Highwaymen (2003)

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Released 9-Sep-2004

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Main Menu Introduction
Menu Animation & Audio
Dolby Digital Trailer-Rain
Theatrical Trailer
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time 76:49
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Robert Harmon
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring James Caviezel
Rhona Mitra
Frankie Faison
Gordon Currie
Colm Feore
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $39.95 Music Mark Isham


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English dts 5.1 (768Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
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

   In 1986 director Robert Harmon made his feature film debut with the cult classic The Hitcher. Starring Rutger Hauer and C Thomas Howell, The Hitcher was an uncompromising action thriller that set the standard for the genre, and for this reviewer it remains unsurpassed. So it was with great anticipation that I awaited the release of Highwaymen, which on paper appeared to be of similar stock to Rutger's brutal cross country odyssey of yesteryear.

    Jim Caviezel plays Rennie Cray, a man set on revenge. Several years ago his wife was the victim of a deliberate hit and run accident in which she lost her life. Now Rennie spends his every waking moment hunting down the man responsible. The man in question is James Fargo, a vehicle owner's worst nightmare - an out-of-control maniac who derives pleasure from killing fellow motorists. Rennie must now seek the help of a mysterious woman (Rhona Mitra), the sole survivor of Fargo's latest atrocity, to assist him in ending the sadistic killer's reign of terror.

    Highwaymen, although passable as entertainment, never comes close to capturing the mood or intensity of Harmon's brilliant Hitcher, which twenty years on still sets the benchmark in open road terror. What Highwaymen does have going for it is a furious pace with very little exposition, and several excellent action set pieces featuring numerous vehicle stunts. For a no-brainer you could do far worse.

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

Transfer Quality

Video

    Highwaymen is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2:35:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The transfer is simply excellent. With a razor sharp image the picture quality is hard to fault. Shadow levels are spot on with strong detailed images and solid blacks. There is not a hint of low level noise or compression nasties, and grain is just as scarce.

    Colours are rich and enhance the location shooting to great effect. The film's landscape and rural setting have been rendered with an artist's touch which gives the story an ethereal quality.

   There are no film or video artefacts to speak of.

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

Audio

   Highwaymen spoils us with not only a reference quality 5.1 Dolby Digital audio track, but a DTS one as well. Also included is a Dolby Digital 2.0 surround track for those without a surround sound system.

    Dialogue is rendered perfectly with no audio sync problems apparent whatsoever.

    The music by composer Mark Isham enhances the furious pace of the film and adds greatly to the film's many cliffhanger sequences.

    Surround channel use is exceptional. The directional soundfield is flawless and totally immerses the viewer in the on-screen proceedings. The DTS track is slightly richer than the Dolby Digital one, with a fuller, deeper resonance.

    The subwoofer is always in play and accompanies both the 5.1 and DTS tracks magnificently.

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

Extras

Main Menu Introduction

    Image grabs containing the vehicle pursuits open the menus.

Menu Animation & Audio

    The menus are animated with clips from the film.

Dolby Digital Trailer

    Standard Dolby Digital trailer.

Theatrical Trailer

    An anamorphic trailer for the feature.

R4 vs R1

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

    All versions of this DVD available are currently essentially the same.

Summary

    Highwaymen is a decent time waster that had the potential to be something special. Sadly, the concept proves a lot more interesting than the execution. The disc has a fabulous transfer with no added extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Greg Morfoot (if interested here is my bio)
Wednesday, December 08, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using Component output
DisplayLG 76cm Widescreen Flatron Television. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderSony HT-K215. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony HT-K215
Speakers fronts-paradigm titans, centre &rear Sony - radio parts subbie

Other Reviews
AllZone4DVD - ColinR

Comments (Add)
R1 is RSDL and has W/S & P/S - Gold Coast Guy (read my bio)