The Initiation appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This wasn’t a bad image given its age, but it never became especially appealing.
Sharpness was probably the weakest link. Parts of the film showed reasonable delineation, but a lot of it came across as soft and bland. No issues with jaggies or shimmering occurred, and I saw no edge haloes. Print flaws were essentially absent as well.
Colors were adequate. Though the hues lacked great vivacity, they showed passable clarity. Blacks were reasonably dark, and shadows presented acceptable smoothness. Nothing here seemed better than average.
When we moved to the film’s LPCM monaural soundtrack, it showed its age but usually sounded decent. Dialogue was adequate as only occasional edginess affected the lines. Speech could’ve been more natural, but the lines seemed okay.
Music wasn’t particularly bold, but the score and songs showed reasonable clarity and vivacity. Effects seemed clean and without substantial distortion; though they didn’t have much kick, they reproduced the material well. While nothing here dazzled, the mix held up fine for a 32-year-old mono track.
As we shift to extras, we get an audio commentary from members of “The Hysteria Continues”, a podcast group. We hear from Justin Kurswell, Erik Threllfall, Joseph Henson and Nathan Johnson. All four chat together for this running, screen-specific look at cast/crew, other horror flicks/influences, sets and locations, and related subjects.
Don’t expect a lot of substance from this largely forgettable chat. The participants offer a smattering of useful thoughts about the film and its genre, but mostly they just seem to shoot the breeze. Maybe that works for some, but I think it fails to produce an informative piece.
Three featurettes follow. Sorority Saga goes for 21 minutes, 17 seconds and provides an interview with writer Charles Pratt Jr. He discusses his interest in filmmaking, his work on Initiation, some production details and the flick’s legacy. Pratt presents a fun personality who makes this an involving little chat.
During the 18-minute, 36-second Pledge Night, we hear from actor Christopher Bradley. He lets us know how he got his part as well as working on the film, cast/crew, aspects of the shoot, and his reaction to the end product. Like Pratt, Bradley seems happy to discuss the movie, and his energy helps carry this enjoyable collection of memories.
Finally, Dream Job lasts 13 minutes, 34 seconds and involves actor Joy Jones. She covers her interest in acting, experiences during the shoot, thoughts about the film and her life after movies. Jones presents another informative and likable conversation.
In addition to the film’s trailer, we find an Extended Scene. It lasts one minute, seven seconds and shows a smidgen more from the fraternity party. The few extra seconds of dialogue add nothing of value.
A booklet concludes the package. It offers credits, photos and an essay from historian James Oliver. It ends matters in a pleasing manner.
Maybe I should admire the fact The Initiation attempts greater thematic depth than the average slasher film, but the end result sputters so badly that I can’t give it credit. The movie moves slowly and offers no excitement, terror or drama. The Blu-ray brings us mediocre picture and audio along with a decent array of supplements. The Initiation delivers a forgettable, amateurish horror flick.