change snafus are to be expected, this no-budget crash course in exploitation moviemaking surprises with an overwhelmingly filmic appearance that comes alive best during the film’s sunnier sequences.  Furthermore, colors seen in drive-in manager Mr. Johnson’s flashy attire pop strongly while, the neon-lit carnival rides also spruce up the picture nicely.  Meanwhile, black levels vary in quality from serviceable to overly grainy.  Unfortunately, the film’s DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mix suffers from more innate issues of muffling and restraint making dialogue delivery a challenging but, not impossible feat to absorb.  Scoring cues are at least more functional while, traces of static interference also rear their head from time to time.  

    Special features include, an Audio Commentary with Director Stu Segall followed by an Easter Egg accessed by clicking left of its icon revealing the Theatrical Trailer for Segall’s 1972 effort C.B. Hustlers (2:52).  Next up, the film’s Theatrical Trailer (2:49) and Drive-In Days: A Conversation with Co-Writer/Actor John F. Goff (16:18) who recalls his early love affair with film through his uncle’s movie theater and his eventual affliction with the acting bug is provided.  Additionally, Norm Sheridan Recalls Drive-In Massacre (11:45) shares his own treasured experiences making the film that transpired several years after returning home from the Vietnam War.  Lastly, the vintage Making the Massacre: Interview with Director Stu Segall (6:32) is also included alongside Reversible Cover Art.  Far from an essential exploitation opus, Drive-In Massacre makes for a curious watch for grindhouse completists with its head-lopping introduction just worthy enough of its time.  Unfazed by its unavoidable wear and tear, Severin Films delivers this no-so trashy cheapie in the best shape imaginable for its high-definition domestic debut, befit with a generous helping of on-disc goodies.

    RATING: 3/5

    Available now from Severin Films, Drive-In Massacre can be purchased via Severin-Films.com, Amazon.com and other fine retailers.

  • The Swinging Cheerleaders (1974) Blu-ray Review

    The Swinging Cheerleaders (1974)

    Director: Jack Hill

    Starring: Jo Johnson, Rainbeaux Smith, Colleen Camp, Rosanne Katon, Ron Hajek, Ric Carrot, Jason Sommers, Ian Sander, Mae Mercer, Jack Denton, John Quade, Bob Minor & George Wallace

    Released by: Arrow Video

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Undercover as sidelining ra ra wailer, The Swinging Cheerleaders centers on Mesa University undergrad Kate (Jo Johnson) as she secretly pens an expose on female exploitation.  Shortly after realizing she’s in good company, Kate discovers a much juicier lead when a gambling circuit concocted by the football coach and his cronies is being carried out.  Fellow cult starlets Rainbeaux Smith (Cinderella), Colleen Camp (Death Game) and Rosanne Katon (The Muthers) co-star.

    Following the action-packed adventures of imprisoned women and the box-office popularity of his back-to-back blaxploitation classics, Director Jack Hill’s (Spider Baby, Pit Stop) field goal into the kinky and burgeoning end zone of the cheerleader feature would be perfectly designed for drive-in consumption.  Although not overly sexy yet, presenting plenty of buxom beauties showcasing their personal pom-poms that would make Russ Meyer proud, The Swinging Cheerleaders finds freethinking journalist Kate landing a spot on Mesa University’s coveted cheerleading squad in order to study the exploitation of women in today’s society.  Using her flirtatious skills and hot bod to her advantage, the undercover student catches the libido of the star quarterback while learning the privileged skinny on her squad-members.  As Lisa (Katon) carries on with an affair with the handsome Professor Thorpe (Jason Sommers, Detroit 9000) and shy virginal Andrea (Smith) finally gives it up through a deflowering gang-bang, Kate gets frisky with head jock Buck as jealous cheer captain Mary Ann (Camp) forces a marriage proposal out of the lug.  Stumbling upon the scandalous discovery that Coach Turner (Jack Denton, Little Cigars), along with a former alumni, is rigging games to further their gambling profits, Kate seeks to expose the truth after winning back the trust of her new friends and rescuing the kidnapped Buck to win the big game.  Boasting a cast of strong, attractive female leads common in Hill productions, The Swinging Cheerleaders may lack the steamier provocativeness that ran rampant in the short-lived genre while, maintaining a narrative that is slightly more politically charged without sacrificing its bubbly personality.  Packed with plenty of pep and a slapsticky finale where the football players charge and tackle a pair of corrupt coppers to save their QB as the cheerleaders do what they do best, Hill’s third to last feature may end rather abruptly but has a sexy and smart time getting there.

