Combat Shock (Troma) Blu-ray Review + 1080p Screenshots + Packaging Shots

After being available on the secondhand market, Troma brings Combat Shock back to blu-ray in a nice two-disc edition.

Studio: Troma 
Release Date: May 14th, 1986 (theatrical) / June 7th, 2022 (blu-ray)
Run Time: 1 hour 37 minutes 0 seconds
Region Code: FREE
Picture: 1080p (1.37:1 aspect ratio)
Sound: English Dolby Digital 2.0
Subtitles: No
Slipcover: No
Digital Copy: No
Starring: Rick Giovinazzo, Veronica Stork, Mitch Maglio, Asaph Livni, and Nick Nasta
Written by Buddy Giovinazzo
Directed by Buddy Giovinazzo
Rating: Not Rated (strong graphic violence and gore, and for language)




What's It About?

Frankie is a war vet whose life sucks. He has no money, a nagging wife, junkie friends, and a deformed baby. This is the story of one day in his pathetic post-war life.


I do not have the Severin blu-ray to compare this to, but both releases come from the same transfer and this one looks really good. The picture is windowboxed slightly instead of the picture going all the way from the top to the bottom like a normal 1.33:1 or 1.37:1 picture would. There is nothing wrong with this as this is how the film is supposed to look. It's just kind of odd as this usually doesn't happen. There is a lot of grain throughout the film which is great as the film was shot on 16mm film stock. Detail isn't all high but that's ok. Colors are just as drab as they should be and the whole picture looks dirty, but that's how it is supposed to be.

Audio is lossy, of course, it, this is TROMA, but it still sound really good. There are no subtitles.


Disc 1: The Movie

Introduction by Lloyd Kaufman (2m 48s, HD, 1.78:1)

Disc 2: Special Features

The Locations of Combat Shock (2m 42s, HD, 1.33:1) This is a video based extra that shows a few seconds from the film and then a few seconds of a video of that location "today".
Rick Giovinazzo Interview (6m 33s, SD, 1.33:1) He is still surprised by various things when watching the film. He was in a band and their music videos helped shape their filmmaking skills. The original film was supposed to be a short, but it kept getting bigger as they shot. He talks about shooting the film without permits and some of the times they got caught. When they went to sell the house used in the film, they had used so much fake blood during filming that it started to come up from the floorboards, it became very hard to sell the house.
Post Traumatic: An American Nightmare (29m 12s, SD, 1.33:1) There are a ton of filmmakers, including Jim VanBebber, Scott Spiegel, and Richard Stanley, are on hand to talk about their appreciation for the film and everything in it. I thought that this was going to be a standard making of, but I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn't that.
Der Combat: Lloyd Finds Buddy Giovinazzo at Tromanale 2006 (4m 24s, SD, 1.33:1) Buddy talks about shooting the film, how he used his film classes as a way to get his film shot. He said that if he had to do it all over again, he would not do the baby stuff.

Short Films:

        -A Christmas Album (7m 4s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Lost Joe Spinell Film (7m 55s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Subconscious Realities (15m 26s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Jonathan of the Night (12m 58s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -The Lobotomy (7m 13s, SD, 1.33:1)

Buddy Giovinazzo Interview (4m 4s, SD, 1.33:1) He is asked why the film is still around and his response is because it is a truth and people want that. He said that newspaper articles don't explain the whole story when they report on things that this film contains. 
Buddy and Nekromantik Director Jorg Buttgereit at the 2009 Berlin Film Festival (7m 38s, SD, 1.33:1) The audio is really hard to make out as it seems like this was shot in a hallway with the on camera mike and there seem to be a bunch of people down the hallway. We hear everything, except for what we are supposed to be hearing. I mean, we can hear the two talking but what they say is really hard to make out, especially Buttgerit.
About the Orange Baby (43s, SD, 1.33:1) Jim VanBebber explains the orange baby.

Music Videos:

        -Planet TT (4m 20s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Leave This World (4m 5s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Something in the Water (3m 10s, SD, 1.33:1)


        -Blood, Boobs, and Beast (1m 54s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Combat Shock DVD Trailer (1m 39s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Combat Shock (3m 17s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Last Horror Film (1m 16s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Troma's War (2m 31s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Story of a Junkie (2m 31s, SD, 1.33:1)

Troma Trailers:

        -Squeeze Play! (4m 23s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -The First Turn On! (3m 22s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -The Toxic Avenger (3m 25s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Mutant Blast (1m, HD, 2.35:1)
        -Stuck on You! (3m 55s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Waitress! (3m 5s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Class of Nuke 'Em High (2m 56, SD, 1.33:1)
        -Return to Nuke 'Em High Vol. 1 (2m 43s, HD, 1.78:1)
        -Return to Nuke 'Em High Vol. 2 (3m 58s, HD, 1.78:1)
        -Poultrygeist (3m 35s, SD, 1.33:1)
        -#Shakespearsshitstorm (2m 24s, HD, 1.78:1)

Here we go again. Like they did with The Sexy Box back in January, Troma has created no new special features while leaving off a few from their "Tromasterpeice Collection" DVD. Gone is the Theatrical Cut of the film, leaving only the director's cut of the film. They also got rid of the commentary track that accompanied the theatrical version. From what I understand, there is no HD version of the film's theatrical version, but it would have been nice if they included the theatrical version even if it were just SD. The only new special feature we get is an introduction from Lloyd Kaufman. The rest of the features are from the "Tromasterpiece Collection" DVD. Also, almost none of the features from the Severin Films blu-ray can be found here outside of some of the short films and the making featurette.

Both discs are REGION FREE


COMBAT SHOCK is the best film that Troma has ever released. It is also the darkest film they have ever released. The film is grim and really depressing, but it is hard to not watch. The blu-ray that Troma has released is actually pretty damn good. Sure, the theatrical version and it's accompanying commentary track are gone, but everything else from the 2-Disc "Tromasterpiece Collection" DVD is here. I am happy that this film is finally in my collection.






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