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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

 

Machete [Blu-ray]

 

(Robert Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis, 2010)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Troublemaker Studios

Video: 20th Century Fox

 

Disc:

Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:44:59.209 

Disc Size: 41,176,905,776 bytes

Feature Size: 34,229,581,824 bytes

Video Bitrate: 35.60 Mbps

Chapters: 28

Case: Standard Blu-ray case inside cardboard slipcase

Release date: January 4th, 2011

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 4248 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 4248 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio English 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio French 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), English, French, Spanish, none

 

Extras:

• Optional Audience Reaction Track
• 11 Deleted Scenes (10:58)

Theatrical Trailer (1:56)

Theatrical Trailer - Red Band -(2:00)

Digital Copy 'How To' (3:35)

Sneak Previews ('A Team', 'Street Kings 2', 'Twelve')

LIVE Extras
Disc 2: Digital Copy

 

Bitrate:

 

 

 

Description: From director Robert Rodriguez (Grindhouse, Sin City) comes an action-packed, cutting-edge serving of carnage asada...with killer deleted scenes that deliver more guns, more girls and more Machete action! Set up, double-crossed and left for dead, Machete (Danny Trejo) is an ass-kicking ex-Federale who lays waste to anything that gets in his path. As he takes on hitmen, vigilantes and a ruthless drug cartel, bullets fly, blades clash and the body count rises. Any way you slice it, vengeance has a new name--Machete.

 

 

The Film:

Machete,” co-directed by Mr. Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis from a script by Mr. Rodriguez and his cousin Álvaro Rodriguez, begins with a massacre involving a naked woman and many severed heads, and it keeps on slamming and banging with a gleeful, nose-thumbing insouciance.

Making fun of itself as it goes along, this live-action comic book, with roots in the pungent swamp of 1970s B movies, was foreshadowed in a fake trailer Mr. Rodriguez made for “Grindhouse,” his 2007 collaboration with Quentin Tarantino. The pace is swift, the tone playful, the screenplay peppered with one-liners. Whether mowed down by gunfire or dispatched by sheaves of blades, the bodies pile up in split-second blasts of carnage.

A central joke is the casting of Danny Trejo, the 66-year-old Mexican-American actor and veteran of several Rodriguez movies (including “Desperado” and “Spy Kids”) in his first lead role as the heroic title character. With his buffalo-nickel head; craggy, unsmiling face; stringy hair; and superhuman facility as a knife thrower, Mr. Trejo offers an amusing inside-out caricature of the Hollywood stereotype of a Latin American drug cartel’s sinister enforcer who speaks in growled sound bites (“Machete don’t text”).

Excerpt from Stephen Holden at the NY Times located HERE

Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Like the Grindhouse retro-mode flics Planet Terror and Death Proof the image quality of Machete is heavily based in a style that attempts, and succeeds, to import the feeling of watching a less-cared-for 70's film with similar genre-based attributes. It has intentional scratches/damage and some heavy grain but less than we found in the first two Grindhouse retros. Because of this it is hard to critique the Blu-ray presentation for flaws - but on a personal level - I liked the thick, heavier look - and believe the 1080P transfer does a solid job of replicating the filmmakers intentions. This is certainly not glossy or pristinely sharp. Skin tones don't seem overly warm and contrast exhibits healthy, rich black levels. Daylight scenes are more impressive in regards to detail and there is some noise apparent in the darker sequences but overall I was impressed with my presentation. This Blu-ray has a 'mood setting' textured feel and I could appreciate the style appearance aspect. It is perfectly suitable for the film.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Audio is impressive with a DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 4248 kbps that carries the many aggressive bytes of the film flawlessly. The track has strong depth and some notable range and the mix is, at times, awesome. It's a fun movie and fun soundtrack enveloping the home theater space with its abundances. The original score by John Debney and Carl Thiel had some campy riffs that supported the film perfectly. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

Extras are a little thin with only an optional 'Audience Reaction Track' which certainly exports a different feel when watching and there are about 10-minutes of 11 'Deleted Scenes' - that are kind of amusing in their own right. Fans of Machete will want to indulge. There are two trailers (the 'Red Band' one is very cool) a Digital Copy 'How To', 3 sneak previews ('A Team', 'Street Kings 2', and 'Twelve') and some untested LIVE Extras. Plus a second disc Digital Copy is included in the package.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Machete was great fun - I'd say almost as good as Planet Terror and almost as good as the trailer! Rodriguez is always so excellent with pace and although this may not be his best effort in that regard - the film carries its own kitschy charisma that is hard to deny. Having De Niro and Segal kind of detracted a bit from the mood - although all performances were perfectly in-step with the aura. The Blu-ray gives an excellent transfer for both audio and video - extras are a bit light but the film will surely entertain even the harshest of critics. Recommended! 

Gary Tooze

December 28th, 2010

 

 

 

About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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