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Re-Animator Blu-ray Review

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The cult classic “Re-Animator” gets the Arrow Video treatment.

“In Re-Animator,” the story revolves around Herbert West who is attending Miskatonic University. West is obsessed with studying and experimenting with reanimation. To make a long story short, West and his roommate Dan are successful in reanimating a dead man but the resurrection causes the corpse to go mad. After getting wind of this, another scientist (Dr. Hill) wants to get in on the action and begins to cause problems for West. Throughout the story, there are also key stories involving further reanimations, the Dean of the University and his daughter Megan (who is Dan’s fiance).

As a fan of author H.P. Lovecraft, I would have liked to have seen a more faithful adaptation of the “Herbest West- Reanimator” series of short stories in “Re-Animator” (although “Bride of Re-Animator” did cover more of the story). To me, the film didn’t quite capture the spirit of the Lovecraft works and instead felt more like an over-the-top, campy, gorefest. With respect, director Stuart Gordon and writers Stuart Gordon, Dennis Paoli, and William J. Norris did bring their own take here. Also, to be fair, it worked out for them as this 1985 horror film has become a big cult classic over the years. Now, that’s not to say the film version doesn’t have its moments. Anything involving the headless body carrying a talking decapitated head is memorable to say the least.

Of course, the real star of the show is the ever underrated actor Jeffrey Combs. To this day, Combs does not get nearly enough credit for his work. He’s a veteran actor, a genre and cult movie hero and a damn fine Herbert West to boot.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.78:1 1080p. How does it look? The 4K restoration has print flaws like flickers, dirt, and grain, but the restoration quality is still here. The colors are noticeably richer in particular.

Audio Tracks: 5.1 DTS-HD MA, Mono, and 2.0 Stereo. How do they sound? The 5.1 track has most depth, some may want to stick with original Mono track, and the Stereo track is lively. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with any of these 3 tracks.

Extras: Trailer and TV spots, still gallery, isolated score, a deleted scene and 23 minutes of extended scenes, multi-angle storyboards, insightful separate interviews with Stuart Gordon/Brian Yuzna, Dennis Paoli, Richard Band (who talks about his “Psycho” esque score), Tony Timpone, another score discussion with Richard Band, an in-depth 36 minute interview with actress Barbara Crampton from the 2015 Frightfest, a 68 minute making of documentary called “Re-Animator: Ressurectus” that contains interviews, film clips, tons of behind-the-scenes information (including tidbits about how it was going to be a more faithful adaptation from the stories), production discussions, and a whole lot more, the Stuart Gordon centric featurette “The Catastrophe Of Success” talks about his history with theater productions, “Theater Of Blood” is all about the “Re-Animator: The Musical,” and finally a total of 3 commentaries (one by Stuart Gordon, one with Stuart Gordon, Graham Skipper and Jesse Merlin and the other with Brian Yuzna, Robert Sampson, Barbara Crampton, and Jeffrey Combs) with the third one being the most enjoyable.

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March 16, 2018 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , ,

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