Streaming might be the future, but physical media is still the present. It’s also awesome, depending on the title, the label, and the release, so each week we take a look at the new Blu-rays and DVDs making their way into the world. Welcome to this week in Home Video for October 3rd, 2023! This week’s home video selection includes Night of the Demons and the superior sequel, the best Predator movie since the first, and more. Check out our picks below.
Pick of the Week
Night of the Demons 2 [Scream Factory]
What is it? A new batch of teens sneak into a house where they don’t belong.
Why see it? You can only watch so many movies, and sometimes you have to make the choice to skip certain ones. As someone who doesn’t love the fan favorite original, I avoided this sequel for nearly thirty years. Surprise! It’s fucking great and beats the original at every turn. The horror comes sooner and more frequent, the laughs are legit, the practical effects are once again spectacular, and the damn thing is just entertaining from top to bottom (final second of fx excluded because they’re lame cg). Angela turns into a giant snake, boobs grow hands, a nun kicks ass for the lord, water pistols are loaded with holy water, and the R-rated fun never stops.
[Extras: Commentary, interviews, workprint, dailies]
What is it? The best Predator movie since the first one.
Why see it? John McTiernan’s Predator is the perfect action/horror flick, and while its follow-ups have been a mixed bag the concept remains pure gold. There are things to like in the sequels and spinoffs, but it took Dan Trachtenberg to craft a fresh take that still delivers the alien action thrills. Prey pits a young Native woman against a Predator enjoying his first hunting expedition to 17th century Earth. The themes and characters work beautifully, but it’s the set-pieces and action beats that thrill as old school goes head head to head with an advanced species. This one was a streaming premiere, but thanks to fans clamoring for a physical release, we now have one to enjoy anytime we want.
[Extras: Featurette, deleted scenes, commentary]
Talk to Me [4K UHD]
What is it? Teens stupidly open the gateway to spirits on the other side.
Why see it? This wickedly good possession flick from Australia was my number one horror movie of 2023 for most of the year before being knocked to second place by When Evil Lurks, and it remains an absolute banger of a good time. Teens make a party game out of a hand that allows the person in contact with it to open themselves up to temporary possession… but if they fuck up, that possession becomes permanent. It’s a great riff on the usually bland and formulaic possession movies, and we get some legitimately creepy and frightening set-pieces here too. Turn off the lights and turn up the volume, this one’s a keeper.
[Extras: Commentary, featurette, deleted scenes]
What is it? A hotel serving guests during Covid quarantine falls prey to a giant centipede fiasco.
Why see it? It might seem an odd pairing putting giant centipede horror alongside a Covid pandemic setting, but you wouldn’t think that if it worked. This Thai film, unfortunately, can’t quite bridge the gap between the two meaning the Covid angle falls by the wayside pretty quickly without the film finding a way to tie anything about it into the centipedes, really. That said, Thai centipedes are terrifying, and while they’re often brought to life via cg the effects are pretty good most of the time.
Night of the Demons [4K UHD, Scream Factory]
What is it? Teens go partying at a house, not all of them survive.
Why see it? Kevin Tenney’s late 80s horror flick has become something of a staple for many fans each Halloween — it’s set on the holiday, the “teens” are celebrating the dark, and the practical effects and gore are pretty darn great. The acting is terrible, but you move past it as each new set-piece in the back half brings the goods with both bloodletting and WTF moments like Linnea Quigley inserting a tube of lipstick into her nipple via some fantastic Steve Johnson fx work. It’s ultimately an okay horror flick with mild comedy around the edges, but the big draw here is Scream Factory’s new 4K transfer which looks great. The film’s uncut version has never looked this good, and the numerous extras add up to making this a spectacular release for an okay picture.
[Extras: New 4K scan, commentaries, interview, workprint, featurettes]
Also out this week:
The Black Phone [4K UHD], Don’t Look Now [4K UHD, Criterion Collection], It Came From Outer Space [4K UHD], The Mean One, The Mist [4K UHD], Mob Land, Night of the Demons 3 [Scream Factory], Scream 3 [4K UHD]
Related Topics: Home Video