Meet Jeremy (Todd Rimatti, HOW TO SLAY A VAMPIRE) - a vicious thug who, when we first see him on screen, is in a remote barn hacking an unfortunate into pieces. He then takes his victim's severed hand and gives himself a wank with it. When he's had his way with himself, he - like most people - gets a bout of the post-coital munchies. So in slow-motion we witness him disembowel his victim and eat their intestines.

This is bad news for a pair of twins (co-directors John and Mark Polonia, FEEDERS) as they embark on a visit to their Aunt Lacey's (Marion Costly, NIGHT CRAWLERS) farm. They hate the woman, but feel obliged to pay her a visit as she's elderly and all alone since her husband's death. Alone, that is, save for her farmhand Jeremy.

As the twins travel to the farm, we get an insight into Lacey's home life, and something is decidedly amiss. Why does Lacey keep staring at a photograph of her late husband, telling it she'll be down to see him later? And why is Jeremy slicing open the sores on his own hands.

Because they're mental, that's why. The twins don't see this when they first arrive and are treated to an amusingly awkward meal with Lacey. But gradually their unease grows as the tell-tale cracks appear - you know the type of thing: Jeremy decapitating a camper in the nearby woods; the late husband's corpse turning out to be Lacey's lover ...

And so SPLATTER FARM progresses, with our hapless heroes oblivious for the bulk of the film as to how much danger they are in. But that doesn't stop the blood running red as Jeremy kills without discrimination.

Shot on video in the late 80s, the handheld camerawork and sparse use of music on the soundtrack help lend a claustrophobic edge to SPLATTER FARM. As a result, it's eerily effective and the gore FX - while primitive - are quite disturbing. There's a fair bit of gore too, the Polonia brothers didn't hold back on their feature debut.

The film is short at 68 minutes in length, and fast-paced as a result. Performances are energetic if hammy, adding to the bizarre unsettled tone of the script.

Hinting at necrophilia, rape, anal fisting and even throwing a firework-up-the-minge effect into the mix, the Polonia brothers courted controversy Stateside when this was first released on home video - and it's not difficult to see why. But I would have to say without reservation that it's the best of the Polonia brothers films I've yet seen. Whether this is BECAUSE it's gory, offensive and unsettling is debatable ...

Camp Motion Pictures continue to find these gory SOV throwbacks and give them the royal treatment on DVD.

Not only is SPLATTER FARM presented uncut and uncensored, the brothers have been given the opportunity to tidy it up (the original home video version was only ever a rough cut).

Presented in its original full-frame ratio, SPLATTER FARM has fared well. Images are clear, relatively sharp and there's minimal colour bleeding. A good transfer.

The English mono audio is loud, clear and consistent. SOV efforts often suffer from hissing on the audio mix, but no such problems here.

There's no scene-selection menu, but the film can be navigated through by way of 12 chapters.

Extras include an excellent commentary track from the auteur brothers. They get on well, allowing each other to talk without interruption. They have good memories too, and a welcome sense of humour (pointing out the "true story" disclaimer at the film's beginning is a lie - you don't say?!). It's a chirpy, informative commentary that deserves a listen.

Back To The Farm is a good 25-minute retrospective, offering a mix of test footage, new onscreen interviews and clips from the Polonia brothers' early Super-8mm shorts.

Speaking of which, there's 7 of them on this disc. These include the fabulously titled Blood Thirsty Butcher and The Mad Slasher, along with a few minutes of test FX footage. Each short also has an optional commentary track from the directors.

Finally, as is the norm for Camp, we get a selection of trailer for other titles: CANNIBAL CAMPOUT, ZOMBIE BLOODBATH, GHOUL SCHOOL etc.

Old-school gore for those that can forgive the cheap shot-on-video origins. An acquired taste, but oddly effective nevertheless. And Camp have provided a very complimentary DVD yet again.

Review by Stu Willis

Released by Camp Motion Pictures
Region 1 - NTSC
Not Rated
Extras :
see main review