The Rebel (2007)
|Year Of Production||2007|
|RSDL / Flipper||Dual Layered||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Truc 'Charlie' Nguyen|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
Thanh Van Ngo
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
Vietnamese Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Vietnamese Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English (Burned In)||Smoking||No|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Vietnamese produced films are pretty few and far between, certainly on DVDs released here in Australia. This one was released as part of Roadshow's Dragon Dynasty series a couple of years ago and had completely flown under my radar until now. I have read that this was the biggest budget film made in Vietnam to that point ($3 million) and it is certainly a good quality product both as a martial arts action film and as a story in itself. The film is called The Rebel in English and was produced by Johnny Tri Nguyen who also stars as Cuong and directed the action scenes (which are very impressive indeed).
The story is set in a similar time to Indochine, 1920s Vietnam, and has quite similar themes in many ways. Cuong is a native Vietnamese but also works for the Colonial power as a secret policeman, hunting down rebels against the French regime. During an assassination attempt against a French official, Cuong and his boss, the seemingly indestructible Sy (Dustin Tri Nguyen), capture a young rebel woman, Thuy (Ngo Thanh Van). They realise that she is the daughter of the rebel leader and torture her trying to get her to tell them where her father is hiding. Cuong has become disillusioned with the regime and helps Thuy to escape and they join forces to escape from Cuong's colleagues and join up with Thuy's father.
Despite having somewhat low production values and a script which could have used some more work to add clarity, there is a lot to like about this film, especially for martial arts buffs. It is full of well staged, easy to follow and very physical action scenes, featuring all three of the lead actors and many extras. Those who detest wire work will love the action scenes on show here. As well as being a quality action film, it is also quite a good melodrama about the situation in Vietnam under the French. The three leads show good acting chops as well as martial arts skills.
I enjoyed this film and would recommend it for martial arts fans looking for something a little different.
The video quality is good. The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is the original aspect ratio or close to it.
The picture was quite clear and sharp but was affected by some MPEG artefacts (such as at 84:56) and quite grainy backgrounds in some scenes (e.g., 46:20).The shadow detail was good. The colour is a bit dull and lifeless possibly as a result of a sepia filter and naturalistic lighting being used. There were no other artefacts.
There are subtitles in English which were clear and easy to read but burned into the picture.
The layer change causes a very minor pause.
The audio quality is very good. This disc contains a Vietnamese and French Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s and a 2.0 track at 224 Kb/s.
Dialogue seemed clear and easy to hear but my Vietnamese is a bit rusty. The music by Christopher Wong is very suitable to the material adding appropriate tension and melodrama. The surround speakers were well used for action scenes, atmosphere and music. The subwoofer was used mostly for music support plus some thumps and thuds.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu was still, silent and easy to use.
A long behind the scenes featurette showing the filming of various scenes and special effects. The video quality is poor and the presentation is unimpressive.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 release of this film is a two disc set with significantly more extras including a commentary, deleted scenes are more. Region 1 is definitely the go.
The video quality is good. The audio quality is very good. The extra is OK.
|DVD||SONY BDP-S760 Blu-ray, using HDMI output|
|Display||LG Scarlet 42LG61YD 106cm Full HD LCD. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||Built into BD player. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer|