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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

(aka 'C.H.U.D. (Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers)')

Directed by Douglas Cheek
USA
1984

 

From the subterranean depths it crawls! Finally making its long-awaited debut on Blu-ray, director Douglas Cheek s cult 80s favorite C.H.U.D. is the ultimate underground movie experience.

In downtown Manhattan, a police captain s hunt for his missing wife leads to the discovery of a series of mysterious disappearances in the area. Extending his search into the tunnels and sewers below the city streets, it soon becomes clear that something monstrous is lurking in that subterranean world and it won t stay there much longer...

Starring John Heard (Home Alone) and Christopher Curry (Starship Troopers) alongside an early appearance from John Goodman, C.H.U.D. has justifiably built up a huge cult following in the years since its release in 1984, with one of the most iconic creature designs of the period.

***

Beneath the streets of New York city, there are hundreds of miles of subterranean tunnels unfit for anything human, unauthorized for anything experimental and unlikely to come to the surface...until now. Something horrible is loose in the sewers of Manhattan, and the city’s homeless population has begun to mutate into ‘Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers.’ They are C.H.U.D. - hideous, hungry and headed for the streets. John Heard, Daniel Stern and Kim Greist star in this wildly original horror shocker, filmed on (and below) the streets of New York City where hundreds of tourists every year are still devoured by actual C.H.U.D. .

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 31st, 1984

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Comparison:

Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Arrow ('Director's Cut' or Integral Cut' and 'Theatrical Cut') - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Covers

   

Distribution Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC Arrow Video ('Uncut', "Integral Cut' or 'Director's Cut' version + 'Theatrical Cut')
Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:36:33  1:36:25.958  - Theatrical Cut - 1:26:29.000
Video 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.5 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s  

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 33,729,321,298 bytes

Feature: 26,727,266,304 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 30.01 Mbps

Disc2:

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,714,161,138 bytes

Feature: 21,563,590,656 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 29.97 Mbps

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

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Arrow (Uncut) Blu-ray:

Bitrate: Arrow 'Theatrical Cut' Blu-ray:

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0) 

LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit
Composer Audio Interviews and Score:

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
Commentary:

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit

 

Disc 2:

LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit

Subtitles None English or none
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1

Edition Details:

• Trailer (1:34)

DVD Release Date: September 27th, 2011

Keep Case
Chapters: 12

Release Information:
Studio: Arrow

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.85:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 33,729,321,298 bytes

Feature: 26,727,266,304 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 30.01 Mbps

 

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,714,161,138 bytes

Feature: 21,563,590,656 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 29.97 Mbps

 

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary by director Douglas Cheek, writer Shepard Abbott, and actors John Heard, Daniel Stern and Christopher Curry
• Composer Audio Interviews and Score
• A Dirty Look - interview with production designer William Bilowit (19:11)
• Dweller Designs - interview with special makeup creator John Caglione Jr. (12:07)
• Notes From Above Ground - interview with writer Michael Gingold and filmmaker Ted Geoghegan on the film's NYC locations (9:11)
• Behind the Scenes gallery (5:32)
• Extended Shower Scene (1:24)
• Trailer (1:36)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Dan Mumford
• FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film

Blu-ray Release Date: November 22nd, 2016
Transparent
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 12

 

 

 

Comments:

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

 

NOTE: We have been told by our FB Group that this is only one package (2 discs) sold in the US and that they UK Amazon link is for the 'Import'. Why is there a UK Amazon 'Import' link - one week before the US official release? and why does it say 88-minutes and not 96-minutes? Why does the US Amazon page say 1 disc and why does my second BD screener say Region B ? (it doesn't say 'Disc B' it says 'Region B') - so the screener must be listed incorrectly and the Amazon links are incorrect (both say '1 disc') ?!?!

 

NOTE: Suresh tells us  - "CHUD has been released by Arrow for the US only. The Limited Edition set out currently contains 2 discs, labeled as Integral Cut & Theatrical Cut." (Thanks Suresh!)

