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Cold Creek Manor Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit), Portuguese & Russian Dolby Digital 5.1, French & Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: ABC  (Region-Free)
  • Rating: R
  • Run Time: 119 Mins.
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: Touchstone Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • List Price: $20.00

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:2/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:2/5]

If you’re looking for an intro course on “How to Make a Paint-by-Numbers Thriller,” then you’ve come to the right place. Mike Figgis’ 2003 film Cold Creek Manor is riddled with every hook in the book. The story is about the Tilsons (Dennis Quaid and Sharon Stone), a married couple who leave the hustle and bustle of New York City and relocate to a dilapidated “fixer-upper” in the country with their two kids (a rather young Kristen Stewart and Ryan Wilson) only to be greeted with animus by the locals. Already this is something we’ve seen many times over. Add in the the seemingly dangerous ex-con and former owner of the house Dale (Stephen Dorff) who the Tilson’s, knowing his past, hire on as a handyman anyway, plus a mystery surrounding the disappearance of his family, which for whatever reason, the documentarian Cooper Tilson (Quaid) just has to investigate, and this story never rises above a middling level of quality at best. The Gothic haunted house set pieces and angst-ridden marital woes of the Tilsons juxtaposed against the rivalry of city slickers versus the small town “plain-folk” also hinders what might have been an otherwise reasonably enjoyable horror/thriller.

Video Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

While Cold Creek Manor doesn’t look like it has been through any sort of extensive or expensive restoration process, there is a more than acceptable amount of quality in this transfer from Touchstone. The grain structure, while at times a little bit on the coarse side, looks natural and rarely gets to be overwhelming. It does help to impart a good bit of textural detail to the image that has strong foreground and midrange imagery; some shots look sharp as a tack. Overall contrast could have been improved just a bit as the image tends to get a little murky in darker scenes and never seems quite bright enough even in daylight, but it is still an enjoyable transfer.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

The soundtrack, in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit), is the strongest part of this release. As thrillers and horror films go, the atmospherics of the sound usually make or break the film, and, while this soundtrack isn’t enough to overcome the film’s weaknesses, it sure gives the film a great boost. There are ample sounds panned throughout the soundstage with good balance that add a sense of eeriness and mystery. The dynamics are spot on, from the most subtle sound to the loudest crash. Dialogue is also crystal clear.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2.5/5]

The extras on here provide no new material and are all ported over.

The supplements:

  • Audio Commentary with Director Mike Figgis.
  • Cooper’s Documentary (1.33:1; SD; 00:07:12)
  • Rules of the Genre (1.33:1; SD; 00:07:58)
  • Alternate Ending (1.33:1; SD; 00:04:14)
  • Deleted Scenes:
    • Introduction to Deleted Scenes
    • Mrs. Tilson’s Refreshments
    • The Snake Catchers
    • Trip to the Store
    • Last Rites
    • A Struggle at Devil’s Throat
    • The Staircase

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3/5]

You might as well just save this one for a rather slow, rainy weekend in and rent it, because it’s not really worth adding to your collection. There are far better films in this general genre, such as The Others, The Woman in Black, or The Innocents.

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase Cold Creek Manor on Blu-ray at CD Universe

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[amazon-product]B0088EDOIK[/amazon-product]

Purchase Cold Creek Manor on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3/5]
The Film
[Rating:2/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

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