Monday, January 19, 2015

Thoughts on the Nightbreed Director's Cut Blu Ray

Ok, so I'm a tad late on this one. But its possible there are still people on the fence about purchasing it. So here are my two cents. Nightbreed is one of my all time favorite movies. I saw it at just the right time I guess, cause it really struck a chord with me. Clive had once said he intended it to be the Star Wars of Monster Movies. For me, that was very much the case. I took to it like most kids did Star Wars. I would play Nightbreed with my friends. Draw pictures of the characters. Even pretended toys that weren't Nightbreed were Nightbreed toys. I collected the comics too.

I remember getting this little pamphlet from Movie Gallery back right before the film first came to video. It was basically a little bio sheet for each of the main characters. I was already hooked and I hadn't even seen the movie yet. I also got an oversized movie poster that day too and it remained on my door for almost ten years.

Rumors of the mysterious directors cut and all the tons and tons of missing footage surfaced almost right away. As such a devotee, I of course HAD to see this. So I patiently waited. And waited. And waited. Yet no director's cut appeared. I won't go into that story. I'm sure most anyone reading this knows that wild and weird story. So a few years back when rumors that it may finally happen appeared, I got excited once again. A few short years later and BAM, I had the director's cut bluray in my hand.

The biggest point of confusion here was that this was the Cabal Cut. It is not. It is a new director's cut. A totally different animal. Though there is supposed to be 40 minutes of new footage, the film itself is only twenty minutes longer. Quite a bit of the footage we know well from the theatrical cut has been cut away and replaced.

So how is it? Was it worth wait? Is it really a totally different movie? The early reviews I read I talked about how very different it is. A different tone. A different ending. A whole new focus. Honestly, that is not the case. It really isn't that different. There are some brand new scenes, most of which focus on Boone and Lorrie. There is also a drug induced freakout Boone has. There are several extended scenes, like Lorrie wandering through Midian. The final battle is also a lot longer. A certain fan favorite character, who survived in the theatrical cut, is killed. Mainly, the ending is what is so different. *SPOILER* Lorrie becomes a Nightbreed and the crazy preacher Ashbury doesn't bring back Decker *END SPOILER*  The infamous Peloquin and Shuna Sassy love is still completely absent.

So all in all, I have to say, I like the theatrical cut better. I really do like the extended scenes, and the bit with Lorrie at the end is great, but the ending part with the preacher is much better in the theatrical cut. Also, there is more Narcisse in the theatrical cut. What I would have done was not take anything out of the theatrical cut, added in the new non-contradicting footage, and used the contradicting stuff as bonus footage/deleted scenes.  That would have been my ideal cut of the film.

As most of you know, Scream Factory has grown a bit greedy and released two different special editions. The normal release then the way too expensive special special edition. The normal special only has a kind of making of documentary thing. Don't get me wrong, its really good. But the deleted scenes would have been a better special feature. As much as I love the movie, 70 plus dollars for two extra discs, one of special features and one of the theatrical cut, is way too much.

This is a great release of a great film. I am definitely glad I got it. But I do prefer the theatrical cut.


  1. Great write-up Rob. I had seen this in the theatre when it first came out I and remember liking it and although not a huge fan of the film, I was intrigued by the new Scream Factory release. Although not being a huge fan, I was a bit confused by what we were getting as I thought "Cabal Cut" WAS the directors cut.
    I too went with the standard release but after getting it I tracked down a used DVD of the theatrical cut so I could watch that again and I gotta say after seeing both I prefer the theatrical version. It's too bad we din't get the actual Cabal cut as that would be interesting to see.

    1. Thanks, brotha! And I'm glad you agree with me on this matter.
      And wow, you saw it in the theater! I'm envious. Im not even sure it came to my hometown.

      It's too bad I'm not all film editing fancy or I'd make my own cut of the film. Kind of like my ideal cut of Erotic Nights I wrote about a few years back. I would also like to make a slight edit of Starcrash.