Day of the Nightmare & Scream of the Butterfly

January 28, 2012 6 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

In Day of the Nightmare, an artist named Jonathan Crane finds himself involved with two women, which is bad news if you happen to be married. So after an extended romance with a beautiful woman named Doris Mays, Crane decided to make sure she couldn’t ruin his marriage. He believed that Doris would come after his wife, either with physical violence or reveal the truth about the affair. In either situation, Crane winds up without the wife he loves, so he decides to take drastic action. He murders Doris and crams her corpse into the trunk of a car, thinking he has tied up all the loose ends. So imagine his surprise when Doris is back soon after, stalking his wife with a razor sharp steak knife. Can Crane ever get rid of this obsessed woman, or will he wind up having to pay an immense penance for his indiscretions? In Scream of the Butterfly, we watch as sex-machine Marla Williams struts her oh-so-impressive stuff. She has only been married for two days to the rich, but rather simpleminded Paul, but when she finds a hunky young stud on the beach, she doesn’t hesitate to get down to business. While she knocks boots with the young man, she also makes plans to have her husband killed. But when a dark secret is revealed that links the trio even more, what will become of the complicated love triangle?

If you’re a fan of imbalanced psychosexual thrillers, then buckle up, as this is just the release you’ve been looking to own. I can’t say these two offbeat pictures were as much fun as the usual Something Weird releases, but I can see why they’ve been issued under the label. I mean, we have some seriously weird stuff in each movie and without Something Weird, I doubt either would see the light of day on home video. So while they’re not classics, I am glad to see them rescued and given a proper day in court. These don’t have the kind of violence, sex, and over the top antics we’re used to from Something Weird, but you will see some nudity, sexual situations, and of course, ham handed performances. Perhaps added violence and sex could have spiced them up, but while those elements might be thin, overall freak factor is off the charts. Which means a circus of psychos is on showcase, from an obsessed woman that refuses to die to a sexually sadistic husband to a triangle of unexpected affections, the freaks are out in these two movies, so prepare to watch some real creeps in action. I did have a good time watching these flicks, but I don’t think they hold the same kind of replay value as most of Something Weird’s discs. As such, I’d recommend this release as a rental, but I doubt most stores will have this one on the shelves.

Video: How does it look?

Both of these psychosexual epics are presented in full screen. I am unaware of the intended formats on these, but I saw no pan & scan or framing issues to report. These are low budget films from the ’60s and as such don’t look perfect, but they do look very good in these new transfers. I found some debris and marks on both prints from time to time, but nothing extreme or too distracting. I also found grain to be less intrusive than expected, though it is still an issue. The black & white transfers looks sharp and well detailed, with no real problems I could discern. The balance is dead on in most scenes and I noticed minimal detail loss. Given the age and low profile on these two, I’d say this is some solid overall work.

Audio: How does it sound?

The audio for both films is presented via mono tracks, which seem to handle the material well enough. These aren’t the kind of flicks to demand dynamic sound anyway, so not much is lost in terms of surround presence. The dialogue is clean in both mixes, but a little harsh in some scenes, though not enough to complain much about. Aside from some minor age related issues, these are about as good as you could expect, given the age and nature of the movies. You won’t be blown away by the audio on either picture, but the basics are covered and that’s enough in these cases, so no real complaints.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This disc includes no film specific extras, but you will find some bonus trailers, three bonus shorts (The Wife and the Whip, Amour pour une Femme, and Nympho-a-Go-Go), and some sexploitation movie magazine artwork.

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