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Universal Studios Home Video presents

Boogeymen (2001)

"Boogeymen. The killer compilation featuring the most inhuman, grotesque, demonic, psychotic monsters ever to appear on film."- Announcer

Stars: Leatherface, Freddy Krueger, Chucky, Pinhead
Other Stars: Leprechaun, Candyman, Norman Bates
Director: Various

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (extreme violence)
Run Time: 57m:37s
Release Date: 2001-10-02
Genre: horror

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B- CCC+ B-


DVD Review

Boogeymen is the first DVD compilation release from Universal's Flix Mix. The promising concept of collecting the best scenes from assorted classic genre films (in this case, horror) is very intriguing, but this series debut falls a bit short of the mark. Perhaps it has something to do with the announcer's comments about this disc containing the most "inhuman, grotesque, demonic, psychotic monsters ever to appear on film" being a bit overboard. When it comes to horror films, any ravenous, blood-red horror freak (like myself) will have their own "best of" in mind already, and for Flix Mix to state that Boogeymen contains "the most" anything is setting the bar a little too high, a little too soon.

Who wouldn't want a compilation disc of horror cinema's finest moments? For Boogeymen, Flix Mix had the opportunity to select the very best, most horrific screen terrors ever created. To be sure, I imagine licensing was a big issue, and that no doubt drastically limits the demonic gene pool right out the box. So Flix Mix had deemed these characters, from ALL of cinematic horror as the most worthy recipients of the Boogeymen title:
Pinhead (Hellraiser)
Freddy Krueger (A Nightmare On Elm Street)
Wishmaster (Wishmaster)
Leatherface (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre)
Ghostface (Scream)
Leprechaun (Leprechaun)
Chucky (Child's Play)
Candyman (Candyman)
Simon Cartwright (The Ugly)
Fisherman (I Know What You Did Last Summer)
Camilla (The Guardian)
The Dentist (The Dentist)
Tall Man (Phantasm)
Blade (Puppetmaster)
Norman Bates (Psycho)
Jason (Friday The 13th)
Micheal Myers (Halloween)

Ok, I'll admit a few of the names are respectable (Pinhead, Leatherface, Tall Man), though a few are questionable (Candyman, Chucky). But I can't imagine too many people who would have selected Simon Cartwright (The Ugly) and Camilla (The Guardian), let alone Fisherman (I Know What You Did Last Summer). This doesn't even have anything to do with the quality of those individual films, but rather it raises the question if the characters chosen are really the scariest? If Norman Bates made the cut, why not Hannibal The Cannibal? If Ghostface, who isn't really inhuman if you want to nitpick, is on the disc, why not Kevin Spacey's John Doe from Se7en? Who's more "psychotic?" Where the hell is some incarnation of Frankenstein or Dracula, the friggin' grandaddies of everything wonderfully inhuman and grotesque?

Maybe the choices were a little loose, but Flix Mix has presented the material in a pretty hip manner. Each of the Boogeyman is introduced by a deep-voiced announcer, and each get a nice little title screen with a few vital stats, as a lead-in to their segment. For example, Leprechaun's info contains the following bullet points:
2,000 year old demonic elf with magic powers
Razor sharp teeth and claws
Viciously kills to protect his pot of gold

Each character is highlighted in a two to three minute film clip, though in some cases it is not necessarily their finest moment (Jason Voorhees from Jason Goes To Hell??). I seriously question the overall scene selection by Flix Mix, despite the inclusion of my dreamgirl Sarah Michelle Gellar's death scene from I Know What You Did Last Summer.

I look forward to future Flix Mix compilations, because I do enjoy the concept. The next two upcoming collections are scheduled to be titled Ultimate Fights and Crack Me Up. I guess I will have to wait and see how those turn out before I forsake the series altogether. I only wish Boogeymen could have had better boogeymen.

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C


Image Transfer

Aspect RatioVarious - None
Original Aspect Rationo

Image Transfer Review: Boogeymen is a compilation disc, and as a result the image transfer varies greatly. Aspect ratios are consistently inconsistent, with widescreen, full-frame and pan & scan featured. With this said, it should not be a surprise that Boogeymen is a nonanamorphic transfer. Image quality varies significantly from clip to clip. Halloween looks pale and flat, while I Know What You Did Last Summer, and my pal Sarah Michelle Gellar, looks fairly vivid.

I believe Flix Mix could have done something more to balance out the transfer quality.

Image Transfer Grade: C

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishno
Dolby Digital

Audio Transfer Review: Flix Mix offers up a respectable 5.1 mix for Boogeymen, and it is more than adequate. In fact, it doesn't differ all that much from the available 2.0 mix. Considering the content is from numerous sources, overall the dialogue is clear. Surround effects vary, depending on the scene (for example, Scream sounds, not surprisingly, fuller and richer than Psycho or Halloween).

Boogeymen is more a visual title, and any audio shortcomings are easily overlooked.

Audio Transfer Grade: C+ 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 18 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish, French with remote access
Cast and Crew Biographies
15 Other Trailer(s) featuring Hellraiser, Wishmaster, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Leprechaun, Childs Play 2, Candyman, The Ugly, The Guardian, The Dentist, Phantasm, Puppetmaster, Halloween, Jurassic Park III, American Pie 2, The Mummy Returns
Feature/Episode commentaries by Robert Englund
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. FlixFacts Animated Trivia
  2. "Name That Frame" Game
  3. Legends Of The Boogeymen
  4. DVD-ROM Interactive Games and Downloadable Sound Effects
Extras Review: Boogeymen's saving grace is in the supplementals. The quality is a little flawed, but the attempt was noble.

FlixFacts Animated Trivia
Sort of like VH1's Pop Up Video, where random production tidbits appear on the screen during the horror clips. This option can only be turned on via the menu, and not the remote, which is too bad.

"Name That Frame" Game
A random still image from one of the Boogeymen titles will appear, and you must choose the correct film from half a dozen choices. A Freddy Krueger-ish voice will tell you if you are right, or mock you if you are wrong. Not very challenging once you have watched the DVD, and when I tried it the identical scene from Candyman popped up three times in a row.

Legends Of The Boogeymen
A text-based series of bios on the disc's featured Boogeymen. Better than a typical Hollywood bio by any means.

DVD-ROM Interactive Games and Downloadable Sound Effects
As I don't have a DVD-ROM drive, I can't comment on these. However, the description tells me all I need to know. I sense if the quality of the game is similar to "Name That Frame", I'm not missing much.

Robert "Freddy Krueger" Englund provides a full-length scene specific commentary for each of the Boogeymen clips. Englund is funny, sarcastic and informative. What more could you ask for? He comes through with some quickie anecdotes about nearly everyone, and he only occasionally has nothing much to say.

Unfortunately, like the FlixFacts Animated Trivia, the commentary track is only available via a menu option, and not the remote. However, you can select both the Animated Trivia and Commentary, for a double dose of background info. The only problem I came across was occasional conflicting info from Englund and the trivia. For example, Englund states that the female demon in Hellraiser is Clive Barker's sister, while at the exact same moment the trivia states that she is his cousin. Not earth shattering, but kind of glaring.

While the supplemental content is not perfect, I applaud Flix Mix on the concept. Let's see if they can improve it for the next release.

Extras Grade: B-

Final Comments

Hardcore horror buffs may feel a little cheated by the selections made by Flix Mix, and by the frighteningly short run time. Pick this up as a rental, as the supplemental content is mildly entertaining. As a purchase, I would have to say no, despite what appear to be the best of intentions by Flix Mix.

Rich Rosell 2001-09-10