Videodrome – Canada, 1983

Videodrome is a 1983 Canadian science fiction body horror film written and directed by David Cronenberg (Shivers), starring James Woods, Sonja Smits, and singer Deborah Harry.

Set in Toronto during the early 1980s, it follows the CEO of a small cable station who stumbles upon a broadcast signal featuring extreme violence and torture. The layers of deception and mind-control conspiracy unfold as he uncovers the signal’s source and loses touch with reality in a series of increasingly bizarre and violent organic hallucinations. The film has been described as “techno-surrealist”.

 

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On August 10, 2015, Arrow Video released a definitive package of the film on Limited Edition Blu-ray and DVD. Details are as follows:

VIDEODROME – BLU-RAY DISC 1 AND DVD DISC 2:

  • Restored high-definition digital transfer of the unrated version, approved by director David Cronenberg and cinematographer Mark Irwin
  • Audio commentary by Tim Lucas, the on-set correspondent for Cinefantastique Magazine and author of Videodrome: Studies in the Horror Film
  • David Cronenberg and the Cinema of the Extreme – A documentary programme featuring interviews with Cronenberg, George A. Romero and Alex Cox on Cronenberg’s cinema, censorship and the horror genre
  • Forging the New Flesh – A documentary programme by filmmaker Michael Lennick on Videodrome’s video and prosthetic make up effects
  • Videoblivion: A brand new interview with cinematographer Mark Irwin
  • A brand new interview with producer Pierre David
  • AKA Jack Martin – Dennis Etchison, author of novelizations of Videodrome, Halloween, Halloween II and III and The Fog, discusses Videodrome and his observations of Cronenberg’s script
  • The complete uncensored Samurai Dreams footage with additional Videodrome broadcasts with optional commentary by Michael Lennick
  • Helmet Test and Betamax
  • Camera (2000) Cronenberg’s short film starring Videodrome’s Les Carlson
  • Fear on Film: A round table discussion from 1982 with Cronenberg, John Carpenter, John Landis and Mick Garris
  • Promotional featurette with behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with Cronenberg, James Woods, Deborah Harry and Rick Baker
  • Original theatrical trailers

DAVID CRONENBERG’S EARLY WORKS: BLU-RAY DISC 3 AND DVD DISC 4 [LIMITED EDITION EXCLUSIVE]:

  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentation of four Cronenberg films
  • Transfer (1966) & From the Drain (1967), Cronenberg’s previously unavailable short films newly restored by the Toronto International Film Festival [7 & 12 mins]
  • Stereo (1969) & Crimes of the Future (1970): Cronenberg’s early amateur feature films, shot in and around his university campus, prefigure his later work’s concerns with strange institutions (much like Videodrome’s Spectacular Optical) as well as male/female separation (Dead Ringers) and ESP (Scanners). Newly restored from original lab elements [65 & 70 mins]
  • Transfer the Future – Author and critic Kim Newman discusses Cronenberg’s early works

COLLECTOR’S BOOKLET [LIMITED EDITION EXCLUSIVE]

  • An illustrated 100-page hardback book featuring new writing including Justin Humphreys on Videodrome in a modern context, Brad Stevens on the alternate versions, Caelum Vatnsdal on Cronenberg’s early works, extracts from Cronenberg on Cronenberg featuring Cronenberg’s reminiscences of getting started in filmmaking and shooting all the films in this collection, plus more, illustrated with original archive stills

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Fangoria 25 Cover

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James Woods VHS Videodrome

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