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A view from the Blu (-ray) on DVDBeaver by Leonard Norwitz


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The Omen III: The Final Conflict (The Omen Collection) [Blu-ray]


(Graham Baker, 1981)



Review of the entire collection:


The FOUR Blu-rays comprise Fox's The Omen Collection on Blu-ray which includes The Omen (1976), Omen 2: Damien (1978), Omen 3: The Final Conflict (1981) and The Omen (2006)


Review by Leonard Norwitz



Theatrical: 20th Century Fox

Blu-ray: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment



Region: A

Runtime: 1:48:19

Chapters: 20

Feature Size: 33.4 GB

Case: Lightweight Gatefold Case, with Slipcover

Release date: October 7, 2008



Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p

Video codec: AVC @ 36 MBPS



English DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio; English 5.1 DD, Spanish & French Mono.



English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin & Korean



• Feature Commentary by Director Graham Baker



The Movie: 4
Optimistically titled "The Final Conflict" (Omen I-III producers Harvey Barnhard & Mace Neufeld couldn't let bad enough alone and put together a made-for-TV movie titled: "Omen IV: The Awakening" – not a part of this collection, though it was part of the 2006 DVD Omen Collection.) In this final part of the trilogy, Damien is now 32, head of Thorn Industries and poised to fully come into his birthright. But first, not having the benefit of George W's hindsight that might have recommended against the venture, Damien seeks the very post that his father had, and which eventually led to his fateful part in this tragedy.

Damien is played by Irish-born Sam Neill. At this point in his career, Neill was still eight years away from Dead Calm, nine from The Hunt for Red October, and fourteen from The Piano and Jurassic Park. Even though some way off, and given his performances in all of those later projects, I have to judge his lackluster performance in Omen III the fault of his director. The
script, up to about the last ten minutes, is not really all that bad. But the direction is weak most of the time. Most curious is Don Gordon as Dean, Damien's secretary and right hand man. His reactions to Damien's various pronouncements are utterly without recognition of the practical or metaphysical implications. Things change when his own son may be targeted, but even then, his character is without substance. If you read the subtitles as the movie goes along, you can see that the script has unrealized potential.

As the movie opens, Christian astronomical signs indicate that the Second Coming is nigh, a fact that Damien is keenly aware of. He sees his mission as heading "The Nazarene" off at the pass. Once it is determined that the rebirth of The Messiah will take place somewhere in southern England, it's a simple matter of killing all the male children born on the appointed date. This requires the mobilization of Damien's Satan-worshippers: In other words, that part of the English middle class who haven't already been sidetracked into Christianity. Meanwhile, a handful of monks under the guidance of Father DeCarlo (convincingly played by Rosanno Brazzi) swear to kill the Antichrist, Damien Thorn, with the recently unearthed Megiddo daggers before Satan's spawn has a chance to put his plan into action. Unhappily for us, these guys are none too bright about how to go about it.



Image: 8/9 NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were ripped directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The first number indicates a relative level of excellence compared to other Blu-ray video discs on a ten-point scale. The second number places this image along the full range of DVD and Blu-ray discs.

The look of this movie is very different from the first two: it's clearer, cleaner, less lyrical and much less interesting. All of this is reflected properly in the Blu-ray transfer, which is pretty much blemish-free. Bit rates are high: in the upper 30s.
















Audio & Music: 7/6
By this time, Goldsmith had lost touch with whatever muse he had for the first movie, which is to say that the score works well enough, but is on balance unremarkable and uninspired. The uncompressed DTS audio mix fairs better than the Dolby Digital 5.1, mostly in respect to it's being dynamic rather than subtle or atmospheric. Graham Baker's pedestrian direction doesn't give us much to go on.




Operations: 2
I took off 3 points for the worst packaging I've seen for a Blu-ray set. The outer sleeve, which is the same height as a standard DVD package, is thin – that's not uncommon, but the gatefold that holds the discs is an embarrassment to the industry – hardly double the thickness of the thin outer sleeve, with the cheesiest disc holders ever. Another thing I had trouble with was that when I selected the desired scene from the menu while the movie was playing, the scene came up but the menu persisted. Why? Everything else went well. Disc loads quickly with no previews or promos.


Extras: 4
Besides a "theatrical trailer" in surprisingly poor quality 4:3 (made for TV, perhaps!), the lone extra feature is an audio commentary by the director. I tuned in a few times: and found Baker to be not especially engaging or informative.


Bottom line: 6
Considering the price of this collection, the presentation is inexcusable. That said, the discs themselves are all very good in terms of both image and sound. It's nice that the first two movies retain the original mono option. At the moment, only the first movie is available separately, so the "Collection" is the only option for any of the other movies in HD.


Leonard Norwitz
October 9th, 2008



Review of the entire collection:


The FOUR Blu-rays comprise Fox's The Omen Collection on Blu-ray which includes The Omen (1976), Omen 2: Damien (1978), Omen 3: The Final Conflict (1981) and The Omen (2006)




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