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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r


(aka 'DeathMobile' or 'Wheels')

Directed by Elliot Silverstein
USA 1977

 

Fasten your seatbelts for the terrifying thrill ride that has become a cult classic - The Car! The peaceful tranquility of a small Western town is disturbed when a murderous car wreaks havoc by viciously mowing down innocent victims. New sheriff Wade Parent (James Brolin) may be the only one who can stop this menace in its tracks until he realizes that the driver of this indestructible vehicle is far more dangerous than any man it is driven by pure evil. With a digitally remastered picture The Car has never been more thrilling more chilling or more explosively entertaining!

***

Why the Lord of Evil would choose a small town in southern California (Read into this: desert.) to terrorize with a custom musclecar is beyond me, maybe he just does dumb things at times. The fear campaign proceeds quite well and soon the sprawling town (Population: 40 or so.) is paralyzed, even their amazing police force can't help. Why they needed ten deputies is beyond me anyway, was this place colonized by Hell's Angels or something? Even a tank would have a hard time stopping this car though, at one point it is faced with two patrol cars. Amazingly it turns and begins flipping, rolling over and squashing them before driving off. (The wonders of special effects, or maybe just having two cars and a jumble on the editing room floor.) Everyone struck by the car becomes a fatality, despite the fact that it never runs over them, instead propelling them through the air like some strange tennis ball machine that shoots humans vice tennis balls. Only Wade's ingenious plan saves the day, after luring the car into a canyon they get it to drive off a cliff and then set off dynamite charges, burying the cursed thing under a tomb of rock.

Excerpt from BadMovies.org located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: May 13th, 1977

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Comparison:

Universal - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Arrow - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - RIGHT)

Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution Universal Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Arrow Video
Region 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:36:12 1:36:13.809
Video 2.35:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 8.73 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size : 31,802,741,915 bytes

Feature: 25,552,613,376 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Average Bitrate: 29.98 Mbps

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0), DUB: French (Dolby Digital 2.0) LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
Commentary: DTS-HD Master Audio English 1608 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1608 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Subtitles English (CC), None English (SDH), None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Universal

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1

Edition Details:

• Trailer (2:12)

DVD Release Date: May 6th, 200
8
Double -lock Keep Case
Chapters: 18

Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Video

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size : 31,802,741,915 bytes

Feature: 25,552,613,376 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Average Bitrate: 29.98 Mbps

 

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary with director Elliot Silverstein moderated by Calum Waddell
• Making a Mechanical Monster: Special Effects Artist William Alridge Remembers The Car (27:33)
• Hitchhike the Hell: Actor John Rubinstein recalls becoming a victim of The Car (10:16)
• Introduction and trailer commentary by director and The Car fan John Landis (2:56)
• Original Trailer (2:04)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Joe Wilson

Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Cullen Gallagher as well as a brand new interview with co-writer Michael Butler conducted by Calum Waddell, illustrated with original archive stills and artwork

 

Blu-ray Release Date: July 15th, 2013
Custom
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 12

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were ripped directly from the Blu-ray disc.

 

ADDITION: Arrow - Region 'B' Blu-ray - July 2013': The superlative new 1080P transfer from Arrow breathes new life into The Car when compared to the 5-year old, flat SD release. The comparative captures identify the upgrade - passive but more layered colors, depth, superior contrast exporting a more film-like appearance. There is a touch more information in the frame - in the top and left edges. Skin tones cool to a more natural state and it looks sharper. This is dual-layered with a high bitrate and is a solid transfer.

 

Audio is in an authentic linear PCM stereo track at 1536 kbps. It sounds quite buoyant with the many effects exported with some depth. The original score is by Leonard Rosenman who has done a fair amount of TV work. It seems well supported by the lossless transfer. There are optional English subtitles on the region 'B'-locked Blu-ray.

 

Arrow include some new extras - an audio commentary with director Elliot Silverstein (A Man Called Horse) moderated by Calum Waddell, a 28-minute featurette entitled Making a Mechanical Monster which has Special Effects Artist William Alridge remembering The Car. Hitchhike the Hell has 10-minutes with actor John Rubinstein discussing his stint of becoming a victim of The Car. We get an introduction and trailer commentary by director and The Car fan John Landis and the original trailer. The Blu-ray package has a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Joe Wilson and inside is a collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Cullen Gallagher as well as a brand new interview with co-writer Michael Butler conducted by Calum Waddell, illustrated with original archive stills and artwork.

 

The film? - well, you probably know what you are in for. It's like a cheapo, grindhousy version of Steven Spielberg's Duel. None of that film's character, inventiveness or subtleties but plenty of down-home creepiness. The direction is surprisingly adept as is the cinematography. You really have to love 'bad' cinema to accept this. It is really the type of film to develop a big cult niche - Brolin is perfect. Personally, I really get in the mood for these type of flicks - all 70's cheese... and I love it. To each his own. If you are keen then this is the best looking, sounding edition with the best extras to own. Really, let your hair down - it can be a lot of fun.

***

ON THE Universal DVD: Anchor Bay released this film in July of 1999 - it was dual-layered with a widescreen version on one layer, and a useless full-screen version on the other. It offered only a trailer. This new dual-layered Universal DVD has a stunning image and is only the 2.35:1 widescreen edition - anamorphic and progressive. It too, only offers a trailer.

The image quality is strong for the format on this new remastered Universal DVD - it is almost hard to believe the film is over 30 years old. Colors are bright, detail is pristine (for SD), the transfer is super clean and tight to the frame edges. Really remarkable all things considered. We understand this is a notable step up from the out-of-print Anchor Bay release. This also differs from the AB edition as it only offers a 2.0 channel track where the older release had a boosted 5.1 as well. The Universal offers optional English subtitles.

 

Gary W. Tooze

 


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(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)

 


(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)

 


(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)

 


(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)

 


(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)
 

 


(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)
 

(Universal - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)
 

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Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution Universal Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Arrow Video
Region 'B' - Blu-ray




 

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