TENEBRAE Blu-ray Review

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Peter Neil is a crime author of violent and horrid stories.  His latest book “Tenebrae” has just released and he is going on a book tour beginning in Italy.  Almost as soon as he gets checked into the hotel, the police come to tell him that there has been a murder and the woman had pages of his new book rammed down her throat.  This is where things get really crazy.

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TENEBRAE is directed by Dario Argento and is a classic slasher film.  There is blood, gore, grind house-type visual effects, and the film really owns it.  The story is one of those “who done it” series that misdirects you from the start.  By the end, you really aren’t sure who the killer is and that is what hooks you in.

One thing that the filmmakers have done that bumped me a bit is the voiceover work on the foreign characters. They spoke English and they were mouthing the words right but the accents were added.  The other possibly is that the actors had heavy Italian accents and they made their voices easier to understand.  Either way, it can get distracting at times and pull you out of the movie watching experience.

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The film is a 1080p AVC transfer.

The transfer for this film was meticulously performed by Synapse and it paid off.  The coloring is bright and bold in all the right places.  The two stand-outs are the blues and, of course, the reds.  The fake blood reminds me of the blood in the older George Romero or Tobe Hooper movies where it is beautifully gory and gross.  There are so many details pulled from the original footage that probably haven’t been seen in a long time.  This also created a nice grain on the film to keep that charm that movies from actual film tend to have.  This is definitely a win for Synapse.

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The main audio is an English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mix.

The soundtrack sounds excellent in HD and it is the right amount of eerie.  You can feel the 1982 in the score with synthesized instruments of the time.  The highs and mids get the most use but the bass is only used sparingly.  As I mentioned earlier, the voices are dubbed over but they are clear and well reproduced.  The filmmakers kept the original 2.0 audio and sounds excellent in a home theater.  The audio was mixed just as well as the video was authored.

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Bonus Features:
-Play TENEBRAE with Rare English inserts via Seamless Branching: There are a few scenes in the film that have the book shown in Italian and this feature adds the English versions of those shots.  It is seamless and works well.

-YELLOW FEVER: THE RISE AND FALL OF THE GIALLO – Documentary: This lengthy documentary runs 99 mins and discuss with various people about where the movie came from.

-Alternate Opening Credits Sequence

-Alternate U.S. UNSANE End Credits Sequence

-Trailers
International trailer
Japanese Trailer

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Disc Details
3 disc set w/1 Blu-ray, 1 DVD, and 1 CD

Running Time
110 mins

Edition Ratings
Not Rated

Region Coding
Region Free

Video Resolution
1080p AVC MPEG-4 AVC
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Audio Mixes
English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Italian DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0

Subtitles
English

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I really enjoyed this movie.  Its nice seeing a movie where you don’t have to worry about unnecessary CGI for effects.  The Blu-ray looks and sounds excellent.  Synapse Films really put a lot of work into this and it is very apparent with the final product.  I love that technology can bring a film back to life after so many years.  The extras are decent to round off the release.  The documentary is good but it doesn’t focus on the film like you might expect.  I would definitely recommend this for the Steelbook and Exclusive Hi-Def Ninja packaging alone but this is also one for the horror junkies.

Official Product Page – Hi-Def Ninja Store

Check out the Community Forums thread chatter here.

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About the author

MEDIA JOURNALIST & STAFF WRITER | Michael is a fanatic about all cinema. He collects many things from movies to Steelbooks to 1/6 Scale Collectibles and vinyl collectibles. He loves pop culture, writing, reviewing films & collectibles, and journalism. Anything that is even slightly related to these things are always on his radar and most definitely a comic book nerd. He is also, of course, a Batman junkie and will chat it up about pretty much anything.