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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Jill Gevargizian
USA 2020

 

Obsession gets a makeover in The Stylist, a deliciously twisted slice of female-led psychological horror, nominated for the New Visions Award for Best Motion Picture at the 2020 Sitges International Film Festival and based on co-writer/director Jill Gevargizian’s award-winning short film of the same name.

We all dream of being someone else… but for Claire (Najarra Townsend, Contracted), that dream goes from an obsession to a living nightmare. Hairstylist by day, serial killer and collector of scalps by night, Claire’s lonely existence is thrown into turmoil when her regular client, Olivia (Brea Grant, After Midnight, Lucky), asks her to style her hair for her wedding day. Increasingly fixated on Olivia’s seemingly flawless life, Claire vows to lock up her scalp collection and change her ways for good – only to discover that repressing your deadly desires is easier said than done…

***

Claire seems to live a normal life as a hair stylist by day, lending a sympathetic ear to the women who visit her chair and encouraging them to unburden themselves as she works her magic. But for an unlucky few, Claire's interest grows more sinister, and she begins coveting their lifestyles...and sometimes their very lives. Her client Olivia has everything Claire wants: a devoted fiancé, robust friend group, successful career, and confident demeanor. When Olivia makes the well-intentioned mistake of asking Claire to style her hair for her wedding, Claire becomes obsessed, and her unassuming, meek demeanor slowly gives way to her inner demons.

Posters

Theatrical Release: September 26th, 2020 (Fantastic Fest) (virtual cinema) (premiere)

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Review: Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:41:49:096        
Video

2.39:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,945,071,649 bytes

Feature: 26,897,963,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 2846 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1846 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2846 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Arrow

 

2.39:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,945,071,649 bytes

Feature: 26,897,963,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

DISC ONE (Blu-ray) – THE STYLIST

Audio commentary by co-writer/producer/director Jill Gevargizian and actress/producer Najarra Townsend
Exclusive Blu-ray introduction by Jill Gevargizian
The Invisible Woman, an exclusive visual essay by author and critic Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, exploring the themes of women’s labor and female killers in The Stylist and horror cinema (20:14)
The Stylist – Behind the Scenes, a series of eight behind-the-scenes featurettes on different aspects of the film’s production, featuring interviews with the cast and crew (1:06:05)
Location scouting featurette (4:12)
Outtakes (6:31)
Original Kickstarter video (2:30)
The original 2016 The Stylist short film directed by Jill Gevargizian and starring Najarra Townsend, that inspired the main feature (14:59)
Pity, a 2016 short film directed by The Stylist’s editor, John Pata, and executive produced by Jill Gevargizian, with an optional introduction by Pata (9:02)
Teaser trailer (1:03)
Theatrical trailer (1:46)
Image galleries (5:39 / 7:40)
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DISC TWO (CD) – THE STYLIST SOUNDTRACK (LIMITED EDITION EXCLUSIVE)

•  CD containing the original The Stylist Soundtrack


Blu-ray Release Date:
June 7th, 2021
Transparent Blu-ray Case inside slipcase

Chapters 9

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Arrow Blu-ray (June 2021): Arrow have transferred Jill Gevargizian's The Stylist to Blu-ray. It looks stunning in 1080P. The image is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate. The visuals are tight, clean and have sublime contrast - it looks even better than you might expect a modern film to export to this medium. The visuals are crisp, colors rich - supporting a wonderful HD presentation in the 2.39:1 aspect ratio. There are green and gold hues that add another layer to the film's appearance.

NOTE: We have added 54 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Arrow use a DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track (24-bit) in the original English language. It sounds as strong as the video with certain effects exported via subtle separation and a wonderfully contemplative and gentle score by Nicholas Elert (available on the second disc CD included in the package), adding immeasurably to the film experience. There is also modern music in the dance club that I am not familiar with. Arrow offer optional English subtitles on their Region FREE Blu-ray.

The Arrow Blu-ray offers a new commentary by co-writer / producer / director Jill Gevargizian and actress / producer Najarra Townsend. Gevargizian is having fun discussing the production and certain scenes. She tells us how she has been a hairstylist for over 10 years, how it was shot where she worked, how the dog was actually her 'Pepper'. She gives a multitude of credit to may of the behind the-the-scenes crew and that many sequences were actual locations (the coffee shop in Kansas City, Missouri. Najarra Townsend gives input on how many of the crew were actually family. I liked the talk about the doppelganger themes and the split screens inspired by Brian De Palma's Sisters and another sequences, that I also thought it referenced, from Ingmar Bergman, another with The Wizard of Oz, Toby Hooper etc., how it was very similar to her short and much more. It's very informative and easy to listen to. I learned that she is a big Kansas City Chiefs fan. The film starts with an introduction by Gevargizian. The Invisible Woman, is a 20-minute visual essay by author and critic Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (author of 1000 Women In Horror, 1895-2018), exploring the themes of women’s labor and female killers in The Stylist and horror cinema. The Stylist – Behind the Scenes, a series of eight behind-the-scenes featurettes on different aspects of the film’s production, featuring interviews with the cast and crew running over an hour. There is a short location scouting featurette, and some Outtakes plus the original Kickstarter video. Included is the original 2016 The Stylist short film directed by Jill Gevargizian and starring Najarra Townsend, that inspired the main feature running 1/4 hour plus Pity, a, 9-minute, 2016 short film directed by The Stylist’s editor, John Pata, and executive produced by Jill Gevargizian, with an optional introduction by Pata, Lastly are a teaser trailer, theatrical trailer and image galleries. There is a second disc CD containing the original The Stylist soundtrack. There is a reversible sleeve (see below) featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Sara Deck, a double-sided fold-out poster and the package contains an illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Emma Westwood and a gallery of exclusive location scouting photographs.

I really enjoyed Jill Gevargizian's The Stylist. It is creative and has a unique intense quality - very subtly expressing the horror story ('Sweeney Todd' overtones) with both gentle and harsh tones. It really works well even beyond being a lower budget effort. The score handles moods with irony and it is definitely creepy. This gal, Claire, really need help - maybe a partner. I look forward to more from Gevargizian! The Arrow Blu-ray is stacked (commentary, visual essay, booklet etc.) and at their usual level of exceptional a/v. I like that they are supporting these lesser-seen films (A Ghost Waits and The Bloodhound) and this get s a strong endorsement. Recommended!

Gary Tooze

 


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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray


 


 

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