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The Ginger Snaps Trilogy (Limited Edition) (Blu-ray Review)


The Film (Ginger Snaps)
The Film (Ginger Snaps 2)
The Film (Ginger Snaps 3)
The Video (All Films)
The Audio (All Films)
The Supplements


Three horror films that turn the werewolf tropes on their heads, with a story of two teenage Canadian sisters confront lycanthropy.

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

The Ginger Snaps Trilogy includes the three films in this werewolf horror franchise, starting with the original Ginger Snaps (2000). This first film concerns two teenage sisters, Ginger (Katharine Isabelle) and her quiet, goth-girl sister Brigitte (Emily Perkins) in the fictional Canadian suburb of Bailey Downs. The town is just like any other suburb, with kids playing street hockey, people mowing their lawns, and a werewolf on the loose. Wait, what? Yes, there has been a legend in the town about “The Beast of Bailey Downs” and with good reason, as something has been savagely attacking pets and even people.

Ginger and Brigitte spend their days suffering teen angst, pubescent anxieties, and staging gruesome death scenes which they photograph. Their mother Pamela (Mimi Rogers) is oblivious to much of their activities, which is why, on the night Ginger gets her first period, and Ginger is attacked by The Beast, she does not notice as Ginger begins slowly transforming into a werewolf. Her behavior changes, she becomes highly oversexed, and prone to violent outbreaks.  This original film sets the tone for the franchise, reworking many of the testosterone-fueled tropes from the genre into a story of feminine empowerment and the connection between puberty, menstruation, and bodily changes for a girl.

The second film, Ginger Snaps 2: Unleashedsets the story directly after the events of the first film. Brigitte is in hiding and eventually winding up in an institution for drug addiction when she is mistaken for a heroin addict due to her track marks from injecting a homemade remedy to keep her from metamorphosing into a werewolf. Inside, she is harassed by an unscrupulous orderly who trades drugs to the girls in the facility for sexual favors. She is also being stalked by another werewolf who wants to mate with her, and she makes friends with a strange young girl named Ghost (Tatiana Maslany). This second film expands the mythology of the franchise but is not as effective in reworking the tropes. The setting of a psychiatric facility feels very typical for a horror film and the connection between coming of age and the changes brought on by becoming a werewolf are not as defined. There is also a much smaller role for Katharine Isabelle, although she does make some appearances.

The third and final film in the franchise, Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning is the film with the most typical, almost gothic setting for a werewolf film. This is a prequel to the two earlier films. Set in the 19th century, two sisters (Katharine Isabelle and Emily Perkins) find themselves wandering lost in the snowy wilderness when they are rescued by a man who takes them to a nearby outpost whose supplies have been running out. As the sisters bide their time in the outpost, surrounded by the hostile, testosterone of men who have not seen a woman in months, and a Bible-thumping preacher, the outpost comes under attack by werewolves. This final film is the most traditional of the three films and it loses the feminist narrative of the first two films under all the atmosphere and period drama, but the two actresses are as good as ever together, while the production design and filming are excellent.

In all, these three films provide a riveting entry in the ongoing universe of werewolf films and stories. They admittedly decrease in quality as far as the storytelling goes, but each film is still worth watching and worth being a part of your spooky season movie marathons.

  • Katharine Isabelle and Kris Lemche in Ginger Snaps (2000)
  • Nick Nolan and Emily Perkins in Ginger Snaps (2000)
  • Wendii Fulford, Danielle Hampton, and Katharine Isabelle in Ginger Snaps (2000)
  • Katharine Isabelle and Emily Perkins in Ginger Snaps (2000)
  • Ginger Snaps Trilogy (Limited Edition) (Second  Sight)
  • Ginger Snaps Trilogy (Limited Edition) (Second Sight)

The Video

Each film in the trilogy is given a 1.78:1 AVC 1080p encodement on Blu-ray. The 35mm film source, shot on the Arriflex 535, for each film looks very filmic and organic. The original film as the softest look, but the difference in picture quality and the production is minimal across the three films. Flesh tones look very natural, even as the overall color reproduction in muted. The images are clean with little to no issues concerning source damage.

The Audio

All three films in this collection come with English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and 2.0 stereo mixes. I watched mostly in 5.1 with samplings of the 2.0 mixes. The 5.1 is mixed in a way that works for a horror film, with a good balance of atmospherics and foley effects mixed through the surrounds, a wide stereo image across the front, and natural dynamic range. Low-end feels and sounds like it is only extending probably into the mid depths of the lower range but has more than enough of a bottom end to give the action a good foundation.

