James Earl Jones (The Great White Hope) and Estelle Parsons (Don’t Drink the Water) star as Barney and Betty Hill, husband-and-wife survivors of an alien abduction, in this engrossing look at one of the most controversial and carefully documented cases of an extraterrestrial encounter in U.S. history. The Hills claim that, on the 19th of September, 1961, in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, they were taken aboard a saucer-like spacecraft and examined medically by mysterious humanoid beings with grayish skin. The UFO Incident describes with fascinating detail the couple’s crippling anxiety and nightmarish visions following the experience, during which they both suffered from amnesia. Directed by Richard A. Colla (Fuzz, TV’s Battlestar Galactica), this strange-but-true story is based on The Interrupted Journey, John G. Fuller’s bestselling account of the actual testimony made by the Hills while under hypnosis.
For thoughts on The UFO Incident, please check out our discussion on The Video Attic:
The UFO Incident comes to Blu-Ray with a digital AVC encoded 1080p transfer derived from a new 2K master that is terrific. Kino Classics has once again rescued a television film from obscurity with a stunning new presentation that is very impressive. Even with the highest aspirations, this print is in much better shape than one could ever dream up. Instances of print damage have been cleaned up immensely with no major blemishes that stand out. Overall clarity and detail is tremendous, and skin tones are natural and consistent with subtle facial features easily noticeable in closeup. The transfer maintains the natural film grain of the source without any hints of digital tinkering. This grain presents as organic rather than overwhelmingly noisy, which allows for greater depth to the image. Colors are well saturated with vivid hues popping off the screen, especially in some of the shots of nature. Black levels are deep and hold up well with crush not serving as a noticeable issue. Kino Classics should be commended for this release.
The Blu-Ray disc comes with a DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio track that perfectly captures the intended output of the film. The music from William Goldenberg is an essential part of establishing the mood, and it is handled well throughout the duration of the film with excellent fidelity. There is never a moment where it threatens to overwhelm competing sounds, and it maintains a good balance so that dialogue comes through clearly. The subtle environmental sounds of vehicles and certain weather noises are rendered well alongside everything else. There does not seem to be any majorly noticeable instances of age-related wear and tear. Kino Classics has delivered an audio presentation that brings this creepy story to life in a pleasing manner.
- Audio Commentary: Film Historian/Screenwriter Gary Gerani provides a very informative commentary track in which he gives a great deal of historical context for these events, the realities of certain situations, how the tapes were used in the writing of the script, details on the performers and production of this television film, and so much more. For those who want to delve deep into this phenomena, you will find this one very valuable for enriching the overall experience.
- Romantic Mysticism – The Music Of Billy Goldenberg: A 102-minute feature documentary from Gary Gerani which takes a look at the life and career of composer William Goldenberg who was so influential on television, movies and Broadway. There are countless historians, composers, directors, performers and more who help put his work into context along with interviews with Goldenberg himself. This may be even more enjoyable than the main feature.
- Trailers: There are trailers provided for Chosen Survivors, The Neptune Factor, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, Zone Troopers and Fuzz.
The UFO Incident is a solidly entertaining made-for-television film that succeeds in spite of the fact that it stays more grounded than you might believe. The performances are the reason to make a special effort for this one, as you have two of the greats selling this potentially overwrought or cheesy material. The narrative itself can feel a bit repetitive and stagnant at times, but these performers keep you invested in this pair as they work through their trauma. Kino Classics has delivered a Blu-Ray sporting a lovely A/V presentation and a great commentary track. Although, arguably the best thing on this disc is the terrific documentary on composer William Goldenberg. This disc is worth picking up for this alone. Recommended
The UFO Incident is currently available to purchase on Blu-Ray.
Note: Images presented in this review are not reflective of the image quality of the Blu-Ray.
Disclaimer: Kino Classics has supplied a copy of this disc free of charge for review purposes. All opinions in this review are the honest reactions of the author.
Dillon is most comfortable sitting around in a theatre all day watching both big budget and independent movies.