Just Before Dawn/VHS
From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
- Format: Color, NTSC
- Language: English
- Studio: Paragon
Due to strange circumstances and the greed of the wealthy (i.e. the "rich guy" that internet film buffs claim owns the rights to this flick), the Media Blasters DVD edition of this film is missing roughly a minute of footage (moments from the first murder, particularly). That leaves the 1983 Paragon Video edition as the only unedited American version of the film and, despite its humble packaging, it's a pretty nice deal for its age.
The film quality offered up is as good as any VHS from the early 80s and the feature's aspect ratio is actually better preserved here than on the DVD (which looks like it was improperly sized for widescreen presentation). It also offers up the film's best kill in its full glory; basking in the shameless delight of a machete through the groin.
Another key piece of the puzzle is the overwhelming amount of trailers before the feature. Boasting a whopping nine trailers, Paragon lays the cheese on thick with a hysterical trailer for the shot-on-video cheapy Boarding House and the Southern-bred Hotwire. It also features a great Gates of Hell aka City Of The Living Dead trailer (including a brief moment of the legendary power drill scene) and a hilarious snippet from One-Armed Executioner. Unfortunately, it shows a very long Just Before Dawn trailer that will piss off any film buff who wants to save the good parts of the film for the actual film.
This is a nice tape that is worth the footwork. Check your local video store; I found mine at a family-owned joint in Penn Yan, NY.
Reviewed by Mdeapo 03:48, 24 June 2008 (UTC)