Combat shock is a movie I like but never enjoy. Grimy and nhillistic its dipiction of urban hell and it's juxtoposition of the vietnam nightmare are certainly valid but this is a film that clearly gives eraserhead a run for it's money in the depressing stakes. One scene especially pretty much sums up the films experience, Our grizzled nam vet is walking down the street when he comes across two little girls arguing, admonishing them the younger girl runs off, "wanna date" asks the older girl. Assuming this is some kind of childish game our disturbed vet shows a sweeter side talking to the young girl, until her pimp arrives and offers a savage beating! Yep this is a relentless film that refuses to show the positive side of anything!(though those of us with shady looking bootlegs already new this!)
The above review sums up the film well but does not give adequate details on the actual disc itself so here goes...
Disc 1: American Nightmares: The origional directors cut.
Combat shock: The origional theatrical version.
Audio commentary track on combat shock with director Buddy Giovinazzo and Jorge Buttgereit.
Disc 2. Post Traumatic: an american nightmare.
Full documentary on the movie with directors like john mcnaughton and scott spiegel, william lustig, jim van bebber.
Early short films.
Interviews and discussions with Director/loyd kaufman and jorge buttgereit.
overall then a packed disc! Troma have gone the criterion route with this giving it a full restoration and packed with features. Essentially then if you like the film this is THE version to own. If your not sure, then I leave you with this caveate the film is GRIM and deeply unhappy and you will not feel very good (or clean) after viewing, but is a trash masterpiece for cult cinema buffs regardless.