DNA Banner 01
horror dna logo header right
Tammy And The T Rex Main

Tammy and the T-Rex Blu-ray Review

Written by ZigZag

Blu-ray released by Vinegar Syndrome

Tammy And The T Rex Large

Directed by Stewart Raffill
Written by Stewart Raffill and Gary Brockette
1994, 90 minutes, Unrated
Released on January 28th, 2020

Starring:
Denise Richards as Tammy
Paul Walker as Michael
Theo Forsett as Byron
Ellen Dubin as Helga
Terry Kiser as Dr. Wachenstein
George “Buck” Flower as Deputy Norville

Tammy And The T Rex 01 Tammy And The T Rex 02

Review:

Tammy and Michael are high-school sweethearts, deeply in love and happy together. Michael plays football and Tammy is a cheerleader. Tammy’s jealous ex, Billy, is a bad boy, always causing trouble and starting fights. One night Billy and his goon squad beat up Michael and leave him stranded in a wildlife reserve where he is mauled by a lion. The nefarious Dr. Wachenstein and his buxom assistant Nurse Helga steal Michael’s comatose body from the hospital and surgically implant his brain into the body of a giant robotic Tyrannosaurus Rex. Michael the dinosaur escapes the lab and plays charades with Tammy, informing her of what has happened. Together with her best friend Byron, they begin looking for suitable replacement bodies for Michael’s brain. As a T-Rex, he is eager to settle scores with Billy and company while eluding the pursuit of Dr. Wachenstein. Tammy sees past his violent tendencies and knows that through true love she and Michael will be reunited and live happily ever after.

In 1994, director Stewart Raffill (Mac & Me) was approached with an offer to use a giant mechanical T-Rex prop for a movie if he could come up with a script in two weeks. Raffill accepted the challenge and, along with co-writer Gary Brockette, developed the story described above for their low-budget vehicle Tammy and the T-Rex. This light-hearted love story takes a goofy premise and fills it with humorous dialogue, silly characters and some amusing sight gags. Raffill knows exactly what kind of movie he is making and has fun with it, playing everything straight. The picture has the good fortune of starting the careers of Denise Richards (Valentine) and Paul Walker (The Fast and the Furious franchise) in the starring roles of Tammy and Michael.

The supporting cast features additional familiar faces, most notably character actor Terry Kiser (From a Whisper to a Scream), who steals many a scene as the evil Dr. Wachenstein. Theo Forsett (M.A.N.T.I.S.) co-stars as Byron and displays a great sense of comic timing. George Pilgrim (Timemaster) is suitably menacing as Billy, and Ellen Dubin (Napoleon Dynamite) is good for a laugh as Nurse Helga. Genre fans will recognize John Franklin (Children of the Corn) as lab assistant Bobby, Sean Whalen (The People Under the Stairs) as Weasel and the always-welcome George “Buck” Flower (They Live) as Deputy Norville.

Tammy And The T Rex 03 Tammy And The T Rex 04

Tammy and the T-Rex was released as a kid-friendly comedy and did fairly well on home video before disappearing into relative obscurity. Twenty-five years later, the picture returns in a surprising new version that contains previously unseen R-rated material that totally changes the tone of the viewing experience. The movie was originally more of a horror/comedy loaded with adult language and over-the-top graphic violence. Before its VHS debut, producers (without the director’s consent) removed all the bloody content and sanitized the language in an attempt to reach a broader audience. Bearing the truncated title Tanny [sic] and the Teenage T-Rex, the newly discovered uncensored “Gore Cut” is making its long-awaited debut courtesy of Vinegar Syndrome.

Featuring an additional ten minutes of decidedly non-kid-friendly material, this new version adds another dimension to the madness, elevating the film to a new level of entertainment. The most notable additions include the lengthy brain transplant surgery scene followed by the teen party sequence where the dinosaur goes on a rampage. Special make-up effects are provided by the late John Carl Buechler (Ghoulies) and the picture benefits tremendously from his efforts. If you remember seeing this movie as a kid, you’re in for a surprise and if you’re new to the audience you’re in for one hell of a ride.

Tammy And The T Rex 05 Tammy And The T Rex 06

Video and Audio:

In addition to the standard Blu-ray format, this title marks Vinegar Syndrome’s first foray into the 4K UHD format on a separate disc, presented in Dolby Vision and HDR-10, adding additional clarity to the new transfer. This is another stellar restoration from the company, stemming from a 4K remaster of the original camera negative. Picture quality surpasses all expectations with bold colors and amazing detail. Presented in the 1.85:1 aspect ratio, the image is sharper than all previous releases.

The original stereo mix is represented in a solid DTS-HD MA 2.0 track that really delivers. Dialogue levels are always clear and understandable while music and effects cues are well-balanced and never intrusive.

Optional English subtitles are included for anyone in need.

Tammy And The T Rex 07 Tammy And The T Rex 08

Special Features:

Director Stewart Raffill is joined by producer Diane Kirman for a highly informative and entertaining audio commentary filled with stories from all aspects of this low-budget production. Raffill talks about the rush to develop the script, working with the oversized dinosaur prop, the casting process, coming up with creative solutions and his approach to directing actors. He goes on to discuss the generous amount of gore in the film and later learning of the PG-13 edit. There is a lot of nice trivia and a heartfelt appreciation of the cult following the film has developed.

Raffill sits down for the interview segment Blood, Brains and a Teenage T-Rex (22 minutes) in which he repeats some of the same information from his commentary, but he is a good storyteller, so it’s not too distracting. Topics of discussion include the writing process, casting Walker and Richards, and praise for his cinematographer and editor.

In A Blast from the Past (12 minutes), star Denise Richards remembers this as her first job and how she was excited and intimidated. She remembers working opposite Paul Walker and shares some additional stories, including one about shooting during an approaching wildfire. Looking back, she sees this as a positive learning experience and is proud of the film.

Actor Sean Whalen talks about his time on the film in Having the Guts (12 minutes). He talks about his early success in commercial ads and getting into horror films. He has a great enthusiasm for low-budget productions and gleefully remembers shooting his death scene.

A Testicular Stand-Off (25 minutes) contains some of the funniest production stories, courtesy of actor George Pilgrim, who played Billy. He has a great tale of his first day of filming with Paul Walker and goes on to share many other humorous memories from the set.

The full length PG-13 cut of Tammy and the T-Rex (82 minutes) is included in standard definition.

Tammy And The T Rex 09 Tammy And The T Rex 10

Grades:

Movie: Twoandahalfstars Cover
Buy Amazon Us
Video: Fivestars
Audio: Fourstars
Features: Fourandahalfstars
Overall: 4.5 Star Rating

About The Author
ZigZag
Author: ZigZag
Staff Writer
ZigZag's favorite genres include horror (foreign and domestic), Asian cinema and pornography (foreign and domestic). His ability to seek out and enjoy shot on video (SOV) horror movies is unmatched. His love of films with a budget under $100,000 is unapologetic.
Recent Articles

­

Join Us!

Hit the buttons below to follow us, you won't regret it...