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The Fighter [Blu-ray]
(David O. Russell, 2010)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Closest to the Hole Productions
Video: Paramount Pictures
Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 42,022,839,995 bytes
Feature Size: 31,278,262,272 bytes
Video Bitrate: 30.20 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: March 15th, 2011
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 3509 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3509 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps / DN -4dB
English (SDH), English, French, Spanish, none
• Commentary by Director David O. Russell
• Theatrical Trailer (2:32 in 1080P)
• Second disc DVD of the Feature Film
• 3rd disc Digital Copy
Description: Academy Award® Nominees Mark Wahlberg (The Departed), Christian Bale (The Dark Knight) and Amy Adams (Doubt) star in this “remarkable” film*. Based on a true story, two brothers, against all the odds, come together to train for a historic title bout that has the power to reunite their fractured family and give their hard-luck town what it's been waiting for: pride. Micky Ward (Wahlberg) is a struggling boxer long overshadowed by his older brother and trainer, Dicky (Bale), a local legend battling his own demons. Their explosive relationship threatens to take them both down - but the bond of blood may be their only chance for redemption. *Joe Morgenstern, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL.
Mark Wahlberg stars in this inspirational docudrama that explores the remarkable rise of Massachusetts-born, junior welterweight title winner 'Irish' Micky Ward. A determined pugilist whose career in the ring was shepherded by his loyal half-brother, Dicky (Christian Bale) -- a hard-living boxer-turned-trainer whose own career in the ring was nearly sent down for the count due to drugs and crime -- perennial underdog Irish Micky rebounded from a disheartening series of defeats to win both the WBU Intercontinental Lightweight title and the WBU Light Welterweight title thanks to a fierce combination of determination and hard work. David O. Russell (THREE KINGS) directs from a script by 8 MILE's Scott Silver and Paul Attanasio (THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM).
“The Fighter,” directed by David O. Russell and based on the true
story of the junior welterweight Micky Ward, is quick on its feet and
packs a mighty punch. With solid bodywork, clever feints and tremendous
heart, it scores at least a TKO, by which I mean both that it falls just
short of overpowering greatness — I can’t quite exclaim, “It’s a
knockout!” — and that the most impressive thing about it is technique.
'Gritty' and 'urban' seem to be two words very much back in vogue over
the San Pellegrino and sarnies in Hollywood’s pitch meetings of late.
Maybe it’s something to do with the slow-motion financial catastrophe,
but filmmakers seem to be looking to the blue-collar heartland for
The Town put Ben Affleck in the less salubrious end of Boston,
Russell Crowe found himself similarly hanging round a region of
Pittsburgh without a Starbucks in
The Next Three Days. And now Mark Wahlberg has found a
Massachusetts ghetto to punch his way out of.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Another strong Blu-ray transfer from Paramount. The image quality shows some rough-and-ready grit and heavy grain giving a nice grassroots texture to the presentation. Colors are surprisingly vibrant but there is still an earthy quality to the visuals that occasionally showcase some notable detail in close-ups. This is dual-layered with a strong bitrate but only modest depth. Grain is the leading attribute and it's nice to see this style hasn't evaporated in Hollywood for the glossy, plastic eye-candy look. Skin tones seem quite warm but contrast exhibits healthy black levels. So - The Fighter doesn't give a pristine look visually-speaking but as a representation of the original - this is probably as accurate as we are likely to ever get. This is how the film looks... and it works. Hopefully the click-able captures below will give you a decent idea of the 1080P quality.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
The audio is in the form of a DTS-HD Master 5.1 track at an abundant 3509 kbps. Keeping this a human experience - effects are not a cornerstone of the presentation but there is some separations and depth tucked in here and there to help establish scenes. Michael Brook's score provides important support - sounding dynamic or subtly underplayed - dependant on the scene. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
Supplements offer an informative commentary by helmsman David O. Russell where he covers some interesting tidbits of The Fighter's production and creation - worthwhile indulging for fans of the film. The main video extra is entitled The Warriors Code: Filming The Fighter and runs just shy of 1/2 hour - it has Micky and Dicky and is more 'real' experiences that those appreciative of the bio-pic pair will enjoy - plus there is the cast and crew giving input in short snapshots. There is also an 8.5 minute featurette called Keeping the Faith - more on Dicky's philosophy -and a whopping 16, short, deleted scenes running with an optional commentary for over a 1/4 of an hour. Last we get a theatrical trailer - like all the extras - it is in 1080P. The package includes a second disc DVD of the feature film and a third disc Digital Copy for use with your portable devices.
March 4th, 2011
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.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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