Directors: Jennifer Reeder, Chloe Okuno, Simon Barrett, Timo Tjahjanto, Ryan Prows, Steven Kostanski
Cast: Anna Hopkins, Christian Lloyd, Kyal Legend
Release Date: April 19, 2022
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 6.5/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
In V/H/S/94, after the discovery of a mysterious VHS tape, a brutish police swat team launches a high-intensity raid on a remote warehouse, only to discover a sinister cult compound whose collection of pre-recorded material uncovers a nightmarish conspiracy.
Please Note: RLJE Films provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
‘V/H/S/94’ invites you back for another unsettling collection of tapes to get under your skin. When a SWAT Team raids a seedy warehouse they discover a dangerous cult and the remains of a bigger threat. With bodies littered throughout the warehouse and no clear answer to the rhyme or reason, the team soon uncovers a collection of graphic pre-recorded VHS tapes with sinister ramifications for the viewer, all with clues linking to a terrifying conspiracy at play.
The installments (or tapes) this time around are directed by Jennifer Reeder (Knives and Skin), Chloe Okuno (Watcher), Simon Barrett (Séance), Timo Tjahjanto (V/H/S/2), Ryan Prows (Lowlife) and Steven Kostanski (PG: Psycho Goreman) who each offer their own unique style to ‘V/H/S/94’ and keep the tone shifting and fresh throughout, even if some entries are superior to others as is usually the case with these films. The cast throughout includes Anna Hopkins (TV’s The Expanse), Christian Lloyd (TV’s American Gods), Kyal Legend (TV’s Utopia Falls) and Budi Ross, along with many more, many of which deliver decent enough performances, although they definitely vary with some being noticeably better than others.
‘V/H/S/94’ is another wildly graphic, unsettling and occasionally quite clever group of short films connecting to a wraparound story that’s clearly catered to dedicated horror fans and often seems to have a pretty good sense of what they want to see. This time around we’re presented with everything from rumors of an eerie rat-man creature and a news crew that uncovers a horrifying truth when investigating, to a deranged doctor whose inhuman projects of trying to merge humans with machines goes incredibly wrong when a local law enforcement team attempts to take him down. We are also presented with the creepy tale of one woman stuck in a funeral parlor overnight in the midst of a terrifying storm with a body in a casket that doesn’t seem to want to stay put, along with more. All of which revolve around a SWAT team raid on a cult compound littered with bodies and a collection of videotapes that are anything but casual entertainment.
It may not be the finest entry in the ‘V/H/S’ franchise but is a definite improvement over some and it definitely doesn’t disappoint in serving up enough blood-drenched carnage and chaos to appease even the most seasoned horror fans, while also cleverly providing some notably different tales across the board to keep the viewer from ever knowing precisely what might be thrown at them next. I would definitely encourage any fans of the franchise that haven’t yet had the chance to try and give ‘V/H/S/94’ a whirl whenever convenient. If you enjoyed any of the previous three films in the series it should be safe to say you’ll find quite a bit to appreciate about this latest offering and it should be worth taking the time to check out.
Overall, ‘V/H/S/94’ is another crazy, tense and carnage fueled anthology of tales that each stand out in their own way and serve up enough of what fans seem to desire from the franchise to make it one of the better entries in the series even if it still may not be the absolute finest installment. ‘V/H/S/94’ definitely won’t be for everyone, but fans of any or all of the previous three films in the franchise, along with diehard genre fans and gore hounds will probably want to try and the find the time to give this one a whirl at some point. Some of the installments within are better than others but that’s certainly nothing new when it comes to the ‘V/H/S’ films but there’s enough notable inclusions within as well as an impressive quantity of gore and bloodshed that alone should make it worth your time and the cost of a rental if you’re already interested.
The Blu-ray release of ‘V/H/S/94’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation with the film’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks great as a whole and delivers a fitting presentation that often has the tracking lines, static and other imperfections that are common with the VHS format, all of which are clearly intentional and help to make the tone and style feel like true VHS recordings (aside perhaps from the widescreen format itself which was rather uncommon for standard camcorders in the mid-90’s). Aside from the elements intentionally utilized to embrace the VHS look, everything is clean, sharp and well captured throughout. Overall, this is a solid high definition video presentation that looks consistently good throughout while making efforts to match the look of the VHS format and the result leaves little to be disappointed about.
The Blu-ray release features a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This multichannel soundtrack provides a clean, sharp and occasionally somewhat immersive audio presentation throughout. It utilizes all five available channels in order to send eerie noises, gunshots and explosions, plus quite a bit more making its way throughout the various speakers whenever fitting and always making certain that any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously remain clean and fully audible. Overall, this is a fully capable 5.1 DTS-HD MA soundtrack that does its job well and should largely please.
The Blu-ray release of ‘V/H/S/94’ includes a nice collection of bonus content that fans should appreciate. Included on the release is an ‘Audio Commentary with the Filmmakers and Producers, Hosted by the Boo Crew’, as well as an ‘Audio Commentary on “The Empty Wake” by Simon Barrett’. Also included on the release are ‘Deleted and Extended Scenes’ from the movie (running approximately 14 minutes in length altogether), along with the ‘San Diego Comic-Con Panel Interview’ (running approximately 30 minutes) and the Behind the Scenes Featurette ‘Behind-The-Scenes of V/H/S/94’ (approximately 24 minutes). We are also treated to ‘The Empty Wake Visual FX’ (1 minute) and ‘V/H/S/94’ Special FX with Patrick Magee’ which takes a look at bringing three notable sequences to life (approximately 10 minutes combined). The ‘Full-Length Veggie Masher Commercial’ (44 seconds) is also included, along with a collection of ‘Behind-The-Scenes Images’.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They will additionally 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.
Film Rating: 6.5/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
‘V/H/S/94’ is Now Available to Own on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital from SHUDDER – RLJE Films
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