The Relic DVD review

A thoroughly enjoyable monster-on-the-loose gore flick, The Relic bombed at the box office in 1997 barely making half of its $60 million dollar budget. It's a crying shame too. Though slow to start, once the creature effects kick in, this is a great ride. Heads fly as the gruesome creature devours sections of peoples brains trapped inside the Chicage Museum of Natural History. The performances are decent and the story gives alot of insight into the characters. Having seen the movie on full screen VHS many years ago (my first and only viewing up until now), I eagerly anticipated popping this disc into my player. Presented in 2.35:1, this widecsreen transfer is a complete disaster, a supreme dissapointment. I remember the movie being dark, but there are at least 10 minutes of this film that are completely black. Faces are obscured by the darkness, performances are lost, and the few brief looks at the title creature are masked by blackness. The 5.1 sound is a mild step up, but only kicks in for the final few chapters during the creatures big rampage. Dolby Surround is also available. As a bare bones disc, the only special feature is the theatrical trailer. Thanks to the abysmal box office return, it's highly unlikely we'll ever get a full fledged special edition. I can only wish for a new release with a restored print that is actually viewable. Definitely a disc for only die hard fans of the film.

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