Out on DVD and Blu-Ray this week: Camp vampires from two very different decades, plus yet another desperate monster war in the post-apocalyptic wastelands and two fair-to-middling classic Doctor Who adventures. (Also this month: New releases on Blu-Ray include Blade II (2002), Altered States (1980), and The Astronaut's Wife (1999).)
Described by moire than one reviewer as Glee meets Twilight, I Kissed a Vampire--featuring two of the talents from High Schoo Musical and choreeographed by the guy who used to make Britney move in her heydey--is packed with high-energy song-and-dance numbers and not much else.
The story: Haunted by bizarre dreams about Goth rocker Trey Sylvania, and experiencing a growing lust for blood, Dylan, a not-so-average teenager, finds himself transforming into a vampire! It all started when he was bitten by a voracious fanged exchange student, and it's a process he is desperate to stop--but how? His demented dentist can't do anything about Dylan's aching teeth and emerging fangs, and the anti-bloodsucking pills he gets from his para-psychologist just give him a rash. Dylan is terrified and he doesn't know what to do--especially about his beautiful girlfriend Sara.
Directed by: Chris Nolan.
Starring: Drew Seeley, Lucas Grabeel, Adrian Slade, Chris Coppola, Mekia Cox, Amy Paffrath, Emily Morris, Lori Lively, Katie Seeley, Autumn Grabeel, Mike Slade.
Indie horror maven Drew Maxwell is either trying to hard or not trying hard enough, but either way this jumble doesn't come together.
AKA: The Dark Knight. (Hmmmm.)
Format: DVD and Blu-Ray.
The story: In a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by feuding warlords, a group of desperate soldiers hatch a plan to steal a Warlord's treasure and start a new life. When they are faced with the threat of horrific death at the hands of the Warlord's executioners, the men escape into a desolate and forbidden land known only as The Shadowlands. Now the men must flee from the Warlord's vicious assassins while defending themselves from the terrifying creatures that inhabit the land.
Directed by: Drew Maxwell.
Starring: Kyle Walsh, Aaron Farb, Debra Lopez.
Features: Closed Caption; Trailers.
Bet you thought that Dark Shadows, which ran as a daily soap for five years, was just too unwieldy to be released on home video in one omnibus, comprehensive, monolithic box set. Surprise! If you've got room on your shelf for a great big coffin (seriously) and a few hundred dollars you don't know what to do with, you can own each and every episode of Dark Shadows. The best part is, once you emerge from your apartment having watched it all th way through in one go, you'll look exactly like Barnabas. 131 Discs.
The story: This limited edition boxed set contains every eerie episode of the original Gothic suspense series DARK SHADOWS plus a wealth of bonus interviews with the stars and creative members that made the supernatural thriller a cult favorite and an enduring television classic.
Directed by: Various.
Starring: Jonathan Frid, Grayson Hall, Nancy Barrett, David Selby, Joan Bennett, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Lara Parker.
Features: Special Bloopers, Treasures & Behind the Scenes; Over 120 Bonus Cast & Crew Video Interviews.
The only thing anyone tends to remember about the Krotons is that it's Robert Holmes's first Who story. He ... got better.
The story: The Gond have been under the rule of the Krotons for generations, and the Doctor is enlisted to break the Krotons' spell and liberate the downtrodden Gond people.
Starring: Patrick Troughton, Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury, James Copeland, James Cairncross, Gilbert Wynne, Philip Madoc, Terence Brown, Madeleine Mills.
Directed by: David Maloney.
Features: Audio commentary (Philip Madoc, Richard Ireson, Gilbert Wynn, David Tilley, Sylvia James, Bobi Bartlett, and Brian Hodgson, moderated by Toby Hadoke; "Second Time Around: The Troughton Years"; "Doctor Who Stories - Frazer Hines (Part One)"; "The Doctor's Strange Love: The Krotons"; Coming soon trailer; Digitally remastered picture and sound; PDF materials: Radio Times Listings; Production Note Subtitles; Photo gallery.
According to legend, the title of this story reflects not its content but story editor Robert Holmes's attitude toward the Daleks in general. It certainly doesn't come across as a story anyone involved especially wanted to make, but it's more solid and has better action than some other late-Pertwee stories (the previous serial is the notorious "Invasion of the Dinosaurs").
The story: The doctor and Sarah Jane soon discover that Exxilon is inhabited by a savagely hostile race. To make things worse, the evil robots, the Daleks, arrive. They all struggle for possession of the vital antidote.
Starring: Jon Pertwee, Elisabeth Sladen, Duncan Lamont, John Abineri, Joy Harrison, Julian Fox, Neil Seiler, Arnold Yarrow.
Directed by: Michael E. Briant.
Features: Commentary (Julian Fox, Cy Town, Michael E Briant, Richard Leyland, L Rowland Warne, Dick Mills, moderated by Toby Hadoke); "Beneath the City of the Exxilons"; Studio Recording; "On the Set of Dr. Who and the Daleks"; Radio Times listings; Program subtitles; Production information subtitles; Photo gallery; Coming Soon trailer; Easter Egg.