Kolobos (1999) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Daniel Liatowitsch, David Todd Ocvirk
Starring: Amy Weber, Nichole Pelerine, Ilia Volok
Rated: UR/Region A/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 1
Available from Arrow Video
The Real World meets Saw by way of Suspiria in this super-smart, super-gory – and, sadly, super-overlooked – late ’90s slasher effort from filmmakers Daniel Liatowitsch and David Todd Ocvirk, released in the midst of the post-Scream slice-and-dice revival. A group of youngsters arrive at a snow-covered house under the guise of participating in a “grounding-breaking” new experimental film. With the entire property fitted out with cameras, their every move will be recorded. But when the house locks down, trapping the youngsters within, it soon becomes clear that something sinister is afoot. Scream – you’re on camera.
You know there was a lot of stuff that hit the video stores in the late ’90s and early 2000s. Kolobos was a movie that I think got lost in the fold a bit in 1999. Starring Amy Weber, who you guys might recall from The Pumpkin Karver and her brief run in the WWE, Kolobos is a movie that actually stands just above the pool of straight to disc films from around its time. Arrow Video here has taken it upon themselves to finally give it some credit and release it with this Blu-ray release. Using elements of reality TV, which was still fresh in 1999, this movie tosses five people in a house for an experiment. Only the catch is that the house is owned by a killer. So we have a slasher element, of course, here. But with the house being rigged to kill we also have some early elements of torture porn as well as more known movies dealing with similar things such as Cube. The gore is really good at times here and the story is interesting even if I feel things get a little silly near the very very end of it.
The acting can be pretty rough here at times. That’s the one thing that is hard to really defend. You can brag on the blood and how ahead of its time this one really is at times, but that darn acting comes back and bites this one in the backside more times than once. That might be what ended up holding this one back a bit when it first came out, but at least Amy Weber is a solid lead and really does a fine job in this one when the writing doesn’t toss her under a few buses. Kolobos is still very much worth watching, especially if you are a fan of the lesser known stuff from the late 90s. This one is better than most but still fails just a bit from becoming what I’d call a classic. Arrow loads this one down with cool stuff and makes it a very cool release.
– Brand new 2K restoration from the original negative
– Original Stereo and 5.1 audio options
– Audio commentary with co-writers and co-directors Daniel Liatowitsch and David Todd Ocvirk
– Real World Massacre: The Making of Kolobos – brand new featurette on the making-of Kolobos including interviews with Daniel Liatowitsch, David Todd Ocvirk, and co-writer/producer Nne Ebong
– Face to Faceless – a brand new Interview with “Faceless” actor Ilia Volok
– Slice & Dice: The Music of Kolobos – a brand new interview with composer William Kidd
– Behind-the-Scenes Image Gallery
– Super 8 short film by Daniel Liatowitsch with commentary
– Original Trailer
QUALITY OF TRANSFER: 95%