Halloween Kills appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie boasted a pleasing image.
Overall sharpness worked well. Some wider shots veered a smidgen toward the soft side, but they remained in the minority during this largely accurate presentation.
I saw no shimmering or jaggies, and edge haloes remained absent. Print flaws also failed to become an issue.
In terms of palette, Kills went with a palette that emphasized a standard form of amber and teal. The disc reproduced these as intended.
Blacks looked dark and deep, while shadows seemed smooth and concise. I felt happy with this high-quality presentation.
Downconverted to Dolby TrueHD 7.1, the film’s Dolby Atmos soundtrack added involvement to the proceedings. The channels used music in an involving manner, and various effects also broadened the soundscape in a winning way.
While not a film packed with action, Kills came to life enough to work the speakers well. Various horror elements related to the thrills moved around the room in a convincing pattern to contribute life to the tale.
Audio quality worked well. Speech seemed concise and distinctive, while effects appeared accurate and natural. Louder moments boasted fine punch.
Music was warm and full, with a good level of punch from percussive elements. All of this left us with a satisfactory “B+” soundtrack.
The disc comes with both the film’s theatrical version (1:45:07) as well as an Extended Cut (1:49:09). What did the extra four minutes, two seconds buy us? Potential spoilers ahoy!
Chapter One comes with one extra minute of Lonnie as he wanders scared. In Chapter Four, Karen enters the hospital morgue to find the corpse of her husband.
Chapter 14 provides about 30 seconds more of the crowd at the hospital, while Chapter 19 adds roughly one and a half minutes to the ending. In addition, a handful of scenes add a smidgen of extra violence, but never more than three to five seconds per chapter.
The pre-finale changes don’t give us much of interest, honestly. None of them seem problematic, but the movie gains little by their inclusion.
As for the alternate conclusion, it gives us a more “sequel-teaser” conclusion as well as added violence. Like the other footage, it neither harms nor helps the film.
Overall, the “Extended Cut” seems like a perfectly valid way to watch Kills. However, it comes with such minor changes that either version works about as well as the other.
Alongside either version of the film, we can screen an audio commentary from writer/director David Gordon Green and actors Jamie Lee Curtis and Judy Greer. All three sit together for this running, screen-specific discussion of story and characters, cast and performances, sets and locations, Easter eggs and deleted scenes, and related domains.
Expect a mostly enjoyable but not particularly great commentary. At its best, we do find some good insights.
However, Greer and Curtis often tend to just watch/react to the movie, and this increases as the film progresses. While worth a listen, this never becomes a particularly strong chat.
A Gag Reel goes for three minutes, 12 seconds and delivers the standard selection of goofs and giggles. It works as expected.
Three Deleted and Extended Scenes occupy a total of three minutes, 21 seconds. We see “Allyson Meets Bracket” (0:30), “Sondra’s Drone Finds the Shape” (1:48) and “Protestors Rock Outside Hospital” (1:03).
All three seem forgettable, though “Drone” allows us to see original “Shape” actor Nick Castle’s cameo. Nothing memorable takes place in these scenes otherwise.
Six featurettes follow, and Haddonfield’s Open Wounds runs seven minutes, 15 seconds. It brings notes from Green, Curtis, co-writers Danny McBride and Scott Teems, co-producer Ryan Turek, producer Jason Blum, makeup FX designer Christopher Nelson, and actors Andi Matichak, Anthony Michael Hall, Dylan Arnold, Robert Longsteet, Kyle Richards, and Charles Cyphers.
“Wounds” looks at story/characters as well as cast and performances. It manages a promotional vibe, so don’t expect much substance.
The Kill Team lasts 11 minutes, two seconds and features Green, Blum, Nelson, Matichak, Curtis, McBride, Turek, Longstreet, Hall, Teems, Cyphers, director of photography Michael Simmonds, script supervisor Ronit Ravich-Boss, 1st AD Atilla Salih Yucer, and actors Carmela McNeal, Michael Smallwood, Michael McDonald, Scott MacArthrur and Lenny Clarke.
We learn about the movie’s crew as well as aspects of the film’s violence scenes. Though it comes with some good notes about the technical elements, too much of “Team” just sticks with praise.
With Strode Family Values, we get a three-minute, 37-second segment that offers material from Curtis, Green, Matichak, Turek, McBride, Greer and Blum.
Here we get thoughts about the movie’s main female characters and actors. This feels like another insubstantial piece.
1978 Transformations fills five minutes, 50 seconds with remarks from Hall, Curtis, McBride, Green, Turek, Matichak, Simmonds, Nelson, production designer Richard A. Wright, and costume designer Emily Gunshor.
The featurette discusses the work done for the flick’s flashback sequences. Like the others, it mixes self-congratulation and useful notes.
Next comes The Power of Fear, a four-minute, 28-second piece that involves McBride, Curtis, Richards, Green, Hall, Greer, Matichak, Longstreet, and Arnold,
“Fear” discusses the movie’s depiction of the “mob mentality”. It proves oddly uninformative.
Finally, Kill Count goes for 53 seconds. It offers a “greatest hits” reel that tears through all 31 of Michael’s slayings in the movie. It seems kind of pointless.
The disc opens with ads for Stillwater, Candyman (2021) and Copshop. No trailer for Kills appears here.
After a successful sequel/reboot in 2018, 2021 brought more of the same with Halloween Kills. Though better than average for the genre, Kills never becomes especially memorable. The Blu-ray brings very good picture and audio along with a decent array of bonus materials. Fans will like the movie but it seems unlikely to convert new viewers.