Patriots Day (Blu-ray) (2016)

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Released 10-May-2017

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Featurette-Boston Strong: True Stories of Courage
Featurette-The Boston Bond: Recounting the Tale (21:43)
Featurette-The Real Patriots: The Local Heroes Stories (19:48)
Featurette-The Cast Remembers (5:49)
Featurette-Researching the Day (11:22)
Featurette-Actors Meet Real-Life Counterparts
Trailer-Start-up Trailers x 2 for othe films
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2016
Running Time 133:07
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Peter Berg
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Mark Wahlberg
John Goodman
Michelle Monaghan
Kevin Bacon
James Colby
Themo Melikidze
Alex Wolff
JK Simmons
Christopher O’Shea
Rachel Brosnahan
Jake Picking
Jimmy O Yang
Dustin Tucker
Case ?
RPI ? Music Trent Reznor
Atticus Ross


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 Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

     On Monday 16 April, 2013, Patriots’ Day in Massachusetts, two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three and maiming dozens. Patriots Day is the story of the events leading up to the bombing and the subsequent manhunt for those responsible. Although some news and CCTV footage is used, Patriots Day is not a documentary but a reconstruction of the events focussed on a number of individuals, real and fictionalised, who were caught up in the bombing and its aftermath.

     Patriots Day is told mainly through the eyes of Boston Police Sergeant Tommy Saunders (Mark Wahlberg), who is not a real person but a composite of various officers who were involved, and his wife Carol (Michelle Monaghan); other law enforcement officers are based on real people including Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis (John Goodman), Superintendent Billy Evans (James Colby), FBI Special Agent Richard DesLauries (Kevin Bacon), who took charge of the investigation, Sergeant Jeffrey Pugliese (J.K. Simmons) of Watertown Police and the young MIT Policemen Sean Collier (Jake Picking) who was tragically shot and killed by the bombers while trying to steal his pistol. The story also takes time to follow some of those who lost limbs in the bombings; husband and wife Patrick Downes (Christopher O’Shea) and Jessica Kensky (Rachel Brosnahan) and Steve Woolfenden (Dustin Tucker) as well as Chinese student Dun Meng (Jimmy O Yang) who had a terrifying ordeal when the bombers hijacked his car. And finally the film looks at the home life of the two brothers who committed the terror bombings, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (Themo Melikidze / Alex Wolff), and Tamerlan’s wife Katherine (Melissa Benoist).

     Although not a documentary, Patriots Day often looks like one. There is contemporary news footage and real, and reconstructed, CCTV footage, and often in the film there is footage using principally hand-held moving cameras where individuals are partially out of frame or focus and we hear snatches of conversations. We know what is going to happen of course, but the film is nevertheless exciting, tense and meticulous with its reconstructions: the bombings and the aftermath, with bloodied bodies and severed limbs, as well as the scenes in the city’s emergency wards are harrowing. The subsequent search for the identity of the bombers is intriguing, showing the procedures put into place and the gradual piecing together of CCTV footage to identify a suspect. The shootout when the brothers are stopped in Watertown is well-staged, intense, loud, chaotic and visceral as bombs detonate, gunshots echo and cars are destroyed by bullet hits and explosions. The final hunt and the capture of the younger brother hiding in a boat create a good tension.

     Patriots Day could have been about gung-ho heroics or excess patriotic fever but director Peter Berg keeps such sentiments firmly in check with only one sequence with a “can we win” discussion towards the end feeling somewhat preachy. This is his third time directing Mark Wahlberg in stories based on actual events, the other two being Lone Survivor (2013) and Deepwater Horizon (2016) and he gets a solid performance from Wahlberg while all the other actors are very good. Patriots Day was in fact a composite of two different screenplays, one called "Boston Strong" which focused on the action/ thriller aspects, the other entitled "Patriots' Day" was more of a factual drama. While mostly the two aspects do meld together pretty well, the different screenplays would be responsible for some of the changes of tone within the film such as the documentary like, real life individuals who, at the conclusion of the story, talk about their experiences, hopes and subsequent life.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Patriots Day is presented in an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, in 1080p using the MPEG-4 AVC code.

