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Event Horizon - Blu-ray DVD / science fiction DVD / horror / DVD review
EVENT HORIZON Rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America curledupdvd.com rating: 3 stars
Actors: Laurence Fishburne, Sam Neill, Kathleen Quinlan, Joely Richardson, Richard T. Jones
Director: Paul W.S. Anderson Distributor: Paramount
DVD release: 30 December 2008 Runtime: 96 min.
(1 disc)
Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, Subtitled, Widescreen, Blu-ray
DVD features: 1080p High Definition, Aspect ratio 2.35:1, Audio tracks (Dolby TrueHD 5.1 - English; Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround - French, Spanish), Subtitles (English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portugese), Commentary (dir. Paul W.S. Anderson, producer Jeremy Bolt), The Making of Event Horizon (5 Documentaries), The Point Of No Return: The Filming Of Event Horizon (w/ director commentary), Secrets (w/ selectable director commentary), The Unseen Event Horizon (w/ director commentary), Theatrical Trailer HD, Video Trailer

The spacecraft Lewis and Clark has been dispatched to go into deep space near Neptune, where the experimental ship Event Horizon that disappeared seven years ago on its maiden voyage has resurfaced. Captain Miller (Laurence Fishburne) leads the team, and the designer who created the Event Horizon, Dr. William Weir (Sam Neill), is along to provide special info as needed. I don't think it's ever a good idea to bring this kind of expert along, but never mind.

The captain, crew, and Dr. Weir jump into water-filled chambers water to slingshot out to Neptune and salvage the Horizon. As soon as they arrive, the strangeness begins. Weir sees his wife, who's probably been dead for a bit. Miller sees a man whose death he may be at least partially responsible for. Things are weird: it may have to do with the gravity drive used by the Event Horizon to create a black hole and instantly transport itself to anywhere in the universe.

Director Paul W.S. Anderson does an excellent job of creating a haunted house floating in the backwaters of the solar system. It's akin to being out on that lonesome farmhouse on a dark, stormy night. What could possibly be rapping on the door way out here? So few space films provide the claustrophobia and danger of space seen in Event Horizon. It's dangerous business traveling in the vacuum of space. There's a finite amount of oxygen, and it's not too hard to die.

The beautifully-built space vessel models are honored in this Blu-ray presentation. The shot at the beginning backing out from Dr. Weir's window in the space station past the other mechanical bits of the ship is awesome - I ran through it a couple of times to really appreciate it. There's a beautiful fly-by when the Event Horizon is first encountered, too. The deep rumbling of the engines and the ship noises, explosions and audio bigness, if you will, of Event Horizon is excellent and beautifully presented in True HD audio.

The bonus features take the form of interviews years after the making of the film. These days, a big part of the production of big-budget films is the filming of the special features for the DVD/Blu-ray release. Event Horizon was released in 1997 before this was done much, so the retrospective making-of without accompanying behind-the-scenes video is a bit dry. Some extra scenes not used in the film needed to be transferred from video tape for the features. Could have been better, but still worth seeing to discover the foundations of this film.

The first time I saw Event Horizon, I remember thinking the water bottle and various debris floating around in zero-G looked pretty cool. It was obviously computer-generated, but it looked good. Seeing it now, with 10 years of CG imagery advancement behind us, it seems gratuitous and showy. Funny how times change.

Event Horizon is probably the best space/horror film out there, and if blood, guts and space suits are your bag, you're in for a treat.
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reviewed by Eric Renshaw
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