4K Ultra HD Review: Perdita Durango (1997)

March 19, 2021

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

Perdita Durango (Rosie Perez), that jaguar lovin’, do-whatever-the-fuck she pleases badass has truly met her match in blood-crazed, self-proclaimed sorcerer (of a rather unpleasant version of Santeria he has bastardized) and crime spree enthusiast Romeo (Javier Bardem), and the world is all the worse for it!
What does Satan’s favorite power couple get up to you may ask? Well, Romeo gets a gig transporting fetuses for illegal use by a cosmetics company, but before engaging in that bit o’ biz; he and his lady-fare decide to kidnap a ridiculous duo of college kids, lovers Duane (Harley Cross) and Estelle… who’s lives mirror a sitcom, in order to eat one of them (they haven’t decided on which one) and use them as sacrifices in one of Romeo’s Santeria shows.
Hot on their trail is ridiculous, yet doggedly determined DEA agent Dumas (James Gandolfini) who can take cartoon levels of abuse and keep on truckin’.
All of this collides and gets fucked up six ways to Sunday, which results in a darkly comedic, always disturbing parade of rape, violence, and blood-letting of the highest fuckin’ order!
If there is one word I would use to describe the off-the-rails majesty that is Perdita Durango it would be “demented”. Here we have a film, filled to the brim with loathsome characters… in particular our heroes Perdita and Romeo… but unholy hell is their joltin’ journey impossible to resist!
This is chiefly the result of some top-shelf acting courtesy of Perez and Bardem, undeniable masters of their craft through and through.
That being said, the manic energy director/co-writer Álex de la Iglesia brings to the screen is a deft blend of exploitation film fried gold, anime pacing, Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, pitch-black humor, love story, and comic book surrealist madness… and it’s unlike anything seen before or since… a true breath of full-on “fuck yeah” that will punch you square in the balls, and you’ll love every damn second of that sweet, sweet pain!
Did I mention besides bein’ one hell of a blood-drenched orgy of carnality and cruelty, this film is based loosely on true events… so that’s fun to think about.
As for special features on this 4K Ultra HD from Severin we get… absolutely nothin’… but we sure as shit do on the extra Blu-ray included in this release!
Along with a Blu-ray version of the main event, disc two also contains a blood-filled cauldron of extras (that’s a decent amount for those unfamiliar with the Satanic system of measurements) including: interviews with Iglesia, writer Barry Gifford (who you can tell isn’t too wild about the film), film scholar Dr. Rebekah McKendry, Abraham Castillo Flores & Cauldron of Blood author Jim Schutze (discussing the true life inspirations for the film), and composer Simon Boswell (who’s kinetic soundtrack provides the perfect accompaniment for the fever-dream existence of Perdita and Romeo), director of photography Flavio Labiano, and a duo of trailers.
If you want to go on a wild as fuck ride of pure, uncut cinematic lunacy then you absolutely must add Perdita Durango to your collection; it’s primal, violent, Satanic, and irresistible… a wickedly winning combo if ever there was one my cats n’ creeps!



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