The Supplements

Second Sight Films gives The Ginger Snaps Trilogy its typical premium treatment for its Limited Edition sets. It gets the high quality slipcase with new cover art, a 112-page book, and 5 collector’s art cards. The additional on-disc extras, including 5 audio commentaries and several new featurettes with interviews and looks behind-the-scenes.

Limited Edition Contents:

  • Rigid slipcase with new artwork by Michael Dunbabin
  • 112-page book with new essays by Meredith Borders, Kat Hughes, Dr Rachel Knightley, Mikel J Koven, Jolene Richardson, Zoë Rose Smith and Caelum Vatnsdal
  • 5 collectors’ art cards

Ginger Snaps:

Bonus Features:

  • Audio commentary by Mary Beth McAndrews and Terry Mesnard (New)
  • Audio commentary with director John Fawcett
  • Audio commentary with writer Karen Walton
  • A Blood Red Moon: An interview with director John Fawcett (1080p; 00:26:44) (NEW)
  • What Are You Wereing?: An interview with producer Steve Hoban (1080p; 00:24:39) (NEW)
  • The Art of Horror: An interview with storyboard artist Vincenzo Natali (1080p; 00:20:53) (NEW)
  • Canadian Uncanny: Stacey Abbott on Ginger Snaps (1080p; 00:14:08)
  • Ginger Snaps: Blood, Teeth, and Fur (1080p; 01:06:34)
  • Growing Pains: Puberty in Horror Films (1080p; 00:27:09)
  • The Making of Ginger Snaps (1080i; 00:04:50)
  • Cast Auditions and Rehearsals (720p; 00:17:45)
  • Deleted Scenes w/optional director’s or writer’s commentary (1080p; 00:25:02)
  • Production Design Work (1080p)
  • Creation of the Beast (720p; 00:04:58)
  • Trailers and TV Spots (1080p; 00:04:45)

Ginger Snaps: Unleashed:

Bonus Features:

  • Audio commentary with director Brett Sullivan, executive producers John Fawcett and Noah Segal, and producer Paula Devonshire
  • Girl Interrupted: An interview with director Brett Sullivan (1080p; 00:24:10) (NEW)
  • The Bloody Lunar Cycle: An interview with writer Megan Martin (1080p; 00:20:32) (NEW)
  • Behind the Scenes: Beast is Built (720p; 00:01:09)
  • Behind the Scenes: Locations (720p; 00:05:53)
  • Behind the Scenes: Special Make-Up (720p; 00:05:25)
  • Behind the Scenes: Practical Special Effects (720p; 00:01:44)
  • Behind the Scenes: Stunts (720p; 00:03:56)
  • Behind the Scenes: Fun on Set (720p; 00:04:16)
  • Deleted Scenes (1080p; 00:12:35)

Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning:

Bonus Features:

  • Audio commentary with director Grant Harvey, co-writer Steve Massicotte, and editor Ken Filewyth
  • Snap!: An interview with director Grant Harvey (1080p; 00:22:50) (NEW)
  • Girls on Film: An interview with producer Paula Devonshire (1080p; 00:19:59) (NEW)
  • Production Design (720p; 00:05:15)
  • Costume Design (720p; 03:29)
  • Blood, Guts, and Fire (720p; 00:08:33)
  • Wolfboy (720p; 00:01:53)
  • Fun on Set (720p; 00:03:41)
  • Deleted Scenes w/optional commentary by Grant Harvey, Steve Massicotte, and Ken Filewych (180p; 00:13:02)
  • Grant Harvey’s Video Diary (720p; 00:09:50)

The Final Assessment

Three high quality, independent Canadian horror films that bring something new to the werewolf genre. Second Sight Films provides solid transfers of each film on Blu-ray in a feature-rich collectible set.

The Ginger Snaps Trilogy (Limited Edition) is out on Blu-ray 30 October, 2023, from Second Sight Films.

  • Rating Certificate: UK: B
  • Studios & Distributors: Copperheart Entertainment | Water Pictures | Motion International | Canadian Television Fund | Téléfilm Canada | Space: The Imagination Station | The Movie Network (TMN) | Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit (CPTC) | Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit (OFTTC) | Casablanca Sound and Picture | Tattersall Sound | Oddbod Productions | TVA International | Second Sight Films
  • Directors: John Fawcett (Ginger Snaps) | Brett Sullivan (Ginger Snaps 2) | Grant Harvey (Ginger Snaps 3)
  • Run Time: 296 Mins.
  • Street Date: 30 October 2023
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Video Format: AVC 1080p
  • Primary Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1
  • Secondary Audio: English DTS-HD MA 2.0 Stereo
  • Subtitles: English HOH

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Three horror films that turn the werewolf tropes on their heads, with a story of two teenage Canadian sisters confront lycanthropy.The Ginger Snaps Trilogy (Limited Edition) (Blu-ray Review)