Capone gets word that the super-cool VHS promo edition THE HOUSE OF THE DEVIL is now available for purchase!!!
Published at: Jan. 25, 2010, 11:34 p.m. CST by Capone
Hey, everyone. Capone in Chicago here.
I was a big supporter of writer-director-editor Ty West's 2009 feature THE HOUSE OF THE DEVIL, a film that truly did capture the look and spirit of '70s horror b-movies that preyed on the nation's then-newly rediscovered fears of satanic cults. The film played to packed houses and enthusiastic crowds at Fantastic Fest and eventually got a limited release around the country, and the reviews were highly positive.
A few weeks ago, I started noticing Twitter posts from a few of my fellow critics who had received what was then a promotional item for THE HOUSE OF THE DEVIL being sent only to press, who in turn were going completely ape-shit crazy for it. In addition to sending out the standard-issue review copy of the film's DVD, Dark Sky Films and MPI Media Group included in the package a VHS copy of the movie in an old-school clam-shell case. The slipcase insert appears worn and faded, the blurb copy and layout of the back cover isn't particularly inspired (on purpose). But when you open the case, the real gem of the packaging is revealed when you see the Gorgon Video logo right above the FBI warning text on the label. For those of you too young to remember, Gorgon released such exploitation classics as the FACES OF DEATH movies, Bob Clark's CHILDREN SHOULDN'T PLAY WITH DEAD THINGS, EVIL DEAD TRAP from Japan, and DEVIL DOLL. I feel fairly confident they had nothing to do with the distribution of THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD, but the logo is a brilliant touch.
From what I've been told, when word got out that these VHS promo items existed, collectors of all things horror went a bit berserk, and starting searching high and low on eBay and other places for copies. In addition, Dark Sky was flooded with emails asking how people get a hold of these tapes. And now Dark Sky/MPI Media has responded by producing what I'm told is a limited-quantity of 1,000 copies of THE HOUSE OF THE DEVIL VHS edition (bundled with the DVD) and is taking pre-orders for them exclusively at Amazon.com until they run out. The official release date of all editions of this movie is February 2.
And for the record, I'm not making a dime off any copy of this. I just happen to think this is something that those old-school horror fans or VHS collectors might find extremely cool. The price seems very reasonable, so go crazy people.
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