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The Destructors aka "The Marseille Contract" [Blu-ray]
(Robert Parrish, 1974)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Kettledrum Films
Video: Kino Lorber
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 19,516,001,437 bytes
Feature Size: 18,713,001,984 bytes
Video Bitrate: 24.34 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: September 22nd, 2015
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1635 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1635 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
• The Destructors trailer (2:51) / Billion Dollar Brain trailer (2:44)
Description:Newly Re-mastered in HD! Screen legends Michael Caine (Get Carter), Anthony Quinn (Zorba the Greek) and James Mason (Odd Man Out) co-star in this action-packed thriller set in the City of Light. This crime drama chronicles the attempts of a U.S. drug agent (Quinn) to stop a major drug-lord (Mason). Though the agent realizes his three predecessors have all been murdered, and that the French government doesn't necessarily approve of the Yank's harassment of a French citizen, he is determined to succeed and when Inspector Briac (Maurice Ronet, Purple Noon), a Parisian cop quietly suggests that maybe he should hire a professional assassin to snuff the drug lord... he hesitantly agrees. The hit man (Caine) turns out to be one of Quinn's old war buddies and agrees to the take the very dangerous and almost impossible mission. Cult director, Robert Parrish (Cry Danger) directed this exciting action film featuring another top-notch score by the great Roy Budd (Get Carter). Co-starring Marcel Bozzuffi (The French Connection).
Set in the City of Light, this crime melodrama chronicles the attempts of a US drug agent to stop a major drug-lord. Though the agent realizes his three predecessors have been assassinated, and that the French government doesn't necessarily approve of the Yank's harassment of a French citizen, he is determined to succeed. Then a Parisian cop quietly suggests that Anthony Quinn himself hire an assassin to kill the drug lord. He thinks about it long and hard, before agreeing to it. Later he is shocked to learn that the assassin is an old war buddy. The hit man then works overtime to cozy up to the criminal and earn his trust. While he is doing that, the agent learns that events have changed and he must capture the drug lord alive. Unfortunately, he must first find a way to call off the professional killer before it is too late.
"The Destructors," once reportedly titled "The Marseilles
Connection," involves Anthony Quinn, as the harried American
narcotics chief in Paris, in a variety of murderous machinations to
eliminate James Mason, as the Marseilles kingpin of the international
dope traffic. Mr. Mason, it turns out in a highly convoluted plot, has
knocked off our hero's best agents, thus driving him to Maurice Ronet,
as a seemingly helpful Parisian police inspector, and Michael Caine, as
a professional hit man, womanizer and old friend, and others, to do the
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The Kino Lorber Blu-ray of The Destructors has some production-related softness but it is consistent. It is single-layered with a supportive bitrate. It is not the most vibrant image looking a shade dull but detail in the many close-ups is pleasing. I imagine this is a decent representation of the source. It can look quite flat. The source is clean, but perhaps a bit faded. This Blu-ray gave me a watchable, but unremarkable, viewing in regards to the picture quality.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Kino Lorber use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at 1635 kbpsin the original English language. There are plenty of effects in the film - cars, guns etc. and they come through reasonably but with a pinch of punch. There is some depth and Roy Budd's (Get Carter, The Carey Treatment, The Wild Geese) score that moves seamlessly from passive to aggressive moments. Those attuned may also catch Thelonious Monk's 'Round Midnight in the film. It all sounds fine with clear consistent dialogue. There are no subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
Only a couple of trailers - one for the film and one for Billion Dollar Brain.
September 15th, 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.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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