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Suspiria: Limited Steelbook 3 Disc Blu-Ray/CD Combo (1977) - Blu-ray Review

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Suspiria (1977) - Blu-ray Review

5 beersThis release from Synapse Films of Suspiria is a work of pure art.  It is also important and impactful, belonging in a time capsule AND in your collection of horror titles.  It is, hands down, my pick for the best blu-ray release of the year.  With only 6000 units produced of this 3-disc limited steelbook edition of Dario Argento’s masterpiece, I suggest you get your grubby hands on this blu-ray as quickly as you can.

Yes, Virginia, it is THAT good. 

What Synapse Films has done here is nothing short of a miracle.  The new 4k scan and restoration of the original uncut and uncensored Italian 35mm camera negative is complete with color corrections as supervised by the film’s original Director of Photography, Luciano Tovoli, who was originally hired by Argento based upon his abilities to harness bold colors – trying to match Walt Disney’s Snow White – and his knowledge of anamorphic lenses.  With a bold use of primary colors as its centerpiece, the saturation levels are cranked to the max and STILL inspire.  Hell, even the designs in the lighting resonate here.

Suspiria, originally released in 1977, is an elegant masterpiece of mood-striking horror.  The colors are bold and the so, too, is the atmosphere.  This is made clear by the first 14-minutes in which one American woman arrives to Frieberg ballet school for her brush with fate and two women depart this existence thanks to a glowing-eyed creature and some brutally-placed stained glass windows.  But first there are the woods between the two location to traverse.  And it looks stunning.

Suspiria is an important horror film, defined by its guiding theme of finding beauty in the breakdown, which never lets up.

Starring Jessica Harper as Suzy Bannion, the young dancer who arrives at Tanz Dance Academy in Germany on a dark and stormy night, Susperia begins with a round of deaths masterfully staged by Argento, who pulverizes his audience with geometric art, color sequences, and sharp objects throughout this feature.  Bannion, upon her first day, is overcome by a bizarre run-in with the janitor and winds up fainting during a lesson, she is then brought into the inner circle of hell: the dormitory. 

And it is there that the witches descend, drugging her with wine, and making sure that she does not escape the maggots that rain down from the ceiling in this mysterious place.  What follows is Suzy’s bizarre journey into the heart of a coven that wants nothing more than to make sure that they are protected far into the future.  But Suzy knows that no coven can survive without their leader.      

Full of stunning colors and sound effects, complete with a depth I’ve never experienced before, Suspiria is made fully alive again for this its 40th anniversary release.  I have seen Suspiria many, MANY times.  But, upon this viewing, I was watching it for the first time all over again.  I have never seen this film look so beautifully fresh and bold in its use of colors, shadows, and structures. 

Suspiria is made brand new with this exclusive 40th anniversary restoration.

Suspiria (1977) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
Runtime:
92 mins
Director
: Dario Argento
Writer:
Dario Argento
Cast:
Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
A chilling blend of American Graffiti and Psycho.
Memorable Movie Quote: "The only thing more terrifying than the last five minutes of this film are the first 90!"
Theatrical Distributor:
International Classics
Official Site:
Release Date:
August 12, 1977
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
December 19, 2017
Synopsis: A newcomer to a prestigious ballet academy comes to realize that the school is a front for something sinister amidst a series of grisly murders.

Suspiria (1977) - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Synapse Films
Available on Blu-ray
- December 19, 2017
Screen Formats: 2.40:1
Subtitles
: English; English SDH
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 4.0; Italian: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; three-disc set
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

The Steelbook release from Synapse Films is limited to merely 6000 copies.  With bold uses of strong primary colors, the 1080p transfer is a damn miracle of restoration.  The Three disc {Two Blu-rays + One CD} limited collector’s edition contains a new 4K restoration of the original uncut, uncensored Italian 35mm camera negative exclusively done by Synapse Films, with color correction supervised and approved by the film’s Director of Photography, Luciano Tovoli.  The results are amazing.  Black levels are crisp and colors respond with depth and focus.  The original 4.0 1977 English language LCRS sound mix not heard since the theatrical release in 1977, presented in high-resolution DTS-HD MA 96 Khz/24-bit audio, is included here.  An Italian 5.1 surround sound mix is also provided.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • This release features two audio commentaries by authors and Argento scholars, Derek Botelho, David Del Valle & Troy Howarth.

Special Features:

There is NO reason why you shouldn’t own this title.

SPECIAL LIMITED EDITION STEELBOOK SPECIFICATIONS AND EXTRAS:

  • Exclusive Steelbook packaging and collector’s o-card sleeve, featuring artwork from Malleus, Van Orton Design, Juan José Saldarriaga & Chris MacGibbon
  • Three disc {Two Blu-rays + One CD]} limited collector’s edition containing a new 4K restoration of the original uncut, uncensored Italian 35mm camera negative exclusively done by Synapse Films, with color correction supervised and approved by SUSPIRIA Director of Photography, Luciano Tovoli
  • Original 4.0 1977 English language LCRS sound mix not heard since the theatrical release in 1977, presented in high-resolution DTS-HD MA 96 Khz/24-bit audio
  • Italian 5.1 surround sound mix
  • Two audio commentaries by authors and Argento scholars, Derek Botelho, David Del Valle & Troy Howarth
  • Do You Know Anything About Witches? – 30 minute SUSPIRIA visual essay written, edited and narrated by Michael Mackenzie
  • Suzy in Nazi Germany – Featurette on the German locations from SUSPIRIA
  • A Sigh from the Depths: 40 Years of SUSPIRIA – All-new anniversary retrospective on the making of the film and its influence on cinema
  • Olga’s Story – Interview with star Barbara Magnolfi
  • Original theatrical trailers, TV spots and radio spots
  • Special Collector Edition Booklet containing an American Cinematographer interview with Luciano Tovoli, liner notes by Derek Botelho and restoration notes by Vincent Pereira & Don May, Jr.
  • “International Classics” English “Breathing Letters” opening credit sequence from U.S. release version
  • Alternate All-English opening and closing credits sequences, playable via seamless branching
  • Newly translated, removable English SDH subtitles for the English language version
  • Newly translated, removable English subtitles for the Italian language version
  • Exclusive CD remaster of Goblin’s SUSPIRIA motion picture soundtrack, containing additional tracks not included on the original 1977 soundtrack release

Suspiria (1977) - Blu-ray Review

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