Blu Review – Devil Story (Vinegar Syndrome)

Director – Bernard Launois (Pigalle Story, Sacres Gendarmes)
Starring – Veronique Renaud (Escale a Nanarland), Marcel Portier (Black Sequence, The Man Without a Face), and Catherine Day (Two Orphan Vampires, Jean Tonic)
Release Date – 1986
Rating – 3/5
Blu Release – 4/5

If you follow my reviews at all then you may have noticed that I typically post several reviews a day. However, the last few days I’ve barely posted a review a day and that’s because COVID has finally reached my home. My wife became ill last week and her results came back as positive. A few days later I took ill and was finally able to get tested today. I haven’t really felt like sitting around in front of a computer so I put my reviews on the backburner. With that being said, today I felt a little better and decided to knock out a review or two. The first I decided to tackle was Vinegar Syndrome’s release of the 1986 film Devil Story.

**Spoiler Alert** The film follows a couple who are having car trouble while traveling through a small, coastal town. They stop at an old castle and hear the story of a group of brothers that would lead ships into the bay with fire only to have them crash on the rocks so they can look the wreckage and kill the survivors. What the young couple doesn’t know is that there is a deformed man tearing through the countryside killing everyone he meets while wearing a an old Nazi SS uniform…and that’s by far not the worst thing to be found there. **Spoiler Alert**

Like most of Vin Syn’s releases, Devil Story was one I had never heard of prior to their announcement but that is what I love about these releases. They often bring us films that have been lost to time or went without notice during their original release. Devil Story is the kind of movie that you will enjoy or you are too self-absorbed to allow yourself to have fun with something so goofy.

The acting in this one is nothing that would stand out to most movie goes. The cast is a mix of experienced actors and some with little to no experience. This doesn’t really matter because the characters are not that well written and their performances are very unenthused. Performances like this doesn’t necessarily drag the film down. In this instance, it gave us some unintentional humor that I thoroughly enjoyed.

The story for this one has a lot going on but doesn’t feel like it’s overbearing. We have a disfigured mutant that eats human flesh and lives in his mother’s barn. His wardrobe of choice is an old Nazi SS uniform. We also have a mummy, a fantastic castle location, and a backstory that just works well enough to tie it all together. The movie does have pacing issues but the story itself is perfect for those of you that enjoy campy horror tales.

Finally, this one has some nasty deaths that I thoroughly enjoyed. The practical effects are great in most cases but there was a few deaths where the effects look a bit rushed. They are inconsistent but still very enjoyable. Overall, Devil Story is a wild trip and one of the oddest releases in Vinegar Syndrome’s catalogue. It’s strange but very entertaining. I highly recommend it especially for genre fans that like the strange side of horror.

Special Features:
Region Free Blu-ray
Newly scanned & restored in 4k from its 35mm original camera negative
Presented in both its original French language soundtrack and its English dub track
“Once Upon a Time…Devil Story” – making-of featurette with the cast and crew
“Once Upon a Time…Bernard” – a brand new interview with writer/director Bernard Launois
Select scenes with commentary by the director
French TV Coverage
Original trailer
Reversible cover artwork with art by Steak Mtn.
English SDH subtitles

Written by Blacktooth

(Staff Writer) Lover of all things horror and metal. Also likes boobs and booze.

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