Thursday, January 5, 2017

HEAD OF THE FAMILY (1996) (Blu-ray Review)


Label: Full Moon Entertainment

Region Code: Region-FREE
Rating: R
Duration: 82 Minutes
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (1.78:1) 
Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Digital 2.0 
Director: Charles Band
Cast: Blake Adams, Jacqueline Lovell, J.W. Perra, Bob Schott, Alexandria Quinn 

In this weird 90s entry from Full Moon we have a local diner operator named Lance (Blake Adams, The Killer Eye) who is having an affair with a married woman, a scrumdiddlyumptious slice of white trash hotness named Loretta (Jacqueline Lovell, Lolita 2000). The problem is that Loretta is married to a long-haired biker thug named Howard (Gordon Jennison Noice, Virtuosity), a brute of guy who is trying to muscle in on Lance's business as a silent partner-type. Howard is scary but not too bright, and the two lovers manage to carry on with the affair right under his nose, and he seems none the wiser, early on they hook up in the employee bathroom at the diner while Lance finishes his meal. 

On their way home from one of their nightly sex-flings Lance and Loretta observe something strange on the road home, discovering that the local weirdos the Stackpoole's are abducting people right off the highway and experimenting on them for nefarious purposes. Lance uses this tidbit of info to blackmail the Stackpoole's into making Howard disappear on his behalf, in addition to extorting them for $2000 a week, but as you might expect crossing the Stackpoole's is just a bad idea. 

You see, the Stackpoole's are a family of quintuplets, the family is headed up by Myron (J.W. Perra, Mystery Monsters) who has a tiny wheelchair ridden body with an enormously deformed head, he's the brains of the family, of course. He has the ability to mind-control his other siblings who are a bit on the tiny-brain side. We have the wide-eyed Wheeler (James Jones, The Dark Mist) with eagle-sharp vision and an enhanced sense of smell and hearing, the brainless strongman Otis (Bob Shott, Vamp), and sister Ernestina (one-time underage porn star Alexandria Quinn, Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster)is just a sexy vixen. Through them Myron is able to perform his oddball experiments in his basement dungeon, where he hopes to transplant his evil-genius brain into a normal sized person's body, he also puts on stage shows for his own amusement from time to time. 

Head of the Family is a fun watch, if you love the weirdness and silly humor of Full Moon stuff I think you will have a good time with this one, just put that thinking cap aside for about eighty-minutes and you're good to go. The characters are fun, Myron is a creepy Southern mad doc of sorts with a giant head with the psychic ability to control his mindless drone siblings, it's a fun conceit. Lance and Loretta are also a fun pair as they fornicate and conspire to do away with her pesky husband, doing both at the same time usually, ninety percent of their conversations are had while having sex! Blake Adams plays Lance as a fast-talking hustler, full of charms and cheap charisma, while Loretta as played by Jacqueline Lovell comes of as a trailer park version of Scarlett Johansson, she's easy on the eyes and kindly sheds her clothes to reveal her top-shelf assets, which is always appreciated. For his part J.W. Perra gives the character of Myron nice Southern evilness, the make-up effects used to create his bulbous deformed head are impressive, and there's a drool-filled nipple licking scene with Loretta that was just so icky to watch, this movie certainly has it's moments. 

Audio/Video: Head of the Family Arrives on Blu-ray from Full Moon Entertainment looking solid for a low-budget 90s production, on par with what we've seen from Full Moon to date, including the absence of lossless audio option, we have instead choice of Dolby Digital 2.0 and 5.1 Surround. There are no subtitle options on the disc. 

Extras include a commentary from Actor J.W. Perra who does the commentary as both himself and as his character Myron which was sort of neat. Other extras include a promo for the planned 2008 sequel Bride of Head which never happened, at least not yet. We also get the original trailer (2 min) and the 2016 HD trailer (2 min) for the film plus trailers for Vampire Journals(2 min), Puppet Master 2 (2 min), Puppet Master 3 (2 min), Subspecies 2 (2 min) and Specters (2 min). 

Special Features: 
– Audio Commentary with Actor J.W. Perra
– Bride of Head Promo (2 min) 
– Original Trailer (2 min) 
- 2016 HD Trailer (2 min) HD 

– Full Moon Trailers: Vampire Journals (2 mins), Puppet Master 2 (2 min), Puppet Master 3 (2 min), Subspecies 2 (2 min), Specters (2 min)

The movie doesn't have a lot of atmosphere unfortunately, which would have escalated this one a bit, but it does have a peculiar softcore-horror feel that was at least fun, with some goofy humor and campiness, but the lack of atmosphere and that quick wrap ending brings it down a bit, but if you're a Full Moon fan there's plenty to enjoy about Head Of The Family.  2.5/5