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Demons / Demons 2 – DVD (Synapse Films) 
Written by: on October 30th, 2014


Theatrical Release Date:
Italy, 1985 (Demons)
Director: Lamberto Bava
Writers: Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava, Dardano Sacchetti, Franco Ferrini
Cast: Urbano Barberini, Natasha Hovey, Karl Zinny, Fiore Argento, Paola Cozzo, Fabiola Toledo, Nicoletta Elmi, Stelio Candelli, Nicole Tessier, Geretta Geretta, Bobby Rhodes, Michele Soavi

DVD released: November 11th, 2014
Approximate running time: 89 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo ‘International’ English, Dolby Digital ‘U.S.’ Mono English
Subtitles: English SDH (Both audio tracks)
DVD Release: Synapse Films
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.95


Theatrical Release Date:
Italy, 1986 (Demons 2)
Director: Lamberto Bava
Writers: Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava, Dardano Sacchetti, Franco Ferrini
Cast: David Edwin Knight, Nancy Brilli, Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni, Bobby Rhodes, Asia Argento

DVD released: November 11th, 2014
Approximate running time: 92 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo ‘International’ English
Subtitles: English SDH
DVD Release: Synapse Films
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.95


“They will make cemeteries their cathedrals and the cities will be your tombs.”

Demons: A masked man hands out tickets to watch a sneak preview at a movie theatre no one has heard of. What starts off as a harmless night at the movies, quickly turns deadly when the audience members start transforming into demons.

Demons 2: The residents of a very secure apartment complex are forced to fight for their lives, when a television program that several of them are watching unleashes bloodthirsty demons that stalk and kill them.

Content wise, both of these films follow similar avenues. They both set the bulk of what occurs in one primary locations and both features a soundtrack filled with heavy metal music. And even the way in which the demons are brought forth to wreak havoc is similar, in Demons the victims are watching a film, while in Demons 2 it is a television program. Another glaring example that they mirror each other is that both films feature a car full of hoodlums that become unwitting victims due to being at the wrong place, at the wrong time. So if you are getting a feeling of déjà vu, don’t worry this is one of those rare moments where familiarity actually works.

Though Demons and its sequel Demons 2 were directed by Lamberto Bava, the end result is a lot more polished then any of his other films. And no one need to look any further then his collaborators on this film, most notably Dario Argento who co-wrote the screenplay and produced the film. In fact there are several instances in the first Demons film that has Argento blueprint all over them, like a camera shot that echoes an iconic shot from Tenebre. The other Argento connections include composer Claudio Simonetti (Phenomena, Opera) and assistant director Michele Soavi (Stagefright), the both worked on Demons.

As mentioned from a visual stand point both films look great throughout. Also pacing is never an issue since both films features an ample amount of gore at brisk intervals. And when it comes to the special effects they are very effective and appropriately grotesque. A standout FX moment is a scene where a woman is hunched over on all fours and a demon hatches out of her back.

The cast features several actors who appear in both films, albeit as different characters. Performance wise though all of the characters are one dimensional and no attempt is made at building back-stories. Fortunately what these performance lack in depth, they more than make up for in entertainment value. With the standout performance in both films coming from Bobby Rhodes, he portrays a pimp in Demons and a he is a trainer at a gym in Demons 2. Ultimately Demons and its sequel are solid examples of what Italian horror cinema was capable during their heyday.

The DVD:

Demons is presented in a 1.66:1 anamorphic widescreen. This is the same transfer that was used for their limited edition Blu-Ray / DVD Steelbook release for this film.

Demons 2 is presented in a 1.66:1 anamorphic widescreen. This is the same transfer that was used for their limited edition Blu-Ray / DVD Steelbook release for this film. Also there are a few scenes where the image vibrates and this is source related, not transfer related. For an example of what that looks like go here.

Demons comes with two audio options, the first track is titled Dolby Digital stereo ‘International’ English and the second track is titled Dolby Digital ‘U.S.’ mono English. These two audio tracks like the transfer has been ported over from the aforementioned Steelbook release and both audio tracks included with this release sound great. Also included with this disc are removable SDH for both audio mixes.

Demons 2 comes with one audio option, Dolby Digital Stereo ‘International’ English and removable English SDH subtitles have also been included with this release. The audio like the transfer has been ported over from the aforementioned Steelbook release and the audio sounds great.

Extras for Demons is limited to a trailer for the film.

Extras for Demons 2 is limited to a trailer for the film.

Overall Synapse Films gives Demons and its sequel their best audio, video presentation to date.

Note: Besides the limited edition Steelbook releases for each of these films. Synapse Films is also releasing a stripped down Blu-Ray release for each of these films.

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