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Mad Monster Party Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 Mono (48kHz/16-bit)
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 95 Mins.
  • Discs: 2 (1 x Blu-ray + 1 x DVD)
  • Digital Copies: N/A
  • Studio: Lionsgate
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • List Price: $14.98

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:3/5]

Mad Monster Party is the one and only feature film by the people responsible for such television holiday classics as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Frosty the Snowman. An homage to just about every monster movie of the past, Mad Monster Party brings in Boris Karloff as the voice of Baron Boris von Frankenstein in a silly yet lovable stop-motion production. The Baron who spends his time inventing monsters and other terrifying inventions invites all of his monster colleagues to his lair to unveil the creation of his most terrifying creation yet, a substance that can destroy all matter. The attendees include Count Dracula, The Wolf Man, The Mummy, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Invisible Man, and The Creature from the Black Lagoon. He also plans on using the opportunity to announce his retirement and his young replacement – his bumbling nephew Felix, a pharmacist unfamiliar with the monster world. Of course, this causes a stir amongst the monsters, as everyone begins to scheme to remove Felix from the equation and place themselves at the head of the monster world.

Mad Monster Party is weak on story and mired in dry humor and slapstick gags that are very much weighted to its late-60s era. Also, as a musical, it is hardly memorable, as the songs are out of place and not quite memorable. Their goofiness rescues them, however, and this family classic seems to work on the whole for holiday entertainment even as it is far from being a great piece of work.

Video Quality

[Rating:2.5/5]

The original negatives for Mad Monster Party were lost, but a rather good print was eventually found that, although it is certainly uneven, is far from being a complete disaster. Many scenes look rather clean and detailed with great colors, but there are also many scenes interspersed where colors and black levels wash out, grain levels jump, and detail softens. Perhaps this could have been fixed a bit more, but it might only have served to hurt the detail further.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3/5]

Audio is iffy in this DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 (48kHz/24-bit) mono soundtrack. The audio sounds rather boxy and, while dialogue is intelligible, the musical sequences lack clarity.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2.5/5]


There are a few featurettes that go through the production and making-of Mad Monster Party and a sing-a-long feature, even of the songs here don’t really have strong melodies.

The supplements:

  • Mad Monster Party? Making of a Cult Classic (1.78:1; SD; 00:14:48)
  • It’s Sheer Animagic! Secrets of Stop-Motion Animation (1.78:1; SD; 00:09:36)
  • Groovy Ghouls! The Music of Mad Monster Party (1.78:1; SD; 00:03:45)
  • Sing-A-Longs
  • Trailer (1.33:1; SD)
  • DVD

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3/5]

This cult holiday family classic is likely familiar to most people from years of television broadcasts round the holiday season. While it won’t catch you with a strong story or even eye-catching animation (by today’s standards, the stop-motion here is rather primitive), its mood and air are rather quirky and quaint, which will help put you and your family in a fun mood for the season.

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase Mad Monster Party on Blu-ray Combo Pack at CD Universe

Mad Monster Party

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

[amazon-product]B008D9NIHW[/amazon-product]

Purchase Mad Monster Party on Blu-ray Combo Pack at CD Universe

Mad Monster Party

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]


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3 COMMENTS

  1. Your review needs one serious correction: Rankin Bass made 14 theatrical features, both animated and live-action, including three other stop-motion ones: Willy McBean and his Magic Machine, The Daydreamer, and Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July (the latter was intended for theatrical release but never got one in the US).

    Willy McBean – which was made at the same time as the original Rudolph special – never got past VHS, since it has some political correctness issues (Willy’s sidekick is a sombrero-wearing Mexican monkey). The other two can be found on DVD.

    And don’t forget, The Last Unicorn was a Rankin-Bass movie!

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