27th Mar2017

‘Pieces’ Blu-ray Review (Arrow Video)

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Christopher George, Lynda Day George, Frank Brana, Edmund Purdom, Ian Sera, Paul L. Smith, Jack Taylor, Gerard Tichy, May Heatherly | Written by Dick Randall, Roberto Loyola | Directed by Juan Piquer Simón


Pieces is one of those movies that horror fans instantly fall in love with. While some would write it off as just another bad movie, others will love those moments of unintentional humour, especially from the dubbed version. This is what makes the Arrow Video Pieces: Limited Edition release on Blu-ray so much fun.

When a murderer stars killing off female students on a Boston college campus, the bodies soon start piling up. With body parts missing it seems that the killer is putting forming an interesting puzzle, but can they be stopped before they complete their work?

With a killer that is straight out of the Giallo genre, but a chainsaw that brings even more gore, nothing is as it seems with pieces. At the start of the film we are introduced to the killer putting together a puzzle featuring a naked woman, and he then goes on to kill his mother by chopping her up. This sets up what we are to see mirrored in the campus killings.

What makes Pieces stand out from just being another Giallo style horror is the script, at least in the dubbed version at least. This is something unique about Pieces when it comes to a non-English horror. The dubbed version is something of a highlight, and has to be watched.

Even if you do listen to it in its original Spanish, this doesn’t mean that the craziness is still not there to see. From Paul L. Smith (who went on to play Bluto in Popeye) to Bruce Le the random Kung Fu guy (a Bruce Lee rip off) there are plenty of odd characters. Christopher George who plays Lt. Bracken and Jack Taylor as Professor Brown do offer some normality though.

Pieces is a horror that all fans of classic horror have to experience at least once. It is a true oddity that sits firmly in the cult, and it is very proud of it. Yes, it can be called a bad movie, but it is one that can truly be enjoyed for the plain oddness that it wears proudly in every scene, and is so easy to love.

Its cult status is probably what attracted Arrow Video to it, and they have shown it plenty of love. In the release, you not only find the US theatrical version of the film as well as the uncensored director’s cut. There is also the ability to listen to an alternative re-score by composer Umberto, and a 5.1 Vine Theatre Experience.

This Vine Theatre Experience is a live recording of an audience watching the film. This is much like the one that was included on The Rocky Horror Picture Show. An interesting one to experience, you’ll probably only listen to it the once but it is interesting to listen to how the audience react to the weird and strange scenes in the film. Also included is a commentary track by The Hysteria Continues and a CD is included featuring the original score of the film.

On top of all of this is the usual interviews and featurettes that Arrow Video include in these releases making it a nice collection of film history. Fans of Pieces will love what is included and this is the best way to see the film so far.

I’m a fan of Pieces so it is no surprise that I easily recommend this for anybody who loves the film, or has yet to experience the truly unique experience that is Pieces. It is one of those movies that may put some off (it is a bad movie after all) but if you are a fan of unique movies, then Pieces perfectly fits that bill and should be in any horror fans collection.

***** 5/5

Pieces: Limited Edition is available on Arrow Video Blu-ray from today.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek

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