Director: Wes Craven
Cast: Bill Pullman, Cathy Tyson, Zakes Mokae
Release Date: Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Now Available
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 8/10
A Harvard anthropologist (Bill Pullman) is sent to Haiti to retrieve a strange powder that is said to have the power to bring human beings back from the dead. In his quest to find the miracle drug, the cynical scientist enters the rarely seen netherworld of walking zombies, blood rites and ancient curses. Based on the true life experiences of Wade Davis and filmed on location in Haiti, it’s a frightening excursion into black magic and the supernatural.
From the late but never forgotten master of horror Wes Craven, his late 1980’s masterpiece ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ dared to venture outside of the typical horror film guidelines and brought to the table a wonderfully exciting, terrifying and refreshingly original type of film that managed to keep viewers on their toes and enthrall them with a different manner of terror than they were generally accustomed to. Featuring a solid performance by Bill Pullman and some odd, creepy and indelible imagery, ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ is frightening fun from one of the best horror filmmakers of our time.
Many fans of ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ and filmmaker Wes Craven’s work in general will undoubtedly want to make sure to pick up a copy of Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release to add to their collections. The release delivers impressive high definition video and audio presentations; although some may be troubled to discover that the film is in fact presented in a 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio as opposed to retaining its original 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio as claimed on the artwork of the case and disc. That fairly minor yet troubling error aside, the release looks and sounds wonderful and also includes some solid bonus goodies including some brand new extras such as a new ‘Audio Commentary with Actor Bill Pullman’ and more (more detailed information regarding the bonus content can be found in the special features section of the technical specification coverage below), almost certain to make this release a definite must own for many.
Overall, ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ is a unique, creepy and occasionally bloody film that many argue is one of filmmaker Wes Craven’s finest, yet one thing is for certain, this is one fantastic film that any genre fan who may not have previously had the pleasure of will not want to miss out on. Fans of the film and of Craven’s work in general will quite likely want to make certain to pick up a copy of Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release which aside from a minor Aspect Ratio error definitely delivers.
Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release of ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing a 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio, unfortunately not its original 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio as claimed on both the case and disc of the release. Aside from this somewhat disappointing factor which unfortunately is certain to deter some folks, the video presentation looks pretty fantastic in every other regard, delivering a consistently sharp, detailed and clean presentation yet in no way excessively polished, still retaining some minor imperfections representative of its source such as grain, some mild pops and the like, yet always looking fantastic and holding up impressively even during the numerous darkly lit and/or fast moving sequences, never causing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a pretty solid high definition video presentation that should thrill fans of this classic that can forgive the Aspect Ratio error, albeit a relatively minor issue.
The Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release features a lossless 2.0 Stereo DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This lossless stereo soundtrack sounds quite wonderful and provides a clean, sharp and generally impressive presentation from start to finish, delivering the wonderful score, dialogue and other auditory elements with notable clarity and never resulting in any confliction between simultaneously occurring elements. Overall, this is a solid 2.0 DTS-HD MA stereo soundtrack that shouldn’t disappoint.
Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release of ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ includes a couple of solid extras created exclusively for this release. Included on the release is a brand new ‘Audio Commentary with Actor Bill Pullman’, along with ‘The Making of The Serpent and the Rainbow’ (running approximately 24 minutes in length) which includes new interviews with Actor Bill Pullman, Author Wade Davis, Director of Photography John Lindley and more. Also included are the ‘Theatrical Trailer’ (1 minute, 23 seconds), a TV Spot (30 seconds) and a ‘Photo Gallery’.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They additionally will suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Disc Rating: 8/10
Wes Craven’s ‘The Serpent and the Rainbow’ is now available to own on Collector’s Edition Blu-Ray from Scream Factory.
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