|Year Of Production||2016|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||Timothy Woodward Jr.|
|RPI||?||Music||Samuel Joseph Smythe|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Not too long ago I reviewed on this site The Good, the Bad, and the Dead, a modern western directed by Timothy Woodward Jr that felt fragmented, overwritten and uneven. With Traded the same director has delivered a proper western, although some of the same issues recur.
Kansas, 1883; tragedy strikes the family of former gunfighter turned rancher Clay Travis (Michael Pare) when his young son is bitten by a rattlesnake and dies. His wife Amelia (Constance Brenneman) is distraught and takes it out on the couple’s 17 year old daughter Lily (Brittany Williams) so Lily runs away to Wichita to look for a job. Unfortunately for Lily on her way she is abducted by Rig Marlowe (Joshua Lebar) and sold to the brothel run by Ty Stover (Trace Adkins). When Clay arrives in Wichita to track down his daughter he is helped by bartender Billy (Kris Kristofferson) and confronts Stover, only to learn that Lily has been on-sold to a brothel in Dodge City run by the notorious Lavoie (Tom Sizemore). Clay follows, and death walks the streets of Dodge.
The plotting of Traded is contrived, full of coincidences and very episodic in nature as Clay interacts with almost random people on his journey who then disappear, including a madam with whom Clay had a relationship 20 years before, a gunman from his previous life whose only function is to be shot down by Clay, a scarred young girl (Marie Oldenbourg) and her violent and abusive stepfather, while even Kris Kristofferson’s character is only in a few scenes despite his prominent billing. There are also rather too many villains, all larger than life, such as the Trace Adkins character, who gets a solid introduction and character traits, but then is quickly dispatched. The film is also brutal, including torture and a character having his eyes poked out, meaning that it is not very pleasant viewing and justifies the MA rating. Another issue is the stilted dialogue, including some homespun philosophical monologues about the importance of family and the two parts of everyone’s character.
Traded is about a serious theme; the abuse, sale and trading of women, a theme that is still very relevant today around the world. This is not, however, presented very coherently or very well but if there is a reason for watching Traded for other than die hard fans of westerns it is Michael Pare. Pare was also in The Good, the Bad, and the Dead so it seems he likes working with Timothy Woodward Jr; here as the vengeful, tainted and grizzled ex-gunfighter he carries the film.
Traded is presented in the 1.78:1 aspect ratio, instead of the original 2.35:1. It is 16x9 enhanced.
This is unfortunate for a western genre film with some wide open vistas but the cropping (it is cropped, not pan and scan) is more noticeable in some interiors when characters are partly out of frame or, in a couple of instances, almost completely out of frame. That aside, the print is sharp except in motion; the close-ups of Michael Pare’s grizzled and bloody face and glaring eyes are finely detailed. Colours are glossy, blacks and shadow detail fine.
Traded is on a single layered PAL DVD. There were no marks but blur with movement was regularly on show while contrast, brightness and skin tones varied.
There are no subtitles provided.
1 mark has been deducted from the overall score for the aspect ratio in accordance with site policy.
The audio choice is English Dolby Digital 2.0 at a low 192 Kbps. It is surround encoded.
Dialogue was clear. The effects, such as gunshots, hooves or the train, were acceptable but lacked much depth. The score by Samuel Joseph Smythe was fine.
Lip synchronisation was good.
|Surround Channel Use|
There are no extras. The silent menu has “Play Feature” as the only option.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
I cannot find any details about the Region 1 US DVD release of Traded. However, the Region A US Blu-ray is in the correct 2.35:1 aspect ratio and includes a “Making of” (8:02) and “Deleted scenes” (5:32), so the Region 1 US DVD could be similar.
I am a fan of westerns, whether they are big or low budget, provided they are done properly. Although its main theme is important and Michael Pare is worth watching,Traded is contrived, episodic and full on coincidences. Presented in the incorrect aspect ratio, with 2.0 audio and no extras, this is hard to recommend except for die hard westerns fans.
|DVD||Sony BDP-S580, using HDMI output|
|Display||LG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||NAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.|
|Speakers||Studio Acoustics 5.1|