 

ADDITION: Arrow - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - November 16': Okay, so what's going on here? It looks like Arrow may have considered an 'A' + 'B' Blu-ray release of C.H.U.D. but at some point in the production realized they only had the 'Uncut' (or 'Director's Cut') rights for Region 'A' and the theatrical rights for Region 'A'. So two separate single Blu-ray disc releases on opposite sides of the Atlantic.

 

The 'theatrical' cut disc is bare-bones (no extras) while the Director's (or 'Uncut' or "Integral Cut") disc has many extras including commentary etc. (see below). Amazon incorrectly lists this as  '1 disc'.

 

Both HD transfers look the same in terms of color, contrast, grain support - strangely the Theatrical loses a sliver of information on all 4 edges beside the DC.

 

Now - vs. the SD. The DVD image seems vertically stretched (abnormally thinner faces) and is noticeably cropped on all 4 edges beside the 1080P. Colors (reds, maroons etc.) are deeper and richer in the higher resolution. The superiority is more evident in-motion but even in the static screen captures you can see the Blu-ray visuals are quite a bit stronger.

 

Both Blu-rays have linear PCM mono tracks and it is predictably flat and without a ton of depth. Some of the monster growls and leaps out of the shadows can shock but the films soundstage is fairly passive considering. Both Blu-rays have optional English (SDH) subtitles.

 

There is a very fun audio commentary (DC only) with director Douglas Cheek, writer Shepard Abbott, and actors John Heard, Daniel Stern and Christopher Curry. Heard can be quite sarcastic with a dry sense of humor and he and Stern really seem to be enjoying themselves. It's an enjoyable listen. There is another audio track - a composer - David A. Hughes - audio interviews and score. Arrow have produced some of their own extras - A Dirty Look is a 20-minute interview with production designer William Bilowit and Dweller Designs spends a dozen minutes with special makeup creator John Caglione Jr. Notes From Above Ground looks at the film's NYC locations with writer Michael Gingold and filmmaker Ted Geoghegan. It runs shy of 10-minutes. There is also a 'Behind the Scenes' gallery and an 'Extended Shower Scene' with Kim Greis. Lastly, a trailer is included. The package has a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Dan Mumford and for the first pressing only you get a collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film. NOTE: I'm unsure whether the UK (Theatrical) offers the reversible sleeve and book - but I would think it does.  

Fans in the UK will need to be Region FREE adopters. The film is still and enjoyable as a very nostalgic, fun, mid 80's creature-feature - great cast too. Great to see it on Blu-ray - especially with the extras. C.H.U.D. is recommended! 

***

ON THE DVD: A lot of fun here. C.H.U.D. (it stands for Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers in case you were curious) has a unique place in film history with plenty of 'future' stars including the likes of John Heard, Daniel Stern and John Goodman.  Let's state right out of the gate that the Anchor Bay edition from 2001 (also the 9-minute longer 'uncut' version) is still available HERE. And:

1) I'll bet its the exact same single-layered 1.78:1 transfer and

2) the Anchor Bay has a commentary and other extras where this only has a trailer.

The film is a hoot but we'd obviously recommend the Anchor Bay DVD while you can still get it - it's only $.50 more at the writing of this review. Unfortunately, Image Entertainment haven't improved this SD release at all. 

Gary W. Tooze

 

(Thanks Suresh!)


DVD Menus


 

Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

Arrow Video ('Theatrical Cut)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 


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

 

Blu-ray Subtitle Sample

 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video ('Theatrical Cut)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video ('Theatrical Cut)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Arrow Video ('Uncut' version)- Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

More Blu-ray Captures


 
Box Covers

   

Distribution Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC Arrow Video ('Uncut' or 'Director's Cut' version + 'Theatrical Cut')
Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 





 

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Gary Tooze

 

Thank You!