"Hammer House of Horror: The Complete Series (1980/DVD/Synapse Films)" Review

From the film studio that brought you some of the best horror films to come out of England, Hammer House of Horror is a series that had a total 13 episodes. Each one of the episodes had great production value and seemed more like a short film than just another TV episode. I personally only heard of this series before I got this release to review. Mainly due to it not playing on TV in my area while growing up and the older DVD release has been kinda pricey for awhile now. Anyways lets dig into this set and see what we got!

Review: Like I stated previously this show has 13 episodes that I said seem like short films. Alot of that could be due to the great look production and the writing. Some would probably cast this off as just another run of the mill horror themed show and they are partially right. In ways it is, but it still have that Hammer charm which makes it that much more enjoyable. The themes of course vary from episode to episode, alot more of it seems to be supernatural or hauntings. The episode I really liked was the one called "Growing Pains". That episode has so many twists and turns that kept me guessing what the hell was causing all the events surrounding this family. I like when that happens. The other episode I also very much enjoyed just so happens to be the episode right after the previous mentioned one and it is called "The House That Bled To Death". I think the scene that did it for me was when blood started pouring down on this party of kids.
 Like any show like this one it does have it's highs and lows, but mainly alot of highs. It is crazy to me that this series only lasted 13 episodes. Maybe that was due to poor ratings or it may of meant to be a short series. Since Hammer has started producing movies again I think it would be cool if they could come out with a new generation of Hammer House of Horror.One thing I have always loved about TV series like this is the theme music, I really like the haunting music they used for this series. It sits up high there with me along the side of the Tales From The Crypt theme and The Hitchhiker. On a side note I would love to see Synapse release The Hitchhiker complete series on DVD or Blu-ray.The acting in this series is quite good, for the most part alot of the actors I am not aware of who they are. From time to time there are some actors I have seen in films before. The one actor of course I spotted quickly was the legend Peter Cushing, he just has that unique look.
Now when it comes to the video and audio quality goes I think it looks very good. I can't compare it to any other source because of not viewing it until this release. The picture is very clean and the colors are great. The audio is presented in it's original 2.0 mono soundtrack. In some ways I wish they would of done a Blu-ray set of this show as well. Nonetheless I can live with having this in standard def of DVD. Overall this is a great series and a good release. Along the side of the 13 episodes you get the following special features: Episode Introductions w/ Film Historian Shane M. Dallmann, Grave Recollections: A Visit With Kathryn Leigh Scott Featurette, Hammer Housekeeping: A Visit With Mia Nadasi Featurette, and an Animated Still Gallery.

-Daniel "Damnation" Lee

Director: Various
Genre: Television/Horror

DVD Release Year: 2012
Syndication Year: 1980
Time Length: 702 mins.
Company: Synapse Films