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Wolf Lake [Blu-ray]
(Burt Kennedy, 1980)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Melvin Simon Productions
Video: Kino Lorber
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 24,413,634,845 bytes
Feature Size: 19,162,945,536 bytes
Video Bitrate: 24.85 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: October 25th, 2016
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1557 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1557 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
• Interview with actors Jerry Harden and Richard Herd (10:17)
Description:Screen legend Rod Steiger (In the Heat of the Night) heads a powerful cast in this violent and bloody clash between a WWII veteran and Vietnam army deserter. Steiger plays Charlie, an ex-Marine who lost his only son in the Vietnam War. He and his friends George (Richard Herd, Trancers), Sweeney (Paul Mantee, Framed) and Wilbur (Jerry Hardin, Cujo) fly to a remote Canadian hunting lodge for their annual outing. There they meet the lodge s new caretaker (David Huffman, Firefox) and his beautiful girlfriend (Robin Mattson, General Hospital). The tension mounts and the hatred slowly builds when Charlie finds out the new caretaker is a deserter. The two men clash as Charlie and his buddies start terrorizing the young couple... playing a sick game of survival. But when David is pushed too far, the hunters become the hunted and surviving the night at Wolf Lake becomes a challenge to all. Written and directed by western legend Burt Kennedy (Support Your Local Sheriff!, Young Billy Young).
Charlie is a bitter war veteran. He and three of his friends go to Wolf Lake for their annual weekend retreat of duck hunting, poker and hard drinking. This year their usual contact person is not there, but instead they find a young caretaker named David and his attractive girlfriend. Charlie is deeply offended when he learns that David is a Vietnam war deserter and fugitive, because his son was lost in that conflict. So Charlie taunts David, and after a wild party with too much drinking, things take a violent and tragic turn at the lake.
‘Wolf Lake’ is a barely released ultra-rare post-Vietnam War backwoods survival thriller incorporating home invasion elements. It is often mistaken as a Canadian Tax shelter production due to the setting of the lakes in Northwest Canada but in fact was shot in Mexico with an American low budget of an estimated $970,000 by an all-American cast and crew. It is written and directed by the late Burt Kennedy best known in Hollywood for his screenwriting and directing work in the western genre from the mid-‘50s through to the mid-‘70s. It stars the late great Rod Steiger in a powerhouse performance and the also departed character actor the talented David Huffman who holds his own in a solid turn.Excerpt from CinematicShocks located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The single-layered Kino Lorber Blu-ray of Wolf Lake looks quite strong in 1080P. The landscape and cottage wilderness look impressive with quite a few shots reflecting the light from the lake onto character's faces. Colors appear real and the detail is crystal clear - although some of the later scenes are very dark. I noticed no noise - and there is plenty of depth. This Blu-ray gave me a very watchable viewing in regards to the HD video 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 1557 kbps (16-bit) in the original English language. There are effects in the film - opening plane, plenty of gunshots and fire. They don't sound particularly deep or ominous. The score is by Ken Thorne (The Bed Sitting Room, The Outsider) and helps establish somewhat of a mood that isn't really supported by the dialogue. There are no subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
Kino add interview with actors Jerry Harden and Richard Herd and another with producer Lance Hool. There are also a handful of trailers; Avenging Force, Malone, Assassination, Steele Justice, and Hero and the Terror.
October 10th, 2016
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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