Vixen Velvet's Zombie Massacre (2015) (NTSC)

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Released 19-Oct-2016

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Comedy Introduction-by Michael Helms (2:25)
Audio Commentary-Stefan Popescu and Katherine Berger
Featurette-Monsterfest Q&A (22:32)
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-(8:26)
Deleted Scenes-x 3
Trailer-Film Trailer
Trailer-x 2 for other films
Reversible Cover
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2015
Running Time 71:32
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Stefan Popescu
Studio
Distributor
Gryphon Entertainment Starring Kathryn Foran
Nathan Bragg
Colleen Booth
Jimmy Gia Nguyen
Fred Osson



Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI ? Music Michael Lira


Video (NTSC) Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 480i (NTSC)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     Porn star and single mother Vixen Velvet’s (Kathryn Foran) favourite actress is Audrey Hepburn (Vixen once starred in a porn film called Breakfast on Tiffany) and she badly wants to be a legitimate actress, or at least make a film she can watch with her ten year old son. Her director Hector (Nathan Bragg) has promised Vixen he will make a non-porn film with her, but it never seems to happen and they are now shooting Zombie Gangbang II with Hector’s fearsome sister Vera (Colleen Booth) as make-up artist and enforcer! So, with the help of cameraman Wolfe (Jimmy Gia Nguyen) and his boom operator brother Special K (Fred Osson), Vixen decides to hijack the picture and turn it into a cult, non-porn, zombie film. And when the town they are filming in is overrun with real zombies, Vixen is not prepared to give up her dream and incorporates them into her film, no matter who ends up as one of the walking dead!

     Zombies are so popular at the moment that one cannot turn around without finding another zombie film being released, from big budget Hollywood extravaganzas to very low budget independent films, so why not a porn zombie, or zombie porn, movie! It must be said however that Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is not a porn film (despite some nudity at the beginning) and is only incidentally a zombie film. What it really is is a low budget, exploitation film about making a low budget exploitation film. Thus Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre takes the form of a behind the scenes documentary being filmed on the set of Zombie Gangbang II by a mostly unseen cameraman called Dillon. So, like behind the scenes featurettes, there are on camera interviews with the “cast and crew” of Zombie Gangbang II plus hand-held video-cam type on set footage that is jerky, grainy, with unfocussed zooms and pans, people half in and out of frame and general artefacts. This can get quite queasy at times, but because of the immediacy of this type of shooting there are some sudden scary scenes as the real zombies attack.

     Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is bloody and gory, offensive and occasionally gross but it is also very funny with some lovely deadpan b****y lines and an adept look at the sniping and backstabbing world of filmmaking. The cast are non-actors who are wonderfully over the top but play it straight; Kathryn Foran’s deliberately inept acting while filming is a treat while Nathan Bragg and Colleen Booth seem to be having great fun. The film was shot in Dawson, the Yukon, Canada and the support of the local population, including Rangers and Fire Department, mean that the pyrotechnics and the snow clad locations give the film a much more expensive look than the budget suggests.

     Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is certainly not for everyone but if the twisted premise and shooting style appeal, and you suspend your brain, Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is an absolute hoot with “cult” written all over it.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is presented in the original 1.85:1 aspect ratio. It is NTSC and 16x9 enhanced.

     Due to the way the film was shot as a video-cam diary with jumpy pans, zooms, deliberate out of focus, partially composed shots and added artefacts, Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre cannot be judged by the usual standards as most of the film is soft with detail lacking. There are also variations in brightness, contrast and colour and there were small artefacts scattered throughout. But this was how the film is supposed to look.

    The layer change at 52:44 caused a noticeable pause in the middle of a scene.

     No subtitles are provided.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     Audio options are English Dolby Digital 5.1 at 448 Kbps, Dolby Digital 2.0 at 192 Kbps and an audio commentary, also Dolby Digital 2.0 at 192 Kbps.

     This film is a quasi-documentary so the audio is usually front oriented, however when the zombies attack the rears carried the loud bangs of zombies beating on the door while elsewhere there were occasional engines, gunshots and the score. Dialogue is clear and easy to understand. The sub-woofer was not overused but supported the gunshots and explosions.

     The sparse score by Michael Lira was effective and the closing song Zombie on my Brain catchy.

     I saw no lip synchronisation issues.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Start – up Trailers (3:32)

     Trailers for Cat Sick Blues and Bullets for the Dead play on start-up. They cannot be selected from the menu.

Introduction by Michael Helms (2:25)

     Similar to the DVD sleeve notes by film critic Helms.

Audio Commentary

     Writer / director / cinematographer / editor Stefan Popescu and producer Katherine Berger watch the film. They talk about the locations, working with the residents of Dawson, the cast of non-actors, improvisations, the shooting style and the special effects. They do tend to watch the film a bit and to laugh at their own jokes in the script but this is by no means the worst commentary going around.

Monsterfest Q&A (22:32)

     Stephan Popescu and film critic Michael Helms are at Monsterfest 2015 after a screening of the film. Popescu answers questions from Helms and the audience talking about why he shot the film in the Yukon, the sexual content, responses to the film, how he developed the story, the music and the animated title sequences. This is candid and amusing.

Behind the Scenes (8:26)

     Unstructured on set footage in Dawson, Canada, without interviews or text.

Deleted Scenes

     Three scenes, all worth a look, one is an extended scene of one which is in the film:

Trailer (1:19)

Reversible Cover

     Inside the DVD cover is an introduction to the film by Michael Helms and poster art for Zombie Gangbang III!

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     There is currently no other version of Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre available.

Summary

     Porn and zombies? Why not!!! As Stefan Popescu is writer / director / cinematographer / editor of Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre it is fair to say that this is his baby and his vision. I think that he has watched too many zombie B movies and that he has a very twisted sense of humour however, despite the tiny budget and short shooting schedule (16 days), Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre is an absolute hoot and makes a virtue of its budget and location (Dawson, the Yukon, Canada). It is not for everyone but has cult written all over it. If this sounds like your thing, seek Vixen Velvet’s Zombie Massacre out.

     The video is as the filmmaker intended, the audio fine. The extras are worthwhile.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Monday, January 23, 2017
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

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