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Category:    Home > Reviews > Superhero > Animation > Horror > Supernatural > Comedy > Satire > Zombie > Monster > Batman: The Long Halloween 4K (2021/DC Comics/Warner 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki (1992/MVD/Unearthed Blu-ray)/The Munsters (2022/Universal Blu-ray)/Night Of The Living Dead

Batman: The Long Halloween 4K (2021/DC Comics/Warner 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki (1992/MVD/Unearthed Blu-ray)/The Munsters (2022/Universal Blu-ray)/Night Of The Living Dead 4K (1968/Criterion 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/They Crawl Beneath (2022/Well Go Blu-ray)

4K Ultra HD Picture: A- Picture: B+ Sound: B+/B+/B+/B-/B+ Extras: C+/C-/C+/B+/C- Films: B/C/B/B+/C+

More horror, old and new, just in time for the latest Halloween season....

Available previously as two separate Blu-rays only, the animated version of the classic Batman graphic novel, Batman: The Long Halloween 4K (2021), comes to the 4K UHD format in a combined double presentation. The story itself is an inspiration to Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight, and features many of the Dark Knight's most infamous villains including Joker, Solomon Grundy, Calendar Man, Catwoman, Harvey Dent, and more. This tale fuses the dangerous Gotham City Mobs and the creation of Two Face into an interesting narrative, and is known as one of the greatest Batman stories ever told.

Directed by Chris Palmer (Superman: Man of Tomorrow), the film also stays pretty close to the original graphic novel by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, and features eye popping animation that is pretty beautiful (including Gotham City itself), even if its more akin to the style of the '90s animated series than directly mimicking the style from the book. Simply put, if you're a Bat-Fan then you won't want to miss this.

This features the voice cast of Jensen Ackles as Batman, the late Naya Rivera as Catwoman, Josh Duhamel, Billy Buke, Titus Welliver, David Dastmalchian, and more.

Batman: The Long Halloween 4K is presented in 2160p on 4K UHD disc with HDR10, an HEVC / H.265 codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and a lossless audio track in English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 sound. The transfer does look a bit sharper and more defined than the previously released Blu-ray editions (reviewed elsewhere on this site.) And the animation is clean and professionally done as expected.

Special Features: BATMAN: THE LONG HALLOWEEN - EVOLUTION OF EVIL (New Featurette): The mystery surrounding the Holiday Killer shrouds Gotham in a sinister darkness forcing Batman to stop the villain's assault on the city. This is a comprehensive look at The Long Halloween with original writer, Jeph Loeb, and filmmakers.

Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki (1992) is a controversial Japanese horror film that is geared towards people with strong stomachs. The film centers on several characters with disturbing pasts that are haunted by a ghost that looks like a child. They soon learn they are pawns of the ghost that are used to carry out horrible acts that lead them down a path of madness.

The film stars Shoko Nakajima, Shiro Sano, Sei Hiraizumi, Kitaro, Jun Maeda, & Ryo Iwamatsu and is directed by Izo Hashimoto.

Evil Dead Trap 2 is presented in 1080p high definition on Blu-ray disc with an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and a nice sounding, lossless audio mix in Japanese DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Stereo with optional English subtitles. Unearthed has done a fine job of handing the restoration and it looks nice on disc.

Special Features: Photo Gallery and Trailers.

Rob Zombie is a filmmaker and musician that you either love or hate, and depending on how deep down the horror pop culture rabbit hole you are, the more you will pick up on some of the many subtle references throughout his body of work to other (often obscure) horror classics. 20 years in the making (just to obtain the rights to make the film), is his most watchable and polished film yet, The Munsters (2022) is actually a lot better than most film critics will give it credit for.

The Munsters is unlike anything else that Zombie has made as there is no foul language or gore in any of it, which I am sure was a slight challenge for him, as that has been a crutch he seems to weigh on. While nobody living could ever replace the original cast of The Munsters television series, this film does a good job with seeking less popular names for its cast and utilizing them in a fun and interesting way, partly due to restrictions of making this film during the pandemic. There are several times in the film where you can see that just about every actor played multiple roles, which is kinda fun. While The Munsters isn't for everyone, and it may be easy for some to dismiss it out the gate, and it's actually a film that this reviewer enjoyed more than most things out this year.

