Man On Fire Blu-ray
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A soldier for hire is contracted by a wealthy American family in Mexico City to protect their young daughter. The man forms a bond with the young girl until she is eventually kidnapped for ransom. Now, the man will stop at nothing to free the girl and make her kidnappers pay for their deeds.
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Thus, this review will only be about the quality of the disc itself. I did not have the standard def release but just a burned copy of it so this will not be a comparison.
It is a single Blu Ray disc with no extras of any kind other than the trailer for Man on Fire and 3 other movie previews. I hate it when BluRays, or any DVD, puts previews for other films on a disc as it makes you pay for advertising and the amount of room these previews take up on the disc just means that the producers simply have to compress the main film even more to make room for them.
The video transfer is an interesting one. I really am not sure whether they really remastered the film at all. While it is not bad or disturbing, there is grain throughout the entire film. This grain is something many like as it provides some depth. Many parts of the film are heavily color graded and this brings in even more grain. The blacks have also been crushed so that you do not see details in many of the darker areas. This might have been done on purpose and I am not judging here, just making the observation. Most of the film transfer to BR appears to be warmly color corrected and some of the tans appeared to be a touch too much. A strange image comes in for a very brief moment at 8:45 in the beginning of the film. Denzel is in the back of a car and there is a 'weird zoom' that I cannot properly describe here, it is almost as if they were making a correction to the aspect ratio. I had to play that one section a few times and it was consistent. Other than what I have mentioned I noticed no aliasing or artifacts for the duration of the movie.
The DTS HD 5.1 audio is the star of the transfer with excellent use of all 5 channels. The lossless audio is as clear as a bell with all audio levels properly set so there will be no adjusting volumes during your watching of the film once you have set the volume you are comfortable with. Your sub will be in constant use and there really was some deep LFE work on this the audio track and not just from explosions either. The Linda Ronstadt soundtrack fully envelops you from all channels quite nicely. There is some fine panning between channels and plenty of discreet directionality from the rear channels providing not only a good front stage but the rear stage as well.
Thus, I give the video transfer a 3.5, the audio transfer a 5 and the movie itself a 5. The movie is a good one and, despite its age, retains strong legs and would make a good addition to your blu ray collection.
All my movie reviews are of this nature and focus only on the quality of the transfer to BluRay so check them and see if they are of help as well.
Hopefully, this review has been of some help to you in determining your purchase, hope I am on the correct path with a review of the transfer quality as opposed to providing plot summaries.
When things go sour and our hero loses one of the two things in life that he was sure of, we see how invested he really is as he turns to the only other thing he knows: killing. His rampage is calm and calculated. He makes the kidnappers feel his anger and he does make them pay. It's a good, no-nonsense, fight against corruption and villainy. It's not going to change your life or anything of the sort but it's entertaining and it doesn't leave you hanging in the end (i.e. closure). I liked the way they did the subtitles and didn't overuse English (since they are in Mexico) but maybe they could have toned down the amount of film flash cuts that they used. Out of the 2756 film flash cuts (no, I didn't actually count but it also doesn't feel like a total exaggeration), maybe they could have taken out a few hundred. I do appreciate that they didn't use that cut style while actual action was happening because that would have become a dizzying mess (see: Bourne Supremacy and other handheld action movie sequences...whyyyy??).
"His art is death, and he's about to paint his masterpiece" - Man on Fire
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