Brain Damage Blu Ray Review

BD2Elmer is one of a kind, hes a big friendly parasite that likes nothing better than brains. He becomes attached to Brian, a simple guy living in an apartment. Brian is given the visions of dreams and wonders. Problem is that Elmer wants to exchange this for something else. He needs a snack every so often. He needs it without question. That snack has to be fresh and tasty. So Brian has to travel around to find these fresh delights. These fresh delights are local innocent people…and their brains…

BD3To talk of this film in terms of film technique or performance is pointless.Frank Henenlotter made some very absurd and surreal films. They explored the deranged world of gore effects and body horror. They were comedic and crashed the blood soaked realm with the social and satirical with skill and humour. They also explored the 80s obsession with the body perfect and the money monster! Think of Elmer as the money mad, capitalist machine. It injects you with dreams but also steals the mind and souls of others who reject it. This oddity enables a great deal of these kind of analysis and observation. They also allow for the film viewer to delight in the detached horror. The monster is comical and crass, the pumping blue liquid is heroin by any other name. The Brian is a shallow, self involved man and does what he feels not what is good. He is the consumer and the clown rolled into one. The set piece gore scenes are great and add comedic turns to great gore drenched blasts of brain and blood.

BD1The film looks great with the 1080 transfer. The commentary is ok. The effects docs are very good and enable some very funny insights. The real stand out though is the Bygone Behemoth animated short by Harry Chaskin. It is very much the place to start and end the Blu with….


  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
  • Original Mono and 5.1 DTS-HD MA Surround Audio Options
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Isolated Score
  • Brand new audio commentary by writer-director Frank Henenlotter
  • Listen to the Light: The Making of Brain Damage brand new documentary featuring interviews with actor Rick Herbst, producer Edgar Ievins, editor James Kwei, first assistant director Gregory Lamberson, visual effects supervisor Al Magliochetti and makeup artist Dan Frye
  • The Effects of Brain Damage FX artist and creator of Elmer Gabe Bartalos looks back at his iconic effects work on the film
  • Animating Elmer featurette looking at the contributions of visual effects supervisor Al Magliochetti
  • Karen Ogle: A Look Back stills photographer, script supervisor and assistant editor Karen Ogle recalls her fond memories of working on Brain Damage
  • Elmer s Turf: The NYC Locations of Brain Damage featurette revisiting the film s original shooting locations
  • Tasty Memories: A Brain Damage Obsession an interview with superfan Adam Skinner
  • Brain Damage Q&A with Frank Henenlotter recorded at the 2016 Offscreen Film Festival
  • Image Galleries
  • Original Theatrical Trailer
  • Bygone Behemoth animated short by Harry Chaskin, featuring a brief appearance by John Zacherle in his final onscreen credit
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Sara Deck
  • Limited Edition O-card with exclusive artwork
  • Collector s Booklet with new writing on the film by Michael Gingold, illustrated with original archive stills and posters


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