Vinegar Syndrome Archive

The Instructor

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THE INSTRUCTOR is part of our Vinegar Syndrome Archive collection, celebrating forgotten cinematic oddities from the video store era. This collection was inspired by our own brick & mortar video stores, with locations in Bridgeport, CT; Aurora, CO and Toronto, ON!

Unique to this line, each hand numbered limited edition release will come fitted in a specially designed, bottom loading VHS inspired slipcase, while also including a double-sided poster.

These releases will ONLY be available on our website and at participating indie retailers. Absolutely no major retailers will be stocking them. This slipcase edition (designed by JJ Harrison) is strictly limited to 5,000 units and may (but probably not) be followed by a standard edition in the future.


The Instructor (played by real-life martial artist Bob Chaney) runs a local karate school where he spends his days training his students in the art of defense, including his best friend Thumper. Since discovering his wife dead under mysterious circumstances, The Instructor has vowed to only use his martial arts training for good in an attempt to overcome his desire for revenge. However, when a rival martial arts school run by the slimy Bud Hart begins engaging in crime and corruption, The Instructor finds himself struggling to contain his anger and is pushed to a breaking point when Hart sets his sights on The Instructor's students. After Thumper is mercilessly beaten in a locker room during a martial arts tournament, The Instructor can no longer suppress his anger and sets out to take revenge on his evil rival.

A regionally-shot action extravaganza, THE INSTRUCTOR was the only film made by director Don Bendell and lead actor Bob Chaney. In the vein of films such as Champagne and Bullets and Death Promise, THE INSTRUCTOR is a low-budget tour de force that will leave you absolutely stunned. One of the most requested Vinegar Syndrome Archive titles of all time, we are proud to present THE INSTRUCTOR for the first time on Blu-ray, newly restored from the director’s own personal print, and featuring some of the most jaw-dropping fight scenes ever filmed. This one is truly unlike anything you've ever seen before!

directed by: Don Bendell
starring: Bob Chaney, Don Bendell, Steve Boergadine, Bob Saal
1981 / 94 min / 1.37:1 / English Mono

Additional info:

  • Region Free Blu-ray
  • Newly scanned and restored in 4K from a 35mm archival print
  • Commentary track with writer/director Don Bendell
  • A Journey to Akron: The Making of The Instructor (25 min) - an interview with writer/director Don Bendell
  • Booklet with an essay by film historian Richard Heldenfels
  • Double-sided poster
  • Reversible sleeve artwork
  • English SDH subtitles