The 2010 remake of I Spit on your Grave comes to Region A-locked US Blu-ray complete with a 1080p High Definition video rendition presented in the movie’s original theatrical aspect ratio of widescreen 2.35:1. Detail is generally very good indeed, maintaining clarity on everything from the close-ups to the longer shots, and doing so with no softness, and no comparative edge enhancement issues. There’s no digital artefacting, a little minor banding, but a generally clean slate throughout. The colour scheme is intentionally dour, the contrasted biased correspondingly, but skin tones come across extremely well, and the blue-dominated palette still renders some vibrant greens and solid, deep blacks. There’s no 3D pop, per se, and the filmmakers have gone for a rather ‘clean’ approach, with little in the way of on-screen noise – i.e. filmic grain – but overall it’s a solid enough transfer for a modern production.
On the aural front we get an equally solid but also equally unexceptional Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track which makes for a perfectly acceptable accompaniment to the proceedings. Dialogue – from the whispers and ‘strange noises in the night’ to the shouts and screams, comes across clearly and coherently throughout, although it seldom breaks free of the frontal array even for off-screen calls. The effects are mostly atmospheric, ranging from the occasional gunshot, to slicing and other torture-related noises, all coming across that little bit too authentically for comfort. You can positively hear that lye-water fizzle when it touches skin. The surrounds still don’t get a great deal to do, but do provide a reasonable atmosphere for the creaky, somewhat eerie woodland setting, and the rears only see action from the score, and, even then, it comes across as quite minimal. Still, this approach largely works for the material on offer. The LFE output could do with a kick, as there are only a couple of effects that really warrant anything particularly notable, but overall it’s a perfectly solid, if far from standout aural rendition.
First up we get a full-length audio commentary with the director Steven R. Monroe, and the producer Lisa Hansen, who provide an interesting and informative discussion on the project, the differences between this remake and the original movie, the changes made for the various cuts of the movie, and the difficulties that they had putting it all together. It’s quite an honest affair, but you still have to appreciate that these guys clearly loved their production, and that obviously comes through in some parts of the commentary. A decent listen for those who actually enjoyed the movie.
The Revenge of Jennifer Hills: Remaking of a Cult Icon runs at just 6 minutes in length but you should be able to tell everything just from the title (an abbreviation of the alternative title to the original: The Rape and Revenge of Jennifer Hills). This is just a standard, remarkably fluffy – for its runtime – Featurette which misses the point much like the film did. Still, if you want the usual interview soundbites and behind the scenes snippets, then that’s what you get.
Here we get some 12 minutes’ worth of extra footage, extending the bridge sequence, the search sequence, and some of the later scenes in the movie. It still doesn’t fully explain how the hell Jennifer survived the ordeal and put together all that elaborate torture stuff, and I can’t honestly see who would be interested in trawling through these excisions to a movie which would have been better off left on the cutting room floor itself.
Finally we get a bunch of trailers, TV spots and radio spots for the main feature, as well as some Previews on disc startup.
Unpleasant, unsatisfying, and utterly redundant, it was a foolish task to try and remake the 70s cult nasty I Spit on your Grave (aka Day of the Woman), particularly when the original still remains – to this day – a truly horrific and harrowing experience. There was some room for improvement in terms of script, story, style and budget; but whilst this new production provides all of those elements, it lacks one vital component from the relatively cheap-looking original – heart. Without this you truly don’t care for the lead character, and find yourself enduring her journey rather than encouraging her on it. With far more emphasis on the torture porn aspect of the story, and thus far more in common with Hostel or Saw, 2010’s I Spit on your Grave will appeal much more to gore hounds than fans of a good movie.
On Region A-locked US Blu-ray we do get the uncut, unrated version of the movie (even if this largely just means more gore) presented with good video and audio and a selection of extras which should keep fans happy, but this is one for those with insatiable curiosity only. If you’ve never seen either movie, and want to, and feel that you can stomach it, then seek out the original. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a sadistic, cold, female-driven Hostel-esque experience, then you might just find this right up your street.
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