Urban Legend (1998) (Collector’s Edition) (Blu-ray Review)
DIRECTED BY: Silvio Horta
STARRING: Jared Leto, Alicia Witt, Rebecca Gayheart
RATED: R/REGION A/2:40/1080P/NUMBER OF DISCS 2
AVAILABLE FROM Scream Factory
When New England college student Natalie (Alicia Witt, TV’s The Exorcist) finds herself at the center of a series of sadistic murders seemingly inspired by urban legends, she resolves to find the truth about her school’s own legend: a twenty-five-year-old story of a student massacre at the hands of an abnormal Psych professor. As the fraternities prepare to celebrate the macabre anniversary, Natalie discovers that she is the focus of the crazed killer’s intentions in the ultimate urban legend – the unfolding story of her own horrific murder.
Coming off the heels of the slasher resurgence that was brought on by Scream, Urban Legend would be part of the wave of then “new age” slashers that came out in the mid-90’s and early 2000’s. This time around the film uses (you guessed it) urban legends for the theme of each death that is brought on by the movie’s mysterious killer. Dressed in a very large winter’s coat, we watch as this killer stalks and slashes and very young cast that was made up of some pretty big named young actors of the time. We eventually have to try to figure out why as our leading lady and residential final girl played by Alicia Witt is chased around and being forced to at times watch her friends die after she survived an early attack. This is perhaps a slasher that like most the 90’s slashers and unlike the 80’s slashers hasn’t aged as well as one might hope. Some of it still comes across as entertaining and some of it does still kinda work, but there is a whole lot that doesn’t.
For one, if you really think things over, the plot and twist that comes in the last act of the film kind of lacks a whole lot of common sense. In also keeping up with the Scream movies of the time the film also tries to place the killer tag on different people from time to time, some of which are ridiculous while others might have actually worked better than the actual person who we get as the killer. Anyway, you want to cut it, Urban Legend plays as a nice throwback to what horror was at the time and maybe even just a little bit to what was wrong with it as well. We have at least one really cool kill while most the action and gore is kept off camera. Our last few moments hold a performance from our killer that might either be genius or a disaster depending on how you look at it. Regardless, I’d suggest you at least give this one a watch anyway and see what you think. It could have used more blood, but it is far from awful. With this release, you’d think we’re dealing with Scream here, as Scream Factory has two discs of goodies for this one.
– NEW Audio Commentary With Director Jamie Blanks, Producer Michael McDonnell, Assistant Edgar Pablos, Moderated By Author Peter M. Bracke
– Audio Commentary With Director Jamie Blanks, Writer Silvio Horta, And Actor Michael Rosenbaum
– Theatrical Trailer
– NEW Urban Legacy – An Eight-Part Documentary On The Making Of Urban Legend (147 Minutes) Including Interviews With Director Jamie Blanks, Writer Silvio Horta, Executive Producers Brad Luff And Nick Osborne, Producers Neal Moritz, Gina Matthews, And Michael McDonnell, Chairman And CEO Of Phoenix Pictures Mike Medavoy, Production Designer Charles Breen, Director Of Photography James Chressanthis, Editor Jay Cassidy, Composer Christopher Young, Actors Alicia Witt, Michael Rosenbaum, Natasha Gregson Wagner, Robert Englund, Loretta Devine, Rebecca Gayheart, Tara Reid, And Danielle Harris, Assistant Edgar Pablos, Author Peter M. Bracke, And More…
– NEW Behind-The-Scenes Footage
– NEW Extended Interviews From The Eight-Part Documentary
– Archival Making Of Featurette
– Gag Reel
– Deleted Scene
– TV Spots
QUALITY OF TRANSFER: 96%