The Convent

The Convent

Mike Mendez' low budget shocker 'The Convent' slips on to DVD in the UK with little fanfare but offering bags of fun.

A favorite on the festival circuit, The Convent involves the well used story of a group of hapless teenagers who decide to visit an old abandoned building (here a convent school) and the expected carnage that follows.

Yes, it's ladled full of all the usual cliches that you come to expect from this plotline, but director Mendez handles the scenario with great style. Good and gory and stuffed full of laughs - this is a great little production that should please horror fans all over.

The relatively new cast all put on great performances with some hilarious characters on show, including a wicked rip at the goth-satan Marilyn Manson lovers that will have you in stitches. Genre stalwart Adrienne Barbeau appears later in the film as the gung-ho gun welding heroine and rap man Coolio has a great cameo as a campus security cop in a performance that's a treat also.

As well as the copius of amounts of laughs throughout there's plenty of fine gore scenes too that will please the most hardened of gore hounds. The warm reception that this fun little movie has recieved on the festival circuit is definetely justified and should be welcomed by home viewers too. Never has a Nun genre movie been so much fun !

A point of some concern though is the difference in the running time from the american print and the running time here, even taking all that NTSC to PAL frame rate nonsense into account (which I can never get my head round!) there is still a considerable difference in the running time on this particular print. The film was indeed passed uncut by the UK censors (BBFC) and gory it is too but we so often these days here of distributors pre-cutting films before submitting them the the censors board - so who knows !

The disc itself shows the film sadly in full screen format, which is strange considering the trailer included is in the widescreen format. A real shame this is too, and an ongoing problem with most UK horror DVD releases - when will they learn to respect UK genre fans and give them the package they always want !! There is very little else here on the disc apart from the aforementioned trailer - biographys and chapter selection ?!! What is going on !! That said the quality of the picture is very nice and clear with a 2.0 stereo soundtrack that pleases also.

So, like Shaky Gonzales 'Angel of the Night' before it, Mike Mendez low budget romp comes up trumps with this cheeky little gore flick which is welcome in this reviewers collection - nice one !!

Directed by Mike Mendez
Released by Metrodome
Running time - approx 76 mins
Rated 18 - Region 2
Ratio - Full Screen (4.3)
Audio - Dolby 2.0 Stereo
Extras : Theatrical trailer