Still, you could probably count on one hand the number of adaptations that came out in the 1980’s that were actually effective motion pictures, and I do say this with nothing but respect to all involved in crafting them for the screen. Horror was transitioning in the 80’s: as the industry just began tinkering with the technological advances pushing Science Fiction’s special effects forward, and I dare say some of these early experiences were less-than-spectacular. Frankly, the cost for using these effects was very high in their infancy; and Horror had truly built much of its reputation on being a low-cost-high-return prospect for film investors, so it stands to reason that incorporating more visually credible scares would be met with much skepticism. When practical effects worked, why risk a still-being-proven CGI visual treat that could run over budget? It just made little sense.
And that’s where a flick like Children Of The Corn (1984) enters the mix.
Serving as director Fritz Keirsch’s first big screen film, Children looks like a something springing from a largely untested director. I remember seeing it in theatres, and I remember thinking that it was visually flat with very, very little depth. As someone who grew up in the Midwest, I had seen more than my fair share of cornfields: sometimes these expansive fields of healthy, green stalks could stretch on for miles and miles, making their endless existence an easy target for Horror and Suspense writers. Instead of focusing on their breadth, Children treated corn more like props, with little to no true focus on the dizzying disorientation anyone might experience by simply being dropped in the middle of one with no idea of knowing where to go or how to get out. Trust me when I say it can be intoxicatingly frightening, and that alone is a reality that could’ve better serve the film.
But I digress: this isn’t a review, per se, but one will definitely be forthcoming as the folks at Arrow Video provided me with a screener Blu-ray release for Children Of The Corn that I’ll be happily going through this week. All I wanted to do now was bring my readers aware that the flick is available for purchase this week up on Amazon.com. Fans should pick one up at their convenience. In the meantime, I’ll put the relevant product information below as provided by the folks at Blu-ray.com.
Linda Hamilton (The Terminator) and Peter Horton (Thirtysomething) star as a young couple who find themselves lost on the backroads of Nebraska, eventually winding up in the seemingly deserted town of Gatlin. But the town is far from empty. As the couple soon discover, it is inhabited by a twisted cult of murderous children, thirsty for another blood sacrifice…
Available for the first time ever in Ultra High Definition, Arrow Video is proud to present a brand new 4K restoration of the film that launched one of the most enduring horror franchises of all time. Children of the Corn… they're an adult nightmare!
Special Features and Technical Specs:
- Brand new 4K restoration from the original camera negative by Arrow Films
- 4K Blu-ray presentation in Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)
- Original lossless stereo and 5.1 Audio Options
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
- Audio commentary with horror journalist Justin Beahm and Children of the Corn historian John Sullivan
- Audio commentary with director Fritz Kiersch, producer Terrence Kirby and actors John Franklin and Courtney Gains
- Harvesting Horror: The Making of Children of the Corn, retrospective piece featuring interviews with director Fritz Kiersch and actors John Franklin and Courtney Gains
- It Was the Eighties! an interview with actress Linda Hamilton
- Return to Gatlin, featurette revisiting the film's original Iowa shooting locations
- Stephen King on a Shoestring, an interview with producer Donald Borchers
- Welcome to Gatlin: The Sights and Sounds of Children of the Corn, an interview with production designer Craig Stearns and composer Jonathan Elias
- Cut from the Cornfield, an interview with the actor who played "The Blue Man" in the fabled excised sequence
- Theatrical Trailer
- Disciples of the Crow, a 1983 short film adaptation of Stephen King's short story