Paul Morrissey box set: Flesh/Trash/Heat

DVD Rating: *****

Reviewed by: Keith Dudhnath

Read Keith Dudhnath's film review of Paul Morrissey box set: Flesh/Trash/Heat

Although the prints have been digitally remastered (and approved by director Paul Morrissey), the picture quality is still in the fairly bad condition you would expect. Nothing is ever obscured by the numerous scratches, but it's immediately obvious that these are low budget films from 35 years ago. The audio quality is similarly rough, whilst still retaining more than enough clarity to hear everything that's being said. The problems with the audio quality are down to poor editing, in Flesh in particular, rather than anything else. There is no subtitling available.

What an excellent collection of extras! Deleted scenes, along with commentary from the director, are always welcome, and these are no exception. Morrissey's introductions to each film, although not quite as edifying as one might hope, set the scene reasonably enough.

Commentaries are available on two of the three films, sadly not from the writer/director, but from people who were film students at the time, who have gone on to be directors themselves (I hope it's not impolite to say that I've never heard of them). Penny Woolcock is accompanied by psychologist Nicola Abel-Hirsch for the commentary on Flesh and Don Boyd handles the Heat commentary by himself. The DVD cover suggests that artist Cerith Wyn Evans has also provided a commentary, but unless my sample copy differs from that which will be sold, there is no commentary from her.

Both commentaries are worthy additions and serve as the greatest source of information on the discs. However, I did find myself wishing that someone directly connected with the films had been providing them instead.

Three short films are included. All Aboard The Dreamland Choo-Choo, About Face and Like Sleep are approximately 10 minutes long and accompanied by commentaries from Morrissey. They aren't a patch on the main features, but seeing the progression in style is fascinating.

My review sample didn't include the booklet, with its essay about the history of Trash at the BBFC. I presume it was along the lines of "The BBFC had cut out the scene with an erection in it, but now have realised that the universe won't implode if someone sees an erection that doesn't belong to them and so they've put it back in." A little more eloquently, perhaps.

This is an excellent DVD package to go with three excellent films.

Reviewed on: 03 Aug 2005
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Paul Morrissey box set: Flesh/Trash/Heat packshot
Trilogy of films about a sometime hustler.
Amazon link

Product Code: TVD3547

Region: 2

Ratio: 1.33:1 full frame

Sound: Dolby Digital mono

Extras: Commentaries on Flesh and Heat; deleted scenes with director commentary; introductions by Paul Morrissey; three short films by Paul Morrissey with director commentary; booklet about BBFC response to Trash over the years.

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