The Flag of Iron Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Cheh Chang
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Chung-Fung Kwok, Sheng Chiang, Li Wang, Feng Lu
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 1 hour and 53 minutes
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ 88 Films
  • MPAA rating ‏ : ‎ R (Restricted)
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ Hong Kong
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ February 8, 2022

For The Flag of Iron, director Chang Chen brought back Chiang Sheng, Philip Kwok, and Lu Feng from his previous film, The Five Venoms (1978). Many of the actors who would become known as the ‘Venom Mob’ were trained in the highly acrobatic Chinese opera and skilled in the use of martial arts weapons, creating a carefully choreographed spectacle within their kung fu films, especially when directed by Chang. Anyone who doubts the similarities between dance and martial arts needs look no further than The Flag of Iron for proof of the connection. Even when brutally violent, there is a graceful beauty to the action of Chang’s film. 

Seobok: Project Clone Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Lee Yong Zoo
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Gong Yoo, Park Bo Gum, Jo Woo Jin, Jang Young Nam, Park Byung Eun
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 1 hour and 54 minutes
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Well Go Usa
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ South Korea
  • MPAA rating ‏ : ‎ NR (Not Rated)
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ February 15, 2022

         I’ve seen science fiction films with a similar premise, action films with similar set-ups, and South Korean films with similar themes. In other words, there is little original about Seobok: Project Clone, but with genre films that is not always a bad thing. Seobok delivers on the sci-fi premise, spectacle-filled action sequences, and a character-driven narrative balanced between themes of revenge and redemption. While it may resemble other movies I have seen before, that did not prevent me from enjoying Seobok.


Shawscope: Volume One Blu-ray Review


In 1925, three Shaw brothers named Runje, Runme, and Runde founded the Tianyi Film Company in Shanghai with a fortune the family had made in a textile factory, and in 1957, Runme and the youngest Shaw brother (Run Run Shaw) shifted focus to their sister studio in Hong Kong, establishing the “Shaw Brothers” company. With a 49-acre film studio named MovieTown which opened in 1960, they treated the studio like the textile factory, demanding much from performers who lived on the studio lot under constant supervision.


They made over 1,000 films until the studio suspended productions in 1987 and were best known for popularizing the martial arts film. This spectacular limited edition box set from Arrow Video includes twelve films released by the studio. Some of the films in this collection are kung fu masterpieces, while others are shoddy exploitation rip-offs of better movies, but collectively they represent the broad genre appeal of Shaw Brothers during this period.



Giallo Essentials Collection Vol. 2 Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Massimo Dallamano, Sergio Martino, Andrea Bianchi
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Claudio Cassinelli, Giovanna Ralli, Suzy Kendall, Tina Aumont, Edwige Fenech
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 6 hours and 13 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ December 21, 2021
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Arrow Video
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
  • Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 3


Before slasher films exploded in popularity in the United States, Italy had a wave of horror-driven thrillers known as giallo films, named after the often-yellow covers of the popular crime novels the movies draw their inspiration from. The word ‘giallo’ itself means yellow in Italian, which is why the second volume of Arrow Video’s Giallo Essentials Collection is so fittingly colored as such. The first volume was in a red box, while the second is given a bright yellow box to contain the three films inside. Stunningly presented in high definition from a 2K restoration, these Italian crime thriller classics have been given the treatment they deserve, including a handful of extras for each. There is currently no better way to watch these films, and no better treatment of the exploitation classics.


Red Angel Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Yasuzo Masumura
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Ayako Wakao, Shinsuke Ashida, Yusuke Kawazu
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 1 hour and 35 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ January 18, 2022
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Arrow Video
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ Japan


         I wasn’t prepared for the intensity of Red Angel, a 1966 Japanese war film told from the perspective of a dedicated young military nurse. Directed by Yasuzo Masumura (Giants and Toys, Blind Beast), Red Angel may be artistically shot in black-and-white, but the film is grounded by the realism in its depiction of the effects of war. Although there are scenes of military warfare, the action at the center of the film is primarily concerned with the violence of medical operations carried out on the frontline. The other aspect of the film is much more psychologically driven, centering on the impact wartime has on the sexual drives of doomed soldiers.


Lies and Deceit: Five Films by Claude Chabrol Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Claude Chabrol
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 9 hours and 17 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ February 22, 2022
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Isabelle Huppert, Emanuelle Beart, Lucas Belvaux, Francois Cluzet, Stephane Audran
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Arrow Video
  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09MSP9DRN
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
  • Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 5


Claude Chabrol began as a film critic for the French film magazine/journal Cahiers du cinema before he got his start as a filmmaker, and his films have always been an intellectual playground because of this. While not as widely celebrated as some of his fellow critics-turned-filmmakers, Chabrol had the ability to blend arthouse sensibilities with genre narratives, often compared to Alfred Hitchcock in his approach and preoccupation with thrillers. The Arrow Video release of Lies and Deceit contains five classics from the French New Wave filmmaker, including Torment, Betty, Madame Bovary, Inspector Lavardin, and Cop Au Vin.


Shock Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Mario Bava
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Daria Nicolodi, John Steiner, Ivan Rassimov
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 1 hour and 35 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ January 18, 2022
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Arrow Video
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ Italy


         Mario Bava’s final film was only made with the encouragement of his son, Lamberto Bava, his filmmaker son who helped with the process of writing the screenplay for Shock (and may have had a hand in directing as well). While it isn’t the crowning achievement of his career, Shock was a worthy final film, a hybrid haunted house and possession film with a worthy mystery at the center.