    Restored in 2K, Arrow Video presents The Swinging Cheerleaders with a 1080p transfer, preserving its original 1.66:1 aspect ratio.  With the exception of rougher looking stock footage of football games, skin tones are warmly presented while, the yellow and green colors found in the cheerleaders and ball players’ uniforms pop most appreciatively.  Understandably shot on a limited budget, the film retains a mild softness that although of hardly much concern should still be taken under advisement before viewing.  Furthermore, excessive cleanup and removal of scratches is evident throughout the film’s runtime, ensuring its presentation to be the best to date.  Equipped with an LPCM 1.0 mix, dialogue is crisply supervised making for a satisfying watch.  Special features include, a newly recorded Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Jack Hill while, Jack Hill: Swingin’ Alma Mater (8:08) sits down with the exploitation auteur as he details his earliest encounters with the film industry through his father and his experiences at UCLA’s film school.  Next up, a vintage Interview with Alfred Taylor (10:15) finds the cinematographer explaining his camera innovations that assisted him through productions such as The Swinging Cheerleaders plus, a many years passed Interview with Jack Hill and Johnny Legend (10:37) and the New Beverly Cinema Q&A (19:19) from 2007 with Hill and co-stars Rosanne Katon and Colleen Camp in attendance is also included.  Finally, TV Spots (1:36), a 23-page booklet featuring stills and Cullen Gallagher’s Pom Poms and Politics essay are joined by a DVD edition of the release and a Reversible Cover Art retaining the original 1-sheet poster.

    Although its title may suggest a sex-filled romp of epic proportions, The Swinging Cheerleaders plays more two-hand touch than full on tackle when it comes to risqué content.  Still managing to share some well-rounded skin with its viewers, Hill’s lively cast of cheerleaders are less bimbo-like while enforcing the film’s strong comedic slant.  Admirably brought to high-definition courtesy of Arrow Video in collaboration with Jack Hill, The Swinging Cheerleaders will undoubtedly make fans of Hill’s illustrious legacy of cult gems squeal with excitement for the home team.

    RATING: 3.5/5

    Available now from Arrow Video, The Swinging Cheerleaders can be purchased via ArrowFilms.co.uk, Amazon.com and other fine retailers.

  • The Giant Spider Invasion (1975) Deluxe Collector's Edition Blu-ray Review

    The Giant Spider Invasion (1975)

    Director: Bill Rebane

    Starring: Steve Brodie, Barbara Hale, Robert Easton, Leslie Parrish & Alan Hale Jr.

    Released by: VCI Entertainment

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Becoming one of the top money grossers of 1975, The Giant Spider Invasion takes place in the rural community of Merrill, Wisconsin where an abrupt black hole appears, ushering in a swarm of giant deadly spiders.  As scientists struggle for a solution, the local population falls victim to the outer space monsters.  Steve Brodie (Out of the Past), Barbara Hale (Perry Mason), Robert Easton (Needful Things), Leslie Parrish (The Devil’s 8) and Alan Hale Jr. (Gilligan’s Island) co-star.

