The Aftermath (1982) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)

The Aftermath (1982) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)
Directed By: Steve Barkett
Starring: Steve Barkett, Lynne Margulies, Sid Haig
Rated: UR/Region A/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from VCI Entertainment

Two astronauts return to earth (“a few miles off the coast of Los Angeles”) to find that it has been destroyed by nuclear war. L.A. has been taken over by Cutter and his gang of outlaw bikers (straight out of the 70s with bell bottoms and everything). Cutter rapes and pillages. Of course, there are also mutants. The astronauts hook-up with the only normal people left: two good-looking women, and two cute little children; a boy and a girl.

A movie like this is the true definition of exploitation. We have a down and dirty film with moments of women and children killing as well as graphic violence. It doesn’t always happen, but when it does it seems to know how to do it in order to get the most effect and importance out of it. Sid Haig shows the world what makes him the cult legend that he is. His character of “Cutter” is one of the most unlikeable people you will see on film. You got to have something like that to really get behind the heroes of the film. Also, I want to point it out now that anyone who owned the old VCI DVD release of this one will also be happy to finally step away from the DVDr that release was and get a pressed Blu-ray and DVD in this release.

Steve Barkett is a prime example of what an action star (of B level movies) was. He wrote, directed, and starred in this film. This might very well be his best film or at least the best one that I have seen. There are down portions of the film that have a lot of walking around and such, but there is also some much-needed character development that helps smooth things out. If you have never seen a Steve Barkett film, then this is a good place to start. This one looks pretty good making the jump to HD. Not that it had much to do to improve upon the old release, but anyone wanting to own a good version of this film will want this. It is also good to see this movie finally get a release with some extras on it.

Extras

– Director’s Commentary
– Bonus Interviews with Fred Olen Ray, Stan Livingston, Chris Barkett and Composer John Morgan
– Trailer
– Behind the Scenes Photos
– Night Caller Short Film

Quality of Transfer: 90%