Blu-Ray Review: Assault on Precinct 13

In general, remakes are a blight on cinema. Probably due to his original films being low-budget and acquiring such a cult status, John Carpenter finds his work keenly coveted for new versions. With Starman and Big Trouble in Little China being in the pipeline, directors and producers never learn that his films are too unique to revisit. Remakes of The Thing, Halloween and The Fog all paled in comparison to the original, but it was Jean-François Richet’s version of Assault on Precinct 13 which is the most misjudged. The 1976 original is a unique and period piece of film-making.

Newly promoted Lieutenant Ethan Bishop (Austin Stoker) arrives in Anderson, a crime-ridden suburb of South Central LA, to take charge of a decommissioned police station. Manned by a skeleton staff, and closing in a few hours, it should be a boring and uneventful day. However, the arrival of a group of prisoners in need of medical assistance and a man fleeing from a local gang put the precinct under siege.

Assault on Precinct 13 was Carpenters first feature as a fully-fledged director (after the success of his student film Dark Star). On a micro-budget, he manages to create a film which is not only tense but continually twists and turns. The scenario seems far-fetched now, but it’s one which will still keep you on the edge of your seat. Assault on Precinct 13 is an impressive thriller, which remains a cult classic and great entertainment.

Special Features:

· Newly restored from High Definition 1080p transfer

· DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and Uncompressed PCM original mono audio options

· Return to Precinct 13: A new Interview with Austin Stoker

· Producing Precinct 13: A new interview with Joseph Kaufman

· Filmmaking with John: A new interview with Tommy Lee Wallace

· Captain Voyeur : John Carpenter student short (Blu-ray exclusive)

· Do You Remember Laurie Zimmer documentary film (Blu-ray exclusive)

· Interview with John Carpenter and Austin Stoker

· The Sassy One with Nancy Loomis

· Audio Commentary with John Carpenter

· Audio Commentary with Tommy Lee Wallace

· Trailer

· Radio Spots

· 5 Art Cards (Limited Edition box set exclusive)

· Bonus CD soundtrack disc (Limited Edition box set exclusive)

· English subtitles for the hard of hearing

The 40th Anniversary restored version of Assault on Precinct 13 comes in a Limited Edition Blu-Ray Box Set and on DVD. It’s released by Second Sight on Monday.

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