I believe it's true, which really sucks!!! How can they neglect VAMPIRE CIRCUS, TWINS OF EVIL, HANDS OF THE RIPPER, QUATERMASS XPERIMENT, BURN WITCH BURN, QUEEN OF BLOOD, MASTER OF THE WORLD, BLOOD ON SATAN'S CLAW, THE CRIMSON CULT and so many others?
Vampire Circus; Twins Of Evil, Hands Of The Ripper: All have anamorphic uncut DVDs in the UK
Quatermass Xperiment: UK DVD, now OOP sadly but other European releases. All are open matte on a film that appers to me to be widescreen. Even Sony/MGM/whoever's recent HD master is open matte
Burn Witch Burn: Anamorphic UK DVD under the title Night of the Eagle
Blood On Satan's Claw: UK DVD non-anamorphic, possibly NTSC-PAL. I haven't seen this to judge the quality
Crimson Cult: Two R2 DVD AFAIK. UK release is the original UK cut and anamorphic. German DVD reportedly restores the sexual scenes from the Euro cut, using the old US laserdisc as a source (I understand the laserdisc was rescored in the 80s)
Nothing for the other two titles, but many of those listed have good to OK DVDs out there.
And the reason the line is dead (for the moment hopefully) is that last years titles flopped. That said, I wonder if that was more due to a large glut of genre titles last fall, from both MM and other companies, that affected sales. I mean, if I had the finances, I'd have bought each title on the spot, but as it is, I eventually went for Yongary. Sigh...
VAULT OF HORROR was Fox. DERANGED was transfered from the original negative and represents the released AIP version: a 1990s version from Moore Video added extra gore that was on the cutting room floor.
When I read about the work gone into the QUATERMSS XPERIMENT transfer by MGM (for what reason it was done, who knows, as they still won't release the damn thing) I'll take that over any British release.
It didn't help that they killed the line a couple years ago before MGM went up for sale, then a year later under Sony's control the released a few z-grade pirate films under the label , then it died again until last years batch under Fox which aside from Witchfinder General wasn't exactly the cream of the crop.
So with the infrequent releases and the dicey selection over the past few years I think a lot of MM buyers lost interest hence the poor sales.
I'll second the fact that Quatermass, Burn Witch Burn and the Hammer Horrors really need a R1 NTSC release.
The only one of last year's crop I bought was Witchfinder General, because that was the only one I had to have. If the line is flopping I'd say it's because they're not picking the right movies at the right times.
Perhaps if MGM would circulate these releases and not cut off distribution for half of the series titles making it impossible for DVD collectors to pick up in retail on top of the inconsistency of their output, they would have many more interested consumers...
In the past the MGM Midnite Movies had a good distribution through the brick and mortar stores. Best Buy even had a special section dedicated to the series. Last year’s releases through Fox were not stocked at Best Buy or the other normal B&M outlets.
Could this be a reason they did not sell well? I purchase just about every DVD title now from internet sites, when it was just two years ago that I could find anything I wanted at Best Buy or other stores. You can find the third release of Footloose or Sixteen Candles but just try and find the Three Stooges Collection on the Fox and Warner film noirs. Their lack of interest in stocking older films is more than likely one of the reasons DVD overall sales are down.
To say that it is getting harder find catalog films in these stores would be an understatement and could be a separate venting thread altogether so I will shut up.
Studios and stores wouldn't keep making and stocking the never ending re-releases if they didn't sell and they would release and stock smaller older titles if they did sell. It sucks but there's a reason why smaller catalog stuff is tough to find in stores- most of them don't sell well enough to warrant taking the shelf space away from movies that are guaranteed to sell more copies.