Dark Age (1987) (Umbrella Entertainment Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Arch Nicholson
Starring: John Jarratt, Max Phipps, David Gulpilil
Rated: MA/Region: B/2:35/1080p/Number of disc: 1
Available from Umbrella Entertainment
In the Australian outback, a park ranger and two local guides set out to track down a giant crocodile that has been killing and eating the local populace. During the hunt, one of the guides discovers that he has an ESP connection to the giant creature.
We have a killer croc on the loose in the Australian classic, Dark Age! Here’s a horror film from a land down under starring John Jarratt and he isn’t the killer! I admit that seeing John in a role that was different from the norm that I usually see him in was a great change of pace. I’ve seen a few movies with a killer croc but this is one that is done very well. It has a major Jaws vibe going for it with people worried about the revelation of a killer croc killing their business rather than being worried about the people being eaten. We have a conflict with the locals and local tribe people about killing them, and we have very creative ways of people ending up where they go from location to being somewhere where this beast can eat them. It is fun stuff all around makes for a nice watch. This was the first time I had seen this film and I admit I enjoyed it.
Umbrella Entertainment keeps knocking it out of the park with releases like this. They keep bringing these old school Ozploitation films to Blu-ray and the results are very much worth you seeking out and purchasing. This 1987 film looks really good in HD from Umbrella and packs enough extras to keep you happy once the film is over. All in all, this is a film with a very well crafted story that is serious but never too serious for a laugh here and there. It has a great performance from John Jarratt that might take people by surprise if they’ve only seen him before in Wolf Creek. I also dug how also in the film things roll along until the croc isn’t the only or biggest issue our leads have to deal with. If you dig Ozploitation films and are hip to the Ozploitation classics from Umbrella Entertainment you’ll totally want to add this one to your collection.
– Audio Commentary with Actor John Jarratt and Executive Producer Anthony I. Ginnane
– A Bicentenary with Bite: Revisiting Dark Age Panel Discussion with Film Historian Lee Gamblin
– Uncut Not Quite Hollywood Interview with John Jarratt and Anthony I. Ginnane
– Living With Crocodiles: 1986 documentary with Grahame Webb, author of ‘Numunwari’, the book which inspired DARK AGE
– Trailer and the original US release Home Video trailers
– Image Gallery including rare press and promotional material
Quality of Transfer: 95%