    An ode to the sci-fi efforts of the 50s, The Giant Spider Invasion does little to improve on the low-budget production values set forth by its inspirations while, simultaneously retaining their cheesy charm.  Headlined by a surprisingly memorable cast despite the film’s campy nature, Director Bill Rebane’s (Blood Harvest) Wisconsin shot effort tends to press the viewers’ patience with the increased dramatics of a redneck family resulting in a Z-grade interpretation of The Last Picture Show.  Not soon enough, a meteorite-like explosion takes place on their farmland opening a black hole for eight-legged monsters to wreck havoc on Earth.  As the film’s scientific minds, Dr. Jenny Langer (Hale) and Dr. J.R. Vance (Brodie), are called into the area to better understand questionable data, a drawn out exposition of scientific mumbo jumbo ensues.  Although more desirable spider-centric sequences are withheld until its climax, The Giant Spider Invasion passes time with an enjoyable appearance from Alan Hale Jr. as the town sheriff.  Mainly restrained to his office fielding phone calls, Hale Jr. appears to be having a fun time that is undeniably infectious.  At long last, the hairy-legged critters make their full blown appearance that lives up to their ridiculousness.  Crafted by covering a Volkswagen beetle with fur and mechanical legs, the queen spider is a hilarious concoction that quickly washes away the film’s previous attempts at yawn-inducing NASA explanations and forgettable character development.  Affectionately roasted on Mystery Science Theater 3000, The Giant Spider Invasion is by all accounts, not the poster child for higher art but, instead a glorious staple of B-movie mayhem that remarkably laughed its way to the bank.

    Celebrating the film’s 40th anniversary, VCI Entertainment presents The Giant Spider Invasion with a 1080p transfer and preserving its 1.85:1 aspect ratio.  Relatively soft at times with instances of vertical lines on display, the transfer still manages to relay strong colors and moderately warm skin tones.  Shot cheaply, black levels fall on the muddier side but still worlds above previous releases that made visibility near impossible.  Considering its low-budget and less than stellar home video releases, VCI Entertainment has done an admirable job on this drive-in throwback.  Equipped with a LPCM 2.0 mix, dialogue is clean and free from distortion making the film’s listening experience a pleasant one.  Containing a tremendous cobweb of supplements, special features include, Daniel Griffith’s informative and well edited Size Does Matter!  Making The Giant Spider Invasion (15:20).  In this Ballyhoo Motion Pictures featurette, Director/Producer Bill Rebane sits down to trace his early beginnings in the industry before climbing into the director’s chair.  Also included, a re-edited Super-8 HD Version (30:17), a Behind the Scenes Photo Gallery (14:32) and the Original Theatrical Trailer & TV Spots (8:14).  Found on the release’s DVD, Archival Interviews with Director Bill Rebane, Members of the Cast & Crew and TV News Reports (2:13:09!), Archival Interviews with Actor Robert Easton (17:00), Kevin Murphy & Mike Nelson of Mystery Science Theater 3000 Introduce Bill Rebane (7:06), a worn but nostalgic Super-8 Version of the film (28:25) and an Archival Newsreel - Bill Rebane on the Set of Rana (7:36).  Finally, a bonus CD containing 14 tracks from the forth-coming stage play of The Giant Spider Invasion - The Musical, a Mini The Great Spider Invasion Collectible Comic and Liner Notes by Tom Stockman of WeAreMovieGeeks.com round out the nearly endless bonus features.

    Hailed as a film “so bad, it’s good”, The Giant Spider Invasion is a well-intentioned crash course in campiness.  Achieved on a shoestring budget and starring a web of notable character actors, Director Bill Rebane’s giant-monster opus is a hilarious love letter to the 50s that will leave viewers doused in cheese.  VCI Entertainment celebrates this schlockterpiece’s 40th anniversary with its finest home video release to date and a glut of bonus features that will leave fans caught in its web for an extended time period.  

    RATING: 3.5/5

    Available now from VCI Entertainment, The Giant Spider Invasion can be purchased exclusively through VCIEntertainment.com.

  • Blu-ray/DVD Weekly Wrap-Up #1: Nightmare City, Die, Monster, Die!, Vinegar Syndrome & More!

