Halloween 4K blu-ray review

Release: 1st October 2018
Cert: 18
Format: BR / DVD

On a black and unholy Halloween night years ago, little Michael Myers brutally slaughtered his sister in cold bold. But for the last fifteen years, town residents have rested easy, knowing that he was safely locked away in a mental hospital – until tonight. Tonight, Michael returns to the same quiet neighbourhood to relive his grisly murder again…and again…and again. For this is a night of evil. Tonight is Halloween!

In a less than subtle exercise, Halloween has been restored to capitalise on the pending release of its latest instalment. Made on a shoe string budget, this is hardly a candidate for the classic 4K treatment. But who cares, when such a stone-cold classic gets to put on its best dress, a bit of make-up, and hit the town!

The first and most striking thing about watching John Carpenter’s signature flick in its restored version is how good it actually looks. You’d expect an independent feature from the 70’s to scrub up about as well as a shiny turd, but the image is surprisingly clear and creamy. Some purists might find fault with the sound mix or the colour grading, but there is very little reason to be anything but ecstatic with this wonderful new release.

For a film that spends a lot of time in the dark of night, the image is nice and clear, and blacks have an oozy texture. Myers is creepy as ever, sliding in and out of view, while a muted palette makes the experience feel even more like a fever dream.

As for the film itself, Halloween remains a terrifying timebomb of a feature that not only set the tone and pace for slasher horror, it still pretty much dominates the genre of horror to this day. And with good reason. Carpenter clearly understands cinema, and uses it as a tool to tell the story he wants to tell. Halloween is less about fear, and more about oppression and isolation; with every frame of the movie telling us that in life, desire is irrelevant, survival is our only option. The acting is its biggest downfall, however, with P.J Soles being the hammiest of the bunch. But when shiz gets real it is evident why Jamie Lee Curtis became a star. It has been about 15 years since I last watched Halloween, so it was striking to discover the film again in this new format. New nightmares were born, and old nightmares re-emerged in pristine 4K.

Whether this was released to re-kindle love for the original or build hype for the latest installment, Halloween in 4K will be the gift that keeps on giving, long after the franchise has been rebooted a fifth or sixth time.

Film Grade: A

Special Features:

These features are recycled from a previous release. The commentary is it best contribution, while the Jamie Lee Curtis documentary is a hilarious look in to the seemingly draining world of fandom. There is a re-visit to the original filming location and some other odds and sods, but it is that commentary you want to be listening to.

Special Features Grade: B

Summary:

If you don’t already own Halloween on blu-ray then this is a must.

Overall Grade: A-

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