Review: The Prey
Blu-ray: The Prey (1983)
Let’s not beat around the bush here, The Prey isn’t a good film.
However, this Blu-ray release from Arrow Films is fantastic and loaded with a slew of entertaining and informative extras that will keep you enthralled every time you put it into your Blu-ray player.
A new 2k restoration from the recently found original camera negative means that The Prey has never looked better, highlighting the ‘interesting’ make-up on the films horrifically burned antagonist.
The narrative is a by the numbers slasher film, though interestingly it was filmed in 79-80, making it a contemporary of the likes of Friday the 13th, rather than a cheap cash-in on the success of the slasher genre during the 80s.
A prologue set in the 40s shows a terrible fire in which a child was the only survivor. Jump forward 30 years and three young couples set off into the mountains for a weekend of climbing, drinking and the obligatory ‘rumpy pumpy’.
Can you guess what happens next?
Despite the killings, The Prey seems more like a meandering low budget wildlife film, with long lingering shots of birds, deer, snakes, and a multitude of other living creatures, all inserted into the narrative via stock footage where the term ‘colour grading’ never passed anyones lips in an attempt to make it match with the main footage.
When animals are not onscreen, the humans do little else to engage you…unless you want to see a sheriff idly chewing on a sandwich for far too long while talking bollocks.
The third act ups the ante a little (though it could hardly have got any worse) with the kill count increasing, but when the killer looks like his face has been put into a bucket of papier-mâché and then quickly painted over, it does nothing to increase the tension.
Despite all of that, it is the aforementioned special features that really make this worth considering as a purchase.
The addition of 3 cuts of the film is interesting, but the audio commentaries, interviews, Q&A, plus much more, really adds some entertaining value to this well packaged set.
The Prey could well go down better late at night with friends and your alcoholic drink of choice (I watched it alone in the afternoon with a cup of tea), but as a curiosity piece that may well have passed you by so far, this is the definitive version for you to buy.
LIMITED EDITION 2-DISC BLU-RAY CONTENTS
- Limited to 3,000 units
- Exclusive slipcover featuring original UK home video artwork
- Three versions of the feature: Original US Theatrical Cut, International Cut and Composite cut!
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
- Original uncompressed mono audio
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
- Reversible sleeve featuring newly commissioned artwork by Justin Osbourn
- Limited edition booklet featuring new writing on the film by Ewan Cant
DISC ONE – US THEATRICAL CUT
- Brand new 2K restoration of the filmmaker-approved US Theatrical Cut from the original camera negative
- Brand new audio commentary with producer Summer Brown
- Brand new audio commentary with Amanda Reyes and Ewan Cant
- Audio Interview with director Edwin Scott Brown
- Brand new on-camera interview with actress Debbie Thureson
- Brand new on-camera interview with actress Lori Lethin
- Brand new on-camera interview with actor Carel Struycken
- Brand new on-camera interview with actor Jackson Bostwick
- In Search of The Prey – Ewan Cant and actress Debbie Thureson revisit the original shooting locations in Idyllwild, California
- Q&A from Texas Frightmare Weekend 2019 with Lori Lethin, Carel Struycken and Jackson Bostwick
- Texas Frightmare Weekend 2019 Audience Reaction Track
- VHS Trailer and TV Spot
- Original Script (BD-ROM Content)
DISC TWO – INTERNATIONAL & COMPOSITE CUTS
- Brand new 2K restoration of the International Cut featuring the infamous “gyspy flashback” footage, added at a later date by the producers without the approval of the original filmmakers
- Composite Cut combining footage from both the US Theatrical and International Cuts, for the ultimate Prey fan experience!
- Extended Outtakes reel – 45 mins of never-before-seen outtakes
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