Recent posts

BluCaps: Hannibal (Kino Lorber)

Tuesday 14 May, 2019

Cruel Summer extract

Saturday 11 May, 2019

Arrow July announcement

Tuesday 30 April, 2019

BluCaps: Mandy

Monday 8 April, 2019

Arrow June announcements

Monday 1 April, 2019

Arrow May announcements

Thursday 28 February, 2019

BluCaps: Suspiria (2018)

Wednesday 13 February, 2019


BluCaps: Hannibal

Click here to order on Amazon

  • Label: Kino Lorber
  • Disc Locality: USA
  • Region: A
  • Codec: AVC
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Source Format: 35mm (spherical)

The previous releases of HANNIBAL were all horror shows to one degree or another — derived from a nasty, smudgy 2K Spirit scan with plenty of ringing and little in the way of fine detail. Finally, nearly two decades after its original release, a new 4K transfer has been created of this most criminally underrated of Ridley Scott’s films, and it’s safe to say the result is a revolution. Released on both standard Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD by Kino Lorber, there are some crucial differences between the two, with the UHD version exhibiting what some have described as black crush. The jury’s out for me, but the standard BD (pictured here because I STILL don’t have the means to take 4K UHD captures) is unquestionably the brighter of the two, with what looks like a lower gamma curve. As this comparison at Caps-a-Holic shows, the UHD disc renders grain and fine detail considerably better than the BD, which at times takes on what looks like a degrained look (whereas, at other times, the grain comes through loud and clear). Regardless, either version absolutely trounces the previous releases, meaning that the creaky old telecine can finally be consigned to the trash compactor.


Cruel Summer extract

Saturday 11 May, 2019 16:32

With just over two weeks to go until Cruel Summer launches, I’ve posted an exclusive preview, consisting of the prologue and an extract from Chapter 3.

Cruel Summer (cover)

Read it now!


Fancy an advance review copy of Cruel Summer? They’re now available through Booksprout. In exchange for a review, a mobi, epub of pdf copy of the novel is yours to keep!

Zoe Callahan is having the summer from hell… and it’s about to get a whole lot worse.

She’s stuck in a dead-end job, her relationship is going nowhere and the memory of the Kelvingrove Park Murders three years ago continues to cast a long shadow over every aspect of her life.

When a prostitute is brutally assaulted by Dominic Ryland, a rising political star with a suspiciously spotless personal reputation, Zoe leaps at the chance to embroil herself in a noble cause and sets out on a one-woman crusade to bring Ryland to justice.

But in doing so, she quickly finds herself on the wrong side of some very dangerous people - people who have reputations to protect and who would think nothing of silencing Zoe by any means necessary.

An explosive thriller set against the backdrop of a sweltering heatwave, Cruel Summer is the sequel to M.R. Mackenzie’s critically acclaimed debut In the Silence and the second instalment in the Kelvingrove Park Trilogy.

Cruel Summer (cover)


The Loveless

The Loveless

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They’re going nowhere… fast!

The United States, late 1950s. A time of generational conflict, of immense social change, of bold fashions and toe-tapping music — just some of the elements that collide in thrilling fashion in The Loveless, the feature debut of both its star, Willem Dafoe (To Live and Die in LA), and its directors, Monty Montgomery (producer, David Lynch’s Wild at Heart) and future Academy Award®-winner Kathryn Bigelow (Near Dark, Detroit).

A motorcycle gang roars into a small southern town en route to the Daytona races, unnerving and angering the locals with their standoffish attitude and disrespect for social niceties. When one of their number, the charismatic Vance (Dafoe), hooks up with sportscar-driving Telena (Marin Kanter, Endangered Species), he incurs the wrath of the girl’s father, setting the gang on a collision course with the rest of the town as simmering tensions boil over into violent retribution.

Raw, angry and honest, The Loveless evokes, with unflinching clarity, both an attitude and a bygone era, exploring the tensions between two very different Americas — now fully restored and presented in high definition for the first time in this feature-packed new edition from Arrow Video!

