Written by: Michael Den Boer on March 16th, 2016
Theatrical Release Dates: UK, 1964 (Code 7, Victim 5, Mozambique)
Director: Robert Lynn (Both Films)
Writers: Peter Yeldham, Harry Alan Towers (Both Films)
Cast: Lex Barker, Ann Smyrner, Ronald Fraser, Walter Rilla, Dietmar Schönherr, Gert van den Bergh, Howard Davis, Percy Sieff, Véronique Vendell, Gustel Gundelach, Sophia Kammara (Code 7, Victim 5), Steve Cochran, Hildegard Knef, Paul Hubschmid, Vivi Bach, Martin Benson, Dietmar Schönherr, George Leech, Gert van den Bergh, Vic Perry, Harold Berens, Maria Rohm (Mozambique)
BluRay released: March 29th, 2016
Approximate running times: 88 minutes (Code 7, Victim 5), 98 minutes (Mozambique)
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC (Both Films)
Sound: DTS-HD Mono English (Both Films)
Subtitles: English SDH (Both Films)
BluRay Release: Blue Underground
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $29.98
Code 7, Victim 5 and Mozambique were produced and co-written by Harry Allen Towers under the pseudonym Peter Welbeck. Towers was a maverick film producer who is most remembered for his collaborations with Jess Franco. Other notable films produce by Towers include, a series of Fu Man Chu films (the last two were directed by Franco) and The Secret of Dorian Grey.
Code 7, Victim 5: A South African millionaire hires a hard-nose private eye to investigate the death of his butler. And shortly after the private eye’s arrival he discovers a picture that holds the key the truth he seeks. Will this new clue help him solve the case or will it lead to his own demise?
Content wise, this film is clearly inspired Spy / Espionage films which rose to prominence after the world wide success of the James Bond series. The film to great effect exploits its exotic locations and the protagonist also bears more than a passing resemblance to the aforementioned Bond.
The narrative is well constructed and pacing is never an issues as thing s move along briskly from one moment to the next. The characters are well defined and their motivations provide an ample amount of moments of midsection.
From a production stand point one of this film’s greatest strengths are its visuals. The cinematographer on Code 7, Victim 5 was Nicolas Roeg, a filmmaker in his own right who notable credits as a director include, Don’t Look Now, The Man Who Fell to the Earth and Bad Timing.
Performance wise the majority of the are very good in their respective roles. With this film standout performance coming from Véronique Vendell (Barbarella) in the role of Gina, the South African millionaire’s promiscuous and voluptuous daughter. Also there is a Femme Fatale quality to her performance. Other notable cast members include, Ronald Fraser (The Misfit) in the role of Inspector Dean and Lex Barker (The Torture Chamber of Dr. Sadism) in the role of Steve Martin, this film’s protagonist.
Mozambique: Unable to secure work due to a deadly plan crash, an American pilot jumps at the chance to fly cargo from Lisbon and Mozambique. Unknown to him at the time he accepted the job, his employer’s main exports are drugs and human trafficking. And to complicate matters further the woman he loves is being held against her will by a sheik. Will he be able to bring his employer to justice or will he be the next victim?
Though this film has all the elements one would want from an action adventure film. There are a handful of areas where this film misses the mark. And nowhere is this more evident than when it comes to the contrived love story involving this film’s protagonist, an aging pilot named Brad Webster and much younger woman named Christina. The disparity in their ages and the fact that actually barley known each other only further weaken this forced love affair.
Fortunately, the narrative is straight forward and easy to follow. And when it comes to pacing things are not always a smooth ride as there are few lulls along the way that bog things down. Most notably the aforementioned romantic moments.
From a production stand point the film does a great job taking advantage of its beautiful locations. Another one of this film’s strengths are the action oriented moments. With this film’s most memorable moment being the scene where Brad rescues Christina from a heavily guarded compounded.
Performance wise the cast are best described at adequate in their respective roles. With the only performance leaving any lasting impression being Hildegard Knef (Murderers Among Us) in the role of a widow named Ilona Valdez. Her recently deceased husband was the criminal mastermind behind the drug and human trafficking ring. Other notable cast members include, Steve Cochran (Storm Warning) in the role of Brad Webster and Maria Rohm (Venus in Furs) in feature film debut.
Code 7, Victim 5 and Mozambique both come on a 50 GB dual layer BluRay. And both films are presented in a 1080 progressive widescreen. For this release brand new transfers were created and the sources used for these transfers are in great shape. There are no issues with DNR or compression, colors look nicely saturated and vibrant, contrast and black levels remain strong throughout and details look crisp. It should be noted that when it comes to grain that it varies in degree of thickness. Fortunately, this fluctuation in regards to the grain it never becomes distracting.
Each film comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD mono mix in English and both films also comes with optional English SDH subtitles. Both films audio mixes sounds clean clear and balanced. Range wise things at times sound rather limited.
Extras for this release are limited to trailers for each film.
Overall Blue Underground gives, Code 7, Victim 5 and Mozambique first rate audio / video presentation.
Note: Blue Underground is also releasing each film on their own separate DVD releases.