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Scanners II: The New Order [UK] Blu-ray Review

scanners-II-uk-blu-ray-coverUnited-Kingdom-Flag-Orb-Icon-32px

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.0 (48kHz/16-bit), English LPCM 2.0 (48kHz/16-bit)
  • Subtitles: English SDH
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: B (Region-Locked)
  • Certificate: 18
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Digital Copies: N/A
  • Run Time: 103 Mins.
  • Studio: Second Sight Films
  • Blu-ray Release Date: April 8, 2013
  • List Price: £15.99

 

Overall
[Rating:2.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:1.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:0/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(The below 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:1.5/5]

Scanners-II-UK-BD_01

Temper your expectations going into Scanners II: The New Order if you’ve already seen its predecessor, the David Cronenberg cult classic Scanners. This sequel is mere B-movie genre buff fodder that completely lacks the style and vision of Cronenberg, who managed to take the low budget horror film and elevate to a level of style and sophistication not often seen in the genre. Director Christian Duguay and writer B.J. Nelson keep things simple, action-oriented, and almost at comic book level for this second go round. A good versus evil story involving an evil police chief looking to take over control of the city with an army of scanners (people with telepathic and telekinetic powers), it comes down to one idealistic scanner, David (David Hewlett) to thwart his nefarious plans.

While the acting more often than not tips over into campiness, it does manage to stay true to genre expectations. Actor Raoul Trujillo, who plays the evil henchman scanner Drak, in particular stands out whenever he uses his “abilities.” He seems like he’s about half-a-second away from an aneurism. The cinematography, courtesy of Rodney Gibbons, lacks the flare and sleekness of Mark Irwin’s, although he does his best to imitate it. Of course, the film contains the expected dose of low budget, practical visual effects that aren’t any less disappointing than those of the first film, which help it maintain a certain level of credibility.

Video Quality

[Rating:2.5/5]

Scanners-II-UK-BD_02

Unlike the rather decent looking transfer of the original Scanners from Second Sight Films, Scanners II is a letdown, just like the film itself. This AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encodement is very soft, grainy, and shows definite issues with video noise, particularly in the darker areas of the image.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Scanners-II-UK-BD_03

Scanners II gets a LPCM 2.0 (48kHz/16-bit) stereo track and a DTS-HD 5.0 (48kHz/16-bit) surround track. Dialogue is clear and dynamics are good in either track, although the stereo track is, like in Scanners, a bit forward and boxy. This time around, however, the 5.0 track seems to have a little more low end, despite the absence of the LFE, but balance is a little bit off. Although the surround channels are populated with just an abundance of ambience, some more discrete sounds occasionally seem to “escape” to the sides. This is a little off-putting.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:0/5]

Scanners-II-UK-BD_04

Zip. Probably inline with the quality of the film in general, this release gets naught for its supplemental materials.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:2.5/5]

Scanners-II-UK-BD_05

Scanners II pushes no boundaries and its plot goes through a ridiculously circuitous route to make a back connection to the original film, but for fans of the genre it is a respectable entry, even if it hardly reaches the same level of quality.

Additional Screen Captures

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Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.co.uk

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Scanners-II-UK-BD_08

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Scanners-II-UK-BD_10

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[amazon-product region=”uk” tracking_id=”bluraydefinit-21″]B00BGS0C1C[/amazon-product]

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.co.uk

Overall
[Rating:2.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:1.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:0/5]

 

 

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Couldn’t agree more about video quality. This looks like a crappy VHS quality wise, and it not even close to what Blu Ray sohuld be.

    I don’t agree with you about how good the film is. It sucks and is not even close to the original in terms of story, cinematography, and acting.

    Save your money.

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