let the right one in
the uk edition of let the right one in is my favorite of my horror blu-ray purchases. the dvd copy i own has the non-theatrical (read: crappy) subtitles, and all blu-ray releases in this region are the same for the moment. i took a chance and ordered the uk version from amazon and was delighted to find out it was region free. (on a related note, if anyone has a region-free player and wants a copy of silent hill on blu-ray meant for region b, let me know). additionally, this is the only release of the film to include an english language commentary track. it features the writer and director and is well worth the small extra cost to have the blu-ray imported. you can find this version from several online retailers, but here’s the amazon link i ordered from.
friday the 13th 3-d
while the 3rd installment of the friday the 13th franchise blu-ray features no extra features over its dvd counter-part, i find it well worth the purchase for the bump-up in quality of the 3d experience. be warned though — while superior to the dvd, this is still an older 3d process film and doesn’t hold up terribly well on dvd or blu-ray, particularly in day shots and when approaching the extremes of depth. still, this is the best 3d version of the film you’re likely to see apart from a screening at your local art house theater.
godzilla in new york shot cinéma vérité style? count me in. despite my co-writer jon’s insistence this was just an over-hyped piece of nonsense with nothing but annoying characters… i love it. the blu-ray version features an exclusive ‘special investigation mode’ which places a government interface around the film which shows you bits of info relevant to the scene you’re watching as well as the current location of the military, the film’s main characters and the ‘clover’ beastie in relation to each other on a nifty map of manhattan.
the x-files: i want to believe
the simple fact that the latest x-files movie had 0% to do with the black oil/alien invasion/magic bee plot which never made a damn bit of sense made me like it instantly. the fact that the blu-ray version of the film features a picture-in-picture commentary from chris carter and co-writer frank spotnitz and an interactive timeline covering the entire x-files history makes me like it as well.
watching a film that was purposely made to look like crap in hd may seem pointless, but i love this disk. as ironic as it may be, all the the scratches, dust and aging have never looked as clear on planet terror as they do on blu-ray. this disk has all the special features of the dvd release, as well as a special scratch-free version of the film ‘just discovered from a thought-lost negative.’ an interesting and curious feature, but the film is probably best viewed as it was intended – beautifully flawed.
i actually prefer death proof over planet terror, but i think i’m in the minority there — in any case, they’re both beautiful films. there are no special features on this disk not included on the dvd release, but if you’re going to own planet terror on blu-ray… then you better damn well own death proof. it’s the law.
halloween is my favorite film of all time, so i am powerless not to purchase it anytime it’s released in a new version, format, or with new holographic cover art. the blu-ray version does feature a new ‘trivia track’ which features little pop-up-video-esque factoids, most of which you’ll already know. halloween is really best enjoyed grainy and dark, which makes me feel weird about buying it in hd… but if i squint real hard and push the brightness way down on my tv, it looks just like my old vhs, which is really how the film should be experienced.
apart from the original halloween and the evil dead series, i can’t think of another horror film to have more pointless re-releases and multiple versions than rob zombie’s amateur-piece, halloween. still, there are things to enjoy in this film, and this is definitely the version to own if you’re going to have one. the picture is beautiful and all the special features are here, including the commentary track and the four and a half hour long (!) making-of documentary. watch this in beautiful hd to get yourself prepared to be moderately disappointed all over again when h2 hits theaters on august 28th.