• A Scream In The Streets (Severin Films) Blu-ray Review

    Released by: Severin Films
    Released on: March 20th, 2021.
    Director: Carl Monson
    Cast: Joshua Bryant, Frank Bannon, Con Covert, Rosie Stone, Linda York, Sharon Kelly, Sandy Carey, Sandy Dempsey
    Year: 1973
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    A Scream In The Streets – Movie Review:

    Produced by exploitation impresario Harry Novak, 1973’s A Scream In The Streets, directed by Carl Monson (and a few uncredited associates), is set in Los Angeles. Here, an unnamed transvestite (Con Covert) is running about the city’s parks and befriending beautiful young women before then taking them off to remote areas and raping them!

    With the cases mounting, the L.A.P.D. is under pressure to catch this maniac. Enter seasoned veteran Ed Haskell (Joshua Bryant, credited John Kirkpatric) and rookie Bob Streeker (Frank Bannon), two hardworking cops who don’t mind bending the law a little bit to see that justice is properly served. We follow them around the city as they crack a few cases, crack a few heads and bed a few babes. This, of course, eventually sets them on a course to confront the knife wielding, crossdressing maniac, but not before we witness first hand a guy in a massage parlor for brutalizing the help (a surprisingly realistic and sleazy set piece), a gun-toting dude who shot up a grocery store and a very busy a peeping tom! Meanwhile, Jenny the sexy police dispatcher (Sharon Kelly a.k.a. Colleen Brennan) gets delightfully naked and goes to bed with a lucky officer of the law.

    What this film lacks in a cohesive plot it more than makes up for with sleazy sex and trashy nonsense. There’s no character development here at all but it hardly matters when the film bombards you with one exploitative set piece after another. Our two cops are of the ‘shoot first, ask questions later’ variety and don’t seem particularly concerned about doing things by the book of reading anyone their rights, but if they might not be the types of guys you’d want patrolling the streets in real life they sure are fun to watch in a movie. As clichéd as they may be, Ed and Bob are a kick, with ‘Kirkpatric’ and Bannon delivering some pretty ridiculous dialogue with completely straight faces throughout the film.

    Speaking of straight faces, Con Covert is a riot as the crossdressing villain of the piece. He plays the part quite seriously, never seeming to intentionally camp things up, which is hysterical to watch because he’s so obviously a terrible choice to play a female impersonator type. There’s nothing convincing about him, but thank the exploitation gods that he’s here, because the movie just wouldn’t be the same without him. On top of that, the aforementioned Sharon Kelly has a decent supporting role here, and be on the lookout for Sandy Carey and Sandy Dempsey in small parts.

    The sex scenes come as close to hardcore as they can without crossing over into legitimate XXX territory, and they can sometimes interfere with the pacing of the film, but Novak and company knew what their audience wanted and with A Scream In The Streets, thankfully they delivered.

    A Scream In The Streets – Blu-ray Review:

    Severin Films brings A Scream In The Streets to Blu-ray an a 50GB disc with the feature presented in both 1.33.1 and 1.85.1 options, both taken from a new 2k scan of the original negative and presented in AVC encoded 1080p high definition. Each version of the movie takes up approximately 22.8GBS of space on the 50GB disc. Aside from some occasional compression gremlins rearing their heads, the transfers look great. The widescreen option would theoretically be more accurate to the theatrical presentation while the fullframe version, which is open matte, opens things up in the frame and in doing so makes some of the more exploitative scenes even more salacious. Detail is really strong here, and the colors pop like they never did on DVD, frequently looking really impressive. Black levels are solid and skin tones look spot on. There are no issues with any noise reduction or edge enhancement related issues. The image is also essentially pristine, there’s really no print damage here at all, the elements used were clearly in excellent shape.

    The 24-bit English language DTS-HD Mono track, which comes with optional English subtitles, has a little bit of hiss here and there but overall sounds fine. The levels are balanced well and the dialogue is always easy to follow and understand. For an older low budget mono mix, there isn’t much to complain about here at all.

    The Peeper is an eleven-minute short film made from outtakes from A Scream In The Streets. In the film, a creepy dude looks in on a couple having sex in a weird bedroom with a purple headboard. As they go at it, the peeper has a smoke while she sucks on her man's toes and then works her way up. They give him quite a show and then it just sort of ends.

    A second short, also called The Peeper, runs ten-minutes and features the same schlubby guy looking through a window, this time watching two lesbians fool around. Then a third gal shows up and it turns into a threesome with poorly dubbed moaning and groaning looped overtop of it. Like the first short, it just sort of ends.

    The disc also contains two trailers for the feature as well as menus and chapter selection options. Severin also packages this release with some cool reversible cover sleeve art. It would have been nice to get a commentary or a featurette on the history of the film, but sadly that didn’t happen.

    A Scream In The Streets – The Final Word:

    A Scream In The Streets is too ridiculous to take seriously but hot damn if it isn’t a whole lot of super trashy fun. Severin’s Blu-ray release is light on extras but it offers a really nice upgrade over the previous DVD release. Recommended!

    Click on the images below for full-sized The A Scream In The Streets screen caps!