Bloodsucking Freaks: Director's Cut (Stomp Visual) (1976) (NTSC)

If you create a user account, you can add your own review of this DVD

Released 16-Jun-2005

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by
BUY IT

Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Horror Menu Animation & Audio
Introduction-Lloyd Kaufman (President Of Troma)
Audio Commentary-Eli Roth
Featurette-Tour Of Troma
Trailer-Aroma DuTroma
Trailer-Lloyd Kaufmann's Autobiography
Interviews-Cast & Crew
TV Spots-Radiation March, PSA's
Web Links
Gallery-Photo
Credits
Rating Rated R
Year Of Production 1976
Running Time 88:18
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Joel M. Reed
Studio
Distributor
Troma Studios
Stomp Visual
Starring Seamus O'Brien
Viju Krem
Niles McMaster
Dan Fauci
Alan Dellay
Ernie Pysher
Luis De Jesus
Helen Thompson
Saiyanidi
Carol Mara
Linda Small
Alphonso DeNoble
Illa Howe
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $19.95 Music Michael Sahl


Video (NTSC) Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Pan & Scan English Dolby Digital 2.0 (384Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (384Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 480i (NTSC)
Original Aspect Ratio Unknown 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

    There's something surreal about watching a film with two naked women fighting to eat a human ear, while a midget dances gleefully in the foreground. While this might sound silly, make no mistake - Bloodsucking Freaks is a nasty, nasty, NASTY film. Indeed, I understand that it's considered to be one of the most disturbing, misogynistic, and graphically violent films ever made. Even the President of Troma recently remarked that if he was brought the film today, he would probably reject it.

    Written and Directed by Joel M. Reed, Bloodsucking Freaks was inspired by Reed's visit to an S&M Ballet in an underground Soho club. The film was shot in 10 days at night, in 1975, and produced on a shoe-string budget by Alan C. Margolin. The film, then known as The Incredible Torture Show (T.I.T.S), was later acquired and renamed by Troma. On its initial theatrical release, the film caused a storm of controversy, especially the graphic depictions of violence toward women.

    Sardu: "Her mouth will make an interesting urinal".

    The story revolves around the evil, sado-masochist Sardu (Seamus O'Brien), who runs an off-Broadway Theatre of the Macabre. With the help of his sadistic blowgun-carrying midget assistant Ralphus (Luis De Jesus), Sardu kidnaps young women from the streets of New York. After a period of imprisonment and torture, the women are either brainwashed into being submissive slaves, and shipped overseas, or used in Sardu's shows, where they are tortured and killed on stage. The audience for these shows, however, assume the gross savagery is a simulated illusion.

    The deranged Sardu is deluded into believing all this torture, murder, and cannibalism is art, and he dreams of theatrical success, where he will be recognised as a great artist and genius.

    To achieve this aim, Sardu kidnaps Natasha DeNatalie (Viju Krem), a prima ballerina, and Creasy Silo (Alan Dellay), a respected New York theatre critic, who has openly mocked Sardu's work in the past. Sardu tortures both of them in his theatre basement of horrors, until they agree to be part of his S&M ballet.

    Meanwhile, Natasha's boyfriend and professional football player, Tom Maverick (Niles McMaster), suspects Sardu is involved in the kidnapping, and enlists the help of crooked Police Detective Sergeant John Tucci (Dan Fauci). Together, they venture into the depths of Sardu's dungeon searching for the truth.

    While the story might sound a little comical, there are constant disturbing images of truly disgusting and graphic violence. While I'm sure many readers will see this all as harmless fun, in my opinion, the danger (especially to younger male viewers) is that this film sexualises the violence by freely mixing images of graphic violence with images of nudity, sexual pleasure and satisfaction. After all, this is a film where a midget uses a girl's severed head for oral sex.

    Bloodsucking Freaks is definitely not for the squeamish, and even hardened B-Grade cult cinema film buffs might find it sickening.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

    In short, the transfer is terrible, largely due to the awful source material.

    The NTSC transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, pan and scan.

    The image is soft throughout, and sometimes (unintentionally) slightly out of focus. The black level is poor, with blacks appearing as a murky grey. The shadow detail is also poor - for example, consider the interior of the hallway at 22:09. Some low level noise is also present.

    The colour has suffered with age, and often appears washed out. As I've often spotted with older films in NTSC, the skin tones often have an orange tint.

    In terms of MPEG artefacts, obviously very cheap film stock has been used, and the source material has not been well cared for. As a result, the image is frequently grainy throughout, and also helps draw attention to the pixelization throughout.

    Film-to-video artefacts are present in the form of telecine wobble, most noticeable during the opening credits.

    Plenty of film artefacts appear throughout, and some of them are quite large.

    No subtitles are provided on the DVD.

    This is a single-sided, single-layered disc, with the feature divided into 10 chapters.

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

Audio

    The limited audio sounds flat throughout.

    Originally released theatrically in Mono, the DVD has two audio options: English Dolby Digital 2.0 (384Kb/s), and English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (384Kb/s).

    The dialogue quality and audio sync are reasonable for the age and condition of the source material. Sometimes the looped dialogue is very obvious.

    The freaky musical score is credited to Michael Sahl, who was a composer of music for porno films in the 1970s. Sahl has cleverly mixed carnival-like theme music with a variety of electronic instruments, bagpipes and cymbals to create something that is as disturbing to our ears as the imagery is to our eyes.

    As the audio is not surround encoded, there is no surround presence or LFE activity.

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

Extras

    There are some interesting extras included, the most notable being film historian Eli Roth's enthusiastic audio commentary. All extras are presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, with English Dolby Digital 2.0 audio.

Menu

    Animated with audio.

Introduction-Lloyd Kaufman

    The President Of Troma, and creator of the Toxic Avenger, introduces the film, which he describes as now being more shocking than the version originally released.

Audio Commentary

   Film historian and Troma fan Eli Roth provides a very interesting and informative screen specific audio commentary. Well researched, Roth is very knowledgeable and chatty.

Featurette-Tour Of Troma

    The tour is hosted by The President Of Troma, and creator of the Toxic Avenger, Lloyd Kaufman. The four-story Troma Building in Hell's Kitchen, New York contains the Troma Film Studios. By selecting the following, viewers are treated to either short snippets from a past Troma film, or some mocked-up, behind-the-scenes footage.

Freaks On Film

Gallery-Photo

    Seven photographic stills from the film

DVD Credits

Censorship

    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

R4 vs R1

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

    We same to have the same, non-region coded, version of Bloodsucking Freaks as released in R1, but one of the extras, Troma Intelligence Test (T.I.T) did not seem to work.

Summary

    One of the most graphic sexploitation shockers ever released!

    The video quality is poor.

    The audio quality is also poor.

    The extras are interesting, and genuine.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Brandon Robert Vogt (warning: bio hazard)
Monday, September 19, 2005
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayGrundig Elegance 82-2101 (82cm, 16x9). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony STR DE-545
SpeakersSony SS-V315 x5; Sony SA-WMS315 subwoofer

Other Reviews
Digital Retribution - Devron B

Comments (Add)
Blood Sucking Freaks- Missing Extra -