Mar 242020

April Fool’s Day is a fun horror-comedy with a respectable ensemble. The kills aren’t bad and while some of the story elements stretched the plot a bit, I still found this to be an entertaining.



April Fool’s Day
— Collector’s Edition —

Genre(s): Horror, Thriller
Shout Factory | R – 88 min. – $29.98 | March 24, 2020

Date Published: 03/24/2020 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Fred Walton
Writer(s): Danilo Bach (written by)
Cast: Jay Baker, Pat Barlow, Deborah Foreman, Deborah Goodrich, Mike Nomad, Ken Olandt, Leah King Pinsent, Clayton Rohner, Amy Steel, Thomas F. Wilson

Features: Interviews, TV Spots, Trailers
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: No
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 2.0)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.35
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 44.66 GB
Total Bitrate: 42.95 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A

Shout Factory provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 3.75/5

Plot Synopsis: When Muffy St. John (DEBORAH FOREMAN) invited her college friends up to her parents’ secluded island home for the time of their lives, she just forgot to tell them it just might be the last time of their lives. As soon as the kids arrive on the island, someone starts trimming the guest list… one murder at a time. And what starts out as a weekend of harmless “April Fool’s Day” prank turns into a bloody battle for survival.

Quick Hit Review: April Fool’s Day, on the surface, and that it’s from producer Frank Mancuso Jr., is just another holiday horror movie in the vein of a Friday the 13th or maybe Black Christmas (1976 version ffs). Instead, it would seem this was a movie ahead of its time, more inlign with Scream, though not nearly as meta. I came away rather entertained. It’s by no means incredible, and parts didn’t make a whole lot of sense, but a fun experience nevertheless.

The film was under the direction of Fred Walton, better known for his suspense-thriller When a Stranger Calls and its sequel, When a Stranger Calls Back, both decent enough films, the first far superior, and with April Fool’s Day, a solid entry for an unheralded (maybe even underrated?) filmmaker.



This “Collector’s Edition” release comes with a matted slip cover. The interior cover is reversible.


  • Horror with a Twist (47:00) — Director Fred Walton
  • Well of Lies (16:32) — Actress Deborah Goodrich Royce
  • Looking Forward to Dessert (17:15) — Actor Clayton Rohner
  • Bloody Unforgettable (26:00) — Composer Charles Bernstein
  • The Eye of Deception (17:23) — Cinematographer Charles Minsky

Good selection of interviews here, with the one with Walton being so lengthy, it’s split into two parts. Each of them provide backgrounds on their careers, and in a couple, even their upbringings. One again, Shout Factory has put together a good array of participants for a title that didn’t get very much love in prior home video releases.

Lastly there is the Theatrical Trailer (1:42) and some TV Spots (1:35).


VIDEO – 4.0/5

Shout Factory releases April Fool’s Day onto Blu-ray, presented in its original 2.35 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. Since there’s no mention on the back cover or on Shout’s website, the transfer was likely provided by Paramount with no apparent restoration, and it could be none was required. The picture here, looks quite good, nothing exceptional yet detail was fine, the film grain was visible, colors on point for the time period and outside of some specs, relatively clean.

AUDIO – 3.75/5

The movie comes with a DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 track, pretty standard for an older release by Shout. Dialogue comes through with good clarity and although there’s not a whole lot to judge in terms of depth, outside perhaps the screaming by would-be victims or Charles Bernstein’s score, it’s still a well done lossless track for a movie that’s going on nearly 35 years old.

OVERALL – 4.0/5

April Fool’s Day is a fun horror-comedy with a respectable ensemble cast with probably Thomas F. Wilson being the most recognizable today (Back to the Future came out a year earlier). The “kills” aren’t bad and while some of the story elements stretched the plot a bit, I still found this to be an entertaining little flick. This Collector’s Edition release from Shout Factory offers up high-quality video and audio transfers and an okay selection of bonus features.

 03/24/2020  Blu-ray Reviews, Quick Hit Reviews Tagged with:

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