Director Gary Sherman has made a name for himself in the horror genre for multiple reasons, but most notably is often seen in interviews regarding the making of Poltergeist 3. Due to the death of its lead actress at a young age and the rather impressive special effects, Poltergeist 3 is often discussed in horror cinema history. Sherman has been an open book when it comes to production troubles which makes Blue Underground’s 4K release of DEAD & BURIED that much more exciting.
The film opens with a photographer on the beach playing a flirtatious game with a beautiful woman who offers to model for him. She removes her clothes right out in the open to welcome a sexual experience. He takes the bait only to find himself being burned alive by a mob of townspeople. Soon, the bodies keep piling up on a daily basis and Sheriff Dan Gillis (James Farentino, The Final Countdown) pairs up with the local coroner, Dobbs (Jack Albertson, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory) to get to the bottom of this. The story unravels with bizarre twists involving the dead coming back to life as well as the suspicious involvement of the sheriff’s wife.
While grain exists on this upgraded release, the picture looks balanced. For a smaller budget and grimy experience, DEAD & BURIED looks amazing. The release is sourced from a new 16-bit 4K master struck from an interpositive that was approved by Director of Photography Steven Poster. Multiple audio tracks are included, but if one is investing in this purchase, the Dolby Atmos track is the way to go. Movies like this always become a fresh experience when utilizing a new track.
On top of those audio tracks are four commentaries involving Sherman, co-writer/co-producer Ronald Shusett, actress Linda Turley, cinematographer Poster, and critics Troy Howarth and Nathaniel Thompson. There are multiple featurettes included as well, but Sherman once again proves his devotion to his work by providing raw footage from the shooting of the film as well as a discussion with composer Joe Renzetti. Other features include location shooting, special effects, the novelization of DEAD & BURIED, and an interview with Robert Englund who has a supporting role in the film.
DEAD & BURIED is one of those movies I never heard of until Blue Underground’s 4K release landed on my doorstep. Packaged in a thick lenticular slipcover, I was convinced there must be an existing following due to attention paid to the physical release. Like their previous releases, Blue Underground included an 18-page booklet with a new essay by Michael Gingold as well as the CD soundtrack that has Joe Renzetti’s (Child’s Play) original score. A Blu-ray disc is also included with the film and special features.
Blue Underground has delivered another top-notch release that is a must-own for fans, but also worth a purchase for first-time viewers. While the 4K is sold out on their site, you can add your name to the waitlist here.