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Horrors of Malformed Men [DVD] [1969]

One of the most infamous films in the history of Japanese cinema has earned a worthy special edition, thanks to this impressive disc from Synapse Films. The anamorphic widescreen transfer of the film is candy for the eye, combining an impressively sharp level of detail with eye-popping primary colors. It is accompanied by the original Japanese mono soundtrack, which is presented with well-translated English subs. The end result sounds nice and strong despite its non-stereo origins, especially the spooky musical score. The disc also offers an impressive array of extras. These extras begin with a commentary track by Mark Schilling: it was recorded during a break at a film festival and offers an informal, moderated chat that bypasses the usual scene-specific approach to cover Ishii's career in detail. Fans of Japanese cult cinema will find it interesting, especially the parts that focus on the inner workings of the Japanese film business and Ishii's on-set habits as a director. There is also an excellent featurette called "Malformed Memories," which has modern Japanese directors Shinya Tsukamoto and Minoru Kawasaki discussing their love of Ishii's work and, in Tsukamoto's case, discussing memories of working with Ishii. Another featurette entitled "Ishii In Italia" provides an informal video journal of Ishii's trip to a festival where Horrors Of Malformed Men was shown. The disc's extras are rounded out by the original theatrical trailer (which has some unforgettable narration), a poster gallery and text biographies of Ishii and Edogawa Rampo. Finally, a booklet in the disc case adds an essay on the film itself and a brief history of the screen adaptations of Rampo's work. All in all, this is an excellent package and a must for collectors of unusual cinema.

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    Special Features

    • New, Fully Restored, Anamorphic Widescreen Transfer Mastered in High-Definition From Toei's Original Vault Elements
    • Japanese Language With Newly-Translated, Removabel English Subtitles
    • Audio Commentary by Film Critic Mark Schilling
    • Malformed Memories, Featuring Interviews With Shinya Tsukamoto (Tetsuo the Iron Man) & Minoru Kawasaki (The Calamari Wrestler)
    • Ishii in Italia, the Director's 2003 Visit to the Far East Film Festival
    • Original Japanese Theatrical Trailer, Poster Gallery and Biographies
    • Liner Notes by Patrick Macias, Tomo Machiyama and Jasper Sharp
    • Reversible Cover With Japanese Poster Artwork.


    Horrors of Malformed Men
    Director Teruo Ishii takes the helm for this controversial shocker that follows a young medical student as he escapes from a medical asylum and makes a shocking discovery while attempting to locate his mysterious doppelganger. Hirosuke is an amnesiac determined to locate his long lost father. Soon after escaping the asylum where he is being held against his will, Hirosuke is shocked to see a picture of his spitting image in the newspaper. Now, as Hirosuke assumes the identity of a dead man in order to travel to remote Panorama Island and unlock the secrets of his family past, the grotesque truth that awaits him will forever alter his perception of the natural world. Deep in the jungles of Panorama Island, Hirosuke's obsessed father has been conducting a series of bizarre medical experiments in hopes of finding a cure for his disfigured wife. But success has eluded the crazed scientist, and all that his experiments have yielded is an abominable dominion populated by repulsive, half-human/half-man hybrids. Here, in a surreal world of incest, murder, and insanity, Hirosuke will finally come face to face with the most terrifying creations ever to walk the earth. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

    Cast & Crew

    • Image coming soon
      Teruo Yoshida
    • Image coming soon
      Tatsumi Hijikata
    • Image coming soon
      Minoru Ohki
    • Asao Koike
      Asao Koike
    • Image coming soon
      Yukie Kagawa

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