     The look of the film varies due to the sections of news and CCTV-like footage with the lack of clarity they entail. As well scenes with action or movement, such as the bombings or the shootout with the terrorists, are jerky and handheld which affects the resolution. Other scenes, however, have strong detail. The colours have that digital glossy sheen, blacks and shadow detail is pristine, skin tones fine and brightness and contrast consistent.

     I did not notice any artefacts or marks.

     English subtitles for the Hearing Impaired are available.

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

Audio

     Audio is English DTS-HD MA 5.1 plus English descriptive audio which is Dolby Digital 2.0.

     The audio experience is enveloping. The film was going for a realistic look and sound which I think is why dialogue was delivered naturally or sometimes heard in snatches, which means that sometimes it was hard to hear clearly. The surrounds and rears were used aggressively for crowd noises, helicopter flyovers, gunshots, hits, explosions, debris and the music. The sub-woofer added resonance and depth to gunshots, bullet hits and explosions and was especially effective in the bombing sequence; the explosions were first shown as CCTV footage with a muted boom, then the sub cut in loudly as the POV switched.

     The orchestral score by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, Oscar winners for The Social Network (2010), was suitable if not overly memorable.

     There are no lip synchronisation issues.

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

Extras

Start-up Trailers (3:54)

     Trailers for Kong: Skull Island and King Arthur: The Legend of the Sword play on start-up. They cannot be selected from the menu.

Boston Strong: True Stories of Courage

     There are three separate sections where individuals involved in the events talk about their experiences:

The Boston Bond: Recounting the Tale (21:43)

     A featurette about the commitment of the filmmakers to get it right, about the strength and support of the people of Boston and their interaction with the filmmakers and cast. Consists of behind the scenes footage plus comments by director / co-writer Peter Berg, co-writer Joshua Zetumer, Former Police Commissioner Ed Davis, Sgt. Jeffery Pugliese and Dun Meng, three producers, the production designer and most of the principal cast including Mark Wahlberg.

The Real Patriots: The Local Heroes Stories (19:48)

     Director Peter Berg explains why he gets inspired as a filmmaker by real life stories while Ed Davis, Jeffery Pugliese and Dun Meng recall their experiences of the day. Additional comments by the three actors who played them; John Goodman, J.K. Simmons and Jimmy O. Yang.

The Cast Remembers (5:49)

     Cast members John Goodman, J.K. Simmons, Kevin Bacon, Michelle Monaghan, Jimmy O. Yang, Christopher O’Shea, Themo Melikidze, Alex Wolff, Rachel Brosnahan and Mark Wahlberg remember where they were when they heard about the bombing and their reactions.

Researching the Day (11:22)

     Producers Hutch Parker and Scott Stuber and FBI Technical Advisor Chris Whitcomb comment on co-writer / director Peter Berg’s working methods and commitment to realism.

Actors Meet Real-Life Counterparts

    Two sections where the actors chat with the people they play about their experience and the film:

R4 vs R1

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

     This release has the same extras as the Region A US Blu-ray of Patriots Day but the US release has DTS: X and DTS-HD MA 7.1 audio, so if your set up can accommodate those it would be the one to get.

Summary

     We know what happened in Boston in April 2013, both the bombing and the subsequent apprehension of the two bombers; Patriots Day could easily have been over the top patriotism but in the hands of Peter Berg it is a genuine, compelling and exciting story about the events in Boston during that April, with good acting and meticulous attention to detail resulting in authentic behind the scenes reconstructions, helped by the involvement in the film of the people who were there including Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis, FBI Special Agent Richard DesLauries and Sergeant Jeffrey Pugliese. The film is comprehensive and intelligent, honouring the first responders, the law enforcement agencies and the courage of individuals and is a moving and a far better film than I was expecting.

     The video and audio very good. The extras are the same as available elsewhere. They are decent if a bit repetitive in places.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Thursday, July 27, 2017
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 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 DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

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