Kolobos appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The image was watchable but erratic.
Sharpness became one of the inconsistent elements. Much of the film showed fairly good accuracy, but more than a few oddly soft shots occurred. Definition lacked real consistency.
No signs of jagged edges or shimmering materialized, and I saw no edge haloes. As for print flaws, I noticed a couple of specks but nothing else, though grain seemed abnormally heavy.
Blacks were too dense and inky, whereas contrast felt off, as the movie usually appeared too bright. Shadows showed decent delineation, though the overly bright feel meant they didn’t come across as especially natural.
The brightness also impacted colors, as these tended to see pale. The film’s palette tended toward a semi-yellowish impression, and the hues lacked real depth or impact. This was all still good enough for a “C”, but the movie never offered strong visuals.
Don’t expect much from the flawed DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, as it came with a few concerns. The soundscape itself tended to lack ambition, so most of the audio concentrated on the forward channels.
In that domain, music spread across the speakers, but these elements didn’t demonstrate especially concise stereo presence. In addition, localization of dialogue became an issue, as speech blended across the front channels in a mushy, awkward manner.
Effects used the five speakers in a wide but rarely precise way. These components didn’t attempt a lot and when they did, they failed to convey a vivid setting.
Not only did the mix lack ambition, but also it suffered from mediocre quality. Dialogue tended to be thin and edgy, and effects showed poor foley work. Balance was off, which meant quiet elements – like simple walking sound effects – became too loud.
This meant those elements came across as awkward and unnatural. The mix usually offered an odd “canned” sound that created distractions.
Music fared best, as the score felt reasonably vivid. Otherwise, this was an awkward, amateurish soundtrack that fell below 1999 standards.
As we shift to extras, we find an audio commentary with writers/directors Daniel Liatowitsch and David Todd Ocvirk. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story/characters, the film’s title, cast and performances, sets and locations, effects, and related domains.
At times, the track manages a decent array of moviemaking thoughts. However, the directors too often do little more than joke around, and I can’t claim we learn a whole lot about the film’s creation. There’s enough here to merit a listen but the commentary largely underwhelms.
A short film entitled Superhelden runs 10 minutes, six seconds. A Super 8 flick Liatowitsch created at the age of 12, it depicts some kids who start a rock band to impress girls.
Superhelden seems more professional than you might expect from this kind of project, but it feels oddly pointless. It remains unclear what Liatowitsch hoped to achieve with the film – other than to impress girls, which is a pretty good motive at 12 or any age, really!
We can view the film with or without commentary from Liatowitsch. He gives us some background for the movie and some tragic connections that make it personal to him as well as its impact on Kolobos. This turns into a surprisingly strong chat.
Four featurettes follow, and we open with Real World Massacre. It goes for 22 minutes, 10 seconds and includes notes from Liatowitsch, Ocvirk, and co-writer Nne Ebong.
“Massacre” discusses the movie’s path to production, inspirations/influences, casting, photography, sets and locations, character design and various effects, editing, reshoots and release. Although “Massacre” repeats some info from the commentary, it provides a much more concise, direct view of the production, so it becomes a pretty strong examination of the film.
With Face to Faceless, we locate a nine-minute, 44-second interview with actor Ilia Volok. The man behind “Faceless”, he tells us about his performance and experiences during the shoot. While not the most insightful program, we get a few good thoughts.
Next comes Slice & Dice, an eight-minute, 37-second reel with composer William Kidd. He brings a nice discussion of his score for the film.
Finally, we get Rediscovering Kolobos, a five-minute, 52-second look at a 2018 fan screening in the UK. It includes a unique message from the directors but otherwise seems forgettable.
In addition to two trailers – one 1999, one 2014 – we get an Image Gallery. It provides 31 photos from the shoot and gives us a brief but fun look at the production.
Nothing about the premise of Kolobos dooms it to failure, but the film’s execution acts as its cause of death. Amateurish and over-done, the movie lacks any kind of scares or tension. The Blu-ray comes with erratic picture and audio as well as a fairly informative compilation of supplements. As a movie, Kolobos shows few signs of life.