Written by: Michael Den Boer on October 25th, 2009
Theatrical Release Date: Australia / Netherlands, 1978
Director: Brian Trenchard-Smith
Writers: Paul-Michel Mielche Jr., Brian Trenchard-Smith
Cast: Grant Page, Monique van de Ven, Margaret Gerard, Paul Haynes, Curtis Hyde, Greg Magie, Smokey Huff, Richie King, Doug Loch, Perry Morris, Don Blackburn, Ron Raley, Chris Chalen
DVD Released: August 25th, 2009
Approximate Running Time: 91 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
DVD Release: Code Red
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $29.98
Synopsis: An Australian stunt man gets his big break when he is hired to work as a stunt man on a Hollywood produced TV series titled “Undercover Girl”.
The plot for Stunt Rock is best described as a few days in the life of stunt man and the stunt man in question is Grant Page who portrays himself in the film. Grant Page is an accomplished Australian stunt man whose filmography includes films like The Man from Hong Kong, Mad Dog Morgan and Mad Max. Along the way Grant spends time hanging out with Sorcery a rock band known for their theatrics, Monique van de Ven that star of “Undercover Girl”, the TV series he has just been hired to work as a stunt man on and an inquisitive reporter who also serves as a love interest for him in the film. In between clips of Grant Page performing stunts and clips of Sorcery performing, the film is loosely held together with dialog driven moments that further flesh out the characters.
The pairing of a stunt man and a rock band is not the most likely of combination’s and yet in the hands of director Brian Trenchard-Smith (The Man from Hong Kong, Turkey Shoot), this most unlikely of combination comes off without a hitch. At the heart of Stunt Rock are the stunts preformed by Grant Page and his fearlessness in the face of danger further enhances each stunt. Even though the band Sorcery are mostly regulated to performance clips their overall impact is not lessened as they more than hold their own with their flamboyant stage productions. The blurring of what is real and what is make believe is why this film holds up as well as it does after all these years. Ultimately Stunt Rock is a loud, in your face, visceral experience that will keep you on the edge of your set anticipating what will happen next.
Code Red presents Stunt Rock in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves the film’s original 2.35:1 aspect ratio. This transfer has been flagged for progressive playback. The image looks clean with minimal blemishes and details look generally crisp throughout. Colors and black levels fare throughout. The transfer for this DVD release is an improvement over the region 4 Australian DVD release, making Code Red’s DVD release the best this film has looked to date on home video.
This release comes with one audio option a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. The audio sound clears and at times robust, most notably during the Sorcery musical numbers.
Extras are spread over two discs. Extras on disc one include a theatrical trailer for the film (2 minutes 25 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), an audio interview with Sorcery drummer Perry Morris (22 minutes 22 seconds) and on camera interviews with director Brian Trenchard-Smith (32 minutes 33 seconds), Sorcery lead guitarist Smokey Huffs (26 minutes 47 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), Producer Marty Fink (3 minutes 21 seconds) and actor Richard Blackburn (5 minutes 41 seconds). Rounding out the extras on disc one are two audio commentaries. The first audio commentary is with Brian Trenchard-Smith, actor Grant Page and actress Margaret Gerard. The second audio commentary is with Brian Trenchard-Smith, Marty Fink and Richard Blackburn. Extras of disc two include the original promo reel for the film that played at Cannes (18 minutes 43 seconds – letterboxed widescreen) and a Q & A with Brian Trenchard-Smith titled “an Evening at the Alamo Drafthouse” (24 minutes 44 seconds – anamorphic widescreen). The main extra included on disc two is a documentary also directed by Brian Trenchard-Smith titled “The Stuntman” (48 minutes 40 seconds – 1.33:1 ‘full frame’ aspect ratio). The remaining extras on disc two are a collection of trailers for other Code Red releases and they cannot be accessed separately. There is a wealth of extra content with this release and there are a few instances where information is repeated that has been covered in other extras also on this release. All of the extras, including the fascinating documentary titled “The Stuntman” that covers all the bases that anyone would want to know about this film and stunt work in general. Also the Smokey Huff and Perry Morris interviews cover in great detail the band Sorcery. The standout extra on this release is the audio commentary with Brian Trenchard-Smith, Grant Page and Margaret Gerard. Overall Stunt Rock gets a fully loaded DVD release from Code Red that is highlighted by an abundance of extra content.