Unearthed & Untold: The Path to Pet Sematary
Directors: John Campopiano, Justin White
Stars: Mary Lambert, Dale Midkiff, Denise Crosby
Reviewed by Brian M. Sammons
I love movies. So much so that I love movies about movies. I’m talking about a trend that started a few years back and is still going strong: feature-length documentaries about famous horror. Sure, all the big franchises have been covered, but now individual films are getting the feature doc treatment. One of the newest is Unearthed & Untold: The Path to Pet Sematary, which makes me happy as I love the Stephen King book and the adaptation of it to film. Does this documentary do the movie it is about justice? Well, grab a shovel and your favorite dead cat and let’s find out.
First it must be said that once again Stephen King can’t be bothered to show up for a documentary about a movie based on one of his books. Now I could see that if the movie sucked, but Pet Sematary don’t suck. Everything I’ve heard said that King was happy with the adaptation. So he can’t spare a single afternoon for an interview? I just can’t understand that.
Despite that, pretty much everyone else who’s still alive that has a connection with the movie is here. That includes the director, pretty much all the actors (minus the late Fred Gwynne), special effects people, various technical artists, lots of fans of the film, people from Maine where it was shot who were extras, and many more. There are lots of behind-the-scenes photos and video, retellings of the ups and downs that occurred during filming, some hidden, secrets bits (always my favorite), post production, pre-production, marketing, the impact the film had on the audience and pop culture, and so much more. Really, if you want to know anything about the Pet Sematary movie, this is the documentary for you.
Okay, on to the extras and special features Synapse put on this new Blu-ray release. There is an audio commentary with the directors, John Campopiano and Justin White. There is also something called a podcast interview commentary with both directors and a podcast called Halloweekly. There is another interview with the directors, this one on video, and that runs seven and a half minutes. There are some extra bits and deleted interview with various folks that didn’t make it into the feature documentary, and these go on for 18 minutes. There is also a collection of edited and alternate scenes that is eight minutes and a collection of photos from locations used in Pet Sematary. There is a gallery of poster art concepts, and home movie-style video on the set of the movie from Rhonda Carter. There is a sizzle reel for the doc, and a promo trailer round out the nice collection of extras found here.
Just as Pet Sematary is a great movie, Unearthed & Untold is a great documentary about that movie. If you are a fan of horror entertainment docs, this is one of the best and a must-get for any serious Stephen King fan, lover of inside info on film, or horror historian. Consider it highly recommended.