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Bubba Ho-Tep 4K UHD Review

“Bubba Ho-Tep” is worth seeing for Bruce Campbell alone. 

In this 2002 horror-comedy film based on the novella by Joe R. Lansdale, the story is set in a Mud Creek, Texas retirement center and focuses primarily on 2 characters- Sebastian (an Elvis impersonator who believes he is the real Elvis) and Jack (an elderly Black man who claims to be JFK). The 2 find themselves facing off against an Egyptian mummy who is feasting on the souls of the retirement home residents. 

Written and directed by fan favorite Don Coscarelli (best known for the “Phantasm” franchise), “Bubba Ho-Tep” is a weird film that has developed a cult following over the years. Having not seen the film since its initial home video release, it was surprising to me that the film was even better this time around. Yes, it’s absurd and cheesy and the budgetary constraints are quite noticeable in terms of the practical effects and makeup, action sequences and minimal location shooting, but if you look past all of that, you’ll find a wholly entertaining and thoughtful genre film about aging, mortality, and death. Coscarelli manages to make the story simultaneously campy, dramatic, comedic and heartfelt. That’s a tough act to pull off for any filmmaker. Heck, no other filmmaker is even making a movie like this either.

Of course, the real reason ‘Bubba’ works as well as it does is due to the performances of Bruce Campbell and Ossie Davis. Campbell is a B-Movie icon and this just might be his finest performance alongside his work in the Evil Dead trilogy. Not only was he born to play Elvis, but he gives a soulful and reflective performance as The King (whose health is waning). Veteran actor Ossie Davis seems an unlikely cast member in a movie like this which makes it all the more rewarding. He classes up the joint playing the most bizarre character.


Presentation: 1.85:1 2160p. How does it look? The new print features a 4K scan of the original negative for both the 4K and Blu-ray discs. It’s a quality upgrade all around. Some shots look better than others, but this is easily the best the film has looked.

Audio Track: 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? The 5.1 track packs a real punch. Fans will be pleased.

* Blu-ray copy
* Theatrical trailer and TV spot.
* Photo gallery.
* A whopping 3 commentary tracks (on the 4K and Blu-ray). One by writer Joe R. Lansdale, one by Don Coscarelli and Bruce Campbell and one by “The King.” Obviously, the comical track featuring Bruce Campbell in character as Elvis is the one to hear.
* 3minutes deleted scenes with optional commentary by Don Coscarelli and Bruce Campbell.
* “The King Lives”- A 22 minute interview with Bruce Campbell.
* Featurettes on the music, costuming, and makeup and effects.
* “All Is Well”- A 24 minute interview with Don Coscarelli mixed with set footage.
* “Mummies And Make-Up”- A 9 minute interview with Robert Kurtzman with some set footage.
* “Footage From The Temple Room Floor”- Raw footage of the Egyptian sequences.
* “The Making Of Bubba Ho-Tep”- A 23 minute archival making of featurette.
* Joe R. Lansdale Reads From his Bubba Ho-Tep novella.
* 34 minutes of archival Bruce Campbell interviews.
* “Bubba Ho-Tep Filming Locations Then And Now”- The title says it all.
* A music video.
* “Bubba Ho-Tep Egyptian Theater Premiere” footage and an amusing Q&A with Don Coscarelli and Bruce Campbell from the “Bubba Ho-Tep At Toronto Film Festival.”


February 2, 2023 - Posted by | 4K UHD Review | , , , , , , ,

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