Instead of doing a direct translation of the show to screen, Zombie decided to tell a prequel story of how Herman and Lilly first met and fell in love, and gives a little insight on some burning questions about how The Munsters got to be who they are, and how they ended up on Mockingbird Lane in California to begin with. The film sets out with Richard Brake (a fabulous and underrated actor in his own right) playing a Mad Scientist who, along with his quirky assistant (Jorge Garcia), end up digging up various pieces to create his masterpiece (which ends up being Herman Munster played by Jeff Daniel Phillips). Meanwhile, Lilly (Sherri Moon Zombie) and her father The Count (the amazing Daniel Roebuck) are at odds with one another as Lilly needs to find a suitable mate. After some zany incidents, Lilly and Herman meet and fall in love, much to the dismay of The Count, and they end up becoming an odd ball family and have to soon leave their spooky home of Transylvania and head to Hollywood thanks to Lilly's cousin Lester (Tomas Boykin), who made a bum deal with a gypsy.

The film also features Elvira herself Cassandra Peterson, Butch Patrick (the original Eddie Munster as The Tin Can Man), Pat Priest (who was also in the original cast), Sylvester McCoy, Dee Wallace, and others.

The Munsters is presented in 1080p high definition on Blu-ray disc with an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and a lossless, English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit). The film is quite colorful and vibrant and I hope a 4K UHD version gets released in the near future as the film is quite beautifully photographed. The Blu-ray does what it can and is definitely a better option than streaming the film, and will do for now.

Special Features (per the press release):

Audio commentary with Director/Writer/Producer Rob Zombie

The Munsters: Return To Mockingbird Lane - From the mind of Rob Zombie, this hour-long look behind the scenes of The Munsters gives an intimate window into his filmmaking process. Watch as he weaves his way through the production and collaborates with a dedicated team to bring his unique vision to life.

The Munsters 2022 is innocent and intentionally corny and silly as that is the essence of what The Munsters are and always have been. There have been various Munsters flops since the original series aired and this film should be given a chance despite your preconceived notions of Rob Zombie as a filmmaker and artist. I actually really think this film is a lot of fun and I hope that Mr. Zombie returns to this world in the future and explores further adventures with this cast and characters. Go into it with an open mind and enjoy the fun in the spirit of the Halloween season.

George Romero's Night Of The Living Dead 4K (1968) manages to just edge out the already shockingly impressive regular Blu-ray edition Criterion issued in a strong set we reviewed at this link not too long ago...


With the same extras since this has the two Blu-rays from the the previous set, along with the same PCM 2.0 Mono sound from the movie from that set, the 1.33 X 1, black & white, 2160p HECV/H.265, Ultra High Definition image may not have any HDR of any kind, but it is STILL an amazing upgrade of the classic with even more detail, depth, better Video White, better Video Black and better gray scale, as well as sharpened detail that never looks fake. Why it has no kind of HDR is odd and a shame, but this is the best non-HDR 4K image I have ever seen and along with the U.K. version of the 1979 Dawn Of The Dead 4K (unreviewed, but stunning and highly recommended; skip any other 4K edition until we see what comes to the U.S. market) are easily the best George Romero films on 4K at this time. I hope more follow.

There is even more impact seeing it in 4K and outside of some mint-condition film print... somewhere, this is the best way to see this film now.

Last but not necessarily least, They Crawl Beneath (2022) is a modern creature feature in the vein of Tremors or other killer worm movies of the like but on a lower budget. Instead of showing thousands of worms running amok as you may see in a bigger budgeted version of this concept, this film is much more contained and intimate. An earthquake awakens a dormant worm-like species that lives underground. As the worms start to grow, they become a threat to anyone who comes in contact with them. Danny (Jospeh Almani) gets stuck next to his dead friend in a garage while repairing a car and comes face to face with one of the growing deadly worms in a race for his life.

The film stars Joseph Almani, Michael Pare, Arthur Roberts, Karlee Eldridge, & Brian DeRozan, and is directed by Dale Fabrigar.

The film isn't too bad, but shows its budget with some bad digital visual effects here and there, and the fact that you don't see the worms much and they sometimes feel a little too puppet-like. The general concept of the movie isn't completely original, but it works fine here. The acting overall isn't terrible, but feels a bit dialed back and could've made for a stronger film with a better or more recognizable cast overall.

They Crawl Beneath is presented in 1080p high definition on Blu-ray disc with an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and an English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit). The film looks and sounds pretty good for the Blu-ray format and the film is nicely shot with vibrant colors and a good sound mix.

Special Features: Trailer.

They Crawl Beneath (again) isn't a terrible film, but nothing to really write home about.

- Nicholas Sheffo (Dead 4K) and James Lockhart



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