Satans Blade - Satans Blade( DVD + Blu Ray) [Arrow Video - 2016]Here from Arrow video we have a DVD/ Blu-ray reissue of a long out of print supernatural tinged slasher with a snowy setting from 1984. Satan's Blade is very much a low budget regional affair from the USA, featuring an cast of (still) unknowns, and a one time director.
As youíd expect from Arrow(both in the UK/USA for this release) you get great presentation- with the DVD/ blu-ray coming in a double pack. We also get their trademark double-side sleeve, featuring the original artwork on one side, and on the other newly commissioned artwork. You also get a glossy twenty two page booklet- taking-in stills from the film, as well as an informative write-up about the films production, etc by Brian Albright, author of Regional Horror Films. Of course this been Arrow you also get some nice juicy extras on the disc themselves, but Iíll discuss those a little latter.
Though the film didnít see a release until 1984, it was actually filmed back in 1981/82, making this one of the early slasher releases. The film is set in a snow bound lodge near Big Bear Lake, in the San Bernardino National Forest, California. It opens rather surprisingly with bank robbery- the robbers( who turn out to be women) return to one of the lodges bedroom to hide the money, and fairly soon get killed. Then we get presented to the main characters of the film- two early 20ís couples who are checking into the lodge, to be given the room where the bank robbers have just been killed!. As they check in they are told the legend of the mountain man killer, who appears ever so often from out of the lake to take vengeance of people who pushed him off his land. From here on we roll into fairly standard slasher territory, though along the way there are some interesting & cheesy quirks- you get a haunting, though rather ham-fisted & at times monotonous soundtrack, blending together piano & keyboard elements. A great dream-like killing from a demon-mask like enity, a selection of ok kills, the occasional bare breast, and acceptable (to below par )acting.
Extras wise on the discs you get the follow: A informative & interesting commentery from The Hysteria Continues (who are selection of four slasher fans/writers). A rather bizarre home filmed interview with the director of the film, who remains standing with his face out of picture for itís twenty or so minutes runtime. As well as the film getting a brand new 2K restoration in both 1.85:1 and 4:3 (1.37:1) versions.
All in all itís great to have this long lost slasher back in-print again, with of course the normal love & care Arrow video give all of their release. The film itís self is far from a master picec, but if you enjoy either very low-budget slashers or regional US Horror film this is well worth checking out.Roger Batty