S E A R C H D V D B e a v e r
The Stunt Man [Blu-ray]
(Richard Rush, 1980)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Video: Severin Films
Region: FREE! (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 46,426,085,740 bytes
Feature Size: 22,720,155,648 bytes
Video Bitrate: 18.71 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: June 7th, 2011
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 2726 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2726 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
• Audio commentary with writer/director Richard Rush and stars Peter O'Toole, Steve Railsback, Barbara Hershey, Alex Rocco, Sharon Farrell, & Chuck Bail
•The Sinister Saga: The Making of The Stuntman (1:54:21 in 1080i)
•'The Maverick Career of Richard Rush (34:18 - in 1080P)
• Peter O'Toole Recounts The Stuntman (18:46 - in 1080P)
• Devil's Squadron: An interview with Steve Railsback and Alex Rocco (18:59 in 1080P)
• Barbra Hershey on Nina Franklin (14:23 in 1080P)
• The Stuntman at the New Beverley (17:18 in 1080P)
• 2 Deleted Scenes (Sandpile - 2:39, Police Station - 3:15 - both in 1080P)
• 3 Trailers (Teaser, Theatrical, Spanish)
Description: It defied all odds to become the most unexpected and acclaimed cult hit of the 80s, and it remains one of the most slyly subversive and thrillingly original action/comedy/drama motion pictures of all time. The legendary Peter O'Toole in his iconic Oscar® nominated performance stars as director Eli Cross, a deliciously megalomaniacal madman commanding a film-set circus where a paranoid young veteran (Steve Railsback) finds himself maybe replacing a dead stunt man, possibly falling for the beautiful leading lady (Barbara Hershey), and discovering that love, death and the mayhem of moviemaking can definitely be the wildest illusions of all. THE STUNT MAN now features a stunning HD transfer supervised by Oscar® nominated producer/director Richard Rush, plus new interviews and commentaries with Rush, Peter O'Toole, Steve Railsback and Alex Rocco, all in the ultimate edition of the classic that the Los Angeles Times calls as innovative today as Citizen Kane was in its time!
Richard Rush, the semi-legendary, often too-independent film director
who cut his teeth on such American-International drive-in quickies as
Hells Angels on Wheels (1967) and Psych-Out (1968), knows
what it feels like to never receive the attention from the American
public that you probably deserve, even when you successfully pull off a
shockingly original film.
This was director Richard Rush's dream project and it took him nine
years to get it on the screen. And, of course, it would! It's
multi-layered, original, funny and packed full of story and circumstance
that makes you think.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Anchor Bay came out with a stellar DVD edition (optimistically advertised as limited to 100,000 units) in 2001. And until now it was the definitive edition of the film on digital. Up next; The Stunt Man appears strong on Blu-ray from Severin. The 1080P image shows grit and grain looking thick, authentic and pleasing. Colors are naturally bright without manipulated vibrancy. This is a dual-layered disc with an acceptable bitrate for the feature transfer. The textures are notable, there isn't an abundance of depth but the print used is exceptionally clean. One rub on the older DVD was the inconsistency of the appearance. This hi-def edition seems to overcome that looking mostly strong throughout. This is the type of 'brave' film-like image we get from companies like Blue Underground. This Blu-ray probably looks like the theatrical representation of The Stunt Man and it advances beyond SD in a number of areas. Bravo Severin!
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
The DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 2726 kbps is not the most aggressive track but it has some moments. The mix is not crisply sending effects to the rears but it sounds like a suitable audio transfer nonetheless with segments of depth and no notable flaws. The score is by Dominic Frontiere who has don a lot of TV work. This supports the film without being intrusive - and through the lossless is clean and useful to the feel of the film. There are no subtitles offered and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.
Supplements seem endless - from the old Anchor Bay we have the same, fun audio commentary with writer/director Richard Rush and stars Peter O'Toole, Steve Railsback, Barbara Hershey, Alex Rocco, Sharon Farrell, & Chuck Bail. While mostly a group effort some participants were recorded separately. It is well worth indulging in for the niche fans of the film. Impressive is the almost 2-hour Richard Rush 2000 documentary The Sinister Saga: The Making of The Stuntman in 1080i. It is a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Stuntman and is loaded with information from the person who would know it best. It features interviews with stars O'Toole and Hershey, plus other members of the cast and crew There are also plenty of other video extras - all in HD. This includes a 1/2 piece on the director entitled 'The Maverick Career of Richard Rush', a 20-minute interview with Peter O'Toole and his recollections of The Stuntman, an appealing interview with Steve Railsback and Alex Rocco entitled Devil's Squadron, 15-minutes with Barbara Hershey on Nina Franklin, a segment on The Stuntman at the New Beverley theater, 2 Deleted Scenes (Sandpile - 2:39, Police Station - 3:15 - both in 1080P) and 3 Trailers (Teaser, Theatrical, Spanish). Wow.
May 27th, 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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