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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Albino Alligator [Blu-ray]

 

(Kevin Spacey, 1997)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Miramax

Video: Lions Gate

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:33:59.133

Disc Size: 22,251,648,743 bytes

Feature Size: 21,973,702,656 bytes

Video Bitrate: 21.99 Mbps

Chapters: 15

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: July 21st, 2015

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 4028 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 4028 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 / DN -4dB
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1713 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1713 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
DUB:

DTS-HD Master Audio Spanish 1020 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1020 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit)

 

Subtitles:

None

 

Extras:

None

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: Brothers Dova and Milo are a couple of small-time crooks in New Orleans. When a hold up goes terribly wrong, the brothers are pursued by federal agents who have mistaken them for major criminals. Desperate and in over their heads, Dove and Milo seek refuge in a basement bar and take five people hostage while they plan their next move!

 

 

The Film:

Actor Kevin Spacey made his directorial debut with this thriller. Dova (Matt Dillon), Milo (Gary Sinise), and Law (William Fichtner) are three small-time crooks on the run after a botched robbery of a New Orleans warehouse led to a car chase, causing the death of two cops. Needing a place to hide, with Milo seriously injured, they sneak into Dino's Last Chance Bar, a shot-and-a-beer joint located on a side street in a basement. Before long, the bar is surrounded by a squadron of Federal agents and SWAT officers. The three robbers are convinced that the cops are trying to flush them out, but it turns out that they aren't the only crooks in search of a cold beer at Dino's. Smart-suited Guy (Viggo Mortensen) is actually an international dealer in illegal arms that the cops were trailing when they stumbled across the robbery gone wrong. As police negotiator Browning (Joe Mantegna) tries to get the bad guys to come out peacefully, the bar's patrons -- pool shooting Danny (Skeet Ulrich), aging beauty Janet (Faye Dunaway), and boozehound Jack (John Spencer) -- beg for mercy as Dova hatches a scheme that involves killing Guy and all the patrons.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

 

Three fugitive New Orleans crims make a former speakeasy their bolthole, slowly realising there's no back exit. Dillon takes charge, since a collision en route has injured brother Sinise - and the trigger finger of tight-coiled Fichtner could leap at any moment. Hostess Dunaway tries to calm nerves, enigmatic quaffer Mortensen may know more than he's letting on, and teenager Ulrich looks doomed as the boys get rolling on their negotiating tactics. A regulation stand-off, but Spacey (in his directorial debut) makes intelligent use of the single location, and the performers take care of the rest. Dillon exudes befuddled authority as he gets in deeper than he'd really like, while mama-fixated Fichtner adds the pepper, and Dunaway skilfully plays up the kidnapper/victim relationship.

Excerpt from TimeOut located HERE

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

Albino Alligator arrives on Blu-ray from Lionsgate - a film notable as Kevin Spacey's directorial debut and for the strong cast.  The image quality supports isn't overwhelming but looks decent - surely advancing over SD (although I don't recall the film ever being on DVD although it apparently was released by Miramax). It's a film with  a lot of darkness - the action transpiring mostly over one night in a basement bar.  This is single-layered with some softness but colors look strong. No noise, decent contrast and it looks quite appealing in-motion in the 2.35:1 frame. There are no flaws - the video is clean and produces, a consistent HD presentation without a particularly exceptional 1080P transfer.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Audio is offered in multiple options defaulting to a strong DTS-HD Master 5,1 at 4028 kbps which sounds more than capable of handling the film's sound requirements including a score by Michael Brook (Into the Wild, The Fighter, An Inconvenient Truth), his first feature, as well as Spacey's. There are no subtitles offered on the region 'A' Blu-ray disc.

 

Extras :

No extras at all - a true bare-bones disc.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Albino Alligator harkens back to Film Noir and older crime drama's like The Desperate Hours and Key Largo. I'm sure the poster with Bogart in the back of the bar is no coincidence. It's a pretty decent crime-drama - great cast. Matt Dillon certainly has that 40's look about him.  The Lionsgate Blu-ray produces a decent 1080P presentation - but lacks value with no supplements or subtitles. Still, I am sure I will revisit this film again. I liked it, well enough. 

Gary Tooze

July 18th, 2015

 

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

 

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