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The Fog

4K Ultra HD

Blu Ray

  • Score
    from 2 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • Shout Factory's 4K UHD of The Fog excels in horror, atmosphere, and extras, outshining StudioCanal.

    The Fog 4K UHD Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
  • The Fog's 4K UHD release by Shout Factory, with a native 4K scan and HDR enhancement, showcases exceptional detail and color depth, avoiding the compression issues seen in StudioCanal's version.

  • Audio
  • The release boasts a pristine Dolby Atmos track and various English audio options, including a restored original mono track, offering an immersive sound experience with clear dialogue and Carpenter's haunting score, while catering to all preferences.

  • Extra
  • The special set includes detailed commentaries with Carpenter, Hill, and a lively actor's panel, enriched by vivid memories and technical insights, alongside a wealth of behind-the-scenes content reflecting on 'The Fog's' creation and legacy.

  • Movie
  • The Fog, a 4K UHD showcased masterpiece by John Carpenter, thrives on eerie ambiance and expert production, affirming its stature as a horror icon with compelling reshoot enhancements.

    Video: 87

    The 4K UHD Blu-ray release of "The Fog" by Shout Factory is a remarkable achievement in home video presentation, offering a pristine native 4K visual experience (2160p HEVC / H.265) in the movie's original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.35:1 widescreen. This transfer was meticulously crafted from a 4K scan of the original camera negative, resulting in a striking showcase of detail and texture, particularly in the rendition of the film's titular fog. The use of high dynamic range (HDR), encompassing both Dolby Vision and HDR10 formats, subtly yet significantly elevates the visual depth and color reproduction, breathing new life into the eerie atmospheric effects and nuanced shadows that define the film's aesthetic. A high bit-rate encode of 76.50 mbps ensures that the presentation remains free from the compression issues that have marred previous releases, offering a smooth and immersive viewing experience.

    Noteworthy is the role of Dean Cundey, the film’s cinematographer, who had a guiding hand in the grade approval process for this release. Despite potential concerns due to Cundey's varied grading choices in past projects, his involvement here seems to have ensured a grade that stays true to the original vision without falling into the trap of unnecessary revisionism. The preservation of the film grain and the exceptional detail underscore an encode that aims for authenticity and reverence towards the source material. This effort has corrected or avoided some of the pitfalls seen in StudioCanal's version, such as macroblocking and flickering issues, making this version superior in terms of quality and viewer experience.

    The disc's technical specifications speak to a meticulous attention to presentation quality that fans of "The Fog" and cinephiles alike will appreciate. By solving previous encoding problems and enhancing visual fidelity through state-of-the-art HDR grading, Shout Factory’s release stands out as an exemplary instance of how to respectfully handle and present classic films in the digital age. The results on display here—viewed optimally on equipment like the JVC RS2000 projector—demonstrate a successful marriage of technology and artistic intent, making this Blu-ray a must-own for enthusiasts seeking the definitive home viewing experience of this horror classic.

    Audio: 83

    The audio presentation of "The Fog" Blu Ray edition offers an outstanding array of options catering to both purists and those seeking an immersive upgrade. The highlight is undoubtedly the Dolby Atmos mix, built upon a Dolby TrueHD 24 bit high-resolution core, which provides an impeccable soundstage designed to elevate the viewing experience through unmatched clarity and detail. This Atmos surround setup not only ensures that dialogue is crystal clear but also beautifully balances John Carpenter’s haunting score within the surround soundstage, offering a depth and precision that is both absorbing and technically proficient.

    Additionally, the inclusion of a variety of English audio tracks, including a restored version of the original theatrical mono in 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio, adds a commendable level of versatility. For those with a penchant for originality, the pristine lossless mono track offers a nostalgic experience that's hard to resist. However, the newly introduced Atmos mix invites a broader soundscape with enhanced ambience and subtle directionality in the sound effects. This greater spatial awareness significantly augments the atmospheric tension intrinsic to Carpenter's work, without sacrificing the integrity of the original effects, thanks to the thoughtful absence of overly intrusive new effects.

    The assortment of available tracks - from the Atmospheric immersion of Dolby Atmos to the fidelity of the original 2.0 and 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio mixes - ensures every listener’s preference is respected. This is further complemented by options that exclude newer sound effects for a more authentic experience, demonstrating a considerate and comprehensive approach to audio presentation. Whether one leans towards the historical authenticity of mono or the dynamic allure of Atmos, "The Fog" Blu Ray offers an exemplary auditory journey that enhances every moment of this classic horror masterpiece.

