Sunday, December 9, 2012

DVD COMPARISON: MARK OF THE DEVIL (1970)

DVD BATTLE:
MARK OF THE DEVIL (1970) 

It's been awhile since we had a DVD comparison up on the site but here we go, this time out it's MARK OF THE DEVIL (1970) with editions from Blue Underground and Cheezy Flicks. .


This is my attempt to guide genre film fans towards the most complete and proper presentations of our favorite films through comparison of special features and audio visual qaulities. I'll make my decision known and why but take a look at what each release offers and make your own decision based on what's important to you as a buyer. Some go for the commentaries and 5.1, others may take a shine to interviews and artwork or just price point. Let's just be thankful that we have choices and that there are niche labels the world around competing for our hard earned dollars because choice is a very good thing indeed.


MARK OF THE DEVIL (1970) 

Label: Blue Underground

Region Code: NTSC 1
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 96 Mins
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Widescreen (1.78:1)
Audio: English Dolbu Digital 2.0 Mono
Cast: Udo Kier, Herbert Lom, Reggie Nalder, Herbert Fux 
Director: Michael Armstrong 

Synopsis: Uncensored!This is the one that historians and gorehounds alike still speak of with shock and awe, the movie so extreme that audiences were given free barf bags! Herbert Lom (THE DEAD ZONE), Udo Keir (BLADE), Herbert Fux (EUGENIE) and the ultra-creepy Reggie Nalder (SALEMS LOT) star in this infamous epic of fanatical 18th Century witchfinders who rape, torture, dismember and burn thousands of nubile young women falsely accused of fornicating with Satan. Can you stomach the agonizing torment of the damned? Behold the gut-wrenching horror of MARK OF THE DEVIL! 


BLUE UNDERGROUND MENUS

Special Features: 

- Audio Commentary with Director Michael Armstrong

- Fear and Loathing in Austria - Interview with Star Udo Kier (6:42)
- The Devil's Torturer - Interview with Star Herbert Fux (13:14)
- Burn, Gaby, Burn! - Interview with Star Gaby Fuchs 
(7:05)
- The Devil's Assaulted - Interview with Star Ingeborg Shoner (7:04)
- Theatrical Trailer (3:26)
- 3 Radio Spots (1:40)
- Poster and Still Galleries



VS.

MARK OF THE DEVIL (1970) 
Yach Pack Edition

Label: Cheezy Flicks 

Region Code: NTSC 1
Rating: R
Duration: 96 Mins
Aspect Ratio: Letterboxed  (1.78:1)
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
Cast: Udo Kier, Herbert Lom, Reggie Nalder, Herbert Fux 
Director: Michael Armstrong 

Synopsis: Banned in many countries!  - Udo Kier is a witch hunter apprentice to Herbert Lom. Udo believes strongly in his mentor and in the ways of the church but loses faith when he catches Lom strangle a man to death for calling him impotent. Kier begins to see for himself that the witch trials are nothing but a scam of the church to seduce women, rob people of their land, money, and other personal belongings. in the end, the towns people revolt, Herbert Llom escapes and poor Udo is tortured to death by the towns people with the his own devices from the dungeon. 

CHEEZY FLICKS MENU



THE VOMIT BAG!

Cheezy Flicks Special Features: 
- Vomit Bag
- Trailers: I DRINK YOUR BLOOD (1:38), HORRORS AT THE BLACK MUSEUM (3:8) 
- About Cheezy Flicks
- Intermission (1:05)

DVD SCREENSHOT COMPARISONS
Blue Underground: Top
Cheezy Flicks: Bottom













Verdict: Michael Armstrong's sadistic tale of a witchfinder (Herbert Lom) and his apprentice (Udo Kier) is still a fantastically exploitative period piece delving into the dark underbelly of just how truly evil and corrupt the witch hunts were, sure it's dated but it still packs quite a punch and is riddled with perversity and bloody torture. 

Cheezy Flicks novel vomit bag is a strong impulse buy based on kitschy appeal alone but in the face of Blue Undergrounds film-specific special features which include not just a great commentary with director Michael Armstrong but also four featurettes with video interviews with the principle cast including Udo Kier. 


That's just the extras, now when you take into consideration the quite poor video and audio quality of Cheezy Flicks edition which is a dark, washed-out muddy mess that seems to be sourced from a VHS the scales are even further unbalanced in favor of Blue Underground whose edition has been completely restored and it shows every level, the saturated color is gorgeous, fine details are abundant and black levels are generally strong, there's just no comparison to be made. Blue Underground bests Cheezy Flicks in all regards, if you can find it cheap enough I would suggest snagging the Cheezy Flicks edition if only to snag the cool vomit bag and stick inside the Blue Underground DVD as pictured below then toss the inferior edition on the sell pile.




THE WINNER: BLUE UNDERGROUND!

http://www.blue-underground.com/
http://cheezyflicks.com/

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