• Humanoids from the Deep (Scream Factory) Blu-ray Review + Screenshot Comparison + Trailer



    Studio: Scream Factory
    Release Date: May 16th, 1980 (theatrical) / July 30th, 2019 (blu-ray)
    Run Time: 80 mins
    Region Code: A (locked)
    Picture: 1080p (1.85:1 aspect ratio)
    Sound: English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
    Subtitles: English SDH
    Slipcover: No
    Digital Copy: No
    Starring: Doug McClure, Ann Turkel, Vic Morrow, Cindy Weintraub, Lynn Theel, and Anthony Pena
    Written by William Martin (Frederick James)
    Directed by Barbara Peeters
    Rating: Unrated (strong horror violence and gore, nudity, and language)

    NOTE: This review contains screenshot comparisons between the 2019 blu-ray release from Scream Factory and the 2010 blu-ray release from Shout! Factory. For every screenshot comparison, the 2019 blu-ray will be on the left, while the 2010 blu-ray will be on the right.

    THE FILM ⭐⭐⭐1/2


    Tensions run high in the seaside community of Noyo when a controversial new cannery promises to revitalize the traditional fishing economy with new jobs, new industry, and a scientifically augmented salmon population. As antagonism intensifies, a series of attacks by mysterious sea monsters threaten all the people in the town.

    1980 was a pretty big year for horror. The slasher boom started this year with the likes of Friday the 13th and Prom Night leading the way on that front. We also got classics like The Shining, The Changeling, and The Fog. It was a great year for horror but there is one film that people don't talk about very: Humanoids from the Deep.

    Produced by Roger Corman, through his New World Pictures production company, Humanoids from the Deep concerns a small town's inhabitants being picked off one by one by monsters from the sea. Well, the men are picked off. The women get raped but many of them also die. The guys have it way easier here.

    Being a big fan of monster movies, Humanoids from the Deep is right up my alley. The monsters have a cool look to them and they don't really take any shit from anyone. That is unless you sneak up on them. They go down like lead balloons. The monsters were designed by Rob Bottin, who doesn't get nearly enough praise, especially when Rick Baker or the guys from KNB are brought up. Bottin created the effects for films like The Howling, John Carpenter's The Thing, Robocop, and Total Recall for God's sake. This man's work repulsed me as a kid and the only thing he has showing for it (other than all the work he, mind you) is a bunch of YouTube wannabes pronouncing his last name wrong. (Its BOE TEEN, not BOT TIN). The effects are equally as disgusting as his latter work with one effect, the guy popping out of the water with half a face, that made me jump the first time I saw it.


    The score is equally as great. The late James Horner composed his third ever feature film score here and you would swear that it belongs in a different, bigger film. Horner, in the making of, found on the disc, says that Corman didn't want small scores nor did he want the score to be campy. He wanted a serious score and Horner delivered. I love this score so much that I bought it when was released on CD years ago.

    Humanoids from the Deep gets a bum wrap for have pacing problems (which I don't agree with one bit) as well as having structure problems (this is true. The film was shot as one thing and then reworked into what we have.) These problems are small as the film is a lot of fun to watch. The characters are also likable, something you really can't say for most characters in horror films these days. Humanoids is a really fun monster flick from back when you could make a film for a few hundred thousand dollars and it would still look and feel like it meant something.

    THE PICTURE AND THE SOUND ⭐⭐⭐1/2 / ⭐⭐⭐


    Featuring a brand new 4K transfer from the original camera negative, and presented in the film’s original aspect ratio of 1.85:1, Humanoids from the Deep looks great. Now, this isn’t the biggest leap in terms of picture quality over the 2010 Shout! Factory release, but it is a nice improvement nonetheless. Colors, skin tones, black levels, all of that is pretty much the same between the two releases. They do change, but not that much in the grand scheme of things. No, the biggest change is actually two-fold. One, you have the film in its correct aspect ratio. The 2010 blu-ray zoomed in on the picture slightly and removed the black bars on the top and bottom to get to that 1.78:1 aspect ratio. The 2019 blu-ray zooms out and keeps the black bars. I think that it gives the film a better presentation.

    The second change is the film grain. The 2010 blu-ray, the grain looks unnatural and chunky. The 2019 blu-ray fixes that with a very nice, natural grain structure. You can definitely tell this film was actually shot on film whereas the 2010 blu-ray looked a bit too processed.

    The sound comes in the form of a DTS-HD Master Audio track and the results are good. Dialogue can be hard to hear from time to time while the effects and James Horner’s fantastic score are heard loud and clear.

    THE PACKAGING ⭐⭐⭐1/2

    This new blu-ray release comes inside of a really nice SteelBook package with brand new artwork from Laz Marquez. I really like the look of the SteelBook as it stands out from other SteelBooks made by companies just trying to cash in on easily duped collectors (I'm looking at you Warner Brothers).

    The disc is REGION A (locked)

    THE FEATURES ⭐⭐⭐

    The Making of Humanoids from the Deep (22m 45s, HD)

    Deleted Scenes (5m 44s, HD)

    Leonard Maltin Interview with Roger Corman (3m 27s, SD, 1.33:1)

    Theatrical Trailers (4m 37s, HD, 1.78:1/1.33:1)

    Television Spot (34s, HD, 1.78:1)

    Radio Spot (35s, HD) Same audio from the TV Spot. Weird.

    Still Image Gallery (6m 34s, HD) Dead silent montage of stills.

    While the other Corman films that Scream Factory has released on blu-ray (Piranha, Galaxy of Terror, etc) have come with a ton of special features, the features here feel a bit empty. The making of feels like it is just part of a bigger making of. Same thing with the Roger Corman interview. Doing some research, I have found out that there is a German blu-ray that contains more special features, including a commentary with editor Mark Goldblatt, and two more interviews. Why these are not on this disc, especially due to the fact that they were produced by the same company that produced the features found on this disc (Red Shirt Pictures) is beyond me. Still, the features aren't bad. I do like the making of and the deleted scenes are interesting for the fact that Corman actually allowed his filmmakers to film nudity and gore but not include it.

    THE CONCLUSION ⭐⭐⭐


    I love Humanoids from the Deep. Sure, it has its problems, like structure problems, but the film is a lot of fun with some great gore effects. This SteelBook edition of the film is something that fans should pick up and horror fans should look into getting. The price is right on this one and I recommend it to any horror fan, really.




    THE SCREENSHOTS




















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