Written by: Michael Den Boer on November 9th, 2011
Theatrical Release Date: Canada, 1988
Director: David Wellington
Writer: Doug Taylor
Cast: Wings Hauser, Lynne Adams, Pierre Lenoir, Barbara Jones, Louise-Marie Mennier
DVD released: November 8th, 2011
Approximate running time: 87 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
DVD Release: Scorpion Releasing
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.95
Synopsis: A couple moves into the home of a psychopath carpenter, who was executed years before for killing those that tried to interfere with him building his dream house.
The Carpenter was directed by David Wellington, who is most known for writing the screenplay for Zombie Nightmare. The Carpenter was produced by Jack Bravman, who is most known for directing the notoriously bad horror / comedy hybrid, The Night of the Dribbler and the aforementioned Zombie Nightmare.
Though The Carpenter sets itself up as a Slasher film, it is actually more of a supernatural thriller.
At the heart of this film is a story about a disturbed housewife named Alice, whose husband buys a home that needs a lot of renovation. And while there is never any doubt that Alice is not mentally well, the film never fully commits to if ‘The Carpenter’ character is a ghost or just a manifestation of Alice’s growing dementia. Either way, this is not a deal breaker, since both of these interpolations lend themselves perfectly to the story at hand.
From a production stand point, there are a handful of moments in which the narrative tends to drag. Thankfully these moments never last too long and things get back on track quickly enough. Visually the moments in which ‘The Carpenter’ character appears on screen are by far and away, the most stylish moments in this film. All of the kills scenes are sufficiently gory and inventive in the way in which each victim gets knocked off, a different method for each victim.
Only two performances leave any lasting impression, Wings Hauser (Vice Squad) is deliriously diabolical in the role of ‘The Carpenter’ and Lynne Adams in the role of Alice. She gives a convincing performance of a woman, who’s went off the deep end. The rest of the cast however are at best merely adequate in their respective roles.
Scorpion Releasing presents The Carpenter in a 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. Details generally look crisp, colors look accurate and black level fare well. There are no problems with compression and print debris while present, it is minimal.
This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. There are no problems with background noise, dialog comes through clearly and everything sounds balanced.
Extras for this release are limited to trailers for The Devil Within Her, Humongous, Final Exam, The Incubus, The House on Sorority Row and The Pyx. Also there are two ways to watch the main feature, ‘Play Movie’ or ‘Play Katarina’s Nightmare Theater’. This second option include comments before and after the main feature from Katarina Leigh Waters, who’s comments are done in a more analytical way as she gives a overall of who all the main players in this production are and she closes with her thoughts on the main feature. This release comes with a reversible cover that features the cover art with Katarina Leigh Waters or a second option without her on the cover. Overall The Carpenter gets a well rounded audio / video presentation from Scorpion Releasing.