THE ALIEN FACTOR Special Edition Blu Ray
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Director Don Dohler's homage to the classic sci-fi 1950's creature features, THE ALIEN FACTOR (1978), has endured the passage of time to become the standard "comfort food" for a generation of eager aficionados. Filmed in Baltimore, Maryland by a collection of never-say-die, hardcore fans, the movie boasts a gaggle of monster suits, clever miniatures and even a stop-motion beast brought to life by, then aspiring, animation wizard, Ernest D. Farino (THE TERMINATOR). Local actors Don Leifert, Dick Dyszel, Eleanor Herman and George Stover infuse the film with an enthusiastic zest that belies the film's tiny budget, adding immeasurably to the charm that is THE ALIEN FACTOR. Special Features include New 2K HD 16x9 Wide Screen Scan from the 16mm Negative; Cast and Crew Commentary Track; Behind the Scenes, The Television Years, Meet the Cast & Crew Featurette; THE ALIEN FACTOR Reunion; Alternate LEEMOID Sequence with Commentary Track; Blooper & Out-Take Reel; and the Original "Retromedia Drive-In Theater" intro.
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It seems reasonable to mention, at this point, that this limited-run special edition is obviously for serious low-budget sci-fi geeks--and it is not intended for, nor is it likely to satisfy, the typical mainstream moviegoer. I give it five stars very enthusiastically, but not because it is a good example of a normal, popular film. As has been mentioned elsewhere, the monsters in this film actually are decent considering their budget. But this is very low-rent genius, and the fact remains that one of the monster suits (the cockroach-looking "Inferbyce") is made largely of cardboard and papier-mache. Oh, they textured it and painted it and did their best to detail it. But it's still made mostly out of cardboard. Still interested? Good. How often do you see a person attacked in the wilderness by a guy in a cardboard monster suit?
Disc features lots of extras (many created by star George "See this pencil line???" Stover, who lent a great deal of his time and effort to producing material for the special features, and who pieced together and edited a lengthy commentary track featuring interview clips with many people in the cast and crew--the George Stover who apparently signed 1000 paper cover inserts to please the adoring fans...this limited edition is really a "George Stover showcase," so if you're a fan of his, take note); There's a section featuring a LOT of featured actor Dick Dyszel promoting the film as "Count Gore DeVol" on his Creature Features program, so if you like Count Gore or just horror hosts in general, you are taken care of here. In other words, if you are the type of person who appreciates that special joy that comes from paying LOTS of attention to obscure low-budget efforts, you have my personal permission to proceed to geek out, beginning now.
The impressive transfer, which is the glue that holds this whole production together, deserves a lot of praise. I don't think any fan of this fairly obscure film ever expected in his/her wildest sci-fi nerd dreams that we would ever be able to view such a crystal-clear version. This is very likely the best the film may ever look.
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