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Above-average cop-oriented thriller
on August 17, 2011
Judge Gordon Sullivan, DVD Verdict-- Based on the cover art and synopsis, Blitz looks like just another Jason Statham vehicle where our muscle-bound hero careens through London, bashing heads until he finds the killer. I was perfectly okay with that. Instead, Blitz is much more of an ensemble piece than it first appears. In addition to Statham's "killer cop," we get his boss Porter Nash (Paddy Considine, The Bourne Ultimatum) a homosexual cop with a past; Elizabeth Falls, a friend who's just got out of rehab after a stint as an undercover drug cop; and Blitz himself (Aiden Gillean, The Wire), a compelling, smarmy killer who makes the perfect villain. It helps that all these characters are played by excellent actors.
More importantly, this cast of characters allows Blitz to tell a story that's a little more complicated than "catch the killer." Obviously finding Blitz is the central story here, but the film weaves in police violence and corruption, the media's complicity in that violence, drug addiction, homosexuality, and burnout. Of course the film doesn't have the most original things to say about these issues, but it's nice to see a cop film that isn't afraid to balance the action with a bit of intellect. The multiple storylines also allow the film to build tension in the main story. The audience knows who the killer is very early on (and the cops find out not much later). By weaving the other stories into the capture of Blitz, the film builds tension by not proceeding to the obvious showdown between good guys and bad guy. Still, it wouldn't be a Jason Statham film without him kicking in some heads and cracking wise. Blitz doesn't ignore those moments, offering some satisfying cracks from Statham, both physical and verbal.
Blitz comes to Blu-ray with a solid AVC-encoded transfer. The film was shot with a lot of wide angle lenses and the picture can get a bit soft around the edges, though that's probably a deliberate choice and not a failing of the transfer. In general, though, detail is strong, and colors are well-saturated. Black levels are consistent and deep, and grain crops up appropriately in a few places. The DTS-HD surround track is fine as well, offering clear dialogue from the center channel, and a bit of atmosphere in the surrounds. The low end gets some use, but not as much as many action films. Subtitles are included for those who have trouble with British accents. Extras include some interviews with the cast and crew and a roll of behind-the-scenes footage. We also get the film's U.K. theatrical trailer.
-Full review at dvdverdict.com