Written by: Michael Den Boer on August 29th, 2016
Theatrical Release Date: USA, 1983
Director: Wayne Berwick
Writers: Thomas Singer, Craig Muckler
Cast: Jackie Vernon, Loren Schein, Al Troupe, Marla Simon, Claire Ginsberg, Lou Ann Webber, Anna Marlowe
BluRay released: August 15th, 2016 (UK) / August 16th, 2016 (USA)
Approximate running time: 76 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Rating: 15 (UK), NR (USA)
Sound: LPCM Mono English
Subtitles: English SDH
BluRay Release: Arrow Video USA
Region Coding: Region Free / Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $34.95 (USA) / £15.99 (UK)
Synopsis: Fed up with his wife’s cooking and constant nagging, a husband kills his wife and then proceeds to eat. Now hooked on human flesh the husband then seeks out other victims to fill his growing appetite.
At the dawn of the 1980’s the Horror genre was experience a rebirth as such films were in great demand at the time. And though there was an influx of Horror film being made specifically for theatrical release. With the rise of cable T.V. and expanding home video market also offered more avenues for the genre to reach its audience. Case in point Microwave Massacre, what is arguably one of the more unusual cannibal themed films that has ever been unleashed on unsuspecting audiences.
The premise for this film is very basic and the straight forward narrative is east to follow. And at just over seventy-five minutes running time this film never drags as things are always moving forward at a brisk momentum. Sure the characters are on dimensional, fortunately many of this films funniest moments are a byproduct of said caricatures. Visually the film always plays to its strengths, moments of carnage and gratuitous T & A. Also the entire cast all give enthusiastic performances, which make this unorthodox Horror film all the more fun to watch.
Microwave Massacre comes on a 50 GB dual layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive widescreen. The 2k transfer used for this release was sourced from the film’s original 35mm camera negative and the booklet included with this release discusses the extensive work that went into preparing this transfer. This film was shot on a very limited budget and this transfer far exceeds expectations.
This release comes with one audio option, a LPCM mono mix English and included with this release are removable English SDH subtitles. The audio is in very good shape, as dialog is always clear, everything sounds balanced and robust when it needs too.
Extras for this release include, an image gallery, Microwave Massacre’s original treatment and eight-page synopsis (BD / DVD Rom content), a trailer for the film (1 minute 23 seconds), a featurette titled My Microwave Massacre Memories (21 minutes 5 seconds) and an audio commentary with writer producer Craig Muckler and moderator Mike Tristano.
Topics discussed in the featurette include, how the director’s father directed The Monster of Piedras Blancas, how they got into filmmaking, Malibu High, the origins of Microwave Massacre, scenes that were cut and added in post-production and other production related topics.
Topics discussed in the audio commentary include, Malibu High and how that lead to Microwave Massacre being made, how the film was completed two years before it was released, the cast, locations featured in the film, the film’s ending, independent filmmaker and how to overcome its restriction.
Rounding out the extras is a reversible cover art and twenty-eight-page booklet with cast and crew information, an essay titled Culinary Cannibal Capers: An Appreciation of Microwave Massacre written by Stephen Thrower and information about the transfer. Also included with this release is a DVD that has the same content included on the Blu-Ray included as part of this combo release. Overall another solid release from Arrow Video.