I’ve been a huge fan of the horror films made in the Philippines, especially the Blood Island films. So I was thrilled when I first heard mention that Severin was going to be releasing these films on Blu-ray. Even more so when I saw the kind of promo stuff they are making available. Granted, the limited edition Dr. Lorca’s Head Bundle is already sold out (Also note…that’s not Dr. Lorca’s Head…just saying), which was a major bummer. But the stuff in the Blood Oath Bundle is pretty damn cool too. Got to give Severin major props for the stuff they come up with. From the Anthropophagus Plush figure, or the beach ball from The Horror of Party Beach, to even the little rubber ball from The Changeling, they are killing it when it comes to new promo items.
So what is in this box set?
Trying to find any information on this actor from the Philippines is damn difficult. But since his face was a staple of movies in the ’60s and ’70s that were filmed there, I thought a little attention needed to put in his direction. If you’ve seen any of the famous Blood Island Trilogy, Brides of Blood (1968), Mad Doctor of Blood Island (1968), and Beast of Blood (1971), then you’ve seen Punzalan. He is usually cast as a bad guy, usually a thug of whoever is in charge. He had a very distinct face that always made him easy to pic out in the casts. He worked many times with director Eddie Romero, as well as with actors Sid Haig and Vic Diaz (another staple of Pilipino movies).
While not much is known about this actor, we feel that because of his contributions to the horror genre, we think that people should at least know who he is. So when they see that same face again, they can say “Hey…that’s Bruno Punzalan!”, impressing everyone around them. Not to mention, keeping this actor’s memory alive.
He also appeared with Ingrid Pitt in The Omegans (1968), as well as Blood Thirst (1971), Black Mama, White Mama (1973), and Savage Sisters (1973).
Mad Doctor of Blood Island (1968)
Directed by Eddie Romero & Gerardo de Leon
Starring John Ashley, Angelique Pettyjohn, Ronald Remy, Alicia Alonzo, Alfonso Carvahal, Ronald Valdez, Tony Edmunds, Bruno Punzalan
Made in 1969, this was the quick follow up to Hemisphere’s Brides of Blood, and I don’t think they could have come up with a better exploitation style title! According to Sam Sherman, who worked for Hemisphere, this was a “gimmick picture from the word go”, which you can see right away when a prologue starts and you can take the “Oath of the Green Blood”. During its run at the drive-ins, little packets of green gel-like substances were passed out so the audience could participate in the Oath. Good old fashion ballyhoo that has nothing to do with the actual film, but who cares. What I wouldn’t give for one of those little packets.