Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Blood Punch - DVD Review - Midnight Releasing

 Die Every Day Like It's Your Last

Blood Punch DVD Review Adelaide Kane Olivia Tennet Midnight Releasing

Released by: Midnight Releasing
Release Date: September 1, 2015
Production Year: 2015
Region Code: 1 
Running Time: 1:45:02
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0 (320 Kbps) / English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192 Kbps)
Video: 16:9 Anamorphic Widescreen
Subtitles: English


Milton (Milo Cawthorne, "Deathgasm") is a brilliant chemistry student serving out his time in court-mandated drug rehab. Skyler (Olivia Tennet, "When We Go to War") is a beautiful, mysterious, new girl at the facility. Looking to recruit a cook for a one-day drug score, Skyler seduces Milton. When her psychotic and trigger-happy boyfriend Russell (Ari Boyland, "Shortland Street"), comes to bust them out, Milton feels compelled to go with her. By the time they arrive at an isolated hunting lodge to prepare for the cook, Milton finds himself in the middle of a tense and dangerous love triangle. When Russell reveals that he plans to kill Milton as soon as he finishes cooking their fortune, Skyler warns him. Together they are forced to kill Russell in order to save each other. After burying his body in the woods, they awaken the next morning to find Russell alive and well, and with no memory of the previous day. Milton and Skyler are forced to kill Russell again...and again...and again, but to their astonishment, he won't stay dead. The bodies are piling up as Milton searches desperately for answers and a way out of this seemingly never-ending cycle of carnage and mayhem. Nothing is what it appears to be and nobody can be trusted. 

I found "Blood Punch" to be sort of like "Groundhog Day" meets "Edge of Tomorrow." This is director Madellaine Paxson's feature film debut. Bravo. If I was a director, I would be very proud to be able to say yes, this was the first film I have directed. I hope she will direct more films in the horror genre. I had a blast watching the chaos unfold. There were numerous random bits of violence that made the journey, that much more entertaining. Eddie Guzelian wrote a terrific script. It really helped the characters shine.  A truly great job to everyone involved in the making of this film. 

Our three main stars of the film, Milo Cawthorne (Milton), Olivia Tennet (Skyler) and Ari Boyland (Russell) all give excellent performances. Olivia Tennet does a great job as the sultry and scheming Skyler. Milo Cawthorne gives a fine performance as Milton, the mild-mannered and troubled student who goes through a transformation in the film. Ari Boyland practically steals a few scenes with how great of a job he does playing Russell, the crazy boyfriend of Skyler. We start off disliking Russell and while we never really root for him, he does become likable due to his comedy relief. I do want to add that supporting characters Archer (Cohen Holloway) and Nibiki (Adelaide Kane) were entertaining in their small roles and the actors portraying them did a fine job as well. They left us wanting to see more of their characters.

Hollywood could learn a thing or two by watching "Blood Punch." They need to make more films like this instead of churning out the remake of the month. It sure seems like the smaller budget and independent films is where the quality is at in horror genre right now.

As is the case every year, good and even great films go largely unnoticed due to the shadow of Hollywood. I am not saying this is my favorite film of the year. But it was quite good and deserves a wider audience. The year is far from over, but I think "Blood Punch" could end up being the best horror film of 2015, that people haven't heard about. I will surely try to do what I can to remedy that and get the film more attention.

Blood Punch DVD Review Adelaide Kane Olivia Tennet Midnight Releasing


The Setup menu offers the choice of 2.0 stereo and 5.1 audio options. However upon choosing the 5.1 option, I noticed when I checked the audio while the film was playing, it showed it being 2 channels. Both options appeared to be the same except one is 320 Kbps and the other 192 Kbps. 

The sound quality was good with no noticeable problems. Dialogue was clear and easy to understand. The score and sound effects sounded fine and did not drown out the dialogue at all. English subtitles are also included on the DVD.


"Blood Punch" makes it DVD debut thanks to Midnight Releasing. The film is presented in Anamorphic Widescreen 16:9. I thought the video quality looked pretty good overall. The image looked clear and showed more detail in stationary shots as opposed to when characters were moving. But that would most likely be a result of how the film was shot. There was a fair amount of fine detail present in some close up shots. The colors looked strong and vibrant in appearance. Skin tones had a natural look. Around the 1:08:10 mark in the film, the layer change occurs in the DVD, in case anyone thinks their disc is defective. 

Blood Punch DVD Review Adelaide Kane Olivia Tennet Midnight Releasing


Deleted Scenes:

  • My name's Skyler (1:49) - This is an extended introduction to Skyler at the rehab facility.
  • The best part (2:15) - This scene is from when the trio first arrive at the hunting lodge.
  • We aren't dead... or are we? (1:13) - Milton and Skyler take inventory of weapons and items.
  • I don't sing (1:50) - Milton and Skyler discuss hallucinations. 
  • Chainsaw to the head (3:47) - Milton asks Skyler to list every way that he died. Meanwhile he searches Russell's police car. 
  • It's the bad ones (5:57) - Full and uncut Archer scene.

Test Footage:

  • Test Titles (2:45) - Alternate opening titles
  • Dead Body Bathroom Scene (3:25) - Milton and Skyler discuss killing Russell
  • Good Morning, Skyler (0:27) - Russell is killing during breakfast.
  • Skyler Group Rehab Scene (4:06) - Skyler telling the group why she uses meth and that she is looking for a cook.
  • Outtakes (7:15)
  • Teaser (1:58) Test footage for teaser trailer.

Production Outtakes (9:02) - Some fun bloopers from several scenes.

Blood Punch DVD Review Adelaide Kane Olivia Tennet Midnight Releasing


Well, this is an easy DVD to recommend. I had a really good time watching the film. The DVD looks and sounds good. It has a few decent special features also. After watching the film, I really wish there was a commentary track featuring our main trio, included on this release. I think it could have been a good addition. Perhaps one day a Blu-ray can happen and a commentary could be recorded. That would be a welcomed treat. However, in the meantime, I do recommend watching "Blood Punch." It is a wickedly fun film.

I want to share a list of awards "Blood Punch" has won since it was completed, until now.

WINNER: Audience Award, Dark Matters (Austin Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Feature Film (New Orleans Horror Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Feature Film, Off The Edge (Omaha Film Festival)
WINNER: Audience Award, Fusion Features (Dances With Films)
WINNER: Audience Award, Best of Fest (Dances With Films)
WINNER: Special Midnight Selection (Cinequest Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Feature Film (Idaho Horror Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Feature Film (Hoboken Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Director (Hoboken Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Cinematography (Hoboken Film Festival)
WINNER: Best Horror Feature (Phoenix Film Festival)

You can watch the film on iTunes

OVERALL: 3.5 / 5