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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Trick 'r Treat & Creepshow -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Oct 21, 2018.

  1. Message #1 of 6 Oct 21, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2018
    Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    As an omnibus production of Halloween tales, Michael Dougherty's Treat 'r Treat is quite good of its kind.

    The Warner film is being released courtesy of Scream Factory, along with the earlier (1982) omnibus of five tales, George Romero's classic Creepshow.

    Both are true special editions, as the extras on both add mightily to the price of admission.

    While Creepshow is reported derived from a "New 4k scan off the original camera negative," Treat 'r Treat, which is derived from a 2k scan appears a bit superior. Creepshow looks fine, overall, but could have used a bit of hand-holding for additional cleanup.

    Color on both is of high quality, along with overall resolution, black levels, et al.

    Price-wise, the new special features aside, $35 may be pushing the limits of pricing. The earlier Blu-ray of Trick is available with about half of the extras for $9, while Creepshow, albeit with zero extras aside from the trailer, can be had for $12.

    Image

    Creepshow - 4.5
    Trick 'r Treat - 5

    Audio

    Creepshow - 5 (DTS-HD MA monoral)
    Trick 'r Treat - 5 (DTS-HD 5.1)

    Pass / Fail - Pass

    Upgrade from earlier Blu-ray

    Creepshow - Yes
    Trick 'r Treat - Not essential unless you need the extras

    Both are Recommended

    RAH
     
  2. Brian Kidd

    Brian Kidd Cinematographer
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    Finally got my copy of Creepshow from Shout Factory after it had been delayed because of replication issues. There is good news and bad news.

    The Good:

    The image is, far and away, the best the film has ever looked on home video and I've seen every domestic release since the Betamax days and also the really nice UK release from a few years ago. There has been some minor tweaking done to the coloring by Michael Gornick, the DP on the film, but only to carry over some of the expressionistic lighting color choices between some shots that had it and connected shots that didn't. Honestly, I probably wouldn't have noticed the changes had they not been pointed out in the featurette with Gornick speaking about them... over and over.

    The previous extras from the UK DVD release have been carried over except for the feature-length documentary which has been available separately in the US for a while. It's a great doc for fans of the film and worth purchasing if you don't already have it, but its exclusion from this release is completely understandable.

    The Horror's Hallowed Grounds featurette is good, though not the best of the ones that Sean Clark has produced, mainly because he wasn't allowed access to a couple of major locations. It's still entertaining and has some nice participation by Tom Atkins, who is one of my favorite B-movie actors.

    The Bad:

    The new extras are copious, but a little on the dull side. I haven't listed to the new commentaries yet, but I did listen to part of the audio track containing new interviews with people who worked on the film and they were pretty good. The other new video supplements are just not very interesting, I'm sorry to say. There's one with a collector where they spend a good ten minutes talking about how he obtained the three props used in the film. There's the aforementioned "restoration" video with Gornick essentially saying the same thing over and over, even using the same words, about how he had the color timing adjusted to blend some shots together. The interview with the costume designer is also similarly pretty dull.

    The Ugly:

    This is a big one. It sounds like they've ported over the 5.1 track from the UK DVD, which means it is pitched higher to account for PAL speedup. The original 2.0 mix is fine and sounds pretty darned good, but why Shout Factory didn't notice the pitch shift during production is beyond me.

    There's also an authoring error that means that you can't select an alternate audio track from the menu and have it start when you start the film. I haven't tested all of them, but after I selected the Interview track in the menu, the 5.1 started when the film played and I had to manually switch it to the correct track. It isn't a huge deal, but, again, it seems like QC on this release was lacking.

    Final Thoughts:

    Creepshow is one of my favorite Horror films and has been since the first time I saw it as a kid back in the early-80's. This release, which should have been fantastic, has some real issues. With that said, the film itself looks probably as good as it ever will. It's still a definite upgrade from Warner's previous Blu-ray and any previous home video presentation.
     
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  3. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member

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    You’re right — the 5.1 track is pitched about half a step higher than the 2.0.

    (Something I’m still not used to in the digital world is the ability to change pitch without changing speed.)

    However, on my player the audio menu works as it should. I tested it with each track.
     
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  4. Worth

    Worth Cinematographer

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    But if they used the PAL track, they'd have to slow it down by 4% to keep sync, then deliberately adjust the pitch to keep it high.
     
  5. Brian Kidd

    Brian Kidd Cinematographer
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    Makes sense. I don't know what happened, then. It's definitely pitched up, though.
     
  6. Mark Cappelletty

    Mark Cappelletty Cinematographer

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    I didn't notice the pitch change until I heard Ted Danson talk— you can't miss it then.
     

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