'Dream Demon: Special Edition' [Blu-ray]
(Jemma Redgrave, Kathleen Wilhoite, Timothy Spall, et al / Blu-ray / R / (1988) 2020 / Arrow Films UK)
Overview: A young bride-to-be's anxieties over her upcoming wedding take on a horrifying, demonic form in this underseen 1988 rubber reality shocker from director/co-writer Harley Cokeliss (Black Moon Rising), starring Timothy Spall and Jemma Redgrave.
As her marriage to decorated war hero Oliver draws near, well-heeled Diana moves into her sprawling new London home where she starts to experience strange and terrifying nightmares.
But are these blood-curdling night terrors merely the symptom of an unsettled mind, or the sign of something far sinister at work?
Hounded by a pair of sleazy journalists (Timothy Spall and Jimmy Nail), Diana soon crosses paths with American tourist Jenny, who appears to have a strange connection to the foreboding house and its sinister past.
Blu-ray Verdict: 'Dream Demon' starts at a wedding as the Minister (Richard Warner) asks the bride Diana Markham (Jemma Redgrave) to take her vows, but she hesitates and declines so the groom Oliver Hall (Mark Greenstreet) slaps her across the face!
Well, as you can well imagine, Diana is not going to take that sort of thing so slaps him back which makes his head fly off his body and fountains of blood spurt everywhere!
Diana suddenly wakes up, it was just a horrible nightmare! Diana is, in reality, engaged to Falklands War hero Oliver and their wedding becomes a big story with two local scumbag reporters - Paul Lawrence (Jimmy Nail) and Russell Peck (Timothy Spall) - who constantly hassle her for a story and try to dig a bit of dirt up on them.
One day Diana befriends an American teenager named Jenny Hoffman (Kathleen Wilhoite) who claims she can't remember anything about her childhood, but then confusingly says she remembers growing up in the house in which Diana now lives; having just moved in a mere 2 weeks ago!
Diana continues to have terrifying nightmares - a doll that a large maggot crawls out off, the basement turning into a labyrinth of dark corridors, a split in the wall appearing and starting to pour with blood and both Paul and Russell turn up horribly disfigured taunting her, etc.
Jenny also starts to experience Diana's nightmares, but in reality while Diana sleeps. Diana starts to lose her grip on reality as her nightmares take over, but is it all in Diana's imagination?
Is the sudden appearance of Jenny a mere coincidence? Is the house somehow involved? Is there a purpose to these gruesome nightmares? You will have to watch it to find out for yourselves, my little lovelies!
In truth, this British production tries to be more intelligent than the classic it obviously imitates (ie: 'Nightmare on Elm Street') with a very intricate "what's-a-dream and what's-reality" structure.
The atmosphere is often uncanny and the camera work is very inventive at times. The acting performances are far above average too and the gruesome make-up effects (even for 1988) look rather convincing at times too! Highly recommended! This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.35:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Brand new 2K restoration from the original camera negative, supervised and approved by director Harley Cokeliss
Director s Cut and Original Theatrical Version
High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
Original uncompressed stereo audio
Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
Brand new scene-select audio commentary with director Harley Cokeliss and producer Paul Webster
Newly-filmed interview with director Harley Cokeliss
Newly-filmed interview with producer Paul Webster
Newly-filmed interview with actress Jemma Redgrave
Newly-filmed interview with actor Mark Greenstreet
Newly-filmed interview with actor Nickolas Grace
Newly-filmed interview with actress Annabelle Lanyon
Newly-filmed interview with composer Bill Nelson
Foundations of Nightmare: The Making of Dream Demon - contemporary documentary taking a look behind the scenes of the production of Dream Demon, featuring on-set interviews with director Harley Cokeliss, producer Paul Webster, actors Timothy Spall, Jemma Redgrave, Kathleen Wilhoite, composer Bill Nelson and many more
Original Theatrical Trailer
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly-commissioned artwork by Christopher Shy
+ FIRST PRESSING ONLY! Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Anne Bilson, author of the Dream Demon novelization, and director Harley Cokeliss
Reversible poster featuring exclusive newly-commissioned artwork by Christopher Shy
'Dream Demon' Original Trailer