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The Independent Critic

Trish Everly, Michael MacRae, Dennis Robertson, Morgan Most, Allison Biggers, Edith Ivey
Ovidio G. Assonitis
Ovidio G. Assonitis, Stephen Blakely, Roberto Gandus, Peter Shepherd
Equiv. to "R"
93 Mins.
Arrow Films

 "Madhouse" Gets Blu-ray Release with Arrow Films 

In Ovidio Assonitis's Madhouse, Julia (Trish Everly) becomes the target her her demented twin sister, a woman who has recently escaped from an asylum. 

Indeed, this Italian horror project from 1981 is a rather straightforward horror project that has been tremendously upgraded thanks the usual Arrow loving care provided to these under-appreciated projects so often found getting a remastering and repackaging by Arrow. Assonitis gave us such popular films as The Visitor and Piranha II: The Spawning, and here he's taken an approach that feels not far removed from the classic works of Fulci. He has by his side a stellar production team that includes D.P. Roberto D'Ettorre Piazzoli (Meet Him and Die, Starcrash) and composer Riz Ortolani (Cannibal Holocaust, Mondo Candido), the latter whose score here is among the film's true highlights. 

This film featured the first and only performance from Everly, a somewhat surprising fact given her solid work here. She completely sells her role as a teacher at a school for the deaf, so much so that by the time we start to experience kills at a birthday gathering we've become invested in Julia's life. Dennis Robertson, as Priest, also adds a tremendous spark here. Fans of gore should be for the most part satisfied, though the film will likely fall short of standards set by true gorehounds. 


  • Brand new 2K restoration from the original camera negative
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition presentations
  • Original Stereo Audio (Uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Brand new audio commentary with The Hysteria Continues
  • Brand new interviews with cast and crew
  • Alternate Opening Titles
  • Theatrical Trailer, newly transferred in HD
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Marc Schoenbach

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic