Trancers

In the future, Los Angeles was laid to ruin following a massive earthquake and civilisation collapsed.  A new order was established but is threatened by a gentleman named Whistler and his zombie like followers called Trancers.  Whistler was thought killed but is alive and well having travelled back in time to 1980’s LA.  He starts to murder the ruling counsel’s ancestors, thus them ceasing to exist. Ace Trancer hunter Jack Deth is assigned to the case and goes back in time to get Whistler.

 

Jack enlists the help of Leena, an LA resident.  There is an instant attraction between the two and together they set out to stop Whistler.  Complicating matters is that one of the council’s ancestors is a homeless dude and Whistler knows where he is.  Jack (Tim Thomerson) is a timeless character who kills the bad guys, smokes cigarettes, wears a trench coat, cracks one liners and generally lights up the screen with undeniable charisma.  How can you not like this guy?

 

Trancers is one film which I have owned on every conceivable format.  I had or have it on Betamax, VHS, several DVD versions and now this HD release from 88 Films.  The DVD releases have certainly been criticised as some were from old laserdiscs complete with a Vestron Video logo.  Those rough copies have always rubbed me up the wrong way, but I am glad the film was always available. The remastering done on this blu-ray release is pretty darn good and in widescreen as well.  I noticed little things I never saw before on other releases such as the future Deth’s scar on his face.  Some of the effects look a bit amateurish now, but really who cares when the film looks this good.  What I thought was great was at the beginning of the film when the new Full Moon features logo appears, the old Full Moon music pipes up and merges into the old Empire logo which brings back lots of happy memories.  Trancers is easily the best of the Empire Pictures’ releases and a classic in it’s own right.  I also like the new Rick Melton cover art, it’s very different from the original poster and gives the film a nice fresh look.

 

The extras include a commentary, a featurette, some archived interviews and trailers for the sequels. Finally the Pulse Pounders sequel is included as well.  This was lost for years and is a nice addition to a terrific blu-ray release.  Basically, if you don’t pick this up you’re nothing more than a squid possibly with dry hair as well.  

 

  • Starring Tim Thomerson  Helen Hunt  Art LaFleur  Telma Hopkins  Biff Manard
  • Director Charles Band
  • Distributor 88 Films