Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Blu-ray review

Books have been adapted to the screen many times before with examples like The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter series. Enter Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. What’s unique about this movie is that the screenplay was written by the author of the book. This would lead one to think that the movie would be close to the book, but you would be wrong in this case.

A young Abraham Lincoln watches as his mother is killed during the night. He sees the man who murdered her and swears revenge when he grows up. As he grows he travels to different places and meets an mysterious stranger that tells him his mother was killed by a vampire. Knowing this he has dedicated himself to hunting and killing vampires while still doing his daily work.

Having read and enjoyed the book, I was thrilled to hear that the author wrote the screenplay of the movie. This is why it pains me after watching the movie that it would deviate from the original source. I get that some changes needed to be made so that it would attract a major audience, but some changes completely came out of left field. It was still enjoyable to see our 16th president brought to life in the big screen, and now on Blu-ray. Though the premise is the same; the plot on the other hand differs from the book.

I would have enjoyed the movie more if some parts of the books weren’t left out; for exmaple, the way he met Henry. I think it was one of the important parts of the book. Another part in the book that was taken out was the interaction between Edgar Allan Poe and Abe was taken out. This pretty much laid out the foundation of why Abe took part in the Civil War fight and made him take that step towards presidency. Though a small sequence was put in the extras. These two thing really made me not like the movie as much. There are others but they will spoil the movie.

Video

The video on this was magnificent. The anamorphic 2.40 transfer is a beauty with sharp details. When you see a vampire get killed you see it in an amazing detail. The blood that flies out of the victims and other animals made it look realistic, as if they really killed someone and shot it on film. This made it look breathtaking during the fight scenes and the details of how that era looked like. They did a superb job on it. The scene below is a fight scene which took place on a train. This is a great example of where the video really shines. The dark, light, and all the shades in between really stood out. When the fighting got started, there was no change in the crispness of the texture and shading.

Audio

The DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 surround mix was spectacular. There was a scene in which Abe was fighting on horseback with a vampire and a team of horses surrounding them. That scene was crazy loud. It was loud enough that it shook the action figures surrounding my setup, but don’t worry, none of them fell or broke. Also, taken from the scene below the audio was amazing. The dialogue and the sound effects were heard when needed. For example, when Abe fought one of the vampires inside the train you can still hear the train chugging along and the swoosh of the trees passing by at fast speeds. But you can also hear the dialogue between the two fighters when they would speed. So there would not be too much noise not to hear the dialogue between the fighters.

Extra

The first extra I checked out was “The Great Calamity”. It is an animated short about Edgar Allan Poe telling Abe the history of why the vampires went to America. Having read the book, this was one of the most interesting things in there. I am glad that it made it in the extras at least.

The commentary from writer and screenplay writer Seth Grahame-Smith was okay, but I’m not much into commentaries on movies. Seth mostly talks about what is seen on screen, but from time to time he will deliver some interesting point of views. Some of the information he gives is worth listening to.

“The Making of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” is a comprehensive look behind the scenes. It starts with 20th Century Fox buying the property and hiring Seth. The rest is history.

Final extras are the “Powerless” by Linkin Park music video and the theatrical trailer of the movie.

Final Reaction

This is a good movie for those that didn’t read the book and is well worth picking up. But if you read the book, you may just want to rent it. I found it to be good and it didn’t disappoint to the point of not recommending it to others.

Overall Grade: B-

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