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Scanners 1981

4.1 out of 5 stars (50) IMDb 6.8/10

The title of this David Cronenberg sci-fi horror film refers to a group of people who have telekinetic powers that allow them to read minds and give them the ability to make other people's heads explode. The children of a group of women who took an experimental tranquilizer during their pregnancies, the scanners are now adults and have become outcasts from society.

Starring:
Jennifer O'Neill, Stephen Lack
Runtime:
1 hour, 43 minutes

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
The steelbook of Scanners is a lovely looking item but it was lacking a booklet inside the case, i have rated it 4 stars because of this reason. For a limited edition release they could have at least included a booklet with some background tales on the movie and some still photos etc.

The Blu-ray transfer of this movie is simply stunning for such an old movie! The picture is very sharp throughout most of the movie with vibrant colours and contrast used perfectly, and just the right amount of subtle noise to give it that filmy feel. You have a choice of two audio tracks, either a Stereo PCM track or 5.0 DTS HD MSTR. I chose the 5.0 DTS HD MSTR and i found it very good indeed, lots of fine detail in the track with crisp and clear dialogue throughout. (i did play it through a home cinema separates system)

The extras were quite good as well which included an interview by it's main star and then some interviews about the "Chaos of Scanners" and the "Special Effects" in the movie.

I definitely recommend this Blu-ray release
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Format: VHS Tape
I have watched this film at least 50 times and I never tire of seeing it. It's proof that Cronenberg was, even nearly 20 years ago, a visionary with a strong stomach. The exploding head, the ruptured veins, nosebleeds and spontaneous combustion should have produced a film whose violence is completely tasteless, but it didn't. Instead, the director uses strong photography, an interesting notion for a plot (Cronenberge studied as a biochemist, and many of his films deal with the concepts of disease and infection) and a gripping soundtrack by his long-time collaborator Howard Shore, to build a film which is truly enjoyable. Despite the uniformly wooden acting and appallingly weak dialogue, the 'kinda' happy ending and a rather obvious 'right versus wrong' storyline, the overall effect is still gripping and - somehow - great fun. Great.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Beautiful steelbook let down that there is no booklet inside(it's crying out for it)
The movie does not need explaining or reviewing by me.If you are here you are looking for an upgrade from the dvd or the german blu ray.

Everything is spot on with the PQ and the sound is lush...Buy it ..you know you want it..
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Scanners was notorious at its time of release for the exploding head sequence. A scene the late great Kenny Everett spoofed on his television show.This film along with Rabid, The Brood and Dead Ringers cemented David Cronenbergs name as a master of urban horror.Any film that can get a restrained performance from the normally vigorous Michael Ironside has to be worth checking out. He is actually rather good in this. For me the excellent Patrick McGoohan is what lifts this very original film above the rank of a mere gorefest. If your a thinking mans horror fan add this to your stash. Its excellent.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I'm a big fan of David cronenberg films especially scanners, one of my favourites
there's been more than one DVD release of scanners over the past 12 years
the first release is 2001 region 1 U.S. release by MGM with no extras at all
and then came the 2005 Anchor bay U.K. release which had pretty good picture and audio quality presentation
with only a 10min featurette about the making of scanners by a U.K. film critic
which was average plus a Documentary on David cronenberg films which was the only best extra on the DVD
this Doco had interviews with some of the Actors from his films
and then many years later 2012,
a German distributor SUBKULTUR released a DVD/BLU-RAY set which i bought
this only had an interview with stephen Lack and a audio commentary track by a film critic
which ended up being German commentary, so it was a waste of money

and now a U.K.
Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I'm not a big fan of horror movies.

Many are just one gory scene after another. In this case less it more. Scanners does at least have a plot. The gory scenes are more horrific because they stand out from the rest of the movie.

It has an impressive cast and the acting is good enough.
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Format: DVD
A young inexperienced Scanner named Vale, is recruited to track down a rouge evil Scanner called Revok, however Revok has other ideas and an intense battle develops.

Interesting and highly enjoyable David Cronenberg sci-fi horror. The film has many strong points, acting is great, Patrick McGoohan is excellent as Dr Paul, as is Jennifer O'Neill and Michael Ironside steels every scene he's in over shadowing the lead Stephen Lack at every turn. The special effects are superb, the famous head exploding sequence is still as brilliant as it was then, but almost all the make-up effects are very good, also Cronenberg's direction is a standout, creating layers of intrigue and a very tension filled atmosphere. The plot and story are very interesting particularly when Vale is hunting down Revok, the confrontation at the end is excellent and exciting and the twist is well handled. The weakest parts are a frankly disappointing lead character, Cameron Vale played by Stephen Lack is acted well and not badly written but just totally over shadowed by the three other major characters, the story whilst strong, is for the first part of the film slightly unengaging not really holding your full attention, although this does improve massively as it goes along.

Almost certainly one of Cronenberg's best and most favoured pictures and rightly so, there's much to admire and remember in this 1981 classic, far, far better than any of the following sequels. The before mentioned, and again wonderful head explosion was instrumental in its inclusion on the Section 3 nasty list here in Britain, but if that's your reasoning for watching, expecting a gory film you might be disappointed, this is a brilliantly staged sci-fi, thriller that is far more mass audience friendly than you might think. 3.5/5
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