Tim Burton’s overly stylized version of Collinsport makes Dark Shadows a visual treat, intermixed with carefully chosen music that capably creates a picture of the early 1970s. There are moments when all of the secret passageways, strange ghostly sideplots, and even the appearance of Alice Cooper work, but unfortunately the wackiness of much of the general plot leaves much to be desired in the characterization department. Still, fans of Burton will should be happy to add this one to their collection, and will get their first opportunity in a little over a month.

Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows will hit Blu-Ray and DVD on October 2. Warner Home Entertainment is actually trying something pretty cool with the bonus features on the upcoming Blu-Ray disc. While a set of deleted scenes will be available in regular viewing mode, the nine bonus featurettes will be “points” in the separate, interactive viewing mode. This means if the film is in interactive mode, it will play the movie normally until it reaches a bonus point, at which point the featurettes will become available. This interactive mode will also prove to be a bummer for DVD buyers, who will be privy to far fewer bonus features with the set.

The whole idea of an “interactive” mode sounds as if it could be pretty complicated, but Warner is pretty good about putting together nice sets, so we shouldn’t be too worried. The bigger surprise is that neither the DVD or Blu-Ray seems to have too a segment devoted to the hit TV series the film is based on. A good chunk of the audience that showed up in theaters had been a fan of the soap back in the day, and it would have been nice to see a segment about the series among the other extras. Hopefully, some of the existing bonus features will be able to give us a sense of the history of the project.

Dark Shadows DVD Extras
  • Deleted Scenes
  • The Collinses: Every Family Has Its Demons
Dark Shadows Blu-Ray Extras
  • Becoming Barnabus
  • Welcome To Collinsport!
  • The Collinses: Every Family Has Its Demons
  • Reliving a Decade
  • Angelique: A Witch Scorned
  • Alice Cooper Rocks Collinsport!
  • Dark Shadowy Secrets
  • A Melee of Monstrous Proportions
  • Dark Shadows: The Legend Bites Back
  • 7 Deleted Scenes

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