Special Edition Contents:

  • Brand new 2K restoration from the original camera negative by Arrow Films, approved by co-writer/co-director Monty Montgomery and director of photography Doyle Smith
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
  • Original lossless mono audio
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • New audio commentary with co-writer/co-director Monty Montgomery, moderated by Elijah Drenner
  • No Man’s Friend Today: Making The Loveless, new video interviews with actors Willem Dafoe, Marin Kanter, Robert Gordon, Phillip Kimbrough and Lawrence Matarese
  • U.S. 17: Shooting The Loveless, new video interviews with producers Grafton Nunes and A. Kitman Ho
  • Chrome and Hot Leather: The Look of The Loveless, new interviews with production designer Lilly Kilvert and director of photography Doyle Smith
  • Relentless, new audio interview with musician Eddy Dixon
  • Extensive image gallery, including on-set photographs, storyboards and original production documentation
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Gilles Vranckx

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Peter Stanfield


The release date for Cruel Summer, the sequel to the critically acclaimed In the Silence, has been confirmed as 28th May 2019. Additionally, the Kindle edition is now available for pre-order from Amazon from the following link:

Click here to order on Amazon

Due to the way Amazon’s KDP programme works, pre-order links for physical copies of self-published titles aren’t possible. If you want to pick up a paperback edition, you’ll need to wait until the 28th May.

Unlike In the Silence, which was a Kindle exclusive, I’m planning to release Cruel Summer on a number of other eBook plaforms. Stay tuned for further details!

Cruel Summer (cover)


It’s been a long time coming, but the time has finally come to unveil the blurb and cover art for Cruel Summer, my upcoming second novel and sequel to In the Silence.

Zoe Callahan is having the summer from hell… and it’s about to get a whole lot worse.

She’s stuck in a dead-end job, her relationship is going nowhere and the memory of the Kelvingrove Park Murders three years ago continues to cast a long shadow over every aspect of her life.

When a prostitute is brutally assaulted by Dominic Ryland, a rising political star with a suspiciously spotless personal reputation, Zoe leaps at the chance to embroil herself in a noble cause and sets out on a one-woman crusade to bring Ryland to justice.

But in doing so, she quickly finds herself on the wrong side of some very dangerous people - people who have reputations to protect and who would think nothing of silencing Zoe by any means necessary.

An explosive thriller set against the backdrop of a sweltering heatwave, Cruel Summer is the sequel to M.R. Mackenzie’s critically acclaimed debut In the Silence and the second instalment in the Kelvingrove Park Trilogy.

Cruel Summer (cover)

For the cover art, I knew I wanted something moody and evocative, as well as something that captured something of the city of Glasgow — arguably as much a character as Zoe, Anna or anyone else. I eventually settled on the McLennan Arch on Glasgow Green — a key location in the novel whose significance only becomes clear very late in the game. The result, I think, evokes something of the same mood as the cover art for titles by the likes of Peter James and Ian Rankin while also having a personality of its own.

Stay tuned for more information, including a concrete release date, an extract from the new book and more, very soon… and be sure to bookmark the newly launched Cruel Summer homepage!


BluCaps: Mandy

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  • Label: Universal
  • Disc Locality: Sweden/Denmark/Norway/Finland
  • Region: ABC
  • Codec: AVC
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
  • Source Format: ARRIRAW 2.8K (Panavision)/2K DI

Nightfall

Nightfall

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During his long and varied career, Jacques Tourneur (The Comedy of Terrors, Cat People) tackled a breadth of genres on both sides of the Atlantic. With 1956’s Nightfall, he returns to the noir trappings he tackled so successfully with Out of the Past for a tale of deception, intrigue and paranoia.

Adapted from the novel by prolific crime fiction author James Goodis (Dark Passage), Nightfall is the story of Jim Vanning (Aldo Ray, The Violent Ones, The Naked and the Dead), an innocent man wrongly accused of murder. On the same night he has a chance encounter in a bar with glamorous model Marie (Anne Bancroft, The Graduate), the hoods he’s spent the past year running from catch up with him, determined to recover the money they believe he stole from them. Pursued by both the hoods and law enforcement, Vanning and Marie go on the lam, leading to a desperate chase that takes them from the streets of Los Angeles to the snowy peaks of Wyoming.

