Frank Henenlotter has been having a major resurgence over the past few years. Films like Basket Case and Frankenhooker are undeniable pieces of trash-cinema gold but For one reason or another there has never been a great release of one of his finest films to date, Brain Damage. Leave it to the wonderful weirdos at Arrow Video to put together a package that is the stuff of wet dreams. I hate how much I gush over Arrow Video, but these guys always bring the goods and shed light on everything from the beloved, to the most forgettable. Good bless you guys.
After that quick derailment, you may want to know what this movie is about. A young man named Brian wakes up one morning and finds that an ancient creature has attached itself to him. The disgusting shit-looking monster first grants Brian a state of euphoria, but quickly starts demanding human lives in return. He then has to decide if it is worth it and if he has any real choice at all.
The transfer for Brain Damage looks better than it ever has and may look better than its initial release. The monster itself is still ridiculous, but works so well in its already surreal universe. The LSD inspired sequences are spectacular and are what drives this movie to rise above its contemporaries. Brain Damage shoots for the stars at every opportunity and soars above its budget (by way of sheer force alone). The gore is awe-inspiring and this version keeps the infamous “blow job” scene intact. The disc is not short on special features either. There is a brand new Director’s commentary, cast interviews and a really fun Q&A with Frank Henenlotter.
The Blu-ray is currently available and can be purchased from all of the usual suspects.
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
- Original Mono and 5.1 DTS-HD MA Surround Audio Options
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
- Isolated Score
- Brand new audio commentary by writer-director Frank Henenlotter
- Listen to the Light: The Making of Brain Damage – brand new documentary featuring interviews with actor Rick Herbst, producer Edgar Ievins, editor James Kwei, first assistant director Gregory Lamberson, visual effects supervisor Al Magliochetti and makeup artist Dan Frye
- The Effects of Brain Damage – FX artist and creator of Elmer, Gabe Bartalos looks back at his iconic effects work on the film
- Animating Elmer – featurette looking at the contributions of visual effects supervisor Al Magliochetti
- Karen Ogle: A Look Back â€“ stills photographer, script supervisor and assistant editor Karen Ogle recalls her fond memories of working on Brain Damage
- Elmer’s Turf: The NYC Locations of Brain Damage – featurette revisiting the film’s original shooting locations
- Tasty Memories: A Brain Damage Obsession – an interview with superfan Adam Skinner
- Brain Damage Q&A with Frank Henenlotter recorded at the 2016 Offscreen Film Festival
- Image Galleries
- Original Theatrical Trailer
- Bygone Behemoth – animated short by Harry Chaskin, featuring a brief appearance by John Zacherle in his final onscreen credit
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Sara Deck
- Limited Edition O-card with exclusive artwork
- Collector’s Booklet with new writing on the film by Michael Gingold, illustrated with original archive stills and posters