The Righteous – Arrow Video (Blu-ray)
Theatrical Release Date: Canada, 2021
Director: Mark O'Brien
Writer: Mark O'Brien
Cast: Henry Czerny, Mark O'Brien, Mimi Kuzyk, Mayko Nguyen, Kate Corbett, Nigel Bennett
Release Date: July 18th, 2022 (UK), July 19th, 2022 (USA)
Approximate Running Time: 95 Minutes 58 Seconds
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Rating: 15 (UK), NR (USA)
Sound: DTS-HD 5.1 English, LPCM Stereo English
Subtitles: English SDH
Region Coding: Region A,B
Retail Price: £24.99 (UK), $39.95 (USA)
"A former priest, Frederic Mason (Henry Czerny), anguished by the tragic death of his young daughter, finds himself wrestling with his religious convictions when a mysterious young man (Mark O’Brien) appears wounded on his doorstop in need of assistance. After he and his wife Ethel (Mimi Kuzyk) welcome him across the threshold and into their household, Frederic sees an opportunity for redemption in this mysterious and troubled lost soul, who might just be an emissary from God, or maybe the Devil…" - synopsis provided by the distributor
Here’s the information provided about this release's transfer, “The High Definition master was provided by Vortex Media.”
The Righteous comes on a 50 GB dual layer Blu-ray.
Disc Size: 42.5 GB
Feature: 19.8 GB
This is a solid transfer. Image clarity, contrast, and shadow detail are strong throughout.
Audio: 5/5 (LPCM Stereo English), 4.5/5 (DTS-HD 5.1 English)
This release comes with two audio options: a DTS-HD 5.1 mix in English and a LPCM stereo mix in English. Despite the fact that both audio tracks are clear, balanced, and robust when they should be. The stereo track is the more conniving of these two audio tracks. Included with this release are removable English SDH subtitles.
Extras for this release include a stills gallery with the original soundtrack (65 minutes 17 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo, fifteen tracks), a theatrical trailer (1 minute 54 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), a roundtable discussion with director Mark O’Brien and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett and Chad Villella of Radio Silence (73 minutes, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), stage presentation and Q&A with Mark O’Brien and actor Henry Czerny from the World Premier at Fantasia International Film Festival 2021 (32 minutes 35 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), Grimmfest 2021 live-streamed Q&A with Mark O’Brien (19 minutes 36 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), cast and crew interviews: Mark O’Brien (33 minutes 47 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), producer Mark O'Neill (7 minutes 1 second, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), Henry Czerny (17 minutes 8 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), actresses Mimi Kuzyk and Kate Corbett (17 minutes 17 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), editor Spencer Jones (11 minutes 4 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), cinematographer Scott McClellan (10 minutes 2 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), and production designer Jason Clarke (9 minutes 26 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an audio commentary with Mark O’Brien and Spencer Jones, reversible cover art, a limited-edition slipcover (limited to first pressing) and a twenty page booklet (limited to first pressing) with cast & crew information, an essay titled Washed in the Blood: Spirituality in the Modern Horror Film written by Sean Hogan, Directors and Producers Statements, and information about the transfer.
The Righteous is a film that teters between horror and psychological thrillers. The narrative revolves around a couple who have a mysterious stranger enter their lives while grieving the loss of their daughter. And what starts off as a chance to come to terms with their loss quickly takes a darker turn when the mysterious stranger reveals their true intentions for entering their lives.
From its opening moments, The Righteous draws you into its world with a riveting narrative that’s filled with symbolic imagery. And though there is a delbertness to the narrative that unfolds, this quickly becomes an afterthought because of how well developed the characters are. Another strength of the narrative is how it builds and maintains momentum by giving key moments an ample amount of time to resonate.
Perhaps the most surprising aspects of The Righteous are the performances, especially Henry Czerny and Mimi Kuzyk in the roles of parents whose daughter died. Another strength of Henry Czerny's performance is how his character's current life has collided with his former life as a priest and how he deals with these two conflicting worlds.
From a production standpoint, The Righteous is a film that far exceeds expectations. The score does a superb job of reinforcing the mood, and every frame is beautifully photographed in striking black and white. Ultimately, The Righteous is an extraordinary film that delves into easily identifiable themes like grief, guilt, and redemption.
Arrow Video continues to shine a light on recent cinema by giving them exceptional releases that help expose these films to a wider audience. The Righteous makes its way to Blu-ray via an excellent release from Arrow Video that comes with a solid audio/video presentation and a wealth of extras, recommended.
Written by Michael Den Boer