Eschewing both the big names associated with the genre and its familiar urban locales, and featuring striking monochromatic photography by Oscar-winner Burnett Guffey (From Here to Eternity), Nightfall is a gripping and inventive late-period noir which shows that, even in its twilight years, the genre still had room for innovation.

Special Edition Contents:

  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation, restored from original film elements
  • Original lossless mono soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • New audio commentary by author and critic Bryan Reesman
  • White and Black, a new video appreciation of Nightfall by film historian Philip Kemp
  • Do I Look Like a Married Man?, a new video essay on the themes of Nightfall by author and critic Kat Ellinger
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Image gallery
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jennifer Dionisio

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Amy Simmons


Def-Con 4

Def-Con 4

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THE LAST DEFENCE. THE LAST HOPE. THE BATTLE FOR THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD HAS BEGUN.

In the 1980s, faced with the demise of the drive-in and the rise of the multiplex, New World Pictures - the independent studio established by Roger Corman - increasingly relied on smaller-scale productions, made with an eye to the cable TV and home video markets. Among these was Def-Con 4, an example of so-called “Canuxploitation” or Canadian exploitation cinema, riding on the coat-tails of the boom in post-apocalyptic disaster movies that began in the previous decade.

Two months after the planet is ravaged by nuclear war, astronauts Howe (Tim Choate), Jordan (Kate Lynch, The Twilight Zone) and Walker (John Walsch, Blow Out) are forced to return to earth - now an apocalyptic wasteland consumed by radiation and roamed by cannibal gangs. Forced into desperate pacts with unlikely allies, among them eccentric survivalist Vinny (Maury Chaykin, WarGames), the astronauts must draw on all their resourcefulness to survive this brave new world.

Bearing more than a passing resemblance to George Miller’s Ozploitation classic Mad Max, Def-Con 4 is an inventive and action-packed low budget sci-fi romp, elevated by a pounding score by New World stalwart Christopher Young (Hellraiser) and making its UK High Definition debut with this brand new restoration from Arrow Video.

Special Edition Contents:

  • Brand new 2K restoration from the original 35mm interpositive
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
  • Original lossless mono soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Brave New World, a new video interview with New World Pictures editor Michael Spence
  • Nemesis Descending, a new video interview with composer Christopher Young
  • Exploring the New World, a new video interview with author Chris Poggiali on the history and legacy of New World Pictures
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Gary Pullin

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Neil Mitchell


Double Face

Double Face

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In the post-war years, the proliferation of transnational European co-productions gave rise to a cross-pollination of genres, with the same films sold in different markets as belonging to different movements. Among these, Riccardo Freda (I vampiri, The Horrible Dr. Hichock)’s Double Face was marketed in West Germany as an Edgar Wallace ‘krimi’, while in Italy it was sold as a giallo in the tradition of Mario Bava’s Blood and Black Lace, combining elements from both genres for a unique and unforgettable viewing experience.

When wealthy businessman John Alexander (the legendary Klaus Kinski, giving an atypically restrained performance)’s unfaithful wife Helen (Margaret Lee, Circus of Fear) dies in a car crash, it initially looks like a freak accident. However, the plot thickens when evidence arises suggesting that the car was tampered with prior to the crash. And John’s entire perception of reality is thrown into doubt when he discovers a recently-shot pornographic movie which appears to feature Helen - suggesting that she is in fact alive and playing an elaborate mind game on him…

Psychological, psychedelic, and at times just plain psychotic, Double Face stands as one of the most engaging and enjoyable films in Freda’s lengthy and diverse career - a densely-plotted, visually-stunning giallo that evokes much of the same ambience of paranoia and decadence as such classics of the genre as One on Top of the Other and A Lizard in a Woman’s Skin.

