Cards of Death (found slasher film; 1986)
Photos of a copy of the film that was sold online in 2008.
Date found: 25 Aug 2015
Found by: Unknown
Cards of Death is a 1986 slasher film directed by actor W.G. MacMillan, his first and only time directing a feature film. It is seen by some as the "holy grail of slasher films" due to its rarity. Shot on video in 1985 in California, the film, despite only being available in English, was released on VHS exclusively in Japan on Sony's "Exciting Video" sub-label in 1986 in limited quantities. The gore effects (provided by Bryan Moore, who has since provided special effects for 1987's Dolls and 2006's Underworld: Evolution) were considered "in-your-face and over the top", and it is assumed that this was why the film only ever received a commercial release in Japan due to the Japanese market being more accustomed to gore since the release of movies such as the Guinea Pig series at the time.
Cards of Death centers around a cult-like group in LA, spearheaded by a mysterious man known as Hog, that holds gatherings to gamble with their lives.
The group, consisting of men in rubber masks and women in dominatrix gear, meet up and receive a random card from a tarot deck, and a poker-like game begins. The one holding the Death card at the end is killed, with victims dying in a variety of graphic and sadistic ways, such as being crushed to death in a "shrinking" room. The person with the winning hand wins money, but must also kill the loser within 24 hours, lest they both be executed. Meanwhile, police are trying to solve the increasingly frequent murders.
The film also contains elements of rape, masochism, drug use, blood-drinking, and mutilation (including a notable early scene in which a police officer's nose is sliced off).
While the film has been re-released, both the original and re-release versions of the film are very rare and are mostly owned by film collectors and reviewers, some of which provided screenshots. However, on August 25th, 2015, an unknown person uploaded a rip of the film on Women In Prison Films.