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Children of the Corn ~ Scary or just plain boring?
Children Of The Corn (DVD)
Member Name: sandemp
Children Of The Corn (DVD)
Date: 20/01/05, updated on 25/01/05 (170 review reads)
Advantages: Umm, The actual DVD looks nice
Disadvantages: Not Scary, No where nearly as good as the story
I never cease to be amazed that one short story, that took me less than an hour to read, could spawn not one but six feature length films. And yet this is the case with Children of the Corn, a short story by Stephen King. This is the first of the six, and first hit the big screens in 1984.
The children of Gatlin, Nebraska have a new god.........
A cruel and hungry god, that will only be appeased by human blood. So it is that one day the children unite under the leadership of the child preacher Isaac and his bloodthirsty henchman Malachai, to turn on and massacre all the adults in the town.
Three years later and a young couple have stumbled into the now apparently deserted town......................
On the whole I found the cast performance wooden, and the characterisations just did not have that special something, that draws you into the film. There was however one exception, that is John Franklin as the supremely creepy Isaac.
Were there any? No, I'm serious, by today's standards the film was very low tech and the peak of the effects was a very obviously fake red sky.
In other words, there is a formula to the score used in horror movies, and this is no exception. As the “tension” (ha) gradually increases, so does the volume of the music, until it peaks as we get to the “scary” (ha ha ha) bits. Not only this but I found the actual music, intrusive and annoying.
~~~A Good Adaptation~~~
In a word, NO. The film veers too far from the original story to be even considered a reasonable adaptation. I won't go into the detail of the differences, just in case you actually decide you want to watch the film, but just where did Sarah and Job come from?
OK, I'll admit it, when I first watched this film, aged 14 (yes I know, rating), In was scared sh*tless. But having read the actual story on which it is based, and grown up considerably, I find it severely lacking in the crucial fear factor.
OK so now you know what I think about the film, how about the DVD itself.
Now, this is a relatively old film, and it shows. Although mostly clear, when viewed on a standard 28” television, the picture quality deteriorates somewhat in the darker scenes, when it becomes quite grainy.
However, because this is a DVD, the picture quality will not deteriorate any further through repeated viewing.
While perfectly clear, the sound was only in mono. It would have been far more effective in Dolby 5.1 or even stereo.
Well to say the extras are sparse would be a bit of an understatement. There is a grand total of one special feature : A useless theatrical trailer.
So, if you're hoping to get any added value from the “special” features, you're in for a disappointment.
~~~The Actual DVD~~~
I've been struggling to find at least one thing nice to say about this DVD, and I've finally found one. The actual printing on the DVD is pretty cool, with a black scythe on a background of blood red corn.
~~~The Technical Bits~~~
Region : 2
Rating : 18
Running time : 88mins
Video aspect ratio : 19:9 Anamorphic
Soundtrack : English Mono
Subtitles : None
~~~Prices and Availability~~~
This DVD is available from Amazon marketplace starting from £2.39. There is however a newer version available for £22.49, which not only features 5.1 sound, but actually has a number of extras.
If you wish to read the story on which it is, very loosely, based, then it is available in the book Night Shift, which can be bought at Amazon for £6.39.
OK, while I can't actually recommend this film, someone must have liked it, as there was not one, but five sequels.
Personally I found the actual story much more subtle and scary than the film. So my advice is to forget this film, grab a copy of Night Shift, and read what Mr King actually wrote about the children of Gatlin and their god.