Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

H D - S E N S E I

A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Southern Comfort [Blu-ray]

 

(Walter Hill, 1981)

 

   

Second Sight in the UK came out with this on a region 'B' Blu-ray in 2012:

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Cinema Group

Video: Shout! Factory

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:45:54.389 

Disc Size: 37,710,014,935 bytes

Feature Size: 30,633,658,368 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.51 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: July 8th, 2014

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 2081 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2081 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), none

 

Extras:

• Documentary (27:12)

Trailer (2:08)

Stills Gallery (5:39)

DVD included

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: From the director of The Warriors and 48 Hrs. comes this gut-wrenching tale of backwoods terror that ’draws you into the eerily beautiful Louisiana bayou...then has you running for your life’ (Pauline Kael, New Yorker)! Keith Carradine (The Duellists) and Powers Boothe (Sin City, Deadwood) lead a ’first-rate ensemble’ (Newsweek) in this ’exciting, arresting and tautly told suspenser’ (Variety).

Nine National Guardsmen enter the Louisiana swamp for routine training, but an error in judgment by one of the team incites an all-out war with some angry Cajuns who know the territory like the backs of their hands. Armed with a precious few bullets, and confused by the dimly lit, moss-covered maze into which they’ve stumbled, the guardsmen know they’ll be picked off one by one, until they come up with a solution using the only resources they have left...their wits.

 

 

The Film:

A handful of part time soldiers unwittingly turn a field exercise into a miniature war in this offbeat action drama from writer and director Walter Hill. A group of National Guard reservists are sent to Louisiana on a chilly weekend for war games exercises. None of these weekend warriors seem especially happy to be there, especially laid-back Spencer (Keith Carradine), tightly-wound macho man Reece (Fred Ward) and transplanted Texan Hardin (Powers Booth). While making their way through swamp country, the reservists discover their maps are out of date and they've become lost. Rather than march back to camp and start over, they decide to "borrow" several canoes they've found by the banks of the bayou, which should put them back on track. When a Cajun local catches the soldiers stealing his canoes, Stuckey (Lewis Smith) fires a few rounds in his direction; for the purposes of their exercises, the Guardsmen have been given blank shells, so Stuckey imagines this is a harmless way to scare the man off. However, the Cajun soon returns fire -- with real bullets. After Poole (Peter Coyote) is killed by a shotgun blast, the Guardsmen find themselves lost in a place they do not understand, surrounded by angry men determined to drive the unwelcome visitors off their land at all costs. A taut and atmospheric action film which is also serves as an intelligent and evocative metaphor for America's role in the Vietnam war, Southern Comfort also features an excellent score by guitarist (and frequent Walter Hill collaborator) Ry Cooder.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

Transposing The Warriors from Brooklyn to the bayous of Louisiana, this reactivates the old genre of the platoon movie, echoes to the distant trumpets of Vietnam, unconcernedly risks pigeonholing as Deliverance II, and generally sets up more reverberations from its pared-down premise than do any number of scattershot epics. Nine part-time National Guardsmen embark on weekend training manoeuvres in the southern swamplands, expecting only a long, wet walk towards a whorehouse - until the gunplay abruptly stops being kids' stuff, and eight virgin soldiers suddenly face long odds on survival, lost and leaderless in a guerrilla war of attrition against the native Cajuns. Hill's characters exercise their own deadly group dynamics in the firing line, while Ry Cooder's score, an eerily-shot alien landscape, and a lifestyle familiar mainly from Les Blank documentaries point up the internal cultural divide. Straight-line conflicts, low-light visuals: the film's basics, its strengths, and its critical Achilles' heel are all those of the classic American male action movie.

Excerpt from Timeout Film Guide located HERE

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

Southern Comfort looks solid on Blu-ray from Shout! Factory.  The image quality supports the frequent grittiness of the style. This is dual-layered with a max'ed out bitrate. Textures are supported and there is no undue noise in the many darker scenes. Certain scenes can look quite thick and rich. Contrast is adeptly layered supporting the cinematography style and there are instances of depth. There are no flaws - the video is clean and produces, what appears to be, an authentic visual presentation although adapted to 1.78:1 from 1.85.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Audio is an authentic DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel at 2081 kbps. There are plenty of effects - some aggressive and the lossless track handles and exports with potent depth. The score is by, frequent Walter Hill collaborator, Ry Cooder (Paris Texas, Streets of Fire, The Long Riders). It captures some of the creepy desolation of the Bayou - and later the Cajun influences along with Dewey Balfa's "Parlez-nous Boire evoking zydeco. There are optional English subtitles on the region 'A' Blu-ray disc.

 

Extras :

There are some extras. Included is a new-ish, 27-minute documentary with many of the cast (Keith Carradine, Powers Boothe etc.), and director Walter Hill (Skyping from Thailand). They provide snippets of reminiscences to the backdrop of scenes from the film. There is also a trailer and stills gallery, plus being 'Dual-format' a DVD of the feature (including supplements) is in the case.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
It's easy to get in the mood for a Walter Hill film. I loved Hard Times (so why haven't you reviewed the Twilight Time Blu-ray?), The Driver and Streets of Fire. His films are macho, with an edge and he doesn't over-indulge in the violence exploitive-ly. The Shout! Factory Blu-ray produces a fine presentation - worthy of an intriguing 'male combative' night in the Home Theater. Recommended! 

Gary Tooze

July 4th, 2014

   

Second Sight in the UK came out with this on a region 'B' Blu-ray in 2012:

 

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 5000 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

 

       HIGH DEFINITION DVD STORE     ALL OUR NEW FORMAT DVD REVIEWS

 

 




 

Hit Counter

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

 CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!