Dating back to 1990, Frank Darabont’s first feature attempt, the made-for-TV Buried Alive, has been made available for the first time on DVD, by UK distributor Second Sight.

Jennifer Jason Leigh plays Joanna Goodman, a shallow woman deeply resentful of her husband Clint (Tim Matheson) and the small town they are living in. Our raison d’être is established within minutes, Cortland (William Atherton), a doctor with whom Joanna is having an affair, suggesting that she poison Clint, using a toxin from fish eggs. Insert parallel with Clint’s fishing hobby here.

Unfortunately for Clint, his poisoning instigates cardiac result alone, making for the appearance of death, which sees him coming to in a coffin beneath the ground, his signs of life at the morgue having been dismissed as not unusual. Punching his way out, Clint is naturally perturbed to discover Joanna’s grief has not extended beyond his funeral, and he sets about revenge.

To observe that Buried Alive is a tad dated would be an understatement… But that’s not to say it is bad. On the contrary, this is a fun little film, camp even, and a required watch for fans of the creator of zombie TV series most sublime, The Walking Dead — if only to see what a difference 20 years can make. Perhaps this was the idea behind the use of the VHS print; there’s certainly no other reasonable excuse for it.

Buried Alive is available on DVD from 17 October

Posted by Naila Scargill

Naila is the founder and editor of Exquisite Terror. Holding a broad editorial background, she has worked with an eclectic variety of content, 
ranging from film and the counterculture, to political news and finance. She is the Culture Editor at Trebuchet, and generally gets around.