    This week's installment of the Blu-ray/DVD Weekly Wrap-up #1 includes:

    - Nightmare City (1980)
    Street Date: December 31, 2013
    Raro Video: http://www.rarovideousa.com/

    - Die, Monster, Die! (1965)
    Street Date: January 21, 2014
    Scream Factory: http://www.shoutfactory.com/screamfactory

    - Cat People (1982) Collector's Edition
    Street Date: January 21, 2014
    Scream Factory: http://www.shoutfactory.com/screamfactory

    - Judy (1969) / The Night Hustlers (1968)
    Street Date: January 7, 2014
    Vinegar Syndrome: http://vinegarsyndrome.com/launch/

    - The Beast of Hollow Mountain (1956) / The Neanderthal Man (1953)
    Street Date: January 28, 2014
    Scream Factory: http://www.shoutfactory.com/screamfactory

  • Virgin and the Lover (1973) / Lustful Feelings (1978) DVD Review


    Virgin and the Lover (1973) / Lustful Feelings (1978)
    Director: Kemal Horulu
    Starring: Eric Edwards, Leah Marlon & Jennifer Welles / Leslie Bovee & Jamie Gillis
    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Vinegar Syndrome welcomes another double dose of passion and perversion in their popular Drive-In Collection!  The indie label continues to preserve and release some of the most obscure and erotic films in recent history with this latest release being no exception.  Two bonafide skin flicks from Director Kemal Horulu (The Sexualist) are paired up that’s sure to send your senses for a loop with featured talent from Jennifer Welles, Leslie Bovee and Jamie Gillis.  Let’s take a look at these erupting features…

    Virgin and the Lover centers on a filmmaker (Eric Edwards) who lives in a sensual dream world where he is torn between his love for a beautiful woman and his odd desires for a female mannequin.  In Lustful Feelings, a young woman (Leslie Bovee) is forced to earn an income in order to pay off the drug debt her lover (Jamie Gillis) owes.  Unknowingly to her significant other, she takes up prostitution and develops a knack for it.


    This review was originally published through Euro Cult AV.  To view it in its entirety, click this link:

    http://eurocultav.com/Reviews/Virgin_and_the_Lover_Lustful_F/virgin_and_the_lover_lustful_f.html

  • Blood Thirst (1971) / The Thirsty Dead (1974) DVD Review



    Blood Thirst (1971) / The Thirsty Dead (1974)
    Director(s): Newt Arnold / Terry Becker
    Starring: Robert Winston, Vic Diaz & Katherine Henryk / Jennifer Billingsley & John Cosidine
    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome

    Reviewed by Mike Kenny

    Vinegar Syndrome aims to please with yet another double dose from their Drive-In Collection series.  This time, we have two films that both promise to bring blood and death to the viewer.  Please note that the makers of these films are not responsible for your nightmares so be warned.  The eye-grabbing poster art and plots for both of these drive-in flicks certainly have their hearts in the right place but the question remains, will Blood Thirst and The Thirsty Dead be the flicks that will quench the cult lovers taste in you?  Let’s dive in and find out…

    Blood Thirst stars Robert Winston, in his final film performance, as an American investigator who probes the violent goings on at nightclub where beautiful women start turning up dead.  The horrifying secret he stumbles upon may be worse though.  1974’s The Thirsty Dead tags along on this double bill about a sinister cult who kidnaps beautiful women to use in their ghastly blood rites.  Interestingly enough, Filipino exploitation legend, Vic Diaz, makes appearances in both films.

    MOVIE(s):
    Blood Thirst was a film that caught me by surprise the second it started.  I was immediately impressed by the nicely staged opening shots as well as the effective lighting which cast a very noir-ish atmosphere.  The film wastes no time establishing the reason for our American investigator’s stay by knocking off a beautiful woman in no time.  The killer, cast in shadows but noticeably deformed in the face, begins what the viewer anticipates will be the next 65 minutes of the film.  Interestingly enough, Blood Thirst threw me for a loop because the film actually plays more like a detective story more than a killer monster on the loose flick.  I appreciated the unexpected change of pace Blood Thirst packed and found myself throughly entertained by the principal cast.  While, the finale of the film brings its focus back to the deformed killer, the reasoning behind the murders is slightly outlandish but still good fun.  The black and white cinematography looked terrific and set the atmosphere for the entire film.  Director Newt Arnold would go on to direct one more film, 1988’s Bloodsport with Jean-Claude Van Damme while primarily assistant directing other Hollywood gems such as The Godfather: Part II, I Wanna Hold Your Hand, Blade Runner, Sixteen Candles, The Goonies and The AbyssBlood Thirst was a film that wasn’t exactly what I was expecting but still managed to thoroughly entertain me with its talented cast, beautiful cinematography and fun plot.
    RATING: 4/5

