Top positive review
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"No, Hill didn't kill me...he didn't have the guts."
on February 21, 2001
OK, so Bride of Re-Animator isn't as good as the original, but as fans know, that was a pretty hard act to follow. I didn't really appreciate this movie as much until I rented this special edition DVD and was blown away! First of all, this movie has the second most hilarious commentary track (the one with Jeffrey Combs and Dan Abbott, as Dr. West and Dr. Cain) I have every heard (the funniest was Evil Dead 2, limited edition-I don't think anything can top that).
I should also point out here in all fairness that I'm a complete Re-animator geek, I saw it in the theater in 1985 and was hooked; I've probably watched it more than any other horror movie-at least 50 times in the last 15 years. I almost broke my legs in my haste getting to the video store when their copy of the sequel came in I was so excited. I was slightly disappointed, but I did have very high expectations. The last 20 minutes or so were pretty impressive, but the prologue I was so psyched to see (more on that later) was completely gone.
When I rented this DVD special edition, though, I decided to actually pick up a copy. Not only; was the commentary by the actors hilarious, but both of the actors, especially Combs, go into interesting details like how the scene was shot,; and even going into the character's motivations. Combs even remembers some of his lines (with the exact inflections he delivered them in), which didn't make me feel like such a geek. You can tell he had a blast making the movie and really enjoyed it. Lines that never struck me as especially amusing before such as Dr. West saying, "My God...they're using tools!" were hilarious when the actor made a few comments afterwards. Anyway, if you're a diehard Re-animator "superfan" (hey,it sounds better than "geek") like me, you HAVE to see this special edition. I can't say enough good things about the commentary-I realize I sound like a broken record now as well as a movie geek, but again, you have to see it for yourself to really appreciate it.
The disc is absolutely packed with cool-a$$ extras-it's one of the double-sided ones, so be sure to check out the other side. Some of the highlights include the unrated version- it doesn't have a whole lot of extra gore, less than a minute, but it's pretty jaw dropping (several more seconds of the climactic meltdown). It includes great behind the scenes footage, (you haven't laughed till you've seen a behind-the-scenes shot of David Hale as Dr. Hill in full make-up, casually playing poker with a pair of bat wings sewed to his head) and a breakdown of a sequence where the detective actually finds Dr. Hill in a sideshow where he's advertised as "The Talking Head From the Miskatonic Massacre" (apparently, he followed West's advice from the first movie).
But the real gem is the deleted original sequence where Dan re-animates Meg (hint: it doesn't go real smoothly). It's sort of a rough cut, but very satisfying- I read about the opening in Fangoria before the movie came out and thought, "man, I can't WAIT to see that-perfect!", so I was really disappointed when it was cut. In fact, it's worth the price of the DVD just to finally get to see Combs as Dr. Herbert West utter the immortal line: "No, Hill didn't kill me...he didn't have the guts." YEAH BABY! I waited over 10 years to hear Jeffrey Combs say that line, and by God, it was worth it. Why they cut the opening, I have no idea. Ah, the invention of the DVD special edition -one of technology's greatest achievements (for us movie fans anyway).
So, if you're a big Combs fan, a big Stuart Gordon fan, a hard-core fan of the first movie, or all of the above like me, this is a must-add to your collection. Even if you weren't that blown away by the first movie, you'll love this special edition- trust me on this. Much, much better than I expected.
Date. Mate. Re-animate.