Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Witch With Flying Head (Cheung Yan-Git, Taiwan, 1982)

A few years back I watched a truly weird, wacky, wild, gory, and wonderful horror movie called WITCH WITH FLYING HEAD. Back then I thought it was from Hong Kong but it's actually from Taiwan, and it was directed by Cheung Yan-Git who also made the weird, wild and gory THE DEVIL (1981). He's made many more films but I haven't watched any of those (you can look them up on the HKMDB).

WITCH WITH FLYING HEAD is very rare as it's never been released on dvd or on any easy-to-find video tapes. The bootleg I got hold of years ago is the same version that everybody else has; it stems from a rare TAI SENG vhs that doesn't have any English subtitles. Until very recently I didn't think a subtitled print existed but then... someone on eBay put up a Mandarin language tape from TAIWAN that indeed includes English subs. I made a hefty bid on the tape but couldn't compete with the winner whose winning bid ended up on $155!! However, someone who had dealt with the seller before suggested I write to him and ask if he's sell me a dvd-r copy instead. Fortunately the seller said yes!

I watched my dvd-r tonight and what a difference it is when you can actually comprehend the WACKED OUT story line!! The Taiwan print is fullscreen and cuts off left and right but because it's also squeezed you can actually get it "down" in the correct ratio by using the 16:9 button on the remote. The film print that was used for the vhs is fairly scratched but, arch, screw that! It's subtitled!!!