• Snapshot

    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome
    Released on: August 29th, 2017.
    Director: Simon Wincer
    Cast: Chantal Contouri, Sigrid Thornton, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Robert Bruning
    Year: 1979
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    The Movie:

    Here’s what Todd Jordan had to say about this movie when it was released a few years ago on DVD by Scorpion Releasing as The Day After Halloween. Vinegar Syndrome have reissued the movie on Blu-ray for the first time under the more accurate original title of Snapshot.

    “With what has to be one of the biggest offenders of misleading titles in horror history, Day After Halloween (aka Snapshot aka One More Minute) tells the tale of a young introverted hair salon worker named Angela (Sigrid Thornton). On the skids with her domineering and sheltering mother, she’s swept from the dull working life and her douchebag boss by fashion model Madeline (Chantal Contouri), and into the world of modeling. Her first stop is to meet the insane photographer/artist Linsey (Hugh Keays-Byrne, Stone, Mad Max) who hires her without even looking at her. The photo session is at the ocean (in the winter) and ends up being a topless shoot for some fancy fragrance. The snapshot (which is obviously the more appropriate movie title) launches her into instant stardom and everyone wants a piece of her. That includes Madeline, who makes serious advances, and her film director husband, who makes serious advances.

    Angela has more to worry about than the would-be suitors: her ex-boyfriend is stalking her in his Mr. Whippy ice cream truck (not obvious at all, numbfuck). He can’t let go of her and wants to make her come back to him. She wants nothing to do with the pathetic weenie, and as a result is fearful for her life when he’s around. Being so hot isn’t easy and the pressure is bearing down on her, mostly in the form of people trying to bone her. The promise of a career in film brings her even further into the realm of being taken advantage of, and a turn of events brings the movie full circle to the opening scene. That scene involves a fire, a charred corpse and Madeline screaming for Angela. But there’s something to the end that isn’t expected and we’re treated to a pretty amusing “what the--?!” conclusion.

    So yeah, nothing about Halloween, or even a masked killer anywhere in this movie. Aside from that giant smear against it, it’s a pretty good little potboiler. Performance-wise, lots of solid work is to be seen, with kudos to Kaays-Byrne for being over-the-top and maniacal, but likeable all the same. Chantal Contouri plays a great rich-bitch snot and Robert Bruning as her hubby, the pervo film director, also deserve some mention.

    Having been filmed in Australia in the late 70s, the picture offers up some interesting visuals by way of trends and fashions of the time, including some swank nightclub action. And watch for the Worst Comedian in Australia to make an appearance in all his makeup-caked glory. The story drags a bit at times, and not a whole lot happens by way of suspense until the final dozen minutes of the movie, but it does offer up some interesting twists, one of which no one should see coming, and the opening sequence is pretty sweet.

    Simon Wincer, who until this film was a television director, went on to direct some bigger movies (Quigley Down Under, Free Willy) and additional tv (The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles), and is still working today. His first feature is a respectable little movie, and although not really much of a horror tale it manages to provide some decent tension and some noteworthy moments.”


    Snapshot arrives on a 50GB Blu-ray disc framed at 2.35.1 widescreen in AVC encoded 1080p high definition taken from a new 2k scan of the original 35mm negative. The DVD looked nice for its time but this is a big upgrade. Colors look much more natural and black levels are stronger. The dark scenes are less murky looking and there’s a substantial upgrade in detail, depth and texture. Skin tones look nice and natural and there’s very little in the way of print damage to note. Grain appears naturally and there are no obvious issues with any edge enhancement, noise reduction or compression artifacts.

    Audio chores are handled by an English language DTS-HD Mono track. Optional subtitles are available in English only. No issues here, the single channel track sounds just fine. Dialogue is easy enough to follow, the levels are nicely balanced and there are no audible issues with any hiss or distortion.

    Extras start off with an audio commentary featuring director Simon Wincer, producer Tony Ginnane, actress Sigrid Thornton and cinematographer Vincent Monton. This is an active and engaging track with Wincer and Ginnane having the most to say. That said, Thornton has some interesting input here too, talking about her thoughts on the role and the film. As the track plays out we hear about the locations used in the film, the evolution of the script, some of the marketing behind it, the contributions of the cast and crew members and quite a bit more.

    Up next we get a series of interviews starting with a twenty-eight minute long piece with Ginnane entitled Producing Snapshot. Here he speaks quite candidly about where the premise for the film came from, working with writer and friend Everett De Roche on the script, what Simon Wincer brought to the film as a director, the alternate title and why it wound up with that title, the cast and more. Also included here are thirty-even minutes of extended interviews originally shot for Not Quite Hollywood documentary. Here get insight from Thornton, Ginnane, Lynda Stoner, Simon Wincer, De Roche and Monton. There’s some great stuff in here including details on the ins and outs of shooting a nude scene, working alongside infamous Australian stuntman Grant Page, the origin behind the script for the picture, casting shifts that occurred during pre-production and quite a bit more.

    Vinegar Syndrome has also included a standard definition version of the Australian theatrical cut of Snapshot that runs just over an hour and forty minutes in length versus the ninety-two minute running time of the feature presentation version. Some of the additional footage here includes a quick scene where Angela and Madeleine meet Lily at the studio, a sequence where the two ladies to go a discotheque, a sequence where Angela finds her mother in her room and argues with her, a scene where Angela wakes up startled by a nightmare and a scene where Angela and Madeleine walk in on Angela’s roommates going at it.

    Rounding out the extras are a still gallery, two television spots for the film, menus and chapter selection.

    As this is a combo pack release we also get a DVD version of the movie taken from the same scan and containing the same extras that are found on the Blu-ray. Additionally Vinegar Syndrome has provided some reversible cover sleeve art for this and the first 1,000 copies sold through their web store include a thick, embossed exclusive slipcover.

    The Final Word:

    Snapshot is a solid thriller with some enjoyable exploitation elements thrown in to spice things up. Not even close to the slasher film that it was marketed as domestically, it’s quite well made aside from some pacing issues. Vinegar Syndrome’s Blu-ray release is a good one. It presents the film in great shape and with loads of extras including a commentary, an alternate version and some featurettes.

    Click on the images below for full sized Blu-ray screen caps!

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