Scream and Scream Again: Limited Edition – Radiance Films (Blu-ray)
Theatrical Release Date: UK, 1970
Director: Gordon Hessler
Writer: Christopher Wicking
Cast: Vincent Price, Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Alfred Marks, Michael Gothard, Christopher Matthews, Judy Huxtable, Anthony Newlands, Kenneth Benda, Marshall Jones, Uta Levka, Yutte Stensgaard, Julian Holloway, Judy Bloom
Release Date: September 18th, 2023
Approximate running times: 94 Minutes 31 Seconds (American Version), 94 Minutes 51 Seconds (British Version)
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC (Both Versions)
Rating: 15 (UK)
Sound: DTS-HD Mono English (Both Versions)
Subtitles: English SDH (Both Versions)
Region Coding: Region B
Retail Price: £16.99 (UK)
"A serial killer runs amok over London, draining his victims of their blood. A mad doctor performs experimental surgery on his victims, taking them apart limb by limb. A shady organization from Eastern Europe is involved in some way while intelligence officer Fremont investigates." - synopsis provided by the distributor
Video: 4.25/5 (Both Versions)
Here’s the information provided about the transfer, “Scream and Scream Again was provided to Radiance Films as a high-definition digital file. Additional restoration to remove instances of dirt and speckles was carried out at R3store Studios, London.
The British cut was provided by Kino Lorber"
Scream and Scream Again comes on a 50 GB dual layer Blu-ray.
Disc Size: 42.5 GB
Feature: 24.5 GB
Though this transfer comes from an existing HD master, the result is easily the best this film has ever looked on Blu-ray. And nowhere is this more evident than when it comes to Fidelity in Motion's excellent encode. Flesh tones look healthy, colors are nicely saturated, image clarity and compression are solid, black levels look strong throughout, and the image looks organic, free of any digital tinkering. Also, when compared to other Blu-ray releases, this transfer has had additional clean-up done to the source. This release uses seamless branching for the two versions.
Audio: 4.2/5 (DTS-HD Mono English - Both Versions)
Each version comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD mono mix in English. Both audio files have been cleaned up and are in great shape. Dialog comes through clearly, and everything sounds balanced and robust when it should. Both versions come with a removable English SDH.
Extras for this release include an image gallery (73 images - stills/lobby cards/posters/press book/advertisements), a theatrical trailer (2 minutes 18 seconds, LPCM mono English, no subtitles), Mick Garris Trailers from Hell (2 minutes 37 seconds, LPCM stereo English, no subtitles), three deleted scenes from UK version: Sylvia And Keith Are Watched (48 seconds, LPCM mono English, no subtitles), Bellaver Throws Rocks (30 seconds, LPCM mono English, no subtitles), and Extended Discussion And End (1 minutes 52 seconds, LPCM mono English, no subtitles), a reconstruction of the cut-down Super 8 Version distributed as The Living Corpses of Dr. Mabuse (16 minutes 44 seconds, Dolby Digital mono English, no subtitles), an interview with actor Christopher Matthews (6 minutes 42 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with actor Julian Holloway (7 minutes 36 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with editor Peter Elliott, and propman Arthur Wicks (3 minutes 39 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with actor Clifford Earl (17 minutes 33 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an archival interview with actress Uta Levkai titled Uta Screams Again (8 minutes 43 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), author Ramsey Campbell on Christopher Wicking and ‘Peter Saxon’ (11 minutes 12 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an archival documentary on the filmmaker's work for the studio featuring Hessler himself and critics Jeff Burr, David Del Valle, Steve Haberman and C. Courtney Joyner titled Gentleman Gothic: Gordon Hessler at American International Pictures (23 minutes 21 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an audio commentary with Kevin Lyons, author of The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Film and Television and Jonathan Rigby, author of English Gothic: Classic Horror Cinema 1897-2015, reversible cover art, removable OBI strip leaving packaging free of certificates and markings, 3 character postcards of classic images from the film, and a 44-page booklet with cast & crew information, an essay titled Scream and Scream Again: An Exquisite Corpse of Incongruous Surrey-Ealism written by Anne Billson, A Termite in a Crazy Circus: Christopher Wicking written by Julian Petley, and information about the transfer.
Directed by Gordon Hessler, whose other notable films are The Oblong Box, Cry of the Banshee, Murders in the Rue Morgue, and The Golden Voyage of Sinbad. The screenplay was adapted from Pete Saxon’s novel The Disoriented Man. The original director was Michael Reeves (Witchfinder General), who was replaced before filming began. He would die while Scream and Scream Again were being made.
The narrative revolves around a serial killer who drains his victims blood like a vampire. What is the killer's connection to a mad doctor and a foreign agent from an eastern European totalitarian country?
The big draw of Scream and Scream Again is that it features three horror cinema icons: Vincent Price (The Fly), Christopher Lee (The Wicker Man), and Peter Cushing (The Curse of Frankenstein). And yet their screentime is actually very limited; Peter Cushing only appears in one scene, and Vincent Price and Christopher Lee only appear in one scene together.
The most surprising aspect of Scream and Scream Again is its elaborate narrative, which is essentially three narratives that intersect by the time the finale arrives. The first narrative revolves around the serial killer; the second narrative revolves around a mad doctor who performs experimental surgeries in his quest to make perfect bodies; and intelligence officers from two countries are at odds with each other.
When it comes to the performances of most of the cast, they all pale in comparison to Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, and Vincent Price’s performances. Despite their limited screen time, all three actors make the most of what are essentially cameos. Another performance of note is Marshall Jones in the role of Konratz, a foreign agent with a deadly death grip.
Scream and Scream Again is a melting pot of genres, notably horror and sci-fi. The far-fetched premise is well executed, and the narrative does a good job keeping things interesting. Though there are horror elements like a vampire killer who drains blood and severed body parts, Scream and Scream Again is not that bloody of a film. Ultimately, Scream and Scream Again is a satisfying blend of horror and sci-fi that often exceeds the sum of its parts.
Scream and Scream Again is an excellent release from Radiance Films that comes with a strong audio/video presentation, two versions of the film, and a wealth of informative extras, highly recommended.
Written by Michael Den Boer