    Extra: 86

    This Blu-ray edition of "The Fog" is a comprehensive collection that not only showcases the film in stunning 4K UHD but also offers a treasure trove of extras that will delight any fan of John Carpenter's work. The audio commentaries provide contrasting experiences: the one with Carpenter and Debra Hill, recorded for the 1995 Image LaserDisc release, is an invaluable but somewhat dry historical document, showcasing Carpenter's vast knowledge but lacking the lively energy found in interviews with a more dynamic partner. On the other hand, the commentary featuring Adrienne Barbeau, Tom Atkins, and Tommy Lee Wallace, moderated by Sean Clark from Horror’s Hallowed Grounds, is engaging, filled with production insights, and lively banter, significantly enlivened by the group's chemistry. This collection not only brings "The Fog" back into the limelight but does so in a way that honors its legacy while providing fresh context through its extensive extras.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Audio Commentary with Writer/Director John Carpenter and Writer/Producer Debra Hill: Valuable insights into the film's creation from the original creators.
    • Audio Commentary with actors Adrienne Barbeau, Tom Atkins, and production designer Tommy Lee Wallace: Offers engaging behind-the-scenes stories and details.
    • Retribution: Uncovering John Carpenter's The Fog: A deep dive into the making and legacy of "The Fog".
    • The Shape of The Thing to Come: John Carpenter Unfilmed: Explores Carpenter's unrealized projects.
    • Intro by John Carpenter: A personal introduction to the film by Carpenter himself.
    • Scene Analysis by John Carpenter: Detailed breakdowns of key scenes from "The Fog".
    • My Time with Terror: An Interview with Jamie Lee Curtis: Reflects on Curtis' experience and broader career.
    • Dean of Darkness: An Interview with cinematographer Dean Cundey: Insights into the film's visual style and cinematography techniques.
    • Tales from the Mist: Inside The Fog: A comprehensive look at the making of the film.
    • Fear on Film: Inside The Fog: Focuses on the film's influence on the horror genre.
    • The Fog: Storyboard to Film: A visual comparison between initial storyboards and the final film.
    • Horror's Hallowed Ground: A tour of the film's original locations.
    • Outtakes: A collection of bloopers and deleted scenes.
    • Special Effects Tests: Early tests for the film's special effects.
    • Theatrical Trailers: Promotional trailers for "The Fog".
    • Trailers from Hell: Director Mick Garris discusses "The Fog".
    • TV Spots: Television advertisements for the film.
    • Photo Gallery: A comprehensive collection of on-set and promotional images.
    • Storyboards: Original storyboard illustrations for key scenes.

    Movie: 87

    The Fog" stands as a testament to John Carpenter's unparalleled ability to weave horror masterpieces, receiving a stunning 4K UHD presentation that only enhances its timeless allure. This film, while produced on a budget that modestly exceeded Carpenter's earlier work "Halloween," emerged as a box-office success, further cementing Carpenter's status as a horror virtuoso. Alongside Debra Hill's adept production skills and featuring a talented cast including Jamie Lee Curtis and Janet Leigh, "The Fog" encapsulates the essence of horror with its tale of ghost sailors haunting Antonio Bay. The film's cinematography by Dean Cundey and the precise editing by Charles Bornstein and Tommy Lee Wallace contribute significantly to its atmospheric dread, making every frame an eerie experience for the audience.

    In terms of visual and technical craftsmanship, "The Fog" excels with an eerie atmosphere that's both unsettling and visually rewarding. The perfect interplay of lighting and meticulous editing ensures a captivating pace, while the production design by Tommy Lee Wallace and art direction by Craig Stearns create an unforgettable sense of dread. These elements, combined with effective costumes, elevate the ghostly menace lurking within the fog. Furthermore, the film benefited from extensive reshoots post its initial cut, adding more scares, atmosphere, and a tangible threat to its originally nebulous antagonist, enriching its narrative depth and keeping the essence of a ghost story intact.

    John Carpenter and Debra Hill's collaboration on "The Fog" after their success with "Halloween" showcases their evolution in storytelling and filmmaking. The adjustments made post-initial screenings, including reshoots to add more graphic content and scares, demonstrate their commitment to delivering a more engaging horror experience beyond just an eerie score. Their effort to maintain the core of a ghost story amidst the rising trend of slasher films emphasizes "The Fog" as not just another horror flick but a masterpiece that transcends its genre. This blend of gothic terror with slasher elements, underpinned by Carpenter's understanding of horror's language, presents "The Fog" as one of Carpenter's most compelling works.

    Total: 86

    Shout Factory's 4K UHD release of "The Fog," directed by the legendary John Carpenter, sets a new standard for horror classics transitioning to the highest definition formats. This masterpiece, renowned for its chilling atmosphere and enduring sense of dread, has never looked better. The meticulous restoration and transfer accentuate Carpenter's skillful use of cinematography, bringing out the haunting visuals in stunning clarity and depth. Complementing this visual feast is the inclusion of a Dolby Atmos audio presentation, providing an immersive auditory experience that elevates the film's eerie soundtrack and spine-tingling effects. Those with compatible home theater setups will find this enhanced audio layer adds significantly to the film's already formidable impact.

    In terms of additional content, Shout Factory’s edition emerges unmatched. Boasting an exhaustive array of extras that leave virtually no stone unturned, enthusiasts will find this collection both comprehensive and satisfying. Although it lacks the soundtrack CD found in StudioCanal’s package, this omission is minor given the wealth of material provided, including exclusive items such as a vinyl single only available with this release. Moreover, the package benefits from superior encoding compared to alternatives on the market, ensuring the best possible viewing quality. Alongside a new Atmos remix and a meticulously restored version of the original mono track, this release has been carefully curated to cater to both purists and fans seeking the ultimate experience.

    In conclusion, Shout Factory's 4K UHD release of "The Fog" stands as a definitive edition for both collectors and fans of horror cinema. Its unparalleled visual and audio restoration, combined with an expansive suite of extras, solidifies its position as the premier version of Carpenter's chilling classic. Whether judged on presentation quality, additional content, or packaging, it commands the highest recommendation for anyone wishing to experience "The Fog" in its most compelling and immersive form yet.