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Meir Zarchi
Camille Keaton, Jamie Bernadette, Maria Olsen
Writing Credits:
Meir Zarchi

Writer Camille Keaton returns to the site of her earlier rape to confront the families of those she killed.

Rated NR.

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English DTS-HD MA 2.0
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 148 min.
Price: $39.95
Release Date: 10/5/2021

• Audio Commentary with Author/Historian Joe Bob Briggs
• Cast Interviews
• “Making of I Spit On Your Grave Déjà Vu” Featurette
• Behind the Scenes Footage
• Trailers


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I Spit On Your Grave Deja Vu [Blu-Ray] (2019)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 2, 2022)

1978’s I Spit On Your Grave long ago became an infamous “exploitation” film, known for its brutal and graphic depiction of rape. 2010 brought a a remake, one that spawned two direct to video sequels.

Four decades after the original movie, the 1978 Grave finally got a sequel via 2019’s I Spit On Your Grave Déjà Vu. Both writer/director Meir Zarchi as well as lead actor Camille Keaton return for this one.

An aspiring writer in 1978, Jennifer Hills (Keaton) achieved success via a memoir that detailed her horrific experiences. She also became a rape counselor to help others who suffer from trauma.

However, the families of the rapists Jennifer killed back in 1978 seek long-awaited revenge, so they kidnap Jennifer and her daughter Christy (Jamie Bernadette). Taken back to the rural setting where she suffered torment 40 years ago, Jennifer needs to take violent action again.

In theory, Déjà Vu could offer a compelling update on the original. Given the ordeal Jennifer experienced, it seems intriguing to see what happened to her in subsequent years.

However, in reality, stories like this don’t tend to live up to expectations. For instance, 2018’s Halloween acted as a direct sequel to the 1978 original but didn’t make Laurie Strode’s developments all that interesting.

That said, compared to Déjà Vu, the 2018 Halloween looks like an all-time classic. Whatever potential comes with the Spit sequel winds up utterly squandered.

Whereas the original film remained deadly serious, Déjà Vu opts for a bizarrely campy tone. Despite the dark nature of its plot and themes, it takes us down a wacky Hee Haw path that just seems perplexing.

Absolutely nothing about Déjà Vu allows for a sense of realism or seriousness. Outside of Jennifer and Christy – who seem underdrawn to the point of near non-existence – we find characters who lean toward nutty caricatures of in-bred loonies.

After 45 minutes of silliness, Déjà Vu takes a shocking turn, and from that point on, it essentially turns into a remake of the original. I won’t spill too many beans here, but whereas the first act depicts the antagonists as silly rednecks, the film suddenly veers toward brutality.

This doesn’t succeed, primarily because the aforementioned opening 45 minutes paint such a silly picture. Whereas the original maintained a serious tone from the start, the sequel’s initial emphasis on campiness makes the abrupt shift totally unworkable.

The movie’s length/pacing don’t help. A violent exploitation film such as Déjà Vu should fill hour and a half or so, not a mind-numbing 148 minutes.

That’s the kind of running time one expects from a serious drama or a historical epic, not a violent revenge tale. Déjà Vu enjoys maybe 20 minutes of actual story, and that makes the extended length even more problematic.

Hoo boy, does Déjà Vu ramble and ramble and ramble. Massive chunks of screentime pass with little viable material, as we watch endless shots of characters as they wander and roam and generate pointless conversations about nothing.

All of this heads in one inevitable direction, as Déjà Vu wants to replicate as much of the original movie as it can. Unfortunately, it just feels like a cheap, amateurish imitation.

While the 1978 Spit never becomes an enjoyable movie, it accomplishes its goals and seems generally well-made for its genre. Déjà Vu just feels like a tawdry, two-bit rip-off that never becomes anything more than a cartoon version of the first flick’s material.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio C+/ Bonus B-

I Spit On Your Grave Deja Vu appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This turned into an appealing presentation.

Sharpness appeared accurate and well-defined most of the time. A few slightly soft shots materialized, but most of the flick seemed distinctive and concise.

No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, and I saw no edge haloes. Print flaws also failed to appear.

Colors tended toward a light sense of amber, with a bit of the usual teal thrown in as well. Though the palette remained subdued, it came across as intended.

Blacks felt dark and dense, while shadows showed positive clarity. Ultimately this became a quality image.

Unfortunately, the movie’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack seemed less satisfying, mainly due to a less than natural soundscape. While active, the soundfield seemed awkward and clumsy too much of the time.

This meant that the movie gave us active use of all five channels, but it tended to seem too active, as the mix didn’t balance the material well. When elements cropped up in the side or surround speakers, they could feel contrived and they didn’t mesh together well.

Audio quality seemed positive, with speech that sounded distinctive and concise. Music boasted appealing range and fidelity as well.

Effects demonstrated good accuracy and impact, with deep low-end. Though the audio sounded fine, the clunky nature of the soundscape made this an erratic mix.

As we shift to extras, we open with an audio commentary from author/film historian Joe Bob Briggs. He presents a running, screen-specific discussion of some production topics, but Briggs mainly mocks the movie.

Sort of. Briggs doesn’t openly attack the flick, but he points out the 10 zillion flaws we find and gleefully reminds us of the movie’s utter lack of coherence/logic.

A little of this goes a long way. Briggs did a commentary for the 1978 movie that worked better because he offered both criticism and defense of that one. This meant he managed to give us a robust examination of the movie.

Probably because the sequel entirely stinks, Briggs finds no room to praise it, and this leaves us with little more than snarky observations. Which seems fair, as the movie deserves no better – it really offers a thoroughly awful affair.

Nonetheless, 148 minutes of jokey insults about a film gets tedious. Briggs is clever and funny enough to ensure this track never becomes a dud, but it still turns redundant before too long.

Under Cast Interviews, we get 11 minutes, four seconds of material. In these clips, we hear from actors Camille Keaton, Jamie Bernadette, Jeremy Ferdman, Jim Tavare, Maria Olsen, and Jonathan Peacy.

These interviews cover the 1978 movie, the sequel’s story/characters, performances, and general thoughts about the production. A few decent notes emerge, but most of the time, we get banal happy talk.

The Making of I Spit On Your Grave Déjà Vu runs 43 minutes, 51 seconds and mainly shows “fly on the wall” shots from the production. That makes it a good look at the shoot.

In addition to three trailers, the set concludes with two minutes, 44 seconds of Behind the Scenes Footage. It resembles a severely truncated version of “Making”, which makes it less than valuable.

Although the original I Spit On Your Grave offered a tough film to watch, at least I respected it own sense of honesty. Unfortunately, its long-delayed sequel flops in all regards, as Déjà Vu gives us a cheesy, tacky attempt to recreate the first flick’s themes. The Blu-ray brings very good audio along with erratic audio and a mix of supplements. Avoid this terrible sequel.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2.3333 Stars Number of Votes: 3
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