'Society' [Blu ray]
(Billy Warlock, Devin DeVasquez, Evan Richards, et al / Blu ray / NR / 2015 / MVD)
Overview: After producing Stuart Gordon's hit Re-Animator, Brian Yuzna (Bride of Re-Animator, Return of the Living Dead III) turned his hand to directing with 1989's Society, and gave birth to one of the ickiest, most original body horror shockers of all time.
Blu ray Verdict: Ha! Not even going to begin to try to describe this movie, other than it's one of the few I've seen that really, genuinely lives up to it's reputation! And to note that what appears to be a typical 90's preppie coming of age urban satire is anything but. I mean it is, but it isn't, unless your idea of power structures involves beings that are mucous covered anthropomorphic slug monsters who feed on tubby conspiracy theory freaks by sucking the warm, runny goo out of their bodies while regurgitating digestive fluids onto the quivering mass of flesh that's left over once all the fleshy stuff has been orally withdrawn.
Then there is the film's perverse sexuality, which once you think about it is only perverse because of our own mere human hang-ups. Different creatures copulate in different ways, and morality is really just an invention of human thought so what the hell. It's only incest if they are humans I guess, but as a character puts it herself go ahead and indulge in your Freudian fantasies if you like. The film's only a sick, hot, perverted mess if you judge it by mere human ideals.
It's also painfully funny with some of the dumbest, cheapest jokes that could possibly work involving people with heads coming out of their backsides and fingers poking out of their noses. Director Brian Yuzna and makeup effects designer Screaming Mad George made a wise decision to leave the blood out and allow their horrific, rubbery, gelatinous special effects have a comic value as well as being shockingly nauseous. This movie's closing 20 minutes are easily as disgusting and potentially disturbing as John Carpenter's take on THE THING, but you don't mind it as much and are more prone to laugh then hurl.
Certainly one of the strangest movies I have ever seen, and as clever of a teen comedy horror as you could ask for, would make a great double billing with Fred Dekker's NIGHT OF THE CREEPS. Same kind of sick, warped, hyperbolic sense of humor. The film is pure genius, and though some idiots may find the first half a little slow during the talking scenes, they'll shut up eventually. Oh boy, how they'll shut up!
FYI: The scene where Billy sees Jenny's body distort in the shower was added during the production, because director Brian Yuzna felt another shocking scene was needed earlier in the film! Another thing you learn when listening to the commentaries, is that whilst shooting the infamous "shunting" scenes, Yuzna would put a sign on the sound stage door that read "Abandon all hope ye who enter here"! This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.33:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
* Newly remastered 2K digital transfer of the film, approved by director Brian Yuzna
* High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentation
* Original Stereo 2.0 audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
* Optional English SDH subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
* Brand new audio commentary by Yuzna
* Governor of Society - a brand new interview with Yuzna
* The Masters of the Hunt - a brand new featurette including interviews with stars Billy Warlock, Devin DeVasquez, Ben Meyerson and Tim Bartell
* The Champion of the Shunt - new featurette with FX artists Screaming Mad George, David Grasso and Nick Benson
* 2014 Q&A with Yuzna, recorded at Celluloid Screams Festival
* Brian Yuzna in conversation backstage at the Society world premiere
* 'Persecution Mania' - Screaming Mad George music video
* Limited Edition Digipak packaging featuring newly-commissioned artwork by Nick Percival
* Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Alan Jones, illustrated with original archive stills and posters
* Society: Party Animal [Limited Edition Exclusive] - the official comic sequel to Society, reproduced in its entirety in a perfect-bound book
MVD Entertainment Group have announced the distribution of Arrow Video (UK) in North America with a host of cult titles receiving deluxe treatment in video, audio, supplements and artwork. The original launch titles were: 'Day of Anger,' 'Blind Woman's Curse,' and 'Mark of the Devil.'