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(Widescreen Edition)

SLITHER ($30) proves to be as much fun as one is likely to have watching a gross out sci-fi / horror movie. A throwback to the gory monster movies of the 1980s, not to mention paying home to earlier classic genre offerings of the same ilk, SLITHER mixes black humor tinged laughter with moments of stomach churning gore to produce one heck of an entertaining monster mash. The plot of SLITHER finds a meteorite falling to earth in small town America, where it immediately infects one of the upstanding pillars of the community. As quick as you can say disgusting transformation, our hapless denizen gets an insatiable craving for raw meat, becomes less and less human looking and impregnates one of the townswomen with his out of this world progeny. As expected, things only get worse when momma pops, spewing out her slug-like offspring that overrun the town, turning the inhabitants into alien controlled, flesh eating zombies. The cast of SLITHER features Nathan Fillion, Elizabeth Banks, Gregg Henry, Michael Rooker, Tania Saulnier, Don Thompson, Xantha Radley, Brenda James and Jenna Fischer.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has made SLITHER available on DVD in a 1.85:1 wide screen presentation that features the anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 displays. This is a very nice little transfer that does not disappoint, delivering a sharp and generally well-defined image throughout. Sure, there are some shots that come up slightly soft and some of the darker sequences don’t fare as well as those photographed under optimum lighting, but for a modestly budgeted little genre movie, it all looks pretty darn good. Colors offer nice saturation, in addition to natural looking flesh tones. Blacks are solid, as are the whites. Contrast is just fine. The film elements very clean and digital compression artifacts never offer a cause for concern.

SLITHER features a fairly workmanlike mix on its Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack. Most of the sound is localized to the forward soundstage, while the surrounds provide general ambience and musical fill, as well as occasional active effects. Fidelity is solid, with the track creating a good musical presence throughout, and rendering the sound effects in an effective manner. The bass channel is solid enough to get the job done, but the material rarely lends itself to anything ground shaking. Voices are natural sounding and the film’s dialogue is always completely understandable. French and Spanish 5.1 channel tracks are also encoded onto the DVD, as are 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 terrific body supplemental features. Writer/director James Gunn and actor Nathan Fillion are on hand to provide a running audio commentary. The Sick Minds And Slimy Days Of Slither runs ten minutes and provides a fairly informal look behind-the-scenes with the usual complement of interview footage. Slithery Set Tour With Nathan Fillion is a pretty self-explanatory five minutes. Visual Effects: Step by Step spends five minutes looking at how effects shots are assembled. Bringing Slither's Creatures to Life spends eighteen minutes with the film’s creature effects team. Gorehound Grill: Brewin' the Blood is a three-minute look at the creation of movie blood. Two minor featurettes are also included: The King of Cult: Lloyd Kaufman's Video Diary (nine minutes) and Who is Bill Pardy? (five-minutes). Deleted Scenes and Extended Scenes with optional commentary and a Gag Reel close out the supplements.

SLITHER is a terrific entrée of comic horror fun that has been given a fine presentation and excellent supplemental features by Universal. Recommended.



Slither (Widescreen Edition) (2006)



DVD reviews are Copyright © 2006 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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