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Original Faces of Death

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Product Details

  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, HiFi Sound, NTSC, PAL, Surround Sound, THX, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Phase 4
  • Release Date: Oct. 7 2008
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #69,402 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

The Original Faces of Death: 30th Anniversary Edition

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 47 reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Very nice release! Aug. 18 2009
By J. A Miller - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A film like FOD deserves to have a special release for it's 30th anniversary. I think this release will spark a lot of new comers to the film. Because of this, I think it is important to view this film completely within the context of when it was made. This hardly seems shocking in 2009 and we also now know much of it was faked. However, the way in which it was faked is pure genious. The way they were able to match film stocks, exposure and shooting style for each individual scene is really quite remarkable. Sure, you can tell now that some of the famous scenes are not real, but it is still hard to tell which shots are original and which are recreated within each individual scene.

The overall transfer is very good looking. It was also released on Blu-Ray but I really can't imagine that it looks so much better than this version. The special features are very nice. Special segments from the FX team and the editor are very interesting to watch. The audio commentary is also very good.

Anyway, nice treatment to such a classic and noteworthy film.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Where is the love? April 7 2013
By Kane Mercer - Published on
Format: DVD
In the year of our lord 2013, there are only 26 reviews for this classic piece of trash. Blasphemy.

Faces of Death, you have heard of it in some form. Maybe through those panic-fest newspaper articles from the 1980s or more recent coverage relating to the amount of the film that has been faked. For those who don't know, this is the film that supposedly contains all real death footage captured on camera. Face it (no pun intended),this film is a rite of passage. There really two types of people in the world, those who are clueless and the rest of us cynical, jaded folks who have seen Faces of Death.

The premise of this film is that it documents one man's journey to seek and understand the many faces of death. No credible reason is given for this personal journey, meaning the viewer can engage in transference and substitute their own reasons for wanting to see this film. This is a brilliant ploy on the part of the film-makers as it allows the audience to achieve an unparalleled sense of empathy with the host and - okay so I'm full of it, sue me.

This film was one of the first that offered viewers a chance to vicariously view the ultimate misfortune of others. Whether it was the man who was mauled by the bear, the guy who got the electric chair or the man who entered into a shoot-out with the police (to name a few). The host attempts to shoehorn these scenes into a linear narrative, with limited results.

Being a first-mover of sorts, this film continues to hold a degree of notoriety even in the age of ubiquitous death footage on the internet. However, as other reviewers have stated, this approach has been followed time and again and without the large amount of staged and faked footage, which will put off some viewers. Don't get me wrong, there is still plenty of real accident footage included in this film, which means it may not be suitable children's programming.

The audio and video of the DVD are imperfect, which actually enhances the viewing experience; you actually feel like you are watching an old VHS dub on the sly in your uncle's basement. The DVD includes a 'making-of' retrospective interview, which includes some informative background information. But really, you would be buying this DVD for the film and not the technical specs or special features.

I don't really need to recommend this film. If you are looking at these reviews, you have either seen the film or are curious to do so. My advice - go ahead, it won't bite you.
18 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Blast from my Past June 1 2011
By RKO Mom - Published on
Format: DVD
First of all, I am a female. Not only guys look for stuff like this. I, too, watched this, as a young, naive girl. Huddled up with girls at a slumber party...thinking of the WORST thing we could watch. It is a classic, cult or otherwise. A reminder of a time when freedoms were celebrated, not policed. When individuality stood for something. At time, when we were not berated or ostracized for quirky (or outlandish) interests. Quit judging!!! To each his (or her) own!! Find something more productive to do than criticize those who have different interests than your own. Gain some tolerance, why dontcha!?!? And get a little happiness while you're at it!!!!
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Faces of Death Dec 1 2008
By Steward Willons - Published on
Format: DVD
If you're like me, you've been hearing about the mysterious Faces of Death - a film supposedly banned in 43 countries, a film so depraved and disgusting that one could barely stand to finish it. The following comments are my reactions to the film as a fan of exploitation cinema, and cultural extremes in general.

Faces of Death has quite a reputation, but it seems that very few people have actually seen it. Needless to say, there's no way the film will live up to its own hype. The narration is predictable, all the scenes involving human death are faked, and the final twenty minutes are basically newsreel footage, which we've all seen elsewhere. The film runs around 105 minutes, which is way too long for something of this nature. If the film was cut to 68-80 minutes, as most exploitation films are, all we would lose is some bland narration and a lot of World War 2 footage.

However, the film is now a cultural artifact and it's most definitely worth seeing, provided you're a fan of horror movies, exploitation films, or bizarre fringe relics. Even though it isn't really a strong film itself, its influence makes it worth viewing. I image that your viewing experience will greatly effect your reaction to the film. If you're in high school and you're sneaking this movie into a slumber party, I'm sure it's amazing. It's not that I expect a film like this to be high quality - that would be silly. I just want to help prospective viewers manage their expectations.

The only real death you see is in the beginning where we see all sorts of animals slaughtered. It's not as bad as it sounds though. The animals weren't killed for the film, but rather as part of the routine slaughtering that happens everyday. I realize that this doesn't make much difference to some people, but at least the killing was nothing out of the ordinary.

On the positive side, I'm sure the film has never looked better. The original footage that makes up the majority of the film is about as clean and clear as one can expect with a cheap film like this. The audio is not great, but I'm sure the original recordings weren't great either. I have to wonder if the video quality colored my experience. I can imagine watching it on a third-generation dubbed VHS tape with severely degraded pictures giving the film a gritty realism - a realism that hides its obviously staged footage.

There are some interesting bonus features, which probably justify purchasing the 30th Anniversary Edition. The commentary track is moderately interesting, as is the featurette with the FX team - the team that managed to fool hundreds of thousands of teens over the last 30 years. There are some outtakes and deleted scenes that are similarly decent. Again though, I have to wonder if all this exposure will ruin the mystique. Once we can go buy the DVD at Best Buy, it's no longer an obscure item of obscene curiosity. Are the horrors less scary with the lights on, so to speak?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
a negative review convinced me i must have this dvd Aug. 12 2012
By VeryFineCrapVideos - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Faces of death the most forbidden film of the 80's youth. I was in 5th grade when I saw this for the first time. Often this film was talked about on the playground,bragging to one another about eating and watching it. Making up details that weren't even in the movie to other kids which had yet to see it. They would tell their parents.
Some people a pissed to find out after all these years it was all a hoax. (I figured out some of it was fake years before the DVD) I think it makes it even better that in the end theirs such a weird funny story of how this classic shock film was created.
Anyways what's making me even write this review that I doubt will ever be read is. Another review said " what do you think people will think of you owning this DVD." All I could think as after reading that is. What would people think not seeing this in my DVD collection. I bought it right then.
Check out my YouTube channel veryfinecrapvideos

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