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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

 

The New York Ripper  aka Lo squartatore di New York [Blu-ray]

 

(Lucio Fulci, 1982)

 

 

Comparison by Gary Tooze - Special Thanks to Eric Cotenas for the DVD screencaps

 

Production:

Theatrical: Fulvia Film

Video: Blue Underground vs. Anchor Bay

 

Disc:

Region: FREE! (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:32:59.282

Disc Size: 22,781,942,884 bytes

Feature Size: 20,191,721,472 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.99 Mbps

Chapters: 16

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: September 29th, 2009

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 2065 kbps 7.1 / 48 kHz / 2065 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio English 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps

 

Subtitles:

English, French, Spanish, none

 

Extras:

• "I'm an Actress!" - Interview with Zora Kerova (9:29 in HD!)
NYC Locations Then and Now (4:08 in HD!)
Theatrical Trailer (3:20 in HD!)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: A blade-wielding psychopath is on the loose, turning The Big Apple bright red with the blood of beautiful young women. As NYPD detectives follow the trail of butchery from the decks of the Staten Island Ferry to the sex shows of Times Square, each brutal murder becomes a sadistic taunt. In the city that never sleeps, he's the killer that can't be stopped!

Written and directed by acclaimed horror maestro Lucio Fulci (ZOMBIE, CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD) and filmed on location in the mean streets of New York City, this is one of Fulci's most savage and controversial thrillers. Now remastered in blood-soaked High-Definition from its original camera negative, THE NEW YORK RIPPER is presented completely uncut and uncensored with exclusive new Extras!

 

 

The Film:

In the opening scene of Lucio Fulci’s 1982 giallo/slasher flick, New York Ripper, the astute Fulci fan is treated to several of the legendary Italian goremeister’s cinematic trademarks. In a deserted New York lot, with the Brooklyn Bridge looming in the background, a man plays fetch with his dog. He throws the stick into some dense foliage and we watch, in a long shot, as the dog brings his bounty back to his master. We never see just what the dog has brought back, but Fulci gives us one of his infamous cut shots to the man’s face—then zooms in so that only his eyes are visible. From this expression, we know something’s not right. Then, with a discordant blast of music designed to jangle our nerves, he cuts to the dog’s mouth, then zooms in what it’s carrying—a decomposing hand. Fulci holds the shot for several seconds, leering at the gore effect and allowing the audience to check it out in detail, then he cuts to another scene entirely.

For anyone who has seen more than three Fulci films (and paid attention), this opening sequence is indicative of his entire body of work as a filmmaker. There’s an aesthetic at work in Fulci’s films—a crass one that seems to revel in showing us gruesome things for longer than necessary, yet an aesthetic none the less. It also demonstrates that other Fulci staple, a fascination with human eyes—and, eventually, the destruction of human eyes. However, while all of Fulci’s films are gory (he wasn’t dubbed the ‘godfather of gore’ by fans for nothing), many of them were supernaturally tinged movies filled with zombies, which gave the films in question an almost comic book feel. It’s hard to take the gore in a film like Zombie or City of the Living Dead in a serious way—zombies aren’t real. But, New York Ripper was something of a departure for Fulci…a sleazy and overtly violent film very much grounded in reality. And it is least partially because of this change in tone and new direction (away from the more comic book styled gore films) that this film is reviled by even many of Fulci’s staunchest supporters. Of course, it’s also why some of us champion it as one of his best films as well.

Excerpt from Mike Bracken's excellent review at epionons.com located HERE

 

 


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

Thanks again to Eric for supplying the 1999 Anchor Bay captures. That original edition, by the way, was directly ported by the April 2008 Blue Underground DVD of The New York Ripper. The improvement on Blu-ray though is staggering. While flesh tones may be the first thing to comment on with the 1080P resolution losing the awful orange/yellow skin - it seems everything has been bumped up a significant notch. The older DVD was very video-y and so dark at times it obscured detail - and the Blu-ray is much brighter, with less damage, and even has more information in the frame. Detail is much better in the HD rendered transfer. The Blue Underground gives a solid presentation in its own right with a nice sheen of consistent grain and even some minor depth. It's only a single-layered Blu-ray disc with the feature taking up somewhere over 20 Gig with a decent-to-strong video bitrate. I wasn't expecting it to look as strong as it does with no discernable DNR or edge-enhancement manipulations and it advances beyond the earlier DVD editions in several key areas - notably detail and colors.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Audio :

Blue Underground give the option of two English tracks - a lossless DTS-HD Master 7.1 at 2065 kbps and a modest mono offering. The HD track hasn't had excessive tinkering with the mix and still relates well to the early 80's video. There are a few nice subtleties and the overall effects remain consistent with production roots. It's not the most dynamic of tracks with extensive range but it has some separation appeal. The mono track sounded pretty clean in testing too - not extravagant flaws or weaknesses were noted. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.

 

 

 

Extras :

There are 3 supplements - each in HD. "I'm an Actress!" is a 10minute interview with Zora Kerova who played Eva the sex show performer. She talks in Italian and there are optional English subtitles - she still looks great. There is a 4-minute short piece on NYC Locations Then and Now - showing scenes from the film to how the city has changed in almost 30-years. There is also a theatrical trailer running just under 3.5 minutes. the Anchor Bay appears to have had some text screen bios.

 

 Blue Underground - Region FREE - Blu-ray LEFT vs. Anchor Bay (1999) - Region 1- NTSC RIGHT

 

 
 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
The Blu-ray viewing is likely to represent a very different presentation experience than the older DVDs. It's a dramatic jump that Fulci fans should relish. It's bantered about that this may be his best film - it certainly has the exploitive earmarks associated with his signature. For what this is being offered - less than $17 at the writing of this review - those who appreciate this genre should definitely indulge on Blu-ray. I doubt we're going to see it looking any better and I recommend! 

Gary Tooze

October 10th, 2009

 

 


 

About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction. So be it, but film will always be my first love and I list my favorites on the old YMdb site now accessible HERE.  

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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