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(Two-Disc Special Edition)

Click here to access THE LOST BOYS video clips

One thing about living in Santa Carla I never could stomach-
All the damn vampires!

As far as modern vampire films go, Iíve always been rather partial to THE LOST BOYS ($27). I remember seeing THE LOST BOYS upon its theatrical release in 1987 and found the movie to be cool, fresh and best of all- intentionally funny. Unlike a lot of genre films that employ humor to relieve tension, THE LOST BOYS gets the combination just right, with all of the supernatural elements played straight, while the filmís comedy is completely character driven. The movie also gets high marks for adding style to the scare factor by mixing MTV type visuals to tried and true horror movie techniques. Of course, having a highly appealing cast certainly didnít hurt THE LOST BOYS, especially when one considers that the filmís motorcycle riding gang of vampires usually look more like an MTV friendly rock band, than a pack of bloodsuckers.

The plot of THE LOST BOYS follows teenage brothers Michael (Jason Patric) and Sam (Corey Haim), who relocate with their recently divorced mother Lucy (Dianne Wiest) to their grandfatherís home in Santa Clara, California. Michael and Sam quickly learn that Santa Clara is far from an average seaside community- in fact, it is referred to as the murder capital of the world, which probably has something to do with the townís high vampire population. No sooner do the teens arrive in Santa Clara, when Michael crosses paths with David (Kiefer Sutherland) and his motorcycle buddies, who initiate into their little club where they partake of an unusual liquid refreshment. Michaelís new "drinking problem" forces Sam to enlist teen vampire hunters Edgar (Corey Feldman) and Allen Frog (Jamison Newlander), who may be able to save his brother from an everlasting liquid diet. The cast of THE LOST BOYS also features Jami Gertz, Edward Herrmann, Alex Winter and a scene stealing turn from Barnard Hughes as the teenís spaced-out hippy grandfather.

Warner Home Video has made THE LOST BOYS available on DVD in a 2.35:1 widescreen presentation that has been enhanced for playback on 16:9 displays. This special edition boasts a superb looking transfer that bests the previous DVD release by a wide margin. The image on this special edition appears much cleaner, smoother and better defined than its predecessor. Colors are strongly rendered and completely stable, especially the reds, which donít betray any fuzziness. Additionally, flesh tones are highly appealing and have a generally natural appearance. Blacks are velvety, whites appear crisp, plus the image produces smooth contrast and a very nice level of dimensionality. Other than a handful of blemishes, this 1987 release shows almost no signs of age, and very little appreciable film grain. Digital compression artifacts are always very nicely concealed.

THE LOST BOYS had its soundtrack upgraded to Dolby Digital 5.1 for the previous DVD and this release features the same solid remix. As a film originating in matrixed surround, the forward soundstage remains dominant, although the rear channels provide a nice sense of ambience, as well as an occasionally well-deployed active effect. Channel separation is pretty darn good across the front for effects, plus the filmís pop/rock heavy musical component is really nicely integrated. Voices sound pretty natural and dialogue is completely understandable. A French language track has also been encoded onto the DVD, as have English, French and Spanish subtitles.

Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the DVD's interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to standard scene selection and set up features, as well as the supplemental materials, which have been spread across both discs of this set. Disc one features an entertaining and rather informative audio commentary with director Joel Schumacher. Moving on to disc two, one will find the remainder of the supplemental programming. The Lost Boys: A Retrospective is a twenty-four minute look back on the production that features interviews with Joel Schumacher, producer Richard Donner, cinematographer Michael Chapman, plus cast members Kiefer Sutherland Corey Haim, Corey Feldman, Jamison Newlander and Edward Herrmann. Inside the Vampire's Cave is broken up into four parts, running eighteen minutes total, that looks at how the project changed after Joel Schumacher was brought on board, how horror is blended with comedy, how vampire lore is adapted to the film and the possibility of a movie sequel to this popular vampire film.

Vamping Out: The Undead Creatures Of Greg Cannom is a fourteen-minute look at the makeup effects created for the film. The Vampireís Photo Gallery supplements the makeup featurette with more than seventy still images. Haimster & Feldog: The Story Of The 2 Coreys is a five minute look back at the how the two actors came together for the first time and the various times they worked together. Multi-angle Video Commentary With Corey Haim, Corey Feldman, And Jamison Newlander allows all three actors to individually comment on the same sequences from the movie. Fifteen minutes of deleted scenes are provided, and while there are some interesting moments, none of it really need be cut back into the body of the film. A World Of Vampires offers an interactive map of vampire legends from around the globe. A Lou Gramm music video for Lost In The Shadows and theatrical trailer close out the supplements.

THE LOST BOYS remains as cool, fresh and funny now, as it was in 1987. Warner has done a first rate job with the DVD, producing a visually impressive presentation for the movie that blows away all previous offerings. Additionally, the disc sounds just fine and offers a good body of supplemental materials. If you are a fan, this Two-Disc Special Edition of THE LOST BOYS is a worthwhile upgrade, and if you have never seen the film- this DVD is the way to become initiated. Recommended.



The Lost Boys (Two-Disc Special Edition) (1987)


DVD reviews are Copyright © 2004 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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