Blu-Ray Rating: **

Reviewed by: James Gracey

Read James Gracey's film review of Poltergeist

Poltergeist is presented here in a new digital transfer from regenerated picture elements, with its soundtrack remastered in Dolby Digital 5.1. Special features are scarce though, and come in the form of two part documentary They Are Here: The Real World of Poltergeists Revealed. Part one, Science of the Spirits, features interviews with mediums, anthropologists and paranormal investigators discussing various technological approaches to ghost-hunting. Part two, Communing with the Dead, looks at more metaphysical methods of paranormal investigation, such as mediums, clairvoyants, and those who are able to channel spirits. Both feature clips from the film, and several of the interviewees cite viewing Poltergeist as a defining moment in deciding their career.

Sadly, there’s nothing about Poltergeist itself; no ‘making of’, no ‘behind the scenes’, no audio commentary. This release could really have benefitted by providing a little more. Since its release, Poltergeist has generated debate regarding who actually called the shots during filming - producer Spielberg, or director Hooper. A look into this could have been interesting. Poltergeist has not only had an overwhelming impact on horror cinema, but on mainstream pop-culture. A look at this would have been fascinating. Another, arguably more sensationalist idea would be a feature looking at the tragedy behind the series, with the deaths of various cast members sparking rumours and lore of a cursed film production. There’s also scope to look at the other films in the series, perhaps even the spin-off TV series, which is apparently set to receive a reboot. As it is though, the two part feature, while certainly not without merit, is a rather paltry offering.

Copy picture Reviewed on: 12 Sep 2014
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Story of spooks in suburbia gets a silver anniversary DVD release.
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Read more Poltergeist disc reviews:

Amber Wilkinson: DVD

Region: 0

Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1

Extras: They Are Here: The Real World of Poltergeists Revealed

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