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The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

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The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

3 beers

Remember the Master-Blaster character combo from Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome?  The Master, played by Angelo Rossitto, was positioned on top of The Blaster, played by Paul Larsson and together they operated the methane-heavy Underworld beneath Bartertown.  One ruled with his mind and the other ruled over the minions with his muscle.  It was indeed a metal-headed spectacle. 

I bring that up here because the combination of tall and short made for a striking visual.  Well, take away all the shoulder pads, chains, and the leather straps and, for a large portion of The Bride, that’s EXACTLY what you have with the relationship between Rinaldo the Midget (the late David Rappaport of Time Bandits fame) and Viktor the Monster (Clancy Brown from Highlander), especially as they work the circus together.  Their companionship, deep in rural England and parts of France, makes for a tall and short combo that is damn interesting, even as the story itself dwindles.

"The Bride is a moody and lush film.  It isn’t for every fan of Frankenstein, but has its dedicated followers."


Both Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome and Franc Roddam’s The Bride were released in 1985.  Both feature a pop star in an important role and, quite honestly, both couldn’t be more further apart in look, feel, and tone.  It was the zenith of MTV’s popularity and while that showed significantly through much of the raucous Mad Max film, NONE of that pop culture commentary bleeds through in The Bride, a rather unique look at Gothicism.

The Bride is not a horror film.  While much has been made of Jennifer Beal’s performance as Eva, the companion to Dr. Frankenstein’s creation, as she learns how to act in proper societies, the point of it all might be missed by anu talk of Razzie Awards.  Screenwriter Lloyd Fonvielle gives fans of Mary Shelley’s classic work a rather thoughtful interpretation here.  Even the original monster isn’t so much of a monster at all.  He is curious about the world around him and, without his father to teach him, has only a few he can trust to best explain it to him.  Eva has Frankenstein but does that even matter? 

Add to this cerebral concoction Sting’s very cold (as in distant) reading of Frankenstein as Lord and Creator and, yes, you have a very interesting spin on the classic tale.  This is a lush romance before anything else.  And, yes, it will subvert your own expectations.  It just, at the time of its release, wasn’t what people wanted from a Frankenstein tale made during the Reagan era.  It probably still isn’t.  That doesn’t mean the film is bad – at all – it is just unique, appearing as if plucked from the clouds above.

The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

And, perhaps knowing just how meditative it is on its themes of life and death, it begins in the middle of Frankenstein’s creation of Eva.  We are immediately brought in.  We know this.  Lots of lightning and explosions kick the movie off as a psychic link is established between both creations.  And then, wham, the monster is out on his own.  And while Frankenstein takes pride in creating the perfect woman, his first monster gets life lessons from a dwarf.  Big difference.  Does it matter, though?  Can the unnatural be thwarted by a nature vs. nurture argument?

Thanks to a stunning climax as fates intertwine once again, The Bride is a moody and lush film.  It isn’t for every fan of Frankenstein, but has its dedicated followers.  It also features Cary Elwes (The Princess Bride) in a supporting role as a soldier who catches the eye of Eva, growing ever more disobedient, and causes Frankenstein himself to question his own interests in his creation. 

Say “I do” to the Scream Factory’s 2K handling of The Bride.

The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: PG-13.
Runtime:
118 mins
Director
: Franc Roddam
Writer:
Lloyd Fonvielle
Cast:
Sting, Jennifer Beals, Anthony Higgins
Genre
: Fantasy | Sci-fi
Tagline:
Here Comes . . .The BRIDE.
Memorable Movie Quote: "I created your body, just as I created your mind. And I can uncreate it too."
Theatrical Distributor:
Columbia Pictures Corporation
Official Site:
Release Date:
August 16, 1985
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
September 25, 2018
Synopsis: Frankenstein builds the perfect woman — and lives to regret it — in this tantalizing marriage of horror, romance, and unbridled passion! Rock legend Sting plays the cunning scientist and Jennifer Beals (Flashdance, The L Word) lends her dramatic presence as his supreme, sublime creation. This sumptuously gothic tale, inspired by the indelible themes and characters originally brought to life by Mary Shelley, follows Frankenstein's creations as they search for their place in the world — the gorgeous Eva by declaring her independence, and her grotesque intended mate Viktor (Clancy Brown, Highlander) by learning self-worth from a compassionate circus dwarf (David Rappaport, Time Bandits). Can Dr. Frankenstein survive when the monster returns to claim his intended?

The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Shout Factory
Available on Blu-ray
- September 25, 2018
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: English SDH
Audio:
English: DTS-HD mono
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

With a new 2K scan of the original camera negative, Scream Factory gives fans of this little gothic romance something to celebrate.  The images are crisp and detailed and retain their edges.  Framed in a tight 1:78:1 aspect ratio, this 1080p transfer is good, good stuff.  Colors are bold.  Shadows run deep and the crisp textures in the walls and in the backgrounds of this haunted home are focused.  The DTS-HD mono soundtrack is perfectly suited for the film. 

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • We get a new audio commentary from director Franc Roddam.

Special Features:

Full of new interviews from the film’s director and Clancy Brown, this release will certainly please the growing number of fans of The Bride.

  • • NEW Interview with Director Franc Roddam
  • • NEW Interview with Actor Clancy Brown
  • • TV Spot

The Bride (1985) - Blu-ray Review

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