Written by: Michael Den Boer on July 11th, 2017
Theatrical Release Date: USA, 1973
Director: Stephanie Rothman
Writers: Stephanie Rothman, James Barnett, Charles S. Swartz
Cast: Don Marshall, Phyllis Davis, Ena Hartman, Marta Kristen, Barbara Leigh, Randy Boone, Sean Kenney, Tom Selleck, Roger E. Mosley
DVD released: July 5th, 2017
Approximate running time: 88 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: R 18+ (Australia)
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
DVD Release: Umbrella Entertainment
Region Coding: Region 2,4 NTSC (Australia)
Retail Price: $14.99
Terminal Island was co-written and directed by Stephanie Rothman (The Velvet Vampire, Group Marriage, The Working Girls). The cinematographer on Terminal Island was Daniel Lacambre (The Lady in Red, Humanoids From the Deep). The art director on Terminal Island was Jack Fisk, who’s other notable credits as a art director and production designer include Carrie, Days of Heaven, Phantom of the Paradise, The Thin Red Line, Mulholland Dr. and There Will Be Blood.
At the core of Terminal Island is story about two rival fractions who populate an island of murderers. The fraction that is in power continues the cycle of violence which lead them to them being put on the island as their means of maintaining power over the majority of prisoners on the island. The other fraction are a handful of prisoners who were outcast from the main group of prisoners after a power struggle. These ‘outcasts’ only resort to violence when there is no other way of resolving an issue.
Even though the premise leads one to believe that this film has something deep to say about violence and the death penalty. First and foremost, Terminal Island is a exploitation film. In between power struggles there is an ample amount of T & A on display. The cast for this film features a bevy of beauties who are never afraid to get down to their bare essentials. Two performances of note to look out for are Tom Selleck, who is cast in the role of a drug addict doctor and Roger E. Mosley, who is cast in the role of Monk a muscleman behind Bobby the man who rules the island. Seven years later they would work together on the T.V. series Magnum P.I.. There are many peaks and valleys along the way and If any area where this film is most lacking it is its pacing which tends to drag. Pacing aside the film does finish off strong with a very satisfying conclusion that does a superb job wrapping everything up.
Terminal Island is presented in an anamorphic widescreen. The source used for this transfer is very clean and the few instances of print debris are very minor. Details look crisp, black levels fare well, colors and flesh tones look accurate.
This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. Dialog comes through clearly and everything sounds balanced. Range wise, this is a dialog driven film that becomes action heavy in its final act and when it needs too, this audio mix sounds robust.
This release comes with no extra content.
Overall Terminal Island gets a strong audio / video presentation from Umbrella Entertainment.