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UNIVERSAL

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Jack Arnold
Cast:
John Agar, Lori Nelson, John Bromfield
Writing Credits:
Martin Berkeley

Synopsis:
Men capture the creature from the Black Lagoon and make him an aquarium attraction, from which he escapes.

MPAA:
Rated NR

DISC DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audio:
English DTS-HD MA Monaural
Subtitles:
English
Spanish
French
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles:
None

Runtime: 82 min.
Price: $29.98
Release Date: 8/28/18
Available as Part of the “Creature from the Black Lagoon Complete Legacy Collection”

Bonus:
• Both 2D and 3D Versions
• Audio Commentary with Film Historians Tom Weaver and Bob Burns and Actor Lori Nelson
• Trailer


PURCHASE @ AMAZON.COM

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RELATED REVIEWS


Revenge of the Creature [Blu-Ray/Blu-Ray 3D] (1955)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (December 17, 2018)

The first of two sequels to 1954’s Creature from the Black Lagoon, 1955’s Revenge of the Creature takes scientists back to the Amazon. There they seek to find the mysterious “gill-man” who they previously discovered.

Once found, the men capture the Creature and take him to a marine park in Florida. When the Creature spies scientist Helen Dobson (Lori Nelson), he falls in love and havoc ensues.

At the very least, Revenge deserves credit for its refusal to simply remake the original film. Sure, it recycles some elements - mainly via the Creature’s lust-filled motivation - but for the most part, it strikes out a new path for itself.

Given how many sequels tend to rehash plot lines, I appreciate the attempt to do something new, and the stateside location adds a nice touch. Rather than keep the Creature isolated in the Amazon, we see him in a new habitat, with all the potential intrigue and drama that may result.

Unfortunately, little intrigue and drama actually do result, as Revenge seems oddly bloodless. Whereas the first film offered a fairly taut little thriller, Revenge meanders and lacks a lot of obvious purpose.

While I appreciate aspects of the US setting, Revenge loses some tension due to the relative safety of this locale. In the original, the humans found themselves isolated in the Amazon and more subject to the Creature’s whims.

With Revenge, however, the breadth of the Florida location robs the tale of much potential menace. Unlike a Jurassic Park T-rex, for example, the Creature lacks much ability to truly terrorize the population, so we don’t fear his escape among the locals.

As a result, Revenge attempts to milk excitement from the threat the Creature poses to Helen, and that recycled element from the first movie feels trite. Helen never becomes much of a character and we don’t care what happens to her, so her plight and the Creature’s actions don’t add up to much.

As a sequel, Revenge comes with some good moments, and I like its novel components. However, the overall package lacks the thrills of its predecessor, so this becomes a mediocre film.

Footnote: Clint Eastwood makes his film debut as a somewhat dopey scientist. This doesn’t become “blink and you’ll miss him” territory, but Eastwood fails to get much screen time.


The Disc Grades: Picture C/ Audio B-/ Bonus C+

Revenge of the Creature appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This turned into a mostly bland presentation.

Sharpness acted as the main drawback. Some shots demonstrated fairly good clarity, but a lot of the movie came across as moderately soft.

No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, and I saw enough grain that I didn’t fear digital noise reduction created issues. Print flaws also failed to mar the proceedings.

Blacks looked decent, though they could seem a bit mushy, and shadows came across as acceptably clear but no better. Though not a bad image, this one lacked much clarity.

Expect an era-appropriate DTS-HD MA monaural soundtrack from Revenge. Speech seemed a bit brittle, but the lines appeared intelligible and without obvious edginess.

Music offered reasonable oomph and clarity, while effects came across with adequate accuracy and range. No background noise or distractions occurred. This became a more than acceptable mix for its age.

This Blu-ray includes both the film’s 2D and 3D versions. The picture comments above reflected the 2D edition – how did the 3D compare?

In terms of picture quality, both versions looked about the same. I saw similar issues with definition in the two renditions, so the 3D edition appeared virtually the same in this regard.

As for the stereo imaging, Revenge worked pretty well, especially during underwater sequences. Those used 3D nicely to submerge us in the action and create a satisfying environment.

A few segments allowed for effective “pop-out” material. In particular, the Creature’s “training” meant we saw various sticks poke out of the screen in a fun manner.

Above-sea scenes showed pretty good imaging as well, mainly in regard to depth. A quick shot of a jazz band allowed for a trombone to stick out at us, though. While this didn’t become the best 3D presentation I’ve seen, it added spark to the proceedings.

In addition to the film’s trailer, we get an audio commentary with actor Lori Nelson and historians Bob Burns and Tom Weaver. All three sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story/characters, costumes and effects, cast and performances, stunts and underwater scenes, sets and locations, and related domains.

Weaver chatted on his own for the track that went with the original Creature, and while I like this commentary, I wish he’d stayed solo. Weaver’s Creature discussion delivered a terrific affair, whereas this one just seems pretty good.

Still, I’ll take “pretty good”, as this commentary manages to cover the film in a fairly effective way. We get a nice mix of perspectives and find a likable chat.

As a horror sequel, Revenge of the Creature seems serviceable. While it shows some creativity, it lacks much real tension or drama. The Blu-ray brings mediocre picture, reasonably good audio and a largely informative commentary. Revenge becomes a watchable flick but no better than that.

As of fall 2018, Revenge of the Creature can be purchased as part of a three-film “Creature from the Black Lagoon Complete Legacy Collection”. In addition to Revenge, we find The Creature from the Black Lagoon and The Creature Walks Among Us.

In addition, Revenge comes in the “Universal Monsters Complete 30-Film Collection”. It actually packages the Creature set mentioned above with similar compilations for other Universal Monsters.

Note that the first pressing of Revenge came with a severe flaw, as its 3D rendition split the screen into two identical images. Universal corrected this error and the version you order should come with the fixed disc, but if not, you can contact Universal for a replacement.

Viewer Film Ratings: 3.5 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main