The Children

The Children

DVD Rating: ***1/2

Reviewed by: Maria Realf

Read Anton Bitel's film review of The Children

The extras on this disc are the DVD equivalent of a side salad: nothing mind-blowing, but still a tasty accompaniment to the main course.

There are a handful of deleted scenes on the menu, including a cliched episode involving a dead cat (didn't director Tom Shankland ever hear the old adage about working with children and animals?) and a final shot that was wisely shelved in favour of the superior ending.

Copy picture

Meanwhile, the 'making of' piece and Working With Children featurette highlight just what a challenging project this was. It can't have been easy to coax such scary performances out of four child actors (and in the wrong hands, the disturbing storyline could have left the young stars needing years of therapy), but Shankland and his team have managed to cultivate some truly terrifying little characters.

It's also interesting to see inside Shankland's on-set lair, which gives you a glimpse into some of his working methods and creative inspiration. Judging from his photo-adorned walls and shot-by-shot storyboards, a huge amount of care and preparation went into this production - and it pays off handsomely.

Other extras include a forgettable location featurette and a closer look at the snow set design, revealing how those clever souls at Snow Business managed to create a white winter wonderland (all the better for spilling blood on, my dear). But by far the most fascinating feature is the behind-the-scenes peek at the gloriously gory prosthetics, faking everything from a broken leg to a horrific head injury. Just be warned: seeing Jeremy Sheffield with his 'scalp' flapping about could seriously put you off your popcorn...

Reviewed on: 06 Apr 2009
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The Children packshot
A seasonal house party turns sour after the children are hit by a virus that leads to violence.
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Product Code: VER51218

Region: 2

Ratio: 16:9

Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1

Extras: The Making Of The Children, Location Featurette, Paul Hyatt Talks Prosthetics, Snow Set Design Featurette, Tom Shankland’s On-Set Lair, Working With Children, deleted scenes

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