4K April 2019 - Prince of Darkness

John Carpenter’s tale of satanic goop, Prince of Darkness, gets the 4K Ultra HD remaster treatment. So, how is it? Was it worth digging up, or was it best left buried?

The story: This love it or loathe it Carpenter horror flick sees a bunch of students called in by their professor for an extra-credit assignment – investigating strange green ooze-in-a-tube under an abandoned local church. But soon strange things are afoot and people are going missing – just what is the deal with this goo, anyway? Could it be the work of… the devil?!

“There could be a limit as to what he can do as a volume of liquid.”

The 4K disc: Some 4K remasters scream enhancement, others are a bit more subtle about it. Prince of Darkness falls into the latter camp. While softness in the original can’t be improved upon, this native transfer does add to the level of detail seen on the Blu-ray. As is often the case, it’s the colour treatment via Dolby Vision/HDR that really makes the difference though, almost affording new life to the film when given the chance. Black levels meanwhile are very good, and the level of film grain throughout is mostly fine enough so as to avoid being a distraction.

If the audio sounds a bit weedy at first, you may wish to pop into the sound menu to change things from the default Linear PCM 2.0 to the much improved DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1. It doesn’t beat what might have been accompished with, say, Atmos, but the score does get to play nice with the rear speakers, along with ambience in an otherwise rather front-centric mix. The sub gets a little to do both in regards to the music and effects, but scarcely rocks the foundations.

What, no extra features? Ah, look on the two included standard Blu-ray discs and you’ll be rewarded! From a commentary track featuring Carpenter through to trailers, radio spots, a gallery, a set of featurettes and extra comments from the director, there’s much for film buffs to get in deep with.

Release date: April 10, 2019
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Donald Pleasence, Lisa Blount, Jameson Parker

Buy now at JB Hi-Fi

Check out our other John Carpenter 4K remaster reviews:

Escape from New York
The Fog
They Live

Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.