Review: Scream Factory's INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS Blu-ray
In 1978, Philip Kaufman's remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers hit theaters. The all-star ensemble cast included Art Hindle, Brooke Adams, Donald Sutherland, Jeff Goldblum, Leonard Nimoy, and Veronica Cartwright. Whatever side of the ongoing remake debate you're on, it's doubtful that you'd call this version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers a bad film.
Scream Factory has just released a new Blu-ray edition with cool new art and lots of extras:
- NEW 2K Scan Of The Interpositive
- NEW Star-Crossed In The Invasion – An Interview With Actress Brooke Adams
- NEW Leading The Invasion – An Interview With Actor Art Hindle
- NEW Re-Creating The Invasion – An Interview With Writer W.D. Richter
- NEW Scoring The Invasion – An Interview With Composer Denny Zeitlin
- NEW Audio Commentary With Author/Film Historian Steve Haberman
- Audio Commentary By Director Philip Kaufman
- Re-Visitors From Outer Space, Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Pod – Including Interviews With Director Philip Kaufman, Screenwriter W.D. Richter, Director Of Photography Michael Chapman And Actors Donald Sutherland And Veronica Cartwright
- Practical Magic: The Special Effects Pod
- The Man Behind The Scream: The Sound Effects Pod – An Interview With Ben Burtt And Sound Editor Bonnie Koehler
- The Invasion Will Be Televised: The Cinematography Pod
- An episode of SCIENCE FICTION THEATRE, "Time Is Just A Place," Based On Jack Finney's Short Story, Directed By Jack Arnold
- Theatrical Trailer
- TV Spots
- Radio Spots
- Photo Gallery
I found that the interviews with Art Hindle and Denny Zeitlin were the most eye-opening aspects of the special features. We get to learn a ton from these two about acting (and interacting), cast, and the development of the score, which is always fun.
So, is it worth it? I'd say yes, but here's the run down on the Blu-ray disc itself. Granted, there could have been a better clean-up and scan of the negative, but it's mostly okay. There's grain and flickering, and sometimes, a pink edge of the the frame, to put it lightly. However, it's likely that only Criterion would have the means to digitally remove these flaws. Does this take away any enjoyment of the film? Nope.
To recap: Kaufman's version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers -- flower-like space spores begin to grow in San Francisco with alarming rates, leading to the pilfering of human forms in the Sunshine State and their regrowth, as far as replication is concerned. These aliens take over human hosts and begin their own take on American (and soon, global) society in record time. Who is who? Who's been turned?
Fun cameos by the original hero (Kevin McCarthy) and director (Don Siegel) of the first Invasion of the Body Snatchers keeps this edition firmly rooted in both homage. The best part of these cameos is that they don't suffer to over-sentimentalism but in fact, further the creepy narrative of the story. The acting and practical effects are top notch. Audio quality is very good for the most part, and while the picture is usually dark, we learn via the supplements that the cinematography was photographed very dark. This shouldn't take away from your enjoyment of the film, but of course, this is a matter of preference.
Overall, this edition of Invasion of the Body Snatchers comes highly recommended. Check out the trailer below.