Riddick: Director's Cut (Blu-ray) (2013)

If you create a user account, you can add your own review of this DVD

Released 15-Jan-2014

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by
BUY IT

Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Sci-Fi Action Trailer-x 2 for other films
Featurette-Making Of-Multiple
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-Multiple
Short Film-Animated short Riddick: Blindsided
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2013
Running Time 126:48
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By David Twohy
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Vin Diesel
Jordi Molla
Matt Nable
Katee Sackhoff
Dave Bautista
Case ?
RPI ? Music Graeme Revell


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     In the year 2000 a film came out of nowhere called Pitch Black which wowed audiences, despite being made on a low budget and without any big name stars. It was a sci-fi action horror film featuring a character who could see in the dark fighting aliens who only came out at night. This was followed a few years later in 2004 by a sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick which went in a much more high concept sci fi direction rather than sticking to the basic concept of the first film. This film was highly criticised on release and was not a success for the studio which funded it. After much negotiation, Vin Diesel, the star of both films, managed to get the rights to the character from the studio and has now produced this third film in the series, Riddick, as an independent feature.

     My colleague Ray has recently reviewed the DVD version of Riddick and I generally agree with his assessment of the film. The opening is the strength of the film, where they are doing something a bit different, but once the bounty hunters arrive this film goes right off the tracks with far too much talking and posturing amongst the generally uninteresting characters rather than any progression of the story. The ending brings the film up a little but I found the whole experience quite flat and uninteresting (after the opening). The story was very simple and the conclusion quite obvious. I really liked Pitch Black so was disappointed by this film, despite its attempt to return to the basic idea of the first film.

     This Blu-ray version includes only the director's cut version of the film but most comparisons I have read consider this extended version to be the better one. A detailed comparison is linked from Ray's review in the R4 vs R1 section. It features more of Karl Urban at the start and I believe a slightly different ending. In total it is about 8 minutes longer. A minor casting note is that Matt Nable who plays Boss Johns the bounty hunter is an ex-NRL player who some may recognise.

     If you like the character, Riddick is worth a look but I would recommend a rental only.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

     The video quality is excellent.

     The feature is presented in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio which is the original aspect ratio. It is 1080p HD encoded using the AVC codec.

     The detail and clarity is excellent throughout showing off the wonderful sets and creatures.

     The colour is also excellent despite the restricted colour scheme.

     There were no noticeable artefacts.

     There are subtitles available in English for the Hearing Impaired.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     The audio quality is also excellent.

     This disc contains an English soundtrack in DTS HD-MA 5.1 and an Audio Descriptive track in Dolby Digital.

     Dialogue is clear and easy to understand throughout.

     The music by Graeme Revell drives the action in the film and continues his fine work from the first two films. It is very immersive on this Blu-ray transfer.

     The surround speakers were used wonderfully in this film with very specific placing of creature sounds especially in the finale. They also provided immersion during the rain and other engulfing sound sequences.

     The subwoofer provided excellent support to the music and the action scenes.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

     A decent selection of extras. All the ones from the DVD version are here and more besides.

Menu

     The menu includes music.

The Twohy Touch (6:22)

     A self-congratulatory featurette on David Twohy and his approach to this third film of the series. EPK style.

Riddickian Tech (10:!4)

     A more interesting featurette about how they built the various pieces of technology such as the hover bikes, space ships and the comms equipment including where they used VFX.

Vin’s Riddick (8:28)

     This featurette about the character developed by Vin Diesel consists of behind the scenes footage during the making of Riddick plus film footage and interviews. Covers his various roles in the film including producer, sometime financier and acting.

Meet the Mercs (10:18)

     Very much an EPK with the various actors who played mercenaries talking about their characters and each other. Additional comments by David Twohy, Vin Diesel and costume designer Simonetta Mariano. Nothing essential.

World of Riddick (10:50)

     The best of the extras covers production design, cinematography, use of motion capture for the puppy and other more interesting technical making of material. Worthwhile.

Riddick: Blindsided (5:15)

     Animated short. The story covered is included in the Director's cut but this is worth a look.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The Region A release has the same extras but includes both theatrical and directors cut versions of the film, making it the best available.

Summary

    A flat and talky sci-fi action film.

    The video quality is excellent.

    The audio quality is excellent.

    The extras are worth a look but tend to be a little samey.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Monday, February 03, 2014
Review Equipment
DVDSONY BDP-S760 Blu-ray, using HDMI output
DisplaySharp LC52LE820X Quattron 52" Full HD LED-LCD TV . Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt into amplifier. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationMarantz SR5005
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Shortchanged again in OZ - Tom Tuttle