Tag: Jackie Kong

Blu-ray reviews: Blood Diner (1987), Waxwork (1988), Vampira (1974)

[From The Dark Side #186, August 2017.]

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Blu-ray review: Blood Diner (1987)

[This Blu-ray will be released by Lionsgate on 28 August 2017.]

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Originally pitched as a sequel to Herschel Gordon Lewis’ infamous gorefest Blood Feast, Jackie Kong’s cannibal comedy (the third of four horror films she directed between 1983 and 1987) is a prime case of incoherent ineptitude misdiagnosed as satirical spoof.

Psycho siblings George (Carl Crew, Urban Legends) and Michael (Rick Burks) run a sleazy eatery where the menu is more Hannibal Lecter than Heston Blumenthal. Under the ghostly guidance of their dead uncle, the pair embark upon a murder spree in order to resurrect an ancient goddess by staging the first “blood buffet” in five million years.

This might sound ludicrous enough to be fun, but it really isn’t. The recipe is wrecked by lack-lustre direction, inane acting (it’s no surprise the leaden LaNette LaFrench made no other screen appearances), cack handed continuity, patchy audio (much of the film is clearly dubbed, though why is anyone’s guess) and a pedestrian screenplay by Michael Sonye (Star Slammer, Commando Squad). On a purely technical level, it’s a great print and includes footage removed for the Vestron VHS release, but it strikes me as somewhat crazy that time and effort can be expended on this junk when many genuinely worthy movies still await a Blu-ray restoration.

Extras: audio commentary by director Jackie Kong; 2016 featurette Killer Cuisine: The Making of Blood Diner; 2009 interview with memorabilia dealer Eric Caidin, who died in 2015; trailer; television ads; stills gallery.