Gridiron Gang (2006)

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Released 5-Mar-2007

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Audio Commentary-Phil Joanou
Deleted Scenes-15 deleted scenes
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-The Rock Takes The Field
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-Profile Director Phil Joanou
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-Football Training
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2006
Running Time 120:06
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Phil Joanou
Studio
Distributor

Sony Pictures Home Entertain
Starring The Rock
Xzibit
L. Scott Caldwell
Leon Rippy
Kevin Dunn
Jade Yorker
David V. Thomas
Setu Taase
Mo
James Earl
Trever O'Brien
Brandon Smith
Jurnee Smollett
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI $34.95 Music Trevor Rabin


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 EX
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 EX
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes

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

Plot Synopsis

    Gridiron Gang breaks no new ground as an inspirational sports movie, but with good production values and a great performance by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson it gets the job done.

Based on actual events, the film follows L.A. County juvenile-corrections officer Sean Porter (The Rock), an ex-footballer determined to help recidivist juvenile offenders increase their mortality rate after being released from custody. Under the contemptuous scrutiny of his superiors, he forms a football team that slowly gives the inmates direction and begins the long road to rehabilitation.

The script which is almost an amalgam of every sports movie ever made has enough energy behind and before the camera to compensate. Director Phil Joanou, a former Spielberg protégé, brings an unusually honest and brutal menace to the story that doesn't shy from presenting the real danger of juvenile gang violence in America. Any stylistic accomplishments, however, would likely fail if it were not for the presence of The Rock, who is beginning to make a habit out of outclassing his material and fellow actors. His enthusiasm and belief in the story is what anchors the whole film. Not once did I find fault with his performance, in fact I doubt a more accomplished actor could have tackled the part with greater integrity. Hopefully someday soon he will find a project worthy of his talents. Until then, just enjoy what is one of the better sports films of the past couple of years.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The Gridiron Gang is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2:35:1 and is 16x9 enhanced for widescreen viewing

    I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of this transfer. There are no aliasing or edge enhancement anomalies tarnishing what is essentially a flawless transfer. Shadow Details are exceptional with strong blacks and no Low Level Noise problems.

    Colours are slightly muted to give the film a documentary feel, but remain natural with no image bleeding.

    The transfer is basically devoid of any Film or Video Artefacts

    This is a great looking transfer of a decent film.

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

Audio

   The transfer has been given two Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtracks in English and Spanish.

Dialogue is always clear, and with the exception of the occasional ADR change there are no lip sync problems.

The film's musical score is standard fare for inspirational true sports stories. It is never overly bombastic or intrusive, but neither is it memorable.

Surround channel usage is very well defined, with rear channels filled with directional effects and ambient noise. If only action films were this consistent with their audio presentations.

The subwoofer adds strong reverberation levels when needed.

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

Extras

Audio Commentary:

A very dull audio commentary by director Phil Joanou (Final Analysis) and writer Jeff Maguire (In the Line of Fire ) full of back slapping and tiresome compliments.

Deleted Scenes

Fifteen deleted and extended scenes (with optional commentary by Joanou) running about 23 minutes in total. After viewing the scenes it's easy to see why they were excised as there is nothing gained or lost in their omission.

Football Training

A very short 6 minute glimpse at the actors learning how to play real football.

Profile on Phil Joanou

A brief 4 minute interview about the director and his career.

The Rock Takes The Field

Another 4 minute piece about The Rock in this role and his football past.

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 title currently available appear the same.

Summary

    Gridiron Gang is a better than average rights of passage story with a great performance by The Rock. The extras are decent and the transfer is outstanding. A great little rental.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Greg Morfoot (if interested here is my bio)
Wednesday, April 04, 2007
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using Component output
DisplayLG 42" High Definition Plasma with built in High Definition Tuner. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 720p.
Audio DecoderSony HT-K215. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony HT-K215
Speakers fronts-paradigm titans, centre &rear Sony - radio parts subbie

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