The Hand (1981) was released on the 25th by Scream Factory. Released in May 2021 on Blu-ray with a new 2K interpositive scan. Characteristics:
Audio commentary by director Oliver Stone
Interview with director Oliver Stone (new)
Interview with actor Bruce McGill (new)
Interview with actress Andrea Markovicci (new)
Interview with producer Edward R. Pressman and actress Annie McEnroe Pressman (new)
Here’s our previous review of the film:
Nothing can prepare you
Hand is a 1981 psychological horror film written and directed by Oliver Stone (Seizure), based on the novel by Mark Brandell Tail of the Lizard. Movie stars include Michael Caine, Andrea Markovicci and Annie McEnroe.
The film’s original score is by James Horner, in one of his first projects.
In the tradition of Beast with Five Fingers, Hands of Eagle, and Demonoid, the severed hand on the loose comic seemed to remain a valuable bargaining chip in the ’80s. For the die-hard fans, this is one of Oliver Stone’s first efforts.
Michael Caine plays a dominating cartoonist and gets the most disturbing haircut of his career, an infamous Thomas Cromwell/Marty Feldman hybrid. It’s clear that one of Kane’s attempts to pay the gas bill is a terrible parody of himself; he struggles, quite understandably, with Stone’s terrible script.
His relationship with his needy wife is on the rocks and during an argument in the car (come back, stupid cow, he yells at a nearby motorist, which Stone didn’t even write) he breaks his arm in the most ridiculous car accident in movie history.
Kane’s character struggles to accept his ruined life – it’s so ugly that he complains to his wife in bed. Kane also has an obnoxious child, his haircut is even more disturbing, but overall he looks more like Eric Stoltz in Mask. My hand ran off, he tries to explain to his …..
He could be, although Stan Winston’s effects are more than acceptable for the whole arm. Up close, a real stump covers the screen at an insane angle to Kane, and in long shots his arm is about a foot long, making it look like Kane is smuggling a hairy, anemic wand up his sleeve. The psychiatrist will tell me I have a penis complex because I lost my arm, he says, waving his crackling stick. It’s awful.
After a while, the hand emerges, first that of the outsider (Oliver Stone in an official cameo by the director), then that of Kane’s closest confidant.
If he gets a prosthetic, Kane’s arm will be long enough to entice Evel Knievel to jump in. When Kane turns up the volume when a Blondie song comes on the radio, it’s clear that his fragile mental state worries him more than his hand. Somehow, without ruining the careers of everyone involved, it offers moderate entertainment, but for all the wrong reasons.
…Once you understand the game the film is playing and how that relates to the main character’s marital problems, there are no real surprises, whether it’s a drama or horror film. It strikes me that Stone doesn’t hesitate to resort to horror clichés (e.g., cars can’t start) when it serves its purpose. Fantastic music movies and trolls
If there are any weaknesses or flaws in The Hand, it’s that the film is fairly predictable. It follows a lot of clichés, and you can almost guess what’s going to happen next. Still, this movie is surprisingly well made. You can say what you want about Oliver Stone’s filmography, but technically his work is generally very good. The house of the tortured souls
This bizarre horror film from director Stone never really gets going…. Unlike the mobile hand, it does not move. One or two decent scenes – and acceptable production standards – cannot lift this film above mediocrity. The horror trap
The actors and characters:
Michael Caine… Jonathan Lansdale
Andrea Markovicci… Ann Lansdale
Annie McEnroe… Stella Roach
Bruce McGill … Brian Ferguson
Viveca Lindfors… Doctor 19 Rosemary Murphy… Karen Wagner
Mara planer … Lizzie Lansdale
Pat Corley… Sheriff 19 Nicholas Hormann… Bill Richamn
Edward Marshall … Doctor (as Ed Marshall)
Charles Fleischer … David Maddow
John Stinson …
Therapist Richard Altman… Hammond
Sparky Watt … Sergeant
Tracy Walter Police Officer
Big Bear Lake, Big Bear Valley, San Bernardino National Forest, California
Culver City, California
Hidden Valley, Thousand Oaks, California
Lake Arrowhead, San Bernardino National Forest, California
New York, NY
104 minutes, format
: 1.85 : 1
Audio : Dolby Stereo
Carlo Rambaldi (E.T. Extraterrestrial) and Stan Winston (Jurassic Park) provided the special effects.