Where we're going, we won't need eyes to see.
While the execution isnít always entirely successful, EVENT HORIZON ($20) has an interesting premise that melds the science fiction and horror genres into some solid popcorn munching genre entertainment. Certainly, I am willing to give the film some scientific credit as a couple of the concepts presented in EVENT HORIZON are grounded in actual physics theorem; however, the rest of the plot is pure horror movie fodder. The screenplay for EVENT HORIZON resembles the kind of soup one would end up with if dropped elements of movies like THE BLACK HOLE, HELLRAISER, PRINCE OF DARKNESS and ALIEN into a pot, and let them simmer together.
In the year 2040, a space ship named Event Horizon vanished after engaging its experimental gravity drive. Powering the gravity drive is an artificial black hole, which is expected to fold the very fabric of space- to instantaneously transport the ship from one point in the universe to another. Seven years after it disappeared, the Event Horizon mysteriously reappears in a decaying orbit around the planet Neptune. The salvage ship Louis & Clark is dispatched to recover the Event Horizon and try to discover what happened to the ship and her crew when she went missing. During the course of the salvage teamís investigation, an accident forces them to take refuge onboard the Event Horizon.
As the crew makes repairs to their own ship, the truth about the Event Horizon becomes quite evident. Somehow activating the gravity drive opened a doorway to hell, which in turn brought the Event Horizon to life. Itís at this point the realms of science and even science fiction are left far behind as EVENT HORIZON heads at warp speed into the heart of the horror genre. The chief highlight of EVENT HORIZON has to be actor Sam Neill, who delivers a perfectly suited over the top performance as the Event Horizonís creator who succumbs to dark forces at the heart of the ship. The cast of EVENT HORIZON also features Laurence Fishburne, Kathleen Quinlan, Joely Richardson, Richard T. Jones, Jack Noseworthy and Jason Isaacs.
Offering a significant upgrade to their initial DVD release of the film, Paramount Home Entertainment has made the Special Collectorís Edition of EVENT HORIZON available on DVD in a 2.35:1 widescreen presentation that has been enhanced for playback on 16:9 displays. The new transfer looks great, delivering a sharp and rather nicely defined image. Colors are fairly vibrant, rendered without flaws and reproduce appealing flesh tones. Blacks are solid and deep, while the whites are crisp and stable. Contrast is generally smooth and the level of shadow detail is quite good. The film elements are fairly clean, although minor blemishes do crop up in places. Film grain is also fairly mild. Digital compression artifacts are nicely camouflaged.
EVENT HORIZON features 5.1 channel soundtracks that come in both the Dolby Digital and DTS varieties. The sound mix is pretty darn good, with plenty of activity in all the outlying channels and a few audible zingers designed to spook the view out of their seats. Sound effects remain convincing and musical fidelity is strong. Additionally, the bass channel rocks oneís listing room quite effectively. Dialogue is crisply rendered and remains totally understandable. French 5.1 and English 2.0 surround tracks are also included, as are English 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 a running audio commentary with director Paul W.S. Anderson and producer Jeremy Bolt. Moving on to disc two, one will find the remainder of the supplemental programming. The Making Of Event Horizon is a five-part documentary that runs an hour and forty two minutes and is broken into the following sections: Into The Jaws Of Darkness, The Body Of The Beast, Liberate Tutume Ex Infernis, The Scale To Hell, and The Womb of Fear. Secrets offers three deleted scenes with optional directorís commentary. The Unseen Event Horizon offers a storyboard rendition of a unfilmed sequence as well as conceptual art. The Point Of No Return: The Filming Of Event Horizon is a four-part look behind-the-scenes that features actual footage shot during the making of the movie and is broken into the following sections: The Revolving Corridor, The Crew Gathers, Shooting Wire Work and The Dark Inside. A Theatrical Trailer and Video Trailer close out the supplements.
EVENT HORIZON isnít perfect but its solid popcorn entertainment for genre fans. Paramountís DVD looks terrific, thanks to a groovy upgraded transfer, plus it sounds great. Additionally, the DVD boasts some solid extras. If you are a fan, youíll want to add this Special Collector's Edition of EVENT HORIZON to your personal collection.
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