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Army Of Frankensteins (Blu-ray Review)

Army-Of-FrankensteinsScream Factory has announced the release of Army Of Frankensteins on Blu-ray, DVD, On-Demand and Digital on September 1stAn unstoppable terror is set loose upon a nation divided… and history will never be the same! An over-the-top sci-fi/horror hybrid,Army Of Frankensteins is an outrageous film that dares to examine a history that never happened:  The War Between The States… of Life and Death.  The film first saw a presentation at the DeadCENTER Film Festival back in October of 2014.  Prior to that, the movie saw a release in Japan.  Army Of Frankensteins was a film that was locally operated and shot all in Oklahoma, using local talent to fit the bill in front of and behind the camera.

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Film 

After a failed attempt to propose to his girlfriend, Alan Jones is beaten within an inch of his life by a street gang. Transported to the mysterious lab of Dr. Tanner Finski and his kid genius assistant Igor, Alan becomes the subject in a series of horrible experiments as part of the doctor’s plan to reanimate the legendary Frankenstein monster. But all bets are off when these experiments lead to a hole being ripped in space and time, pulling an army’s worth of the infamous creatures from hundreds of parallel universes and sending them all back to the 19thcentury – directly into the heart of a bloody battle between the North and South!

This is one of those movies that would have “had” me back in my old video store renting days.  It has a cool box, a fun concept, was NEW HORROR, but ultimately when you popped it in, it wound up being some cheap junker that was meant to hook someone like me.  As I said in the intro, this was a small town local production and really plays like one.  Its like the rich kid with the best computer and programs at the high school decided he wanted to make a movie and nobody else knew any better to help sort of improve the thing.

Within 5-6 minutes of this movie starting I already felt the doom and gloom of this production.  The cold open was a little dumb and confusing, but I was ok with it.  Its when we got to our main character and the real dialogue got started that this movie was going to have to work EXTREMELY hard to win me back and it never came close to doing so.  Everything in this “modern time” sequencing was so forced and so local that it was unbearable to watch.  You can tell this cast was either friends, family or local theater.

There are some silly moments and some crazy action that come along, some working and some doesn’t, but its almost too late.  This movie also runs damn near two hours in length.  And its not tight at all.  I’m not going to hamper on the effects because of how low budget this probably was.  But, this is below low-grade SyFy Channel Original feature here.  I’m honestly surprised that someone like Scream Factory picked this one up for distribution.  Then again, Lionsgate used to pick this stuff and drop it on shelves once a week back in their Saw/Madea days.  I’m a huge fan and supporter of Scream Factory (Some probably refer to me as “apologist” and that’s fine, I’ll own up to that), but this is easily the weakest entry into their canon.

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Video 

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1o80p

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1

Clarity/Detail:  This is a really snazzy digital image.  The picture is razor sharp and rife with detail.  The downside is that all the digital/CGI effect work comes across and incredibly fake looking with such a pristine image.  However, I do have to say the picture is very very good quality.

Depth:  Depth is really solid.  Character movements are natural and there’s really no blur or anything.  Background imagery is clean and discernible.

Black Levels:  Blacks are deep and rich.  No real crushing visible.  Detail is still distinct on black hair, surfacing and clothing articles.

Color Reproduction: Colors are bold and pop quite well.  Greens and reds are the all stars here, shining right through and taking on many different tints and shadings.

Flesh Tones:  Skin tones are natural and distinct.  Every little detail such as freckles, scars, wrinkles, scrapes and make up are cleanly visible at all times.

Noise/Artifacts: None

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Audio 

Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, English 2.0 DTS-HD MA

Subtitles: English

Dynamics:  This is a rock solid 5.1 track.  Audio is very clean, very loose and plays around well with its effects, vocals and scoring.  None of those three step on one another’s toes at any time.  Effects prove to be well rounded, sounding very complete and whole.

Low Frequency Extension:  Musket fire, smashing and body part detachment all get nice bump from the sub woofer.

Surround Sound Presentation:  The rear speakers provide more than just ambiance.  You get some random growls, wild gunfire and the like throughout the feature.

Dialogue Reproduction:  Dialogue is crisp, clean and set at an ideal volume.

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Extras 

The reverse side of the cover features an addition image.

Trailer (HD, 2:01)

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Summary 

Don’t be fooled by the rating here in the summary.  Technical merits drive this score up much higher than the quality of this movie is.  Video and audio are both great, but you’re left in the dust with bonus features.  As you can see, I really didn’t care for this movie much at all, and it might be the weakest film Scream Factory has ever put out.  If you’re curious at all about the film, please proceed with extreme caution.

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

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