November 15, 2017
Familiar territory here, as Maniac takes us on a ride into Tobe Hooper's teenage slasher, "The Funhouse."
Hooper was still an unknown, yet promising talent at this point, smack between "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" and "Poltergeist." "The Funhouse" could be called family friendly, with little brother, too family friendly.
Maniac's powers up his chainsaw and rips into this.
Video - 1280 X 720p AVC. First time I have noticed Maniac's new opening, which I suspect is a harbinger of things to come. A clever touch. From there, straight into the peeper's POV. Once we actually reach the carnival, the rich colors shimmer across the screen. Such vintage saturation appears lush compared with today's desaturated hues. Much of the action occurs within the funhouse, and shadows and blacks are solid throughout.
Thank you for not damaging the print. Too many rookie editors go crazy with grain, grime, scratches, thinking they have produced "art." Learn from Maniac, guys.
Audio - 160 kbps, 2 Channel AC-3. No subs, not expecting with this one. Dialogue clear. Pretty good dynamic range for a 1981 flick. The noises, groans, shrieks, chortles, et al, jump out. I know he modified the music here and there - I never noticed.
Narrative - This was a decent film to begin with. Amy's brother was always annoying and useless. Far as I'm concerned, Maniac could have started his version at the 5.45 point, excising most of Joey altogether. Nonetheless, his brisk edit is coherent and makes drive-in sense.
Enjoyment - Very much so. This would also be an excellent introduction to Maniac's library. While there are kills, there is no gore and nudity is brief. This is a satisfying late night quickie, when you're in the mood for Horror, but want to watch only an hour or less.
NOTE - Will update later.
About a year on, I've finally gotten around to Haunted, maniac's take on Poltergeist.
For an hour film, this is a big ass file. 4.7 GB.
Video sharp, audio clean. No subs, of course.
The story romps along, which makes this a perfect refresher.
Maniac does make an error near the end when he cut's Zelda Rubinstein's "This house is clean" declaration.
Missing that, you wonder why in hell the family is still there.
The story itself is still too cutesy by half. Script by Spielberg when he was concocting a load of family friendly fare.
Maniac rarely makes twofers nowadays, and this is no exception. This has been split into two features, available at his own site (as of 2019).
The pairing ought to be divorced here as well. If it happens, I will redo this review properly.