    If you’re still thirsty for more death than the next feature might be for you!  Unfortunately, The Thirsty Dead didn’t tickle my fancy as much as Blood Thirst.  The film kicks off intriguing enough with a gorgeous woman dancing in a cage for a slew of bar sailors.  Before you know it, she’s abducted, along with other women, by men in hooded robes.  The women’s future does not look bright as they are whisked away to a remote jungle locale where a cult wants their blood for ritual purposes.  The problems begin when the girls arrive at their new “home” and don’t really seem as phased about their situation as one would be.  By the half hour mark, even the viewer will have a hard time seeing what’s wrong with the situation since the “prisoners” seem content for the most part and the cult leaders are quite nice.  The film drags its feet by not pitting the girls in any true danger or sensing any real threats until the leader of the girls (played by Jennifer Billingsley) decides they need to escape.  Odd because I thought that would have been priority number one the second you were abducted.  Billingsley’s character is fawned over by the cult leader and is selected to enjoy the riches of youth forever at the expense of her friends.  Not being able to have her cronies along for the ride changes the whole scenario so escape from these dreaded cult worshippers is shifted into high gear.  Interestingly enough, Billingsley manages to show the cult leader the error of his ways prompting him to help the girls escape.  This doesn’t sit well with his followers who all band together to take their former leader down along with the women.  The lack of blood and horrific imagery is severely lacking plus the rather boring first hour of the film crowns The Thirsty Dead the stinker of this double bill.
    RATING: 2/5

    VIDEO:
    Blood Thirst has been scanned in 2K from 35mm archival film elements (1.85:1) and looks really gorgeous.  The black levels look strong with grain remaining intact.  There are minor cases of scratches in the film but just the right amount to make you feel at the drive-in without taking away from the viewing experience.  This is exactly how I love seeing films of this caliber.
    RATING: 4/5

    The Thirsty Dead was also scanned in 2K from 35mm archival film elements (1.85:1) but is slightly more problematic.  Scratches and pops are way more apparent in the transfer but it still manages to bolster nice colors and natural grain.  More scratches aren’t necessarily the worst thing in the world depending on which cult fan you ask but this one, while still serviceable, doesn’t look quite as hot as Blood Thirst.
    RATING: 3/5

    AUDIO:
    Blood Thirst sounded just as terrific as its video transfer.  No noticeable hissing or muffling to be found.  Dialogue comes out nice and loudly.
    RATING: 4/5

    Much like its video transfer, The Thirsty Dead is slightly problematic.  Hissing and pops can be heard at various moments in the film but luckily it didn’t hinder any dialogue scenes.  Not horrible but it’ll do.
    RATING: 3/5

    EXTRAS:

    No special features to be found on this Drive-In Collection.

    RATING: -/5

    OVERALL:
    Vinegar Syndrome’s latest Drive-In Collection of Blood Thirst and The Thirsty Dead was a mixed bag.  Blood Thirst was hands down the crowning jewel with its fun detective story mixed with a deformed monster as well its gorgeous black and white cinematography.  Unfortunately, The Thirsty Dead is the anchor on this double bill since it fails to captivate the viewer with a fun or even remotely horrific tale.  The lack of any blood or true danger for the principal cast really sent the eyes rolling after the first 30 minutes.  But, like any experience at the drive-in, you win some and lose some.  Vinegar Syndrome always manages to take chances with the films on these double bills which is appreciated but some just manage to ring louder than others.  The strength of Blood Thirst alone and the low price point on this collection definitely calls for a strong recommendation.
    RATING: 3.5/5