Body Melt (1993) (Vinegar Syndrome Blu-ray/DVD Review)

Body Melt (1993) (Vinegar Syndrome Blu-ray/DVD Review)
Directed By: Philip Brophy
Starring: Gerard Kennedy, Andrew Daddo, Ian Smith
Rated: UR/Region 0/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from Vinegar Syndrome

A peaceful morning in suburban Pebbles Court is interrupted by a deafening car crash. What the residents fail to notice are the strange tentacles that erupt from the dead driver’s neck and force their way down his throat. Senior detective Sam Phillips (Gerard Kennedy) and his rookie partner Johnno (Andrew Daddo) soon discover that this freak automobile accident is the result of a diabolical plan to experiment on the residents of Pebbles Court with a radical new designer drug. Some locals will survive the experiments – most won’t! And none of them will ever know what the hell is happening!

Body Melt is one of those movies I’ve been meaning to check out for years but for some odd reason or another, I never got around to it. One of the reasons could be that the now out of print American DVD of it isn’t the cheapest or easiest disc to find around these parts. Whatever the reason was I’m kind of happy I did wait because now I got to see it for the first time on a North American release from Vinegar Syndrome. With a name like Body Melt how couldn’t you be excited to see it? The plot in this one revolves around a group of houses in an Austrailian neighborhood where everyone on the block seems to have taken these pills. We learn in the opening moments of the film that the company has evil plans with those darn things and the person who is on his way to warn these folks has just been overdosed himself. What follows is very gross in spots, very comedic, and also very much like an anthology (which was the original idea) in ways but spread out and mixed up a bit. We basically learn what the stages of your demise are and then we watch as each person has these symptoms and they deliver very gross and very cool results. I’ve never seen anything like Body Melt but I’m sure people who aren’t big fans of splatter films won’t have the stomach for it. Everyone who is into that type of stuff will love it.

Among the stories we see while our detective duo is trying to get to the bottom of things is a whole buffet of weird things. We have the guy living on his own and seeing a woman who isn’t there. We have a couple young lads who stop at a roadside spot and end up with some very twisted company. We have the couple expecting a child and you just know from the moment you see she has a bun in the oven that it won’t end well. As awful as it might sound to say it, it also opens the door for anticipation of how her condition will be used in a movie like this. Trust me, it doesn’t disappoint. And finally, we have a family that takes a trip into the belly of the beast of sorts, as they venture out into the location where all these pills are coming from. That is one of the last parts of the movie we see, but it makes things all the more entertaining at the end. All in all, I can easily say I got what I expected with Body Melt. All in all, with what Vinegar Syndrome offer up here you get a disc worth owning even if you already have the Umbrella one. We have a new transfer here that I truly believe looks better and a whole host of extras making this a very cool release.

Extras

– Region free Blu-ray/DVD combo
– Newly scanned & restored in 2k from its 16mm original camera negative (exclusive to this release)
– Commentary track with writer/director/composer Philip Brophy, writer/producer Rod Bishop and producer Daniel Scharf
– Commentary track with Philip Brophy, focused on the sound design and film score
– “Melting Away: The Deconstruction of Body Melt” – 2018 featurette with Philip Brophy and Rod Bishop
– “Body Building: The Making of Body Melt” – 2018 interview with Daniel Scharf
– “Adrenal Glands” – 2018 interview with actor Neil Foley
– “Making Bodies Melt: The Making of Body Melt”
– “Behind-the-Scenes Featurette”
– Extensive behind-the-scenes stills and prop gallery
– Complete storyboard gallery
– Original theatrical trailer
– Reversible cover artwork
– English SDH subtitles

Quality of Transfer: 94%