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Species Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Review

Species came out the second summer I worked at a movie theater. After beginning my usher/box office career in the summer of True Lies, Speed, Forrest Gump and The Lion King, I couldn’t wait for another season. Perhaps Species got buried in the summer of Braveheart, Apollo 13, Crimson Tide and Die Hard With a Vengeance but rewatching the film I got nostalgic memories for repeat showings in the middle sized theaters.

The new transfer from a 4K source is flawless. You see the film grain, and it’s clear. The clean white lab where they created Sil is stark. Out in the real world it’s like a time machine of blue denim and Hollywood pre-Fred. I arrived in 1998. The cave finale is also full of detail, as is all the H.R. Giger detail on Sil and the gore. The ‘90s CGI is glaring, but it always was. It was new and they used it to enhance, not substitute for makeup.

Looking back, Michelle Williams was already a powerhouse as young Sil. She’s so endearing and sympathetic as an alien DNA runaway. I always found it an appealing debut for Natasha Henstridge too. Yes, she’s the monster and the seductress, but I feel her sincerity when she wants to have a baby in this unnatural alien DNA cycle.

A 36-minute behind the scenes feature includes Roger Donaldson and footage from Giger’s shop. I guess that was already available on the DVD and they’ve included previous bonus features. There’s no new Henstridge interview. She was pretty intimate on the Species II Blu-ray so they’ve included that interview again. It’s just surprising they didn’t bank some stuff for Species I. You could have imagined they’d eventually do another special edition, but maybe they thought she’d be available again (she was forthcoming and grateful) and maybe schedules just didn’t work out the second time.

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