Takedown (2000)

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Released 1-Jul-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Thriller Main Menu Introduction
Dolby Digital Trailer-City
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2000
Running Time 91:57
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Joe Chappelle
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Skeet Ulrich
Russell Wong
Angela Featherstone
Donal Logue
Chris Mcdonald
Master P
Jeremy Sisto
Tom Berenger
Amanda Peet
Mitch Pileggi
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $39.95 Music Chris Holmes


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio Unknown 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

    Takedown is based on the true story of computer hacker Kevin Mitnick, at one time the most wanted hacker in U.S. history.

    Being an IT University student, I was interested to see how Hollywood would portray Kevin Mitnick's exploits. After watching the movie, overall, I was a little disappointed. It had Mitnick doing things which were Hollywood's perception of all the usual hacker stuff. It seemed that the movie was technically toned down to appeal to the masses, but as a result ended up appealing to no one.

    Takedown revolves around the notorious U.S. hacker Kevin Mitnick (Skeet Ulrich). At the time, he was the most talented, most successful and most wanted hacker in the world. He was not hacking for personal gain, but out of an obsession to prove that it could be done and he was the man who could do it.

    Mitnick was out to hack the biggest and the best - he wanted them all; international companies, the Pentagon and the FBI. Through his hacking crimes he managed to attract the attention of computer security expect Tsutomu Shimomura (Russell Wong) as well as FBI agents Mitch Gibson (Christopher McDonald) and McCoy Rollins (Tom Berenger). The FBI agents on their own are no match for Mitnick, but with the help of Tsutomu they begin to close in on the by now paranoid hacker.

    All cast members perform adequately but there is no stand-out performance. I get the distinct impression that Tom Berenger does not want to be there. There are a few cameo appearances by Amanda Peet, whose character is a half-hearted attempt at a love interest and Mitch Pileggi of X-Files fame.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is excellent, with only a few very minor flaws.

    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The picture is clear and sharp from beginning to end. There was some very minor grain, present only on the rarest of occasions. The shadow detail is excellent with all objects pertaining to the story clearly visible. There was no noticeable low level noise.

    The colours were clear and constant throughout, with no problems evident. The blacks were black and did not waver.

    There were no MPEG artefact issues with the transfer. Film-to-video artefacts were a rarity with minor aliasing occurring occasionally. Film artefacts were also well controlled. The only instances occurred at 11:22 and 26:40. These were small and did not distract.

    There is only one subtitle option available on this disc; English for the Hearing Impaired. I sampled the subtitles and they appeared to be accurate and well-timed.

    This is a single layered disc and therefore no layer change is present.

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

Audio

    The audio quality is good, but not of reference quality.

    There is only one audio track offered on the disc; English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s).

    The dialogue is clear and easily understood at all times. However, if you are not familiar with computer acronyms you may get a little lost from time to time. Audio sync was not an issue with this disc.

    The music score was written by Chris Holmes. The musical score suits the movie well, but it could be described as stereotypical of this type of feature. It has its far share of beeps, bops and swishes when computer activity is taking place.

    There is only intermittent use of the surround speakers and subwoofer. However, there was more surround channel use than I expected. This is predominately a dialogue driven movie and there is little or no chance for explosions or special effects.

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

Extras

Main Menu Introduction

    The introduction to the main menu is a stylised look at the tool of a hacker, with both visuals and sound. The main menu is designed to resemble a computer board. It is static and silent.

Dolby Digital Trailer-City

    The Dolby Digital City Trailer is a precursor to the start of the movie.

R4 vs R1

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

    Takedown has not been released in Region 1. However, it has had a limited released in selected Region 2 countries including France as Cybertraque, and Denmark, Norway and Sweden as Operation Takedown.

    The Region 4 version of this DVD misses out on;

    The French Region 2 version of this DVD misses out on nothing.

    The Norwegian, Swedish and Danish Region 2 version of this DVD misses out on;

    Assuming that the French subtitles are able to be turned off, the version of choice in this instance would appear to be the French Region 2 release.

Summary

    Takedown is at times a reasonably entertaining hacker story that could have been so much better. It has been given an excellent video transfer and an above average audio transfer. There are no real extras to speak of.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Geoff Greer (read my bio)
Thursday, August 28, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDSony DVP-S525, using S-Video output
DisplayBang & Olufsen BeoVision Avante 82cm 16:9 Widescreen. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderDenon AVR-1803. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationDenon AVR 1803
SpeakersParadigm: Phantom V. 3 Front, Paradigm CC270 V. 3 Centre, Paradigm: Titan V. 3 Rear, Yamaha YST-SW305 Sub

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