Review V/H/S/99 Available on DVD, Blu-Ray and SteelBook on May 23


By Chris Hammond

Fans were first introduced to the “found footage” franchise of V/H/S in 2012. The film is designed with an anthology-style formula. This means the viewers are treated to a collection of stories rather than just one.

The franchise has many famous up-and-coming writers and directors wanting involvement in a segment. Some of the people already stamping the V/H/S franchise include Ti West, Jason Eisener, Timo Tjahjanto, Eduardo Sánchez, Simon Barrett, Jennifer Reeder and Maggie Levin.

The V/H/S films also incorporate special effects artists who specialize in practical effects. Some of these people include Lino Stavole, Lars Jangaard and many more. Blurry Found footage tapes, stories left of center and practical effects, what more could a horror fan ask for?

Well, V/H/S is back and this time the viewers go way back to 1999. The artist Prince told people to party like it’s 1999, but will viewers of V/H/S 1999 feel like a party is in order after viewing this installment? Stay Tuned and find out!

Written and directed by Maggie Levin (Into The Dark), Johannes Roberts (47 Meters
), Flying Lotus (Kuso), Tyler MacIntyre (Tragedy Girls), Vanessa Winter
(Deadstream) and Joseph Winter (Deadstream); Zoe Cooper (V/H/S/85) and Chris Lee
Hill (Tragedy Girls).

Some stars that will appear in segments include Steven Ogg (“The Walking Dead”), Jesse LaTourette (Z Nation) and Keanush Tafreshi (Weird: The Al Yankovic Story), just to name a few. Sure, these aren’t all household names, but the fresh faces in these segments help to twist the strings in favour of a more believable “found film”. It’s not easy to gauge the calibre of each star’s performance here. Most of them have been in a handful of roles or just done voice-acting. The acting is great for the material they are given.

Shredding is a segment about a punk rock band “R.A.C.K.” that goes way too hardcore. For their next web show Rachel, Ankur, Chris and Kaleb go to a venue called “The Colony” which burned down years ago. This fire took the lives of a young band that goes by the name “Bitch Cat”. Now this group of friends (who like to play pranks) may be in for one last performance from the deceased band.

This story (which is the lead segment) is a great opener to this film. It has a well-executed direction with a likeable enough cast. The fact that the special effects are disturbingly real makes it much more than just another segment. It helps V/H/S 99 get over the fact that there is no ongoing story within a story (like all the other entries in this franchise).

There are a handful of predictable segments this time around. The Gawkers is one of those segments. It isn’t horrible by any means. It just runs a little long with the payoff falling short. That being said, there are some cool special effects in this one. Overall, fans of more dark humour leaning may find this film more appealing.

Other segments include Suicide Bid (A college freshman is trying to get accepted into the most exclusive sorority on campus but to do so, she must undergo extreme hazing from sorority members in the form of being buried alive), To Hell and Back (A group of cultists attempting to resurrect a demon have the ritual goes awry, and the people hired to record the event find themselves trying to escape Hell), and Ozzy’s Dungeon (A gameshow host offers contestants a chance to win the ultimate prize in the form of one real wish. One young contestant gets permanently crippled and the host continues the show regardless of her injuries. Years later the host finds himself in taken hostage by the young crippled girl’s family. He must now do challenges or lose his life).

The extras here include An exclusive panel from REDPOP New York Comicon. This was an interesting watch. The panel on hand was interesting and had some great dialogue. This Comicon event was the first time audiences were treated to the film’s trailer.

There are “standard” extras like bloopers along with a “gag reel”. There’s also a commentary track (which in full disclosure, I haven’t listened to yet). The best “extra” is a full-length music video from the film’s faux band “Bitch Cat” (it really shreds). There are a few other extras like “The Gawkers” (camera test and The Making of Medusa) and “To Hell and Back” (Storyboards and Location Scouting).

V/H/S 99 has enough going for it that fans of the franchise will enjoy it, but newcomers may want to get accustomed to other V/H/S entries first before viewing this one.

Available on DVD (SRP of $27.97), BluRay (SRP of $28.96) and the BluRay/DVD SteelBook (SRP
of $35.97) on May 23, 2023

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