RED (2010)

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Released 29-Mar-2011

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Comedy Menu Animation & Audio
Audio Commentary
Trivia
Deleted Scenes
Interviews-Cast & Crew
Featurette-CIA Exposed
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2010
Running Time 106:32
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Robert Schwentke
Studio
Distributor
Icon Entertainment Starring Bruce Willis
Mary-Louise Parker
John Malkovich
Helen Mirren
Karl Urban
Morgan Freeman
Case ?
RPI $39.95 Music Christophe Beck


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.40:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.40:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired
English Information
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

†††† This light and wacky action film has already been reviewed on our site in itís Blu-ray edition. There is certainly fun to be had with this film which has very little seriousness to it at all. It is completely tongue-in-cheek and despite having well shot and interesting action scenes, never takes itself seriously. The cast is chock full of big name stars all seemingly having a ball. The plot is wafer thin but the film doesn't outstay its welcome and helps to pass an amiable 100 minutes or so. It was very successful at the box office and as you would expect a sequel is in the works. RED stands for Retired Extremely Dangerous.

†††† My colleague, TrevorD, give a good summation of the plot in the review linked above, so I won't retell it. The casting and their obvious relish at playing the characters is the main draw here especially Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich and Brian Cox as the retired spies who just can't give the life away. Other casting highlights include 94 year old Ernest Borgnine as Henry, the CIA record keeper, Karl Urban, playing it tough as a current CIA assassin, Mary Louise Parker, as Willis' feisty love interest, Sarah and Richard Dreyfuss, who hasn't been in many big films lately.

†††† The film was directed by German born Robert Schwentke, who is starting to hit the big time after Flightplan in 2005 and The Time Traveller's Wife in 2009. There are some quite impressive action sequences with built in humour. I was particularly struck by a scene where Bruce Willis steps out of a moving car and calmly shoots at Karl Urban chasing him.

†††† A warning about this disc is that it does feature an unskippable anti-piracy trailer.

†††† All in all, this is a fun and wacky film with some quality action sequences and a wonderful cast, just don't expect any great depth in the plot.

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Transfer Quality

Video

†††† The video quality is very good. The feature is presented in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio which is the original aspect ratio.

†††† The picture was quite clear and sharp but was affected by some mild MPEG artefacts such as at 39:15 and 70:18 and some blurring due to interlacing during fast motion. The shadow detail was very good. The colour is excellent showing off the variety of locations on show. There were no other artefacts.

†††† There are subtitles in English for the Hearing Impaired which were clear and easy to read.

†††† There is no obvious layer change during playback.

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

Audio

†††† The audio quality is very good, close to excellent.

†††† This disc contains an English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s. Dialogue was mostly clear and easy to hear but lacked clarity at times. The music by Christophe Beck is cool and funky, perfectly suited to the style of the film. The surround speakers were in constant use for gunshots, surround effects, music and lots of atmosphere. The subwoofer was used for music support, explosions, gunfire and lots of action effects.

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

Extras

Menu

†††† The menu included an introduction, motion and music.

Easter Egg - RED Vfx (10:20)

†††† An Easter Egg is available on this disc if you (SPOILER ALERT: highlight with mouse to read) press left from the main menu item on the special features menu. This is a ten minute featurette about the visual effects in the film and how they were done.

Audio Commentary - Robert Baer Former CIA Operative

†††† This is an interesting and different commentary by the technical consultant on the film who was a CIA agent. He talks about how the film compares to the reality of the CIA, how agents approach life after the CIA and a variety of anecdotes about his time in the CIA. Very interesting listen.

Trivia Track

†††† This is a subtitles stream which adds trivia to the screen during the playback of the film. It is very trivial stuff indeed, mostly random pieces of information about things onscreen like a book. Generally these are not actually linked to the plot although there is an ongoing cost of damage done counter.

Deleted & Extended Scenes (8:22)

†††† Mostly minor additions or extra exposition.

Cast Insights (29:15)

†††† Lots of EPK style interview snippets about lots of different topics including working with Bruce, the director, the cast, characters, action & locations. Not bad but probably far too much for anyone except the most hardy viewer.

CIA Exposed (5:56)

†††† Short documentary style snippets about the history of the CIA including LSD experiments, listening devices, the cold war, Guatemala. Interesting but too short.

R4 vs R1

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

††† The various DVD editions of this film globally seem to be quite similar but I am struggling to find any detailed information about them to be absolutely sure..

Summary

†††† A fun, tongue-in-cheek action film with a great cast but a wafer thin plot. The video quality is very good. The audio quality is very good, bordering on excellent. The extras are very good.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Saturday, April 30, 2011
Review Equipment
DVDSONY BDP-S760 Blu-ray, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 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 DecoderBuilt into BD player. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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