42nd Street Forever - The Blu-ray Editoin
Director - Various
Cast - Various
Country of Origin - Various
Discs - 1
MSRP - $24.95
Distributor - Synapse Films
Reviewer - Scott MacDonald
The Film (5/5)
I had heard of Synapse Films 42nd Street Forever DVD Trailer Compilation Series prior to reviewing the last volume 42nd Street Forever Vol. 5 : The Alamo Drafthouse Edition, but I had never actually seen one of them. That potent blend of grindhouse trailers, and odd ball commercials completely blew my mind back in 2009. and I have been waiting impatiently for the next volume in the series since that time.
It has been 3 years coming, and 42nd Street Forever is BACK! And while itís not necessarily a new volume, there is plenty of new material to keep long time series fans happy. Those wonderful restoration masters at Synapse Films have seen fit to go back to the first 2 volumes of the series, re-sequence and add new trailers, and remaster them for this glorious BLU-RAY edition giving us fans of the series 3.5 + hours of grindhouse trailer goodness in the glory of Synapse High Definition!
Dear Readers, believe me when I say this is the Seven Samurai of grindhouse trailer compilations here!
If you are familiar with the other entries in the 42nd Street Forever series that this one will be familiar. Synapse has put together 80+ trailers in a variety of genres from Blaxploitation, action, horror, sci-fi, 3-D films, porn, mondo films, and more! The trailers are broken down by genre for example the disc kicks off with a series of Blaxploitation films like Savage! and the Zombie opus Sugar Hill. The way this is structured helps the flow in 2 ways, it allows for a less random feel to the whole affair. The other thing is it gets you excited for the next thing, when you feel you've seen just about enough Sci-Fi trailers, we start getting some horror.
Now as this set goes back to the first 2 42nd Street volumes for it's source material, the question you may want to ask is "Should I hold on to my DVD's?" And the answer is a resounding YES! While Synapse has included a good many of the trailers from the original volumes a good few were left out. This is balanced out by the fact that a good many new trailers from brought in. I have to assume this was done to keep the disc fresh for returning buyers, and hopefully a 2nd disc compiling the remains from the first 2 volume plus some more goodies isn't too far away.
Before 42nd Street Forever the Blu-ray Edition came out, I was predicting this would be my home video release of the year, at least up until this point. After concluding my epic viewing, I was proven correct, this is truly an amazing set. It has been 3 years too long since the last set, and I certainly hope the next set comes out sooner than later. These are usually the most fun home video releases any year they are released.
42nd Street Forever the Blu-ray edition is a tough cookie to review as far as A/V is concerned. While the level of detail is greatly increased from the DVD editions, this is a set that prides itself on it's grindhouse aesthetic, and as such many of these trailers come from damaged sources. That essentially means there is quite a few scratches, specks, and all manners of print damage throughout, that being said, that helps contribute to the atmosphere of the piece. Essentially if you're buying a 3.5+ hour grindhouse trailer compilation, this is the kind of thing that should be expected.
All the trailers are presented in their original aspect ratio, detail and color are nice, but fluctuate depending on the source. The audio is presented in a Dolby Digtal HD 2.0 Mono Track. Similar to the video it's not what I'd call perfect, but it fits the mood of what is being presented, and everything on display is perfectly audible.
The only extra on the disc is a commentary track by the team of commentators from 42nd Street Forever Volumes 3 and 4. This include A.V. Maniacs' Edwin Samuelson, Fangoria Magazine's Michael Gingold, and Temple of Schlock's Chris Poggiali. These 3 essentially provide an informative and entertaining mini-commentary for each of the films here, and there commentary is a great addition to a great disc!
While probably too soon to declare it the greatest home video release of the year, 42nd Street Forever the Blu-ray edition is definitely an early competitor for that title. This is 3.5 hours of sheer home video fun with some of the best grindhouse trailers remastered in glorious HD! HIGHLY FREAKING RECOMMENDED!