BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

Beyond Re-Animator: Veston Video Collector's Series (2003)

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Beyond Reanimator (2003) - Vestron Video Collector's Series

2 beersProving there is still some mojo left in the bottle for the Re-Animator series (or maybe it was just a desire to get the gang back together), director Brian Yuzna and star Jeffrey Combs as Dr. Herbert West return, some 13 years later, to the series that put schlock back on the horror scene.  But – gasp – something is missing; the gonzo spirit that fueled the first two flicks feels a bit worn through. 

And that’s no good.  At all.

"a mixed bag of gruesomeness that will appeal solely to diehard fans"


Beyond Re-Animator, the third and (so far) final entry in the series begins, hilariously enough, where the first sequel ended.  It’s as if no time has passed whatsoever.  In the opening sequence, we see West tossed in the back of a police cruiser.  This happens after a random attack from one of West’s living dead zombies terrifies his own neighborhood.  The sequence – involving a poor dead guy with no bottom jaw so that his tongue is very visible (and very active) and a babysitting teen who mistakenly things she is being pranked by her wards – is actually a great way to begin the movie.  It happens to be one of the best sequences in the movie. 

We then fast forward a bit from the explosive opening and discover that West, armed with just enough serum to continue his resurrection experiments on rats, is still doing his thing from behind bars.  He just can’t help it.

And it is with that change in location – from behind bars – where Beyond Re-Animator picks up the story of Dr. Herbert West.  Nothing too terrible could happen here, right?  Wrong.  And, once West gains footing during a prison riot thanks to a naive doctor, one Howard Phillips (Jason Barry) (who actually saw West get loaded in the back of the cruiser in the opening sequence), his particular form of madness reigns supreme.

And journalist Laura Olney (Elsa Pataky) will help hammer the message home that there is life after death.  Since this is a Spanish co-production, comedian Santiago Segura has a part as a drug-obsessed inmate.  With all this going on, one would think the film is able to fire on all its cylinders and absolutely take off.  But, truly, there’s something missing throughout this flick.  It begins when you notice just how much Combs isn’t actually in the movie.  Oh, he’s present but so much of his schtick is regulated to the sidelines. 

If only the film worked as well as the first film did.  Here, though, the third time is not the charm.  There’s a crazy spirit inhibiting this flick, true, but it crystalizes none of what came before.  There’s a gross-out humor to a lot of the narrative but the wit is missing.  Many jokes are groaners and, with obvious situations involving a horny (and cruel) Simón Andreu as Warden Brando, the film fumbles its way toward much of its humor, including a fun scene where Brando loses his dick to a zombiefied version of Pataky. 

Beyond Reanimator (2003) - Vestron Video Collector's Series

Gone, too, is the absolute ferocity of the freewheeling fun of what came before.

The film premiered on Syfy back in the day and a limited theatrical release followed, pleasing some gore hounds with its ratcheted up blood effects.  The gore had been dialed down in other releases, cleaned up for television and all that.  Some of the more extreme content, too, was missing.  But that’s not this release.  Vestron Video Collector’s Series have issued the R-rated  version for this release and, yes, it is the best version of the movie available. 

The film is a mixed bag of gruesomeness that will appeal solely to diehard fans. 

Beyond Reanimator (2003) - Vestron Video Collector's Series

MPAA Rating: R.
Runtime:
96 mins
Director
: Brian Yuzna
Writer:
José Manuel Gómez
Cast:
Jeffrey Combs, Tommy Dean Musset, Jason Barry
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
Welcome To Death Row. The Doctor Will See You Now.
Memorable Movie Quote: "She's not getting any fresher."
Theatrical Distributor:

Official Site:
Release Date:

DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
July 24, 2018
Synopsis: After causing the Miskatonic University Massacre, Dr. Herbert West has been serving a prison sentence for the past 14 years. When Howard, a new young doctor, comes to work as the prison MD and requests Dr. West’s assistance, Dr. West discovers that Howard has something he left behind 14 years ago.

Beyond Reanimator (2003) - Vestron Video Collector's Series

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Lionsgate Films
Available on Blu-ray
- July 24, 2018
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, Spanish
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Ambiance and atmosphere, that’s what you get with this release from Lionsgate.  The new 2K scan of the interpositive is beyond impressive. This series continues to deliver the goods to fans of the forgotten films. The polished visual upgrade from its original release is definitely a stunner. The new transfer showcases the darkness of the prison setting with finesse. Blood effects are detailed.  The film is presented in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Nicely saturated, there are no dents in its new HD shiny armor. Colors are strong throughout and are particularly memorable with their inclusion of details and strong edges. Black levels are clearly defined, too. Shadows are detailed. The DTS-HD MA 5.1 track is solid and aggressive, making the film’s score sound as awesome as it really is.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • Brian Yuzna lends his voice to the audio commentary for his film.

Special Features:

Alongside the commentary from director Brian Yuzna is the isolated score and interview with composer Xavier Capellas.  Fans also get interviews from Combs and Yuzna, as well as discussions on Lovecraft, a music video, and more!

  • Isolated Score Selections and Interview with Composer Xavier Capellas are presented in Dolby Digital 2.0
  • Beyond and Back (18 min)
  • Death Row Side Show (20 min)
  • Six Shots by Midnight (16 min)
  • Production Art Gallery (5 min)
  • Still Gallery (17 min)
  • Vintage EPK Featurette (17 min)
  • Dr. Reanimator - Move Your Dead Bones Music Video (5 min)
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • International Trailer

Beyond Reanimator (2003) - Vestron Video Collector's Series

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