The Film (5/5)
Raw Force is the type of movie that has me keeping an eye on the output of Vinegar Syndrome. This is a film that features Kung Fu fighters, Cannibals, Rocket Launching Hitler types, nudity, zombies, monks, and more. It is essentially a thrown together mix tape of every exploitation cliché you can imagine, and oddly enough, it doesn't just work, it works extremely well.
Raw Force involves the members of a Kung Fu Club getting on a yacht and going on a trip to a place actually called Warriors Island to participate in a tournament. On the way the group does a lot of drinking, partying, strip club visiting, and of course fighting. The island, of course, isn't just the location of a tournament, but it is home to a group of monks that are involved in a sex slave trade, and also to a leader who resembles Hitler quite closely. The Monks, and the Hitler stand in appear to be working together to raise from the dead fallen warriors, of course the members of the club have to get involved and try and stop the madness.
And that's what this film is, sheer cinematic madness. If you are looking something remotely logical try elsewhere, but for someone looking for an absolutely mad great time with a movie Raw Force is it. If you are a long time fan of cult or exploitation cinema, than there is something for you to enjoy in this film, and if you aren't seeing it wait a minute, it's sure to appear on screen eventually. In perfect honesty, this is a film so off the wall, it stands outside the realm of conventional film criticism, so if anything in the preceding paragraphs has got your interest, or the cover image in the top left strikes you, or hey you're a Cameron Mitchell completist, you might just need Raw Force in your life.
Vinegar Syndrome in maintaining their usual quality standards brings Raw Force to Blu-ray life with a splendid 1:78:1 1080p AVC MPEG-4 encoded transfer. This is simply put a gorgeous transfer, colors simply pop, detail is excellent throughout, flesh tones are accurate, and there is a nice natural level of film grain permeating the feature.
The audio is presented in a DTS-HD MA 1.0 track in English. This track is quite good with dialogue, score, and FX coming through nicely, and no issues to complain about.
Vinegar Syndrome have put together a decent array of extras together for their release of Raw Force. The primary extra is a 14 minute piece called Destination: Warriors' Island which interviews the films director and cinematographer about the film. We then get a 5 minute audio interview with Deathstalker II director Jim Wynorski about the post-production work on the film. The disc concludes with the films theatrical trailer in HD.
Vinegar Syndrome's Blu-ray release of Raw Force has stunning image quality, and sound great. The film itself is completely off the wall in the best way possible, and belongs in the collection of anyone that calls themselves a cult cinema fan. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.