Written by: Carroll Jenkins on February 3rd, 2018
Theatrical Release Date: Australia, 1986
Director: Mario Andreacchio
Writer: Rob George
Cast: Cassandra Delaney, Peter Ford, David Sandford, Garry Who, Don Barker, Carmel Young, Adrian Shirley, Wayne Anthony
BluRay released: January 3rd, 2018
Approximate running times: 86 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Rating: M (Australia)
Sound: DTS-HD Mono English
Subtitles: English SDH
BluRay Release: Umbrella Entertainment
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $34.99
Synopsis: An animal rights crusader runs a private wildlife refuge in the Australian outback with her husband, who’s away on a business trip. Her path crosses that of a vicious trio of kangaroo hunters, and a game of tit for tat begins.
The action starts off with a bang as the hunters rear-end Cassandra Delaney’s dilapidated Ford Ranchero, sandwich her between their two vehicles, then Ringo jumps from one to another. This introduces us to the characters and their traits. Cassandra’s character is an animal rights advocate (transporting a wounded baby kangaroo), the hunters are thrill seeking predators.
The movie plays in a similar vein to The Most Dangerous Game or The Naked Prey, though the targets in those tales had no choice. Cassandra could have stopped the situation long before it had gone too far, but she had to have the last word. Thus what starts as ‘harmless’ pranks escalates into a life and death struggle.
The hunting truck, called ‘The Beast’ is a unique creation that looks like it came straight out of The Road Warrior, with red headlights like eyes and a frontal exhaust system that actually blows smoke and ‘snorts’ when revved. Cassandra is sympathetic as the heroic victim, but again, she really gets what she asks for. Ringo provides the thrilling stunts, and Sparks the low-brow comic relief, but is the cool and outwardly charming Sony played by Peter Ford (‘Hercules: The Legendary Journeys’, ‘Xena: Warrior Princess’, King Kong) who’s the truly dangerous and vicious leader of the group. Ford also appeared in the Ozploitation feature that started it all, Mad Max.
With a cast of basically four persons (discounting vehicles, animals, and the scenic settings), the film moves at a good pace though the incessant retaliation and one-up-manship does get slightly repetitive. But, like any good Republic serial, they do construe new and imaginative twists to the embellish the continuing struggle.
Fair Game comes on a 50 GB dual layer (39.1 GB) BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive widescreen. The source used for this transfer is in great shape, colors look accurate, details look crisp, grain looks natural and black levels remain strong throughout.
This release comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD mono mix in English and included with this release are removable English SDH subtitles. There are no issues with background noise or distortion, dialog comes through clearly and everything sounds balanced. Range wise, this audio mix sounds robust when it needs too and the more ambient aspects of the soundtrack are well represented.
Extras for this release include, a reversible cover art, an image gallery, storyboards, a trailer for the film (1 minute 3 seconds), a featurette titled On Location with Fair Game (3 minutes 39 seconds), Behind the Scenes – 1985 TV Report from NWS9, Action News (36 seconds), Behind the Scenes – 1985 TV Report from ADS-7, State Affair (2 minutes 21 seconds), Behind the Scenes with Dean Bennett (52 minutes 1 second), an extended interview actress Cassandra Delaney from Not Quite Hollywood (15 minutes 24 seconds) and an audio commentary with director Mario Andreacchio and screenwriter Rob George.
Topics discussed in the interview with Cassandra Delaney include, her thoughts about her character and the film, Mario Andreacchio, onset memories, stunts, her thoughts about shooting nude scenes and critic reaction to the film.
Topics discussed in the audio commentary include, how for both of them Fair Game was their first feature film, the origins of the film, the cast, stunts, the score / sound design, other production related topics and their thoughts about the film.
Other extras include, five shot films also directed by Mario Andreacchio – Vandalism, Break-in, Taken by Storm, Abduction… Who’s Next? and Under Pressure. These short’s are not in HD and they appear to come from an analog source. Also, these shorts cannot be viewed separately.
Overall Fair Game gets an excellent release from Umbrella Entertainment, highly recommended.
Note: Umbrella Entertainment are also releasing this film on DVD.