Skull Heads

Director - Charles Band

Cast - Steve Kramer, Robin Sydney

Country of Origin - U.S.

Discs - 1

MSRP - $19.99

Distributor - Full Moon

Reviewer - Scott MacDonald

The Film (1/5)

 

     Normally, I would not be so blatant with my negative criticism of a film so take this as a warming.

Skull Heads is Retarded

     I don't mean good fun retarded, I mean take the worst movie you've seen seen multiply it by about 10, and you are still nowhere close to the retardation that is Skull Heads.  I would like to say that I felt I knew what to expect with Skull Heads, I am a fan of Full Moon/Empire Pictures/Charlie Band, and have been for decades now. I don't expect much from Full Moon films, I expect them to be dumb and entertaining this one is definitely much more the former than the latter. 

     Of course I have been out of the Full Moon loop for some time. The last official Full Moon title I can remember seeing is Dave Parker's fun-as-Hell zombie romp The Dead Hate the Living, and that was close to 10 years ago in itself. I did catch some of the J.R. Bookwalter/Tempe collaborations like Hell Asylum and Dead and Rotting, but the purchase of those DVD's were more for the wonderfully entertaining Chris Seaver/Low Budget Pictures films those sets contained. Even with my lowered expectations Skull Heads failed to deliver on any level. The only praise that I can give the film is that the actual Skull Heads were pretty cool looking. 

     The film tells the story of the Arkoff family who reside in a castle located in rural Italy.  The daughter, Naomi, is a restless teenager looking to free herself from her oppressive Father, who punishes her using the rack that was left in the families dungeon during the Spanish Inquisition. The castle and family are protected by the titular Skull Heads, these little tiny creatures with weirdly designed skulls that are meant to destroy any intruder, and also restore life to the family it protects.  Along come some Hollywood executives that want to make a World War II film at the house. The director falls for Naomi, and tries to convince her to leave.           

     Unfortunately, revealing much more than that would spoil the movie which does have multiple twist at the end.  The thing about these twist are they seemingly come from nowhere, and do not really gel with the characterizations and story evidence we were provided up until the moment of their reveal.

Audio/Video (3/5)

     The audio video information is not listed on the Skull Heads case itself.  The films audio is in English and is quite clear for the most part. During the occasional bit where Italian is spoken the track is subtitled, and the dialogue is quite clear. The image is quite serviceable, but not overly fantastic.

     One thing I am going to put out there.  The copy of the film I received froze during a layer change in chapter 8 around the 48 minute mark. I skipped the chapter, and tried to rewind the DVD back as far as I could, but could only get It playing again around the 53 minute mark, so I lost quite a bit of the story(maybe?) because of that.  I will further say that I tested it out on 3 players. My Oppo 980H, a Sylvania DVD/VCR combo, and my Samung BDP1500 Blu-ray player, and all had difficulty with that layer change.  I would like to say that I believe the error maybe with the disc itself, but I had the same error on prior Full Moon/Tempe releases of such films as Witchhouse 2, Hell Asylum, and Dead and Rotting. So be warned.

Extras (1/5)

 The extras include an interview with Stuart Gordon, Jeffrey Combs, and Barbara Crampton, none of whom are in this movie, and would have been more fitting to include with a Castle Freak special edition. I love these guys, and find them interesting, but I would have preferred something akin to the old Full Moon VideoZones that covered the actual film itself. There is also an interview with Jack Kirby, who while an interesting interview, has been dead for some time, and unless Skull Heads is somehow an uncredited adaptation of some obscure Kirby comic, I don't believe this extra pertains to this film at all. The only extra that almost pertains to the film is a promo reel for Charlie Band's Horror Road Show.

Overall

I would like to end this review by simply stating Shark Sandwich, because that pretty much sums up my feelings on this film.