Blu-ray Review: Cujo

Since their domestication thousands of years ago, dogs have been man’s best friend. Loyal, obedient, protective, loving. Our cinema screens have been graced by some truly great canine performances – Lassie, Red Dog, Marley and Beethoven all won over hearts, if not always minds. Indeed, the latter starred in a whopping eight film series and triggered a love of Saint Bernards to millions of fans. Cujo probably didn’t have quite the same positive marketing impact for the breed.

When advertising executive Vic Trenton’s (Daniel Hugh-Kelly) car needs repairing he takes his wife Donna (Dee Wallace) and young son (Danny Pintauro) to see Joe Camber (Ed Lauter), a rural mechanic because he needs it fixing straight away. The Cambers have a friendly pet dog, Cujo. Donna notices a bite on the canine’s nose but thinks nothing of it. That will come back to haunt her when mother and child are trapped by the rabid bloodthirsty beast.

Whilst the plot of Cujo is pretty straightforward (apart from a bizarre adultery sub-plot), Lewis Teague does a great job of building and maintaining tension. This is in part to the excellent ‘attack’ scenes which look frighteningly real. You know what you’re getting with a Stephen King adaptation and Cujo doesn’t disappoint. It’s a claustrophobic horror with plenty of bite. A crazy canine chiller with a lot of teeth.

Limited edition contents:

·         Hardbound Slipcase, featuring newly commissioned artwork by iconic British illustrator Graham Humphreys

·         Reversible sleeve featuring artwork by Justin Osbourn and original poster artwork

·         PLUS: A LIMITED EDITION 60-PAGE Collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Lee Gambin, author Scott Harrison, and Craig Ian Mann; illustrated with archival imagery from the film’s production.

Disc one

 ·         1080p presentation of the film, on Blu-ray for the first time ever in the UK

·         Uncompressed LPCM mono soundtrack

·         Optional English SDH subtitles

·         New and exclusive feature length audio commentary by Lee Gambin, author of Nope, Nothing Wrong Here: The Making of Cujo

·         New interview with Dee Wallace [40 mins]

·         New interview with composer Charles Bernstein [35 mins]

·         New interview with stuntman Gary Morgan [25 mins]

·         New interview with stuntwoman Jean Coulter [21 mins]

·         New interview with casting director Marcia Ross. [20 mins]

·         New interview with visual effects artist Kathie Lawrence [13 mins]

·         New interview with special effects designer Robert Clark [12 mins]

·         New interview with dog trainer Teresa Miller [28 mins]

·         Dog Days: The Making of Cujo – archival documentary on the film’s production [42 mins]

 Disc two [Limited Edition Only]

 ·         Q&A with Dee Wallace from “Cinemaniacs & Monster Fest 2015”, moderated by Lee Gambin [96 mins]

·         New interview with critic and author Kim Newman [25 mins]

Cujo is released on Blu-ray by Eureka Classics on 29 April.

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