XenForo Template THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT Studio: Universal Film Year: 2009 Film Length: 1 hour 50 mins (Theatrical Cut), 1 hour 54 mins (Unrated Cut) Genre: Revenge Thriller Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 BD Resolution: 1080p BD Video Codec: VC-1 @ over 30 mpbs Color/B&W: Color Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 @ an average 3.5 mbps Spanish DTS 5.1 French DTS 5.1 Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish Film Rating: R and Unrated, Respectively (Sadistic Brutal Violence, Including a Rape and Disturbing Images, Language, Nudity and Some Drug Use, Inappropriate Use of Household Appliances) Release Date: August 18, 2009 Starring: Tony Goldwyn, Monica Potter, Garret Dillahunt, Spencer Treat Clark, Martha MacIsaac and Sarah Paxton Based on the Film by Wes Craven Written by: Adam Alleca and Carl Ellsworth Directed by Dennis Iliadis Film Rating: 1 /5 The Last House on the Left is an extremely difficult film to watch, and therefore to review. The movie is ostensibly a horror film about both the wrongs done to innocent young girls and the grim coincidence of their attackers seeking shelter with the parents of one of those girls. And there’s an undercurrent of dread to the first ten minutes of the film, in that the viewer knows something awful is waiting to happen. But once the awful thing starts to happen, the film becomes at once both ordinary and revolting in the level of violence and viciousness on display. Once the parents get involved in the carnage, the situation deteriorates to the point that the scenes seem to be generated from an attempt to shock the viewer with inventive ways to dispatch people with household appliances. I can’t say that I really enjoyed this film – I was rendered speechless by several of the more outrageous moments. The caution on the packaging about “sadistic brutal violence” is an understatement, if anything. And if I was trying to follow any kind of story logic in the plot, I’d be out of the movie after the first scene, where a thoroughly unlikely and unbelievable event triggers the rest of the story’s events. I’ve heard it said that the film (and the original Wes Craven film it remakes) has a deep moral undercurrent about desensitization to violence and the hidden darkness of the nuclear family, etc, etc. I don’t buy it. And even if I were to try to go there, the film ends with such a sick joke that it’s hard to find anything in the film even remotely redeeming. The Last House on the Left has been released simultaneously on Blu-ray and standard definition this Tuesday. Both editions are identical, except that the Blu-ray has the high definition transfer in picture and sound, a bookmarking function and BD-Live access. On the Blu-ray, the picture and sound benefit from the clarity and detail provided by the higher definition. The only extras to be found on the Blu-ray are a quick promotional featurette in HD and almost 9 minutes of deleted scenes and outtakes in standard definition. VIDEO QUALITY 3 ½/5 The Last House on the Left is presented in a 1080p VC-1 1.85:1 transfer that shows off a lot of the detail of blood, grime and dirt that the film presents to the viewer. I found the overall palette to be a bit cool and dark, but that fits the subject matter at hand. (I’ve read some criticism that this does not accurately represent the theatrical look of the film, but I admit that I did not see this film in the movie theater.) From what I can see, the picture is fine, with a fair amount of the aforementioned detail constantly filling the screen. I should note that I watched the film on a 40” Sony XBR2 HDTV. If anyone is watching the film on a larger monitor and is noticing problems, please reply within this thread. AUDIO QUALITY 3 ½/5 The Last House on the Left is presented in an English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix in English, as well as standard DTS mixes in Spanish and French. As is typical for scary movies, the subwoofer is put to good use throughout to goose any moments of “Boo!” that the film can throw at the viewer. A continual nighttime thunderstorm is brought to life nicely by the subwoofer and the surround channels. SPECIAL FEATURES 1/5 The Blu-Ray presentation of The Last House on the Left has only two special features: a quick promo piece in high-def, and almost 9 minutes of deleted material in standard definition. And there is the usual BD-Live, “My Scenes” and D-Box functionality. A Look Inside (2:41, 1080p) – This is a really quick featurette that includes some interview material with Wes Craven about his unbridled enthusiasm for this remake of his low-budget horror film from the 70s. Deleted Scenes (8:58, 480p, Non-Anamorphic) – Almost 9 minutes of deleted material, including a silly car wipeout outtake, is presented in non-anamorphic standard definition. There’s really nothing here other than scene extensions that tax the viewer’s patience, including an interminable section about Spencer Treat Clark’s work to obtain a key prop. And just in case the viewer thought the ending joke was a mistake of some kind, we get another view of the carnage for everyone’s enjoyment.. BD-Live - This Blu-ray includes access to Universal’s BD-Live online site, allowing for the viewing of trailers online. D-Box – For viewers with this system installed in their home theater, this Blu-ray can make use of it. Subtitles are available for the film and the special features. A full chapter menu is available for the film. The Blu-ray menus also include the “My Scenes” bookmarking feature and a BD-Live User Guide. IN THE END... The Last House on the Left is the kind of film that really defies review. People that like it will do so regardless of what I print here. But I feel I have a duty to warn any casual viewer to think carefully about spending two hours watching this kind of thing. I can’t recommend it, but I understand if some readers differ with my opinion here. Kevin Koster August 18, 2009.