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Blu-Ray Review: Scream Factory’s Urban Legends: Final Cut (Collector’s Edition)

Scream Factory's Urban Legends Final Cut

Adam goes back to College this time for Film School in the sequel Urban Legends: Final Cut being released in a Stacked Single-disc Blu-Ray Collector’s Edition by Scream Factory.

 

The Film

There has been plenty of horror series that have used its sequel to go Meta and create a film within a film inside their universe.  Wes Craven had done it successfully (see: A New Nightmare) but Urban Legends: Final Cut makes the choice to set their sequel in a film school.  Much like the original, the sequel’s combination of heightened melodrama and horror is a successful combination.  Urban Legends: Final Cut isn’t a great film but it sure is an entertaining one.

The film has only taken the central conceit of a killer using Urban Legends as their inspiration.  Urban Legends: Final Cut has taken to a new Giallo style central mystery.  When ace film student Travis (Matthew Davis) apparently commits suicide, his friend Amy (Jennifer Morrison) can’t let the feeling go that he’s been killed.  Amy suspects one it is possibly one of their fellow student filmmakers has actually made it look like a suicide. No sooner do bodies start piling up that Amy and Security Guard Reese (Loretta Devine) begin to investigate.  Jealousy, competition, second chances, nature documentaries, and nepotism all play a part in this new killer’s plan.

Taking a cue from original screenwriter Silvio Horta’s cheeky script, screenwriters Paul Harris Boardman and Scott Derrickson creates a film that’s equally witty.  Rather than being a direct sequel, they continue with a new set of characters all but Reese the security guard from the second film.  The film taking the melodrama and horror in equal measure does not have the inherent drama that the first does.  Though it does keep with its Giallo roots by having a character have a twin.  That reveal is one won’t be able to control their laughter, which isn’t a bad thing.  That “twist” and all of the twists and turns are not designed to be awe-inspiring but fun commentary on the entire enterprise of a sequel.

Director John Ottman keeps everything moving at such a brisk pace that one won’t notice even the largest of plot holes.  It does help that Ottman also composed and edited the film (he is by trade primarily a Composer and Editor).  There is polish to the detailed work in the film that is elevated because of Ottman’s time as an editor.  The story always manages to deliver its information on whom or what you aren’t supposed to trust with the precision of a laser.

By the film’s end as an additional sequence rolls during the credits, one will either be on board with the type of mania that Urban Legends: Final Cut delivers or will have already turned it off.  For those that have made it to the end credits, you will be on board for what unfortunately was never delivered in Urban Legends 3, what could have been.  The first two Urban Legends we do have are a brilliant mix of scares, laughs, and melodrama that any Giallo fan would be happy with.

The Transfer

Scream Factory’s partnership with Sony Pictures has only begun but this relationship has borne some of the best Transfers we have gotten out of Scream Factory yet.  This Transfer, as with the original film, appears to have been was culled from a 4K/2K master provided by Sony is gorgeous.  The film shot on 35mm is beautifully reproduced here in Hi-Def.  The grain structure, blacks, and contrast are perfectly rendered in a primarily night-shot film.  The transfer is clean of any blemishes, spots, dirt, or any other artifacts.  In a word, it’s gorgeous.

The Extras

They include the following:

  • The Legend Continues: Urban Legends: Final Cut Including Interviews With Producers Gina Matthews And Michael McDonnell, Executive Producers Nick Osborne And Brad Luff, Chairman And CEO Of Phoenix Pictures Mike Medavoy, Writer Silvio Horta, And Actors Loretta Devine And Rebecca Gayheart
  • Interview With Actress Jessica Cauffiel
  • Audio Commentary With Director John Ottman
  • Deleted Scenes With Optional Commentary By Director John Ottman
  • Vintage Making-Of Featurette
  • Gag Reel
  • Theatrical Trailer

The Commentary by John Ottman has been ported over from the initial DVD release back in 2001.   It’s a great informative track by the Editor/Composer on his Debut Feature Film as a Director.  The track is a bit sparse in places with sections where Ottman does not speak but he more than makes up for it with great information when he is discussing the film.

The Legend Continues –  Urban Legends: Final Cut like Urban Legacy on the Urban Legend Disc is a great behind the scenes documentary on the making of the sequel.  Though be warned, this is not as in-depth as the original’s doc.  This17-minute behind the scenes featurette is still good just nowhere near the detail of the 2.5-hour Urban Legacy.  Which is the only minor complaint, one wishes that it was longer even by double would have helped as everything seems a bit rushed in the featurette.

Also included is an interview with Jessica Cauffiel who plays the bad student actress in Sandra.  It’s a fun 16-minute interview with Cauffiel who discusses her acting career and the role itself.

The Making-of Featurette is approximately a 5-minutes long as it more of an afterthought or EPK than it is a worthy behind the scenes feature.   Though it is nice that it was included.

Deleted Scenes come with commentary by director Ottman.  The scenes were justifiably cut from the film.

Rounding out the special features is a Gag Reel and the Theatrical Trailer.

The Final Thought

Urban Legend: Final Cut gets the same deluxe treatment that the original has with great special features and most importantly an amazing Transfer.  Highest Possible Recommendation!!!

Scream Factory’s Blu-Ray of Urban Legend: Final Cut is out now

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