Pumpkinhead II: Blood Wings DVD review

Somebody should summon a vengeance demon to punish the people responsible for this sequel

Stan Winston’s 1988 creature-feature Pumpkinhead (aka Vengeance the Demon) remains a personal favourite of this reviewer - and inot just because it gave us a fantastically realized monster. I also admire it’s inventive new twist on the ‘teens in peril‘ story and the authentic sense of place the film creates.

Sadly, all of those things are absent from this 1994 direct-to-video sequel. In their place we get bland characters, zero atmosphere and a ludicrous tale involving a bunch of bored teens who summon the demon for a laugh. Even Pumpkinhead itself looks extremely rubbery this time around and the reduced budget has clearly stymied just how much movement he’s actually capable of (without the aid of really obvious wires). Heck, not even a topless cameo by scream queen sexpot Linnea Quigley can liven up this turkey!

Befitting the film it contains, 101 Films’ DVD is a rather modest affair with absolutely nothing in the way of extras. The 1.33:1 transfer holds together relatively well, although the strobe lighting that accompanies Pumpkinhead’s appearances results in some horizontal striation and macroblocking. The Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack is a touch more impressive, simply by virtue of its stability – although once again there’s nothing to really get excited about. Dialogue and music are both cleanly presented in the mix, although given how limited the sound design is, it’s hard to see what could have really gone wrong.

Pumpkinhead II: Blood Wings, 101 Films, R2 DVD, £12 Approx