The moment has finally arrived. Halloween, co-written by David Gordon Green, Danny McBride, and Jeff Fradley with Green directing, is out on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray, DVD, and ON DEMAND today!
Taking place 40 years after the original, the new Halloween is a direct sequel to the 1978 film. Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) has never fully dealt with the trauma of that long ago night, and her PTSD has effected the lives of everyone around her, including her daughter (Judy Greer) and granddaughter (Andi Matichak).
The film was box office gold for Blumhouse and Universal and while it has been available for a couple of weeks on digital streaming services, today is the day that physical media collectors have waited for.
Why, you ask? We want the special features, of course!
Halloween comes with a few select special features including deleted/extended scenes and five short featurettes.
The deleted and extended scenes here are exactly what one would expect on a release like this. These are the scenes that ran too long or simply slowed down the pace of the film, ultimately, though I wonder if two scenes in particular weren’t cut for another reason.
I’m going to include a brief synopsis of these scenes which contain some spoilers. If you want to see them for yourself, skip everything between the “***” above and below the information.
If you’re curious about my theory or want to know more before watching, read on!
In a scene titled, “Extended Shooting Range–Deleted Suicide Thoughts”, we see a much longer scene of Laurie on the shooting range and then back in her home cleaning her guns and making sure they’re in working order. As the scene comes to a close Laurie loads a single bullet into the revolver and places it under her chin, losing herself for a moment as if she’s actually considering shooting herself.
Given her mental state in the film, thoughts of suicide would not be uncommon, and it’s a poignant and powerful scene. However, for many, this is a disturbing and triggering topic and the studio may have cut this one short in order to avoid those issues.
Likewise, in “Jog to a Hanging Dog”, we see Laurie’s granddaughter out for a morning jog when she comes upon the police and a disturbed family who have found their dog hanging from his haunches in their tree.
His head is bloody and it’s just, in general, rough to see, though it echoes Michael killing a dog in the original film. In a day and age where websites exist to let people know whether animals and dogs in particular are killed in a film, it’s highly likely again that the studio pulled this scene to avoid potential backlash.
Back with me? Okay, here we go.
The five featurettes on the physical media release are pretty standard behind the scenes fare.
“Back in Haddonfield: Making Halloween” gives a few quotes and glimpses of the making of the film while “The Original Scream Queen” focuses on Jamie Lee Curtis’s return to the franchise.
“Journey of the Mask” features FX Make Up Designer Christopher Nelson discussing the creation of the new mask while honoring the legacy of the original interspersed with brief clips of James Jude Courtney, Jamie Lee Curtis, and David Gordon Green discussing what the mask has meant to them.
Particularly interesting are Courtney’s comments on how his whole demeanor seemed to change when he donned the mask, himself.
“The Legacy of Halloween” finds Green, Carpenter, and Curtis together with Jason Blum discussing their own thoughts on why the original film worked and how they connected it with the new film. It’s a great little feature, though very brief, and exciting to see these creative people exchanging ideas and comments with Curtis sort of acting as moderator.
Finally, and my favorite of the features, “The Sound of Fear” takes us inside John Carpenter’s studio where he and his son, Cody, and Dan Davies created the score for the new film.
The three really created something special with the score and not only do they describe their creative process, but we’re also given glimpses of them writing and working together.
While all of the features are entertaining, my biggest complaint is that it is all so brief. It took barely a half hour to watch the special features on the Blu-Ray, which also lacks a feature commentary.
Perhaps I’m showing my age, but one of the reasons I began collecting physical media was because of all the amazing hours of bonus footage, feature length documentaries, etc. that were once standard on most big film releases.
In recent years, however, those seem to be either gone all together or they only become available on later “anniversary” releases, special editions, etc.
I’m not entirely certain why this came to be, but as a fan and collector I’m left wanting more when I reach the end of a special features list and find I’ve still got hours left to my evening.
Still, what is available is great, and the film itself is well worth owning for fans of this classic franchise!
Halloween is available today, January 15, 2019, on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray, and DVD at retailers across the country and online, and ON DEMAND.