August 10, 2012

Blu-ray Spotlight- The Exorcist (1973)


When it comes to buying horror movies on Blu-ray, we have one issue; we already own so many horror movies on DVD, that upgrading them all to Blu-ray would cost a small fortune. There are some titles that we have to own in the best format available however, and so we open to you our Blu-ray Archives which consist of what we consider to be Must Own Horror Blu-ray's

The Exorcist (1973)
Extended Director's Cut & Theatrical Version
Warner Bros.
Price: $24.99 (DigiBook)
Discs: 2 50 GB Blu-ray Discs
Video: 1080p
VC-1 (22.14 Mbps)
1.78:1 AR
Audio: English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1/ES
French/Spanish/Portuguese/German/Italian/Japanese: Dolby Digital Mono
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German SDH, Italian SDH, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish
Region Free

There will most likely never be another film like The Exorcist, that pushes boundaries and affects audiences the way that it did back in the early 70's. By today's standard's it's a slow, deliberately paced movie that takes its time to build to the payoff. Of course those very elements are the movies strengths and the reasons that it's so damned effective. This version of The Exorcist amazes with its visuals and sound, and is packed with so many supplemental and extra features that it makes us sad that we never had them to watch back in the day.

Showing a 12 year-old girl using a crucifix as a dildo while screaming "Fuck me, Jesus!" is about as shocking as it gets for most folks, and I can't imagine that scene making it into a theatrical movie these days.
Many have tried to make a possession movie as effective as The Exorcist in the years since its release, and many have failed. No matter how good some possession movies have been over the years, none can seem to truly capture the magic that Friedkin did here. Most don't even come close. Not even The Exorcist's own sequels.

Let us also say that we LOVE DigiBooks; sure, it might make us a little odd, but DigiBook packaging brings a small tear to our eyes to behold. We're movie geeks, and are also very simple creatures, apparently. What do you want from us?

During the day with the lights on... that's how we watch this movie.
We've said it before and we'll say it again; we're not really Audiophiles around here... that doesn't mean though that we don't appreciate a good Lossless audio mix or that we don't love DTS sound in 5.1 or 7.1 mixes, because we do. These discs bring all of that to the table, and die hard Audiophiles will be more than pleased with how great everything sounds for the most part.

Oh yeah, and the score is an all time classic.It sounds fantastic here as well.

"... Now kindly undo these straps!"
The best "special feature" to be found in the Extended Director's Cut version, are all of the little odds and ends thrown into the movie; random creepy faces appear in certain scenes, the added and extended scenes that don't seem out of place, and the Spiderwalk... that alone is worth the price of admission here. First time we saw that scene when the "Version you've never seen!" was released in theaters back in 2000, it caught us off guard and freaked us the hell out. Good stuff.

Other Features Include:
  • Theatrical and Director’s Cut on Two Blu-ray Discs
  • New 3-Part Documentary on the Movie’s Production and Legacy
  • Raising Hell: Filming The Exorcist
  • The Exorcist Locations: Georgetown Then and Now
  • Faces of Evil: The Different Versions of The Exorcist
  • Commentary by Director William Friedkin on Director’s Cut
  • 2 Commentaries on Theatrical Version
  • Introduction by William Friedkin
  • Feature-Length 1998 Documentary The Fear of God: The Making of
  • Interview Gallery Covering the Topics: The Original Cut, The Final Reckoning and Stairway to Heaven
  • Original Ending
The special features on both discs in this set are in-depth and fantastic for hardcore fans. We tend to dig the Documentaries and Making-of's, so we were well pleased.

I can still hear the piano notes... ugh.
As a true horror fan, there's no excuse for you not to have this movie in your collection. If you have a Blu-ray player, this DigiBook version is an absolute must own. As a movie, it's monumental; as a Blu-ray presentation, it's superb. $24.99 is a bit more than we prefer to drop on our movies, but in this case it is money well spent, and then some. Own it, sucka!

I also think it's safe to say that The Exorcist experience turned precious little Linda Blair into a sexified bad girl; when she was 15 she dated Rick Springfield who was 25 at the time (perv) , bought, took and was arrested for conspiracy to sell drugs; dated Rick James (who allegedly wrote the classic funk  song Cold Blooded about her); and appeared naked in about 943 movies in the 70's/80's.

We ain't mad tho. Good or bad, we love our genre icon.


2 comments :

  1. "Showing a 12 year-old girl using a crucifix as a dildo while screaming "Fuck me, Jesus!" is about as shocking as it gets for most folks, and I can't imagine that scene making it into a theatrical movie these days."
    You are so right! When I think of the difference between 70-80's movies and those from today, the most striking is how back then you could show nudity, obscenity and profanity if it advanced the story or made the film better. Snuff films and torture porn had no real power back then, unless they were also what they were supposed to be: horror movies. Man, I miss horror movies from back then... even goofy they managed to be captivating.
    Maybe I should open a horror blog myself, although it would probably have one entry a year, other than furious rants on the quality of stuff I am watching. And I am still watching... what's wrong with me?

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  2. 70's & 80's flicks pushed boundaries. It was maverick film making back then in a lot of cases, in others, it was all about packing it full of the nasty stuff to get teenagers into the theaters.

    These days, most horror filmmakers are trying to be clever.

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