WWE-Macho Man: The Randy Savage Story (Blu-ray) (2014)

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Released 3-Dec-2014

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Sports Trailer-OMG Vol 2: The Top 50 Incidents in WCW History
More…-19 Matches featuring Randy Savage
Deleted Scenes
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2014
Running Time 444:09 (Case: 450)
RSDL / Flipper No/No
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By None Given
Studio
Distributor
WWE Entertainment
Shock Entertainment
Starring Randy Mario Poffo
Hulk Hogan
Lanny Poffo
Richard Blood (Ricky Steamboat)
Vince McMahon
Case Standard Blu-ray
RPI ? Music None Given


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080i
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

"Oh Yeah".

     Professional wrestling is often seen as a joke and a sham, with over-sized clowns playing up to our worst instincts. What often isn't appreciated however is the skill, determination, work and pain that is required to be a player in the professional wrestling scene, where no amount of acting can fully eliminate the injuries and daily batterings that come with the show. I clearly remember attending wrestling events in the glory days when masks were still a novelty and the standard costume was a pair of super strong trunks. The atmosphere was always electric and the entertainment was brilliant. Having some heel's head slammed into a concrete pylon by Mark Lewin right in front of you is something a 14 year old doesn't forget. The hit was presumably only half-hearted, but the thump was real. Under review is The Randy Savage Story: Macho Man, a biopsy of the larger than life wrestler who started off his sporting career as a potential major league baseballer, but ended up in the square ring duking it out with the likes of Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair.

     Randy (real name Randy Mario Poffo) was born in 1952 into a wrestling family. His father Angelo Poffo was a regional league professional wrestler who had the distinction of once doing 6,033 sit-ups in 250 minutes. After a promising baseball future petered out with 289 minor league games, Randy in 1973 at age 21 decided to get serious about wrestling and joined his father and brother ("Leaping" Lanny Poffo) on the circuit. First wrestling as "Spiderman" he eventually adopted the moniker of "Macho Man" on the suggestion of his mother.

     After some time wrestling in the various American minor wrestling leagues, Randy signed with Vince McMahon's World Wrestling Federation (WWF, later known as WWE). As part of his WWF stage gimmick Randy assumed a female "manager", his future wife "Miss Elizabeth" (Elizabeth Hulette) who he treated possessively as part of an arrogant stage persona. In real life however Randy was a quiet shy man who was not a great speaker. His trademark "Oh, Yeah" and facing away from the camera during interviews was part of a technique that helped overcome his on camera nerves. In the ring however Randy was far from reticent, with a burgeoning popularity that ensured he booked big-name opponents for major pay-per-view events. His battles with Hulk Hogan, George Steele, Bruno Sammartino, Ricky Steamboat and the like were epic battles which ensured huge ratings. As part of the choreographed nature of professional wrestling, alliances and feuds with various characters came and went with improbable soap-opera scenarios thrown into the mix for good measure. Although fluctuating between being a hero and a heel (bad guy) during his career, Randy always had fan popularity which at times rivalled Hulk Hogan even during the Hulk's peak. For the period 1985 to 2005 Randy was a top tier performer in various major wresting leagues despite a number of changes in fortune and semi-retirements. Health concerns prompted his retirement from professional wrestling and he eventually died from a heart attack in 2011 at age 58.

     This documentary is expansive and includes an active time line of Randy's life including personal and professional details. Far from being a hagiography, Macho Man explores low lights in his career as well as the highlights in the form of interviews and archived material. Being produced after his death meant that Randy isn't given the opportunity to contribute much in his own words, however there is enough material here to give some depth and understanding to his story. The sequencing of interviews play well and the interspersion of actual footage is effective and entertaining. The limited interviews with Randy himself give a good representation of his personality and professional persona. He was a meticulous professional who trained hard and practiced his moves and match choreography with an almost obsessive diligence. You don't have to be a pro-wrestling fan to appreciate the Randy Savage story and understand that his untimely death robbed the wrestling community of a real legend, even though his legacy lives on.

     In addition to the documentary itself are a number of his more notable match-ups with deleted interviews included on 2 discs.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Video is presented in the original aspect of 1.78:1 with 1080i high definition resolution using MPEG-4 AVC codec.

     As you would expect the content varies according to the source with archival footage varying a great deal in quality. Some footage is included at the original 1.33:1 aspect although some has been reformatted to 1.78:1. The interviews filmed for this feature are all in high definition with good lighting, skin tones, and detail. Being 1080i there is some interlacing evident but you need to be looking for it. There is also some colour banding although again this is not really noticeable. For what it is this release has excellent video with minimal issues to detract.

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

Audio

     The only audio option is a Dolby Digital 5.1 track at 640 Kb/s. Being a dialogue based presentation there is little surround presence and no bass to speak of. Some of the music has a directional element and voices pan across the front on occasions. The recently recorded voices are clear and precise however as you'd expect some of the older recordings are a little harsh. The 1993 interview with Savage has a background hiss that is not obtrusive.

     Nothing to complain about here for this sort of content.

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

Extras

Menu

     Animated menu with audio.

Trailer (before the main menu on Disc 1)

     OMG Vol 2: The Top 50 Incidents in WCW History (1:50) - HD Video and LPCM stereo audio at 1536 Kb/s.

Matches - Disc 1 (107:00)

     All HD video sourced from archival SD 1:33.1 with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio at 640 Kb/s.

Matches - Disc 2 (167:46)

     All HD video sourced from archival SD 1:33.1 with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio at 640 Kb/s.

Interviews (deleted scenes) - Disc 2 (75:18)

     All HD video with original content in 1:78.1 and archival SD 1:33.1 with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio at 640 Kb/s.

     A further 18 interview segments which were presumably cut from the main documentary. Interesting enough and give a fuller picture of the Macho Man story.

R4 vs R1

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

    Region A seems to be identical apart from language options.

Summary

     The Randy Savage Story is a great example of presenting a flamboyant and charismatic character whose professional career is a stark contrast to his personal life. Although you don't have to be a fan to appreciate the journey, the amount of wrestling footage included would make it desirable. Brimming with content this release is a must have for pro-wrestling fans.

     The video quality is excellent depending on source.

     The audio quality is very good depending on source.

     Extras are excellent.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Mike B (read my bio)
Thursday, January 15, 2015
Review Equipment
DVDCambridge Audio 751bd, using HDMI output
DisplayPanasonic TH-58PZ850A. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).
Amplificationdenon AVR-4311 pre-out to Elektra Theatron 7 channel amp
SpeakersB&W LCR600 centre and 603s3 mains, Niles in ceiling surrounds, SVS PC-Ultra Sub, Definitive Technology Supercube II Sub

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