R Dir: Steve Barnett | Twilight Time | 1h 32min
Plot: What’s it about?
I find myself every couple months purchasing a couple titles from the Twilight Time label. The small distributor has a very eclectic repertoire of films, showcasing numerous films on Blu-Ray that would never receive a release otherwise in high definition. Admittedly, some of these films are lesser efforts and may or may not be worth your money. The other kicker is that the films are not typically stuffed with extra features, some having only a trailer. This is the case with their release of Mindwarp.
Mindwarp is a Fangoria produced sci-fi horror hybrid taking place in a dystopian future where every human being plugs into machines that give them experiences. They then awaken from their dream to the real world to drink their meals dispensed by a computer. Judy (Marta Martin) is tired of the humdrum grind of living almost exclusively in her head. She wants to see the real world. After making the system administrator upset, she wakes to find her mother dead in the real world. She then is sent out into the outer lands where people exist basically as scavengers, in constant peril of the mutant cannibals that live in tunnels beneath them. This is where she meets Bruce Campbell’s character, Stover.
The whole reason why I purchased this movie is that I love Bruce Campbell. Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness are two of my favorites from my childhood, and when I saw that it had Angus Scrimm of Phantasm, I could not help but make a purchase. That said, this movie is pretty terribly conceived. It is ridiculously bad. That didn’t stop me from watching it all the way through, but it may not be a good purchase. This one strikes me as more of a rental, even though there are some fun things to see. One of my favorite parts of the film is just how stupid the scenes inside the operating system are. They make Lawnmower Man look plausible in comparison. It really took me back to that early nineties Sci-fi channel days of my youth, and for that I can be thankful.
Video: How’s it look?
Twilight Time did a solid job on the transfer of the film using an MPEG 4 AVC codec. The film looked basically about DVD quality due to the cheap stock it was filmed on, but for a limited release for a relatively small fan base, I appreciate all the steps that Twilight Time took. Honestly, this transfer is pretty good, and the elements they used were in decent shape. Fine detail is good as well, even if it has that softness present in so many early nineties features.
Audio: How’s it sound?
The audio treatment of Mindwarp is solid, if nothing to write home about with a DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio track. This was a cheaply produced film that I can only suspect was or designed to play on anything but television speakers. Therefore, while not sounding bad, it is not going to have anybody walk away impressed. This whole production feels very much of its time.
Supplements: What are the extras?
- TV Spot – this was really one of those VHS spots that tried to get Rental stores to carry the movie. Loved it!
The Bottom Line
Mindwarp is a somewhat enjoyable B-movie. It has elements that made me very nostalgic for a simpler time. On the plus side, it’s great to watch Bruce Campbell and Angus Scrimm on screen. That said, there are much much better ways to spend your money. If you are curious, just rent it. Also, Shout Factory is having a sale on some of their titles which are a way better use of your cash.