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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Cohen and Tate [Blu-ray]

 

(Eric Red, 1988)

 

Also available on Region 'A' Blu-ray by Shout! Factory:

   

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Nelson Entertainment

Video: Arrow Video

 

Disc:

Region: 'B' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:26:03.199  

Disc Size: 36,155,928,009 bytes

Feature Size: 27,606,191,808 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.19 Mbps

Chapters: 7

Case: Transparent Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: December 5th, 2016

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
Commentary:

LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bitt

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), none

 

Extras:

Audio commentary by writer/director Eric Red
A Look Back at Cohen & Tate, a retrospective documentary featuring Eric Red, cinematographer Victor J. Kemper, editor Edward Abroms, and co-stars Kenneth McCabe and Harley Cross (20:43)
Eric Red's original storyboards for the opening farmhouse shoot-out (PDF in root of disc)
Original, uncut versions of the farmhouse (2:11) and oilfield shoot-outs (2:48)
Original theatrical trailer (2:27)
Extensive stills gallery
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys
FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Kim Newman

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: They were hired killers going up against the deadliest force of all... Each other.

When a pair of mismatched hitmen the grizzled, experienced Cohen (Roy Scheider, Jaws, The French Connection) and the impetuous, psychopathic Tate (Adam Baldwin, Full Metal Jacket, Firefly) are tasked with snatching a young boy living under witness protection and transporting him to their boss in Houston, it seems like a simple enough job. But the pair quickly find that they ve got more than they bargained for, with both the boy s unexpected resilience and their own incompatible personalities threatening to derail the entire mission. And, as the night wears on, their cross-state journey truly becomes the road trip from hell...

With Cohen & Tate, writer/director Eric Red (Body Parts, Bad Moon) constructs a truly nail-biting thriller recalling the atmosphere and motif of people driven to desperate lengths in order to survive also present in his script for the celebrated road horror classic The Hitcher. So buckle up for the road trip from hell as Cohen & Tate now shines like never before in this feature-packed, director-approved edition.

 

 

The Film:

Some of the most interesting films of the 1980s offer a heady mix of a B-movie ethos, a focus on unpleasant people in unpleasant situations, disturbing undercurrents, and haunting imagery. COHEN AND TATE is a noteworthy example of this tendency and a remarkably assured first film for writer-director Eric Red. COHEN AND TATE begins at a farm in Oklahoma, where nine-year-old Travis Knight (Harley Cross) and his family are hiding under FBI protection after Travis witnesses a mob hit. When Cohen (Roy Scheider) and Tate (Adam Baldwin) show up, the two hit men kill the boy's family and kidnap the child, planning to take him to their mob bosses in Houston. The film turns into a very grim variation on O. Henry's "The Ransom of Red Chief" as the boy sizes up the tense group dynamics and begins setting the men against each other.

COHEN AND TATE works because of its unapologetic B-movie style, including its underlying themes. The performances are terrific. Although more than half the film's action takes place in a car, COHEN AND TATE is never boring, thanks to Red's crackling dialogue and interesting visual style. COHEN AND TATE is a suspenseful, funny, and insightful thriller that should please people with a taste for something different and subversive.

Excerpt from TV Guide located HERE

 

Eric Red, scriptwriter of The Hitcher, turns his hand to writing and directing for this suspenseful low-budget thriller. Both films revolve around the theme of innocent captured by raving sadist. Travis (Cross) is a nine-year-old boy who has witnessed an underworld killing. Cohen (Scheider) and Tate (Baldwin) are professional killers who must kidnap the boy and transport him from Oklahoma to their bosses in Houston. The nightmarish journey takes place at night, with the jaded taciturn Cohen increasingly angered by the lunatic ramblings of his violent sidekick. Added to this is their young hostage, who sets the men up against each other, and concocts various escape plans. Red does wonders with a simple budget and scenario; the sparsity of props and dialogue enhances the often brutal tension, while balance is struck with hefty doses of black humour. Cohen wears a hearing aid and dreams of retirement, while Tate chews matchsticks and 'has shit for brains': unlikely villains made credible by the context and Scheider's low-key performance.

Excerpt from Timeout located HERE

 

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

Cohen and Tate gets a 1080P transfer to Blu-ray from Arrow Films in the UK.  It is dual-layered with a max'ed-out bitrate for the 1.5 hour feature. Much of the film is ion a car at night but there is no noise in those, many, darker sequences. There is a textured, consistent presentation in the original 1.85:1 frame.  It has no major flaws that I could ascertain. This Blu-ray looks supportive in-motion providing a decent HD presentation.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Arrow utilize a linear PCM 2,0 channel track at 2304 kbps. It helps export the film's abundant aggressive effects (guns, cars, crashes etc.) with notable depth. The, occasionally intense, score is by Bill Conti (F/X, Rocky, Harry and Tonto, The Right Stuff) and adds to film's 'thriller genre' attributes and it certainly benefits from the lossless transfer. There are optional English subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'B'-locked.

 

Extras :

Arrow include the older audio commentary by writer/director Eric Red and a 20-minute retrospective documentary featuring Eric Red, cinematographer Victor J. Kemper, editor Edward Abroms, and co-stars Kenneth McCabe and Harley Cross entitled A Look Back at Cohen & Tate. Those keen can access Eric Red's original storyboards for the opening farmhouse shoot-out via a PDF in root of disc. There are also the short original, uncut versions of the farmhouse (2:11) and oilfield shoot-outs (2:48) sequences as well as an original theatrical trailer and stills gallery. The package has a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Graham Humphreys and for the first pressing ONLY you get a collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Kim Newman.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Cohen and Tate was better than I was expecting. I'll always watch a thriller with Roy Scheider. Adam Baldwin keeps the tone very tense and it's quite an exciting ride. Yeah - I would watch it again - despite any imperfections. The Arrow Blu-ray is at their usual competent level - great a/v, good supplements and cool cover. Enjoy. 

Gary Tooze

November 28th, 2016

Also available on Region 'A' Blu-ray by Shout! Factory:

   


 

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
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Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

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Gary W. Tooze

 

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