And so after all these years, Gremlins comes across as what it probably always was: a fun monster comedy for the puberty set. It's still that, but for those who are now older it's difficult to go back in time and see it in that way again. Adults who aren't holding on to the nostalgia of it will have a more difficult time on the revisit.
There's a lot of nostalgia to be had while revisiting the film on Blu-ray. Meaning the same dim picture you probably viewed from previous home video formats. It's a modest update from DVD quality, but the picture overall suffers from lack of clarity and an almost hazy layer that detracts from picking out detail. Color is lackluster, and the healthy grain of the film doesn't do much to help remedy any of the above. The film is largely free from debris, but on the whole it's a bit of a disappointing Blu-ray transfer. Passable, but doesn't reach much beyond that.
The audio track improves things a bit. For the most part the Dolby TrueHD 5.1 delivers, although the moments for it to shine are scattered. During the main conflict scenes, the surround speakers kick into action, but when the movie veers back towards dialogue-driven scenes, things are considerably more flat. But there's nothing from the audio field that feels lacking, other than the slightly neutered music score. Overall it's a strong representation of the film, and frequently offers some solid action.
There are two commentary tracks for the movie. The first features director Joe Dante, producer Michael Finnell and special effects artist Chris Walas. The trio provide an interesting look at the film, focusing primarily on the technical details and challenges of the shoot, as well as sculpting the story and tone of the film. There is also an actor-oriented track, again featuring director Joe Dante, with stars Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, Dick Miller and Howie Mandel (who provided the voice for Gizmo). The group mainly takes a walk down memory lane, offering up bits of trivia and anecdotes from the shoot. It's of little substance, but is a fun track.