A pair of 80’s Anthony Perkins gems come to Blu-ray.
Though he reached the peak of his fame in the 1960s, specifically in 1960,due to his career defining turn as jittery serial killer Norman Bates in PSYCHO, the 1980’s were a prolific and creatively energized decade for the late Anthony Perkins.
His reprisal of Bates in the 1982 Richard Franklin directed, Tom Holland penned PSYCHO II spurred this renaissance. Soon Perkins would star as the malevolent manic street preacher in Ken Russell’s deranged 1984 thriller CRIMES OF PASSION and he even directed a few pictures, like 1986’s arthouse-informed sequel PSYCHO III (read our appreciation HERE) and the bizarre black comedy LUCKY STIFF.
In the middle of all this movement, Perkins starred in a nifty pair of high caliber exploitation films, one of them fun…the other an underrated masterpiece.
And both of them share space on the latest Scream Factory double bill Blu-ray release.
Scream Factory presents the Lyle Alzado shocker DESTROYER and Gerard Kikoine’s ultra-stylish EDGE OF SANITY in their Blu-ray debuts, a disc set to release on April 12th.
1988’s DESTROYER (no relation to the 1976 KISS album) sees Perkins cast as a flamboyant director making a B movie in a supposedly haunted prison. Still marauding through the cellblock is Ivan Moser (Alzado), a possibly undead murderer who wants to keep adding to his body count.
The movie is dumb, but fun and Perkins steals the show.
But 1989’s gorgeous and vulgar EDGE OF SANITY is brilliant and feels like a melange of Ken Russell and Jess Franco; small wonder considering Franco wrote the film under a pseudonym and the movie was co-helmed by Franco’s old collaborators Harry Alan Towers and his wife, actress/producer Maria Rohm. And director Kikoine was a director of European pornography. So it all clicks!
In it, Perkins delivers one of his greatest performances as Dr. Henry Jekyll who essentially invents crack and, when high, becomes this sadistic Mr. Hyde/Jack the Ripper! As the latter hybrid entity, Perkins resembles a cross between Iggy Pop and Lux Interior from THE CRAMPS.
The movie is fantastic and sleazy. And Scream Factory is giving us the sexed-up, uncut European version so happy, happy, joy, joy!
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