Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Phil’s Horror Watch: INVASION OF THE BLOOD FARMERS (1972) from Severin Film - August 13, 2019


Starring Norman Kelley, Tanna Hunter, Bruce Detrick, Paul Craig Jennings, Jack Neubeck, Richard Erickson, Cynthia Fleming
Screenplay by Ed Adlum, Ed Kelleher
Cinematography by Roberta Findlay (as Frederick Douglass)
Edited by Michael Findlay
Produced by Ed Adlum, Milton S. Greenman
Directed by Ed Adlum
Originally released by N.M.D. Film Distributing Company
Re-released by Severin Films

Today's film review is an interesting one. It was probably one of the worst films ever made.  And I've seen some bad films in my lifetime. Granted, some you have to take with a pinch of salt, while others I wondered how they were even made, let alone how the filmmakers would watch their final cut of the film and say to themselves, "Yup, we have a winner here!" Today's film is one of those films that I would see religiously on the shelves at my local mom & pop video store, but never had the balls to rent it. Over thirty years later, I finally watched INVASION OF THE BLOOD FARMERS, and now I wish that I rented this all those years ago!

The film's official synopsis: In 1972, a team of New York City exploitation outlaws that included Ed Adlum (SHRIEK OF THE MUTILATED), Ed Kelleher (PRIME EVIL) and Michael & Roberta Findlay (THE TOUCH OF HER FLESH, SNUFF) – along with first-time assistant cameraman and future award-winning cinematographer Frederick Elmes (ERASERHEAD, BLUE VELVET) – descended on bucolic Westchester County with 8½ bottles of stage blood to make a movie about a Druid cult seeking to resurrect their dead queen. The budget was $24,000. The cast was paid in beer. And the result remains one of the greatest achievements in schlock/shock cinema history.

Original Theatrical Poster (1972)
Believe it or not, despite its low budget, the film has yet made its money back. Which is a real shame, if you ask me. The movie would have killed it at the drive-ins in rural America, and in the grindhouses that laced 42nd Street in New York City. The movie has it all: bewildering story, inane acting (both Richard Erickson () and Richard Kennedy () were so bad that they had to read off cue cards for their lines), and, according Adlum, the production went through eight and a half bottles of stage blood. Seriously, what more do you want in a cheesy low budget horror movie?

The film was released by N.M.D. Film Distributing Company on August 23, 1972 (364 days before my birthday). It was released on VHS in 1984 by Regal Video. After several years, it was released on DVD by filmmaker Fred Olen Ray's company Retromedia Entertainment in 2001. Afterwards, both Cheezy Flicks Entertainment and Code Red released DVD editions in 2011 and 2013, respectively, before landing at Severin Films.

Hailed as a  “accidental masterpiece” among genre fans, the film has garnered the status as a cult classic, and has been on many horror fans' Blu-Ray wish list. Again, Severin Films have come to the rescue, thanks to a brand new 2k restoration scan from the original negative for the first time ever! Plus they've added some cool bonus features to go along with this collector's release: Audio commentary with director Ed Adlum and actress Ortrum Tippel, moderated by Kier-La Janisse, author of "House of Psychotic Women", Nothing You’d Show Your Mom: Eddie Adlum’s Journey through Exploitation, Coin-Op & Rock n’ Roll, Harvesting the Dead: Interview with actor Jack Neubeck, Painful Memories: An interview with cinematographer Frederick Elmes, and the film's original theatrical trailer.

INVASION OF THE BLOOD FARMERS is an unspeakable, grizzly, gory, Grade-Z horror flick that will make you go mad just by watching the first five minutes of it! So of course it's gonna be awesome!! It's hard to believe that it's taken me 30 years to get around to watch this movie! And now, thanks to Severin Films, I, along with horror fans, can now watch it whenever we want! And it's never looked this good before! So grab yourself a copy of this diabolical fright flick, and see what the hype is all about! You'll be glad you did! 4 out of 5 stars! Highly recommended!

INVASION OF THE BLOOD FARMERS is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD from Severin Films. To purchase a copy, visit their website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the screaming!

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