Road Rash Reviews

The Changeling (1980) 4K Review****-

Cert 15 | 115 mins | 2023

4 star remastered classic and deeply chilling horror.

The Changeling was first released in 1980 and is based on a story by Russell Hunter and directed by Peter Medak (The Krays, Romeo is Bleeding). This horror classic is now restored and brought to limited edition 4K HDR Blu-ray courtesy of Second Sight Films, with newly commissioned artwork from Christopher Shy and a host of new special features plus collector’s packaging and a 108 page booklet.

“Why would it happen two mornings in a row? Precisely at 6.00. Why does it go on for about half a minute and then stop dead? It doesn’t make sense.”

John Russell (George C. Scott – Patton, The Hustler) is a successful composer living in New York with his wife and daughter. When they are killed in a tragic accident, he finds he can no longer live in the house they all shared and decides to move to Seattle.

At the advice of a friend, Claire Norman (Trish Van Devere – The Hearse, The Last Run) who works for the Historical Preservation Society, he rents an old house from them.

It’s a huge property which has stood empty for twelve years but it has a music room and a piano and with the help of caretaker Mr Tuttle (Chris Gampel – Annie Hall, Death Wish) he soon has it up and running the way he likes it.

It’s not long however before he starts to notice some strange activity, loud rhythmic banging noises, doors opening and closing, taps turning themselves on and glass being broken. He finally follows the clues to a locked attic room with a tiny wheelchair, leading him to start an investigation which will lead both him and Claire to some shocking revelations.

“That house is not fit to live in. No’one’s been able to live in it. It doesn’t want people.”

The Changeling is an excellent horror film and very creepy in places. It’s amazing the level of fear that can be generated by something as simple as a ball bouncing downstairs. The tension is built beautifully and is enhanced by superb acting performances on behalf of all involved.

Scott plays the lead with great self control and none of the usual histrionics expected from this kind of film. It is a great addition to the somewhat overpopulated haunted house genre and it does it with great class and style.

The already spine-chilling story is made all the more so when you realise that it is all inspired by actual  events, as outlined in the featurette included with the film.

An excellent box set, well remastered with lots of special features and a film worth adding to any horror collection.

“She said that the house didn’t want people. She’s mistaken. Whatever it is, it’s trying desperately to communicate.”

The Changeling is available to own now on Limited Edition 4K UHD /Blu-ray Box Set & Standard Edition4K/UHD and Standard Edition Blu-ray

Special Features 

  • New 4K scan and restoration presented in HDR
  • Audio commentary with director Peter Medak and producer Joel B. Michaels
  • Interview with Peter Medak by filmmaker Adrián García Bogliano at Mórbido Fest 2018
  • Exile on Curzon St. ­– Peter Medak on his early years in swinging London
  • The House on Cheesman Park – The Haunting True Story of The Changeling
  • Audio commentary with actors Marilyn Burns, Allen Danziger and Paul A. Partain, and art director Robert A. Burns
  • The Music of The Changeling – an interview with music arranger Kenneth Wannberg
  • Building the House Of Horror – an interview with art director Reuben Freed
  • The Psychotronic Tourist
  • Master of horror Mick Garris on The Changeling

Limited Edition Contents

  • Rigid slipcase with new artwork by Christopher Shy
  • 108-page book with new essays by ​​Martyn Conterio, Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, Rich Johnson, Mikel J Koven, Meagan Navarro, Rachel Reeves, Shelagh Rowan-Legg and Heather Wixson plus archive interview with Peter Medak
  • Original Soundtrack CD
  • Five collectors’ art cards 
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DirectorPeter Medak
GenreHorror, mystery
StarringGeorge C. Scott, Trish Van Devere, Melvyn Douglas
Available to buy on : Own The Changeling 4K on Blu-Ray
Category: 4K, Blu-ray, dvd, film, Review