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DVD Review: Monster Dog

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Way back in 1984 Alice Cooper got the opportunity to star in his first screen role. The role was that of Vince Roberts, aka Vince Raven, rock music star and potential werewolf. It’s too bad that this Italian/US/Puerto Rican production, that was shot in Spain, was so bad. The idea on paper looks great, come on, Alice Cooper starring in a werewolf horror movie? Sounds like a perfect fit to me. Then again, you have an unproven actor, and you’re surrounding him with rank amateurs. Ah well, I have to assume they knew what they were getting into. Or maybe not…

The movie opens with an Alice Cooper video, performing a song, one of two that was only available in this movie for years. It is one of the corniest, nonsensical songs I have heard in a long time. We quickly learn that he is unhappy with the way his videos have turned out of late, and therefore is going back to his home in the country, armed with his director girlfriend and fellow cronies to regain some inspiration. On the way he comes across the sheriff who warns him of a pack of wild dogs that have been killing people throughout the town, the warning is repeated to them by some crazy old guy who seems to know a lot of what’s going on. They continue onto Vince’s home to find the housekeeper missing, after fixing a tray of sandwiches, of course. The movie continues on as they are terrorized by the dogs, and a creature in the woods, not to mention the local lynch mob who had killed Vince’s father years earlier and wish to now finish the job with Vince, who may or may not be the creature.

Words can’t really describe how bad this is. The acting, if you want to call it that, is beyond bad. The movement is wooden, the dialogue delivery is as it were read from a book, the sets were overly simplistic. Back on the dialog for this dreck, it is dreadful, there is no grounding in reality for what is said, it just does not make any sense. The effects are rather poor, although there is an exploding head that was surprisingly effective.

Not sure really how else to describe this thing. It is strictly for those who collect all werewolf or Alice Cooper related material they can get, anyone else should probably avoid this title. Although I have read about how people are happy to finally have this on DVD.

Video. This is presented in a full frame ratio of 1.33:1. I found that it was filmed in 35mm, so I am assuming it was probably matted to 1.85:1 for it’s theatrical run, and that seems to be what the ratio should be as there was a lot of headroom in some scenes. All of you who only want OAR may want to investigate prior to purchasing. The video quality itself is rather poor, it reminds me of a lot of the old martial arts flicks I watch. The colors are washed out and everything is very soft, but considering how low budget it appears, the film elements probably aren’t in the best of shape.

Audio. Presented in 2.0 stereo, it does the job. It is not spectacular, actually it is rather poor. The levels are OK, everything is always understandable. It appears as if all of the voices were overdubbed and added in later, the voices stand out from the image without blending. Again, I chalk this up to the low budget they must have had.

Extras. Not much to speak of:
-Cast biographies. There are some text listings about the primary actors and other films that they have appeared in.
-Trailers. None for Monster Dog, but there are for other MVD releases such as Cannibal Taboo.

Bottomline. A low budget DVD for a low budget film, probably the best you can expect for a film of this stature. The film is not very good, but every film has it’s fans. I would have liked an Alice Cooper commentary.

Not Recommended.

The disk is available through Music Video Distributor’s.

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