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I have had a love affair with horror movies since childhood, and am willing for forgive a lot of flaws in films of this particular genre. Of course, the only thing I really canít forgive is when a horror movie is boring. Fortunately, MIRRORS ($40) wasnít a boring horror movie, so it held my attention throughout its running time. MIRRORS also had a number of creepy elements going for it, in addition to a cool production design, a pretty good cast and more than a bit of gore. That being said, MIRRORS still isnít a wholly successful horror movie either; however, the premise of the film is different enough to draw me into the story and keep my attention throughout.

MIRRORS stars Kiefer Sutherland as Ben Carson, a suspended undercover police detective, who is recovering from accidentally shooting another cop, as well as crawling into the bottle to forget about the tragedy. Unfortunately, Benís problems with substance abuse have left him estranged from his wife Amy (Paula Patton), and sleeping on the couch of his younger sister, Angela (Amy Smart). As the film opens, Ben take a job as the night watchman at the burnt out ruin of a luxury department store, whose building once housed a psychiatric hospital. Despite the dilapidated state of the building, Ben notices the pristine condition of the department storeís mirrors, which he learns were being maintained by his predecessor. During the course of his nightly patrols through the store, Ben thinks he sees some odd things in the storeís mirrors, but then dismisses them as hallucinations, attributable to the medication he is taking for his alcohol dependency. However, Benís so-called hallucinations become more intense, and soon there is a body count to back them up- with his wife and young son the next likely target of whatever evil is lurking within the storeís mirrors. The cast of MIRRORS also features Cameron Boyce, Erica Gluck, Amy Smart, Mary Beth Peil, John Shrapnel, Jason Flemyng, Tim Ahern and Julian Glover.

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment has made MIRRORS available on Blu-ray Disc in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio presentation that has been encoded onto the disc with the AVC codec. Both the original Theatrical Version and the Unrated Version of the film are present on the disc. The 1080p presentations are pretty terrific throughout, beautifully rendering the film in hi-def. Image sharpness and fine detail are truly excellent. Individual hairs, lines in the actorsí faces textures all register very well. Additionally, the picture is highly dimensional. Depending on the lighting, colors can be well saturated or a little subdued, but the blood reds gush accurately. Blacks are pure, whites are crisp, plus the picture produces wonderfully smooth contrast and terrific shadow detail. The elements from which MIRRORS have been mastered are free from flaws. A fine film grain is present and maintains an organic quality for the presentation.

MIRRORS is presented on Blu-ray Disc with a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. The sound design is highly dimensional; creating realistic sonic environments, plus there are enough sound effects and odd noises thrown in to heighten the creepiness factor. Additionally, there is plenty of directionality and well-placed effects for the more action oriented moments. Fidelity is pretty terrific; music has a full-bodied quality, while the sound effects have weight thanks to a strong bass component. Dialogue is always crystal clear and easy to understand. French and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 channel tracks are also encoded onto the disc. Subtitles are available in English, Spanish, Korean, Mandarin and Cantonese.

Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the disc's interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to standard scene selection and set up features, as well as some supplements. The most significant supplement is Reflections: The Making Of Mirrors a near fifty-minute look at the production. Other Featurettes include Behind The Mirror (eighteen minutes) and Anna Esseker: Hospital Footage (six minutes). An Animated Storyboard Sequence, Bonus Trailers and Deleted / Alternate Scenes close out the standard supplements. There is a Bonus View mode for the Theatrical Version of the film (requires a Profile 1.1 player). In the Bonus View mode one will find a picture-in-picture Video Commentary with director Alexandre Aja and co-writer Gregory Levasseur, plus Storyboard To Screen Comparisons. . A Digital Copy of the film is also provided.

As I stated above, MIRRORS isnít a wholly successful horror movie, but it has it has a few things working in its favor. The Blu-ray presentation is great, so if you are going to see MIRRORS, this is the way to do it.



Mirrors [Blu-ray] (2008)


DVD & Blu-rayDisc reviews are Copyright © 2009 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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