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Steve Niles’ Remains Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1:78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
  • Subtitles: None
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: Unrated
  • Run Time: 88 Mins.
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • Blu-ray Release Date: August 7th, 2012
  • List Price: $22.99

Overall
[Rating:2/5]
The Film
[Rating:1.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

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:1.5/5]

Remains tells the story of Tori (Evalena Marie) and Tom (Grant Bowler), two Las Vegas junkies living out their days sniffing blow and having sex. A new day has come, but to these two it’s just another normal day of drugs. It turns out this particular day is an important one as this is the moment where a new nuclear energy source is set to be released to the world promising to bring a bold new utopian world. Wait one second, how often has this plot been seen before? Anyway, moving on. The day comes and goes, everything seems okay until a giant explosion rattles everything. Now, naturally I might add, everything is NOT okay. This ‘new’ energy didn’t bring world peace but, rather…wait for it…the living dead! With this genius plot, excellent results are sure to abound….right?

To the shock of the entire world, I’m sorry to report that Remains is a poor example of a horror film. The scares aren’t genuine, the acting is rather poor, the direction is stilted almost like the director didn’t know exactly what he was aiming for, and the plot is absolutely ludicrous. Okay, the idea of wanting to seek out a new energy source surely is relevant, but mixing in the zombie genre just doesn’t work. I can personally think of a bunch of better zombie apocalypse films (hell 28 Days Later anyone)?? Chalk this up as yet another bland example of a so-called ‘horror’ film.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

This 1:78:1 framed, AVC MPEG-4 encoded transfer offers up a solid result. The film’s palette does feature a few instances of solid color production, but mostly focuses on somewhat washed colors. Blues, reds, and blacks tend to dominate this transfer. Brighter moments, like that of exterior shots, look just fine, while darker moments do lose a bit of detail. Textures, and other finite detail like that of facial closeups or contrast levels seem to be accurate. There’s a slight layer of film grain present, but this just helps the film’s theme IMO. All in all, for a low budgeted film, this looks just fine.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3/5]

The provided DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 fares somewhat well. Dialogue, surprisingly, isn’t well reproduced throughout. There are instances where a character is speaking and, all of a sudden, there dialogue will just drop off moving toward the back… kind of in a fading manner. I’ve really seen anything like this before in a sound mix. Outside of this, the main problem here is the limitations a 2.0 mix places on the film. There are more than a few action sequences, ones that would clearly benefit from a fuller 5.1 mix. Gun shots lacked an overall punch, while the absence of LFE was sorely missed. All in all, I suppose this gets the job done.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2/5]

The included supplements are featured in High Definition:

  • Audio Commentary with Producer Andrew Gernhard, Director Colin Theys, Screenwriter John Doolan, and Makeup Supervisor Ben Chester
  • Short Film: Remains: Road to Reno, the prequel – This is broken down into three different episodes, running 3:19, 4:14, and 3:32 in length.
  • TV Spots – A few brief TV Spots, running 0:32, 1:03, and 1:02 are shown.
  • Behind-the-Scenes TV Spots – These offer up a few cast interviews, broken down into three different pieces, running 1:02, 0:32, and 0:32 in length.
  • Comic-Con Teaser- The film’s teaser from Comic-Con (1:02) is shown.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:2/5]

Chalk Remains up in the column with all the other bland, mundane, lacking any real imagination, zombie affairs. Shout!’s Blu-ray for the film is decent at best with a serviceable video transfer, a forgettable 2.0 mix, and a few features. Unless you’re a diehard zombie fan, avoid this one at all costs.

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase Steve Niles’ Remains on Blu-ray at CD Universe

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[amazon-product]B007RMQ508[/amazon-product]

Purchase Steve Niles’ Remains on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles on Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:2/5]
The Film
[Rating:1.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

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