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Killer Klowns from Outer Space 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 2.0, French Dolby Digital 1.0
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Run Time: 86 Mins
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Digital Copies: N/A
  • Studio: MGM
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 11, 2012
  • List Price: $16.99

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:3/5]

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:3.5/5]

Killer Klowns from Outer Space tells the story of a strange circus tent spaceship. Landing in the town of Crescent Cove, two teenagers in Mike (Grant Cramer) and Debbie (Suzanne Snyder) decide to investigate the oddity. Upon entering the ship, the duo immediately discover a wide array of clown machinery, from cotton candy machines to weird weapons. It’s at this moment that the ship’s inhabitants, killer klowns, leave the ship, entering into the night. Their goal? Why to kidnap humans and use them as food of course. Now it’s up to Mike and Debbie to alert the town before everyone is slowly eliminated. What results is a rather cheesy alien-ish movie that actually reminded me of Ernest Scared Stupid due to its occasional laugh-out-loud cheesiness.

The real enjoyment in a film like Killer Klowns is that the movie never once takes itself seriously. Instead of attempting to create something of Oscar caliber, Director Stephen Chiodo has made something that seems to have been completely forgotten about in the modern era of movie making. Have fun! As we watch this film, a sense comes across us via every little scene. We realize and know the actors are enjoying every moment they film and act in. It’s this lone aspect that made me think back to Ernest Scared Stupid. Actor Jim Varney, one could possibly assume, knew he wasn’t ever making a great film while filming the Ernest films. It’s this, like Killer Klowns, that make the Ernest movies so enjoyable. Yes, both films are over-the-top at moments. Yes, the plots make absolutely no sense. Yes, the films (when we think about it) are kind of dumb; however, it’s knowing that you’re just having fun doing what you love that makes me wish Hollywood still believed in this.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Killer Klowns from Outer Space arrives with a 1:85:1 framed, AVC MPEG-4 encoded transfer, which is quite solid for a film nearly 25 years old. The film’s color palette features a wide range of colors. From the reds and blues of the clowns’ masks, to the deep, dark blacks of some sequences, each of these colors are presented fairly well. I was impressed with just how much detail was present here, particularly that of the close-ups of the aforementioned klowns. We can easily make out their masks, each designed with intricate textures and attention to detail. The film’s print is in mostly good condition. There’s a fine layer of film grain present throughout, and I did detect a few blips and scratches on the print. All in all though, this is a solid effort from MGM.

Audio Quality

[Rating:2.5/5]

Featuring a DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mix, this newly added lossless track certainly shows its age. Dialogue, for the most part, is well reproduced in the phantom center. Outside of the dialogue, the main problem here is the lack of an overall impact. Atmosphere is all but absent and and real effects forced up front sound tinny and out of place. Take for instance a sequence that occurs around the 20:00 mark. During this scene, the film’s audio sounds as if it’s out of sync. Now, I’ve never seen this film outside of this viewing, so I’m not certain if this is a new Blu-ray issue or this was present on other releases. Regardless, I’d be lying if I said this didn’t take me out of the film. Due to this, I found the audio to be rather disappointing.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:3/5]

The included supplements are featured in Standard Definition:

  • Audio Commentary with the Chiodo Brothers –
  • The Making of “Killer Klowns” – This runs 21:40 and is a rather solid making of, detailing the entire production process.
  • “Komposing” Klowns – This runs 13:15 and features composer John Massari as he discusses the film’s score.
  • Visual Effects with Gene Warren, Jr.  – Supervisor Warren sits down (in 14:52) and speaks on the film’s design and effects.
  • Kreating Klowns – The film’s technical aspects are covered in 12:50.
  • Early Films – One of the Chiodo Brothers early films is shown here in 7:10.
  • Deleted Scenes – Roughly 4:36 worth of deleted scenes are shown here.
  • Bloopers – 2:49 worth of bloopers.
  • Auditions – 3:56 worth of early auditions, some of the folks who were underneath the masks.
  • Holy Smoke – A very brief 0:07 bit on television dubbing.
  • Trailer – The film’s trailer (1:53) is shown.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

Killer Klowns is just a fun, cheesy, good themed film. It’s not too over-the-top, yet not too dumb. MGM’s Blu-ray is a mixed bag though, with a fine video transfer but problematic audio. Luckily though, the provided supplements mixed in with the quality of the film make this one definitely worth picking up, especially for the low $7.99 price at Amazon.

Additional Screen Captures

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[amazon-product]B008MU8ZNO[/amazon-product]

Purchase Killer Klowns from Outer Space on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Killer Klowns from Outer Space

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

[amazon-product]B001Q5397O[/amazon-product]

[amazon-product]B008MU8ZNO[/amazon-product]

Purchase Killer Klowns from Outer Space on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Killer Klowns from Outer Space

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:2.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:2/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

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