Creepshow was a great experiment. To make an anthology film with a couple legends of horror is always worth a shot. In Creepshow 2, Stephen King returns to pen some tales again. How does it compare?
Creepshow brought Stephen King together with George Romero. The end result was a great anthology horror film. They brought viewers five short tales with some real winners in there. For the sequel, Stephen King wrote three more short tales for the screen. George Romero stepped out of the directing chair to write the screenplays. Creepshow’s cinematographer Michael Gormick stepped in to direct.
Like the first one, the tales are separated by interludes with a young boy who is a fan of the Creepshow comic and the Creeper. The first story, “Old Chief Woodn’head” is about a store’s wooden statue that takes revenge on a band of young robbers. The second story, “The Raft” is about a group of college kids who head out to a lake and are stalked by a mysterious predator. The last story, “The Hitch-hiker” is about a races home wrecklessly to disastrous effects.
Now I loved the first Creepshow, but never really found myself loving the sequel. This time, as the fine people from Arrow were willing to provide a copy, I decided to re-examine this anthology with new eyes. The end result is…well, mixed. I found the first story to be decent, but with some overly slow pacing at times. The second story, I still don’t care for at all. The last is once again pretty decent, but lacks anything truly special. I also enjoy the framing story, but also really dislike the animation used for it.
Overall, I’d say the stories average out to pretty mediocre. I don’t think there is anything really special in the mix here. It truly pales in comparison to the original. The direction is mostly competent, but lacks any real fun or charm. I can understand big fans of the original wanting this to pair with the first movie. On the other hand, for everyone else I think Creepshow 2 merits only a rental.
Picture Quality: 3.5/5
Creepshow 2 was not a high budget release, so image isn’t the best you could imagine. I suspect most of the deficiencies come from weaknesses in the original print. Arrow probably did as much as they could for it, which does show noticeable improvement over the DVD. I never had the Image release, so I can’t compare to that. However, I can comment that while the grain is quite noticeable, it always looks natural and isn’t distracting. While the colors don’t necessarily pop, they look predominately natural.
Audio Quality: 3.5/5
Arrow has supplied Creepshow 2 with a decent DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track. The sound effects are rather satisfying on the track. While the sound effects are pretty solid, the surround is unimpressive. The track doesn’t activate the sides much throughout the film, but that doesn’t really do much to detract from the experience. The track just fails to really lift up the presentation.
Supplemental Features and Packaging: 4/5
Audio Commentary: While I wasn’t necessarily super interested in a commentary for this movie, I really liked this one. There are a number of times where they discuss the technical aspects of making the movie such as the tricks they used to compensate for the contrast changes from day to day and a lot of the special effects work. The commentary actually made watching the film much more enjoyable.
My friend Rick: Howard Berger raves about his friend and mentor Rick Baker.
Nightmares in Foam rubber: A half hour talk with Howard Berger and Greg Nicotera about special effects. A Very good extra carried over from Anchor Bay’s Divimax release. By far the best extra on this release.
Road to Dover: Interview with the victim from the last story.
Poncho’s Last Ride: Interview with the actor who plays Randy in the second tale. The most interesting part being his story about filming with hypothermia.
Tales from the Creep: Interview with Tom Savini(The Creep). Pretty interesting talk about his experiences in the industry.
Screenplay for a Sequel: Interview with George Romero about the creation of the Creepshow 2 as well as related projects.
Trailers and TV spots for Creepshow 2: Ummm, self-explanatory.
Behind the Scenes: Some footage of preparing Savini as the Creep and filming a scene.
Image Gallery: Yeah, pretty much what it sounds like.
BD-ROM Feature: Pop this into your computer’s BD-ROM and you can check out the screenplay for Creepshow 2.
The extras are pretty comprehensive, especially for a sequel. Anyone who is a fan of the movie will probably appreciate everything that has been included.
Packaging-wise, we pretty much know what to expect form Arrow here. Arrow offers fans a solid case inside which we find reversible cover art and a booklet. As always, the included booklet features an essay on the movie as well as some information about the transfer for the release.
Creepshow 2 has never been a movie I have much love for. This release was never going to change that. Even so, Arrow did great work with on this disc. They put a great set of extras on the disc with a pretty solid commentary headlining it. The technical aspects are sufficient and probably about as good as we can expect to come to this movie anytime soon. So for fans, this is a great release. Also, while revisiting this, I don’t view it as harshly as I did before. I would give this release a modest recommendation for horror fans. But I recommend waiting for a good deal before picking it up.
You can find it over on Amazon here.
Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.