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The Shed (Blu-ray Review)

Stan and his best friend Dommer have put up with bullies their entire lives. All of that changes when Stan discovers he has a murderous vampire living in his shed. Seeing the bloodshed and destruction the monster is capable of, Stan knows he has to find a way to destroy it. But Dommer has a much more sinister plan in mind. RLJE Films, a business unit of AMC Networks, will release THE SHED on January 7, 2020 on DVD and Blu-ray.  Written and Directed by Frank Sabatella (Blood Night), the film stars Jay Jay Warren (“Bosch”), Cody Kostro (“City on a Hill”), Sofia Happonen (Woman of a Certain Age), Frank Whaley (Pulp Fiction), Siobhan Fallon Hogan (Men in Black) and Timothy Bottoms (The Last Picture Show).

 

Film

Stan (Jay Jay Warren) and Dommer (Cody Kostro) are best friends, who are being bullied at school. Stan lives with his abusive grandfather and Dommer is taking a beating or two from the bullies at school. Both dream of leaving the small town they’re in for greener pastures. Stan wouldn’t mind leaving town with the lovely Roxy (Sofia Happonen), as well. What these three don’t know is that there’s a bloodthirsty creature in the backyard shed at Stan’s grandpa’s house…

The Shed is the latest vampire horror film with one of the better premises out there. You have a vampire that has taken refuge in a shed, so it can’t come out in the day time but chooses not to leave at night when the coast is clear. I say that last bit with a bit of sarcasm, because as much as I wanted to like The Shed, it fell flat for the most part. There are quite a few continuity issues that bugged me and some logistic plot-points that fell flat. Yes, I know this is a low-budget horror film, but still. What I really did not like was the hammyness of the “adult” cast. Whenever they had scenes of dialogue their line readings were awful or just beyond exaggerated. All authority figures outside of Frank Whaley’s character were caricatures.

As I mentioned before, the premise is awesome. The Shed proudly wears its inspirations on its sleeve. There are various homages to Fright Night, From Dusk till Dawn, and John Carpenter’s Vampires on display. Those gags worked great for the most part, while falling flat in only a handful of scenes, mainly in the final act. The issue is that outside of the horror aspect, the film just isn’t that good. Frank Whaley has no lines whatsoever, yet he plays one of the most important roles in the film. I would say that newcomer Sofia Happonen fairs much better as our lead female character – she was pretty cool.

I don’t think I’m being that harsh on the film – it’s not one of the worst horror films I’ve seen in recent memory, but maybe I got caught up with the genius marketing and novelty of it all? As a dumb creature feature, it certainly works, but don’t go past that. It’s shot well, and the creature effects are nicely done. If you absolutely positively have to watch The Shed then a rental is about as high a recommendation that I can give it.

 

Video

Encoding: AVC/MPEG-4

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

Clarity/Detail: The Shed betrays its low-budget roots, with this spectacular looking Blu-ray. Contrast and sharpness levels are nice and crisp, with no signs of artificial tweaking or boosting. Edge enhancement is nowhere to be found on this Blu-ray.

Black Levels: There are several scenes taking place at night and in dark interiors. All of those scenes look great, as there are no instances of crush. Black levels remain deep and inky.

Color Reproduction: The color palette is rich and lush. Our main cast may live in a small town but they have nice greenery all over. None of the color bleeds through and banding issues were not detected.

Flesh Tones: Everyone has perfect skin even if they’re supposed to be high school students.

Noise/Artifacts: Zilch, zip, and nada.

 

Audio 

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish

Dynamics: RLJE seems to always come through with this spectacular video, and now, audio lossless track. The Shed sounds great on Blu-ray.

Low Frequency Extension: The LFE channel definitely rumbles with the best of them. The low-end bass levels are exquisite on this Blu-ray release.

Surround Sound Presentation: There are many scenes involving some very subtle and aggressive sound design that fills the rear soundscape. The opening prologue is one of the best parts of the film, and the way it was filmed, takes advantage of those rear surround speakers.

Dialogue Reproduction: The cheesy dialogue rings through in great detail.

 

 

Extras

N/A

Summary 

The Shed is a simple time-waster – it’s not the worst vampire horror film I’ve ever seen, nor is it the best. It has a fun and spectacular premise but the questionable tone and acting from some of the actors lower the bar. The creature/gore, production design, and Blu-ray specs elevate the overall rating of the film substantially. Some extras would have been nice, as well. As it stands, The Shed is not very good, but the Blu-ray, on video and audio specs alone, is top-notch.

 

The Shed is released on Blu-ray

& DVD January 7, 2020!

 

ORDER NOW!

 

 

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Gerard Iribe is a writer/reviewer for Why So Blu?. He has also reviewed for other sites like DVD Talk, Project-Blu, and CHUD, but Why So Blu? is where the heart is. You can follow his incoherency on Twitter: @giribe

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