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The Independent Critic

Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott David Gale, Kathleen Kinmont, and Claude Earl Jones
Brian Yuzna
H.P. Lovecraft (Characters), Rick Fry, Woody Keith, Brian Yuzna
Both "R" and "Unrated" versions
96 Mins. (plus extras)
Arrow Video (Blu-ray)

 "Bride of Re-Animator" Gets Limited Edition Collectible From Arrow Video 

The folks at Arrow Video are at it again with this 3-disc, director approved limited edition packaging for Brian Yuzna's Bride of Re-Animator, the sequel to Stuart Gordon's classic Re-Animator. This package includes brand new 2K restorations of both R-rated and unrated versions of Bride of Re-Animator that have been approved by Yuzna.

Unfortunately, this is one case where the fine Arrow packaging may actually exceed the quality of the final product. Bride of Re-Animator kicks off for the most part where Re-Animator left off as doctors Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) and Dan Cain (Bruce Abbott) have been forced to lay low in a Latin American MASH Unit following the massacre at Miskatonic University Hospital that claimed the life of Cain's beloved fiancee'. All this time laying low has allowed Cain and West to discover that boosting the serium with the amniotic fluid of a rare iguana allows for the creation of new body parts.

Of course, you kind of know where this is going. Don't you?

While the special effects in Bride of Re-Animator are inspired and fun, much of the film feels like a "been there, seen that" type of experience including jokes that feel like they've been reworked from the original film and some of the film's obvious tips of the hat are just a tad too obvious.

To their credit, Arrow has still managed to make the entire collection watchable by including both R-rated and unrated versions of the film along with a tremendously entertaining Brian Yuzna featurette and multiple audio commentaries worth a listen. I continue to marvel at Arrow's ability to attract the attention of indie horror and cult film filmmakers and stars to participate in their projects, even those that weren't particularly successful the first time around. They deserve applause all the way around.

While Bride of Re-Animator doesn't come close to measuring up to the original, both Combs and Abbott still bring their A-game to the affair. Combs has a hilariously deadpan delivery that will leave you in fits of giggles and proves to be a tremendous contrast to Abbott's more seductive performance.

If you're a fan of the original or, for that matter, of this film then this Arrow Video collection is about as good as it gets in terms of video and audio quality along with a wealth of extras you won't find anywhere else. Available in both the U.K. and U.S. markets, this limited edition package proves once again that Arrow Films has become practically a best friend to indie horror and cult filmmakers.

Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic