Welcome to the Vinegar Syndrome Staff Picks section, where we highlight our favorite releases from the many other fine labels releasing films on home video. This section, which will be updated semi regularly, features an array of crucial genre films, which no home library should be without.
THE BEAST AND THE MAGIC SWORD is the last great film from Spanish horror legend Paul Naschy. Although he would go on making and planning films until his death in 2009, he never again attempted the epic sweep and grandeur of this 10th entry into the saga of Waldemar Daninsky, a man afflicted by the curse of lycanthropy.
In this film, we get for the first time an origin story of how the Daninsky curse began back in the 10th century. We then move forward to 16th century Japan where Daninsky has traveled in search of a cure to his affliction. Co-starring Japanese stage and screen veteran Shigeru Amachi, and shot in the studios of Toshiro Mifune, THE BEAST AND THE MAGIC SWORD is a highly successful and colorful melding of European werewolf legends and dark Japanese fantasy. It features a fight between werewolf and tiger, an evil scarlet-cloaked witch who imprisons Daninsky, a sword fight with a troupe of ghost samurai, and many other unforgettable scenes.
This is the first Blu-ray release of this film and its first-ever US release and includes both a full-frame version and a widescreen version.
- 4k digitally restored transfer from a film negative
- New cover painting by Rick Melton
- The Smile of the Wolf – Interview with star Paul Naschy
- Introduction to the film by Paul Naschy
- Interview with the writer and critic Gavin Baddeley
- Audio commentary with the Naschy cast (Rod Barnett and Troy Guinn)
- The disc contains both widescreen and full-frame versions
- Original trailer
- Mondo Macabro previews