DVD Review “The River: The Complete First Season”

Created by: Oren Peli
Starring: Bruce Greenwood, Joe Anderson, Paul Blackthorne
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Distributed by: ABC Studios
Release Date: May 22, 2012
Running Time: 344 minutes

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

“The River” is a great combination of “Lost” and “Blair Witch Project and really takes the found footage genre to the next level. Oren Peli, the genius behind the “Paranormal Activity” series created and produced this show and his involvement is very apparent. My main issue with the show is that it is short running only eight episodes, although it also keeps the show tighter and not stuffed with a lot of filler. Unfortunately this show was not renewed for season two, so the season cliffhanger will have the serve as the series finale. Who knows maybe Netflix will revive this fantastic show! Hint…Hint!

The premise of the show follows the disappearance of Dr Emmet Cole, the host of a wilderness reality show, into the depths of the Amazon.  He is presumed dead by friends and family until a signal from his communication device shows up on radar. His son & wife along with, his producer and colleagues head out to into the jungle to try and rescue him. While on this journey they decide to bring a camera crew along to document.  The group finds that Dr. Emmet Cole was in a lot deeper than everyone thought and they might have a hard time leaving the jungle once they enter it.

Besides coming from the amazing mind of Oren Peli, this series was also Executive Produced by Steven Spielberg.  Having a horror thriller on TV these days are incredible rare and like this one they unfortunately don’t last.  This DVD does not only include the complete first season, there is also some decent special features.  There are various deleted scenes included, worth checking out since you can imagine how much footage they shot for this season.  There is a making of featurette, which is a little short but still worth watching.  There is also commentary available for the episode “The Magus” and “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.”  They are two of my favorite episodes and the commentary tracks are very welcomed.

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