Witchtrap (1989) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)

Witchtrap (1989) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)
Directed By: Kevin Tenney
Starring: James W. Quinn, Kathleen Bailey, Judy Tatum
Rated: UR/Region O/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from Vinegar Syndrome

For years, the Lauder House has been plagued by strange and violent occurrences. Unexplained deaths and seemingly supernatural activities have scared away all prospective tenants and buyers, but now its owners have decided to turn the old mansion into a bed and breakfast. Follow a team of paranormal experts as they attempt to remove the demonic forces and cleanse the property of all evil, through the use of a special device designed to lure in and trap evil spirits. But as soon as they arrive the violence begins again, as members of the team begin to meet increasingly bloody fates…

Witchtrap is often mistaken as a sequel to Witchboard. The VHS back in the day had to go as far to clearly state that it wasn’t, but you could understand why this confusion probably happened and I’m not conviced that confusion wasn’t something everyone was counting on. The movie not only packs on the tagline of “This time, it’s not a game”, but it shares some of the same cast as Witchboard. Some of the actors shared had pretty big parts in both. While Witchboard was about a game, this time around this is a movie that dabs into haunting. An evil man is dead and really pissed at people coming in his old house. After a man is taken over by this evil and leaps out the window to his death at the start of the film, we then follow a team of paranormal people and a couple detectives back into the house. Some believe in what is going on and some don’t, but once the stuff really starts hitting the fan the movie picks up and it becomes a fun ride from there on out. It isn’t always the most livly film I’ve ever seen but the movie never takes things too seriusly and we have more than a few jokes going on on-screen.

We also get a good amount of effects. Some kills can try to use angles and leave stuff a little more up to the imagination in some spots, then you have some very awesome kills like one that takes place in a shower. The cast packs few folks I’m sure you’ll recognize from other things but as a treat we do have Linnea Quigley among the cast and for those keeping score at home, yes, she gets naked. Witchtraps’ effects, campy ways, and weird ending will probably be what most will remember from it after seeing it. The movie tips toes along the lines of being outright trippy in the final act and I kind of really dug that for some reason. As a fan of 80’s cinema I can say I had fun with it and that is what counts with these types of films. The movie also looks way better in its uncut form here than it has any right to look on this Blu-ray combo release from Vinegar Syndrome. I happen to think the world needs more naked Linnea Quigley in HD and this movie gives us just that with some cool effects to go along with it.

Extras

– Region free Blu-ray/DVD Combo pack
– Newly scanned and restored in 2k from 35mm Interpositive
– Completely uncut
– Group commentary track with: Director Kevin Tenney, Producer Dan Duncan, Cinematographer Tom Jewett and Actor Hal Havins
– Video interviews with: Director Kevin Tenney, Actress Linnea Quigley, Cinematographer Tom Jewett and SFX Supervisor Tassilo Baur
– Audio interviews with: SFX Makeup Artist Judy Yonemoto and Music Composer Dennis Michael Tenney
– Original video trailer
– “Book of Joe” a short film Directed by Kevin Tenney
– Alternate ending for “Book of Joe”
– Production/Promotional still gallery
– Original cover artwork by Corey Wolfe
– Reversible cover artwork
– English SDH Subtitles

Quality of Transfer: 98%