Special Edition Contents:

  • Brand new 2K restoration of the full-length Italian version of the film from the original 35mm camera negative
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
  • Uncompressed mono 1.0 LPCM audio
  • Original English and Italian soundtracks, titles and credits
  • Newly translated English subtitles for the Italian soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing for the English soundtrack
  • New audio commentary by author and critic Tim Lucas
  • Seven Notes for a Murderer, a new video interview with composer Nora Orlandi
  • The Many Faces of Nora Orlandi, a new appreciation of the varied career of the film’s composer by musician and soundtrack collector Lovely Jon
  • The Terrifying Dr. Freda, a new video essay on Riccardo Freda’s gialli by author and critic Amy Simmons
  • Extensive image gallery from the collection of Christian Ostermeier, including the original German pressbook and lobby cards, and the complete Italian cineromanzo adaptation
  • Original Italian and English theatrical trailers
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Neil Mitchell


Yakuza Law

Yakuza Law

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Director Teruo Ishii (Blind Woman’s Curse, Horrors of Malformed Men), the Godfather of J-sploitation, presents Yakuza Law (AKA Yakuza’s Law: Lynching) - a gruelling anthology of torture, spanning three district periods of Japanese history and bringing to the screen some of the most brutal methods of torment ever devised.

In this deep dive into the world of the Yakuza, meet the violent men who rule the Japanese underworld and the cruel punishments inflicted on those who transgress them. The carnage begins in the Edo Period with a violent tale of samurai vengeance starring Bunta Sugawara (Battles Without Honour and Humanity), before shifting to the Meiji Period as the exiled Ogata (Minoru Oki, Shogun Assassin) returns to face punishment for his past transgressions… and, ultimately, to take his revenge. Finally, the action is brought right up to date with a tale of gang warfare set in then-present-day 60s Japan and headlined by Teruo Yoshida (Ishii’s Orgies of Edo), as a powerful crime syndicate seeks bloody vengeance for the theft of one hundred thousand yen.

Brutal, bewildering and definitely not for the faint-hearted, Yakuza Law represents Japanese popular cinema at its most extreme… and most thrilling.

Special Edition Contents:

  • High Definition Blu-ray™ (1080p) presentation
  • Original lossless mono Japanese soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles
  • New audio commentary by author and critic Jasper Sharp
  • Erotic-Grotesque and Genre Hopping: Teruo Ishii Speaks, a rare vintage interview with the elusive director on his varied career, newly edited for this release
  • Image gallery
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jacob Phillips

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Tom Mes


The Annihilators

The Annihilators

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IN VIETNAM THEY FOUGHT FOR THEIR COUNTRY. NOW, THEY’RE FIGHTING FOR THEIR FRIENDS.

As the 1980s rolled on, a new, bullish attitude to war took hold in America, the weary cynicism of the previous decade giving way to an unabashed celebration of military might. Numerous filmmakers and producers sought to capitalise on the emerging mood… among them New World Pictures, the company founded by the legendary Roger Corman.

In The Annihilators, the war comes home as a group of army vets, battle-scarred from their travails in the jungles of Vietnam, are forced to dust off their combat moves once again when one of their own meets his demise at the hands a violent criminal gang. Deciding that enough is enough, the self-styled Annihilators, led by the redoubtable Bill (Christopher Stone, The Howling, Cujo), set out to equip the beleaguered citizens of downtown Atlanta with the skills they need to rid their streets of crime and vice.

Directed by Charles E. Sellier Jr. (Silent Night, Deadly Night) and co-starring Gerrit Graham (Phantom of the Paradise) and Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs (Death Wish), The Annihilators is a brash, no-holds-barred slice of vigilante justice from the golden age of B-movie action.

Special Edition Contents:

  • Brand new 2K restoration from the original 35mm interpostive, presented uncut in the UK for the first time
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
  • Original lossless mono soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • The New Heat on the Street, a new video interview with actor Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs
  • In Search of Charles E. Sellier Jr., a new video interview with filmmaker David O’Malley on the early career of the Annihilators director
  • Comparison between the censored and uncensored UK releases of the film
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Travis Crawford


BluCaps: Suspiria (2018)

Click here to order on Amazon

  • Label: Lionsgate
  • Disc Locality: USA
  • Region: A
  • Codec: AVC
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Source Format: 35mm (spherical)/4K DI