Sylvester Stallone stars as Jimmy Bobo, a New Orleans hitman who witnesses his partner in crime being killed by a rival mercenary. In order to bring the murderer down he has to form an unlikely alliance with a Washington DC cop, Taylor Kwon (played by Sung Kang) who also wants to avenge the death of his own partner. The two of them plot a deadly revenge…
Presented in a 2.35:1 1080p AVC encode the film looks as good as you would expect it too for a new title, the video is pretty much spot on. The overall print is very clean showcasing some fantastic definition. There is a little bit of grain, which is more prominent when viewing indoor shots and night time scenes, which adds a small touch of grittiness to the movie.
Daytime scenes, particularly indoors, seemed to have a slightly yellow haze to them, which I found to be very reminiscent to those movies buddy cop movies of the 80s, but still keeping that great detail. The night scenes again are superb with the city’s lit up skyline looking great on the screen. The black levels add great depth to the picture whether it’s inside or outside, which again is something you would expect from a new release and no detail is lost in the darker scenes. Colours were very good and the bright colours that we do get pop off the screen and look vivid showcasing how good the video looks.
The definition on the print is superb. The wrinkles and veins of Stallone really pop out on screen, and are really defined. The close up details on the actors faces again is spot on. Beads of sweat, or the cuts and bruises obtained by the cast are really prominent here making good use of the high definition.
No major moans here at all really and I only noticed a very slight amount of motion blur during fast car scenes, otherwise it was barely noticeable. A fine presentation that is hard to find any real faults with.
We’ve been provided with two different audio options. Up first is a standard Stereo 2.0 track, and then the very meaty DTS-HD MA 5.1 track. Both are English tracks and also included are English Hard of Hearing subtitles.
The DTS-HD MA track certainly packs a massive punch! The surround mix is excellent with every channel receiving a full workout, especially your sub! The sub gets a great pounding from all of the gun fire and fighting, it will shake your walls. Bullets fly from everywhere and immerses you into the film. The dialogue is crisp and clear, and is not lost in the mix at all. The levels seem great with nothing being too loud or too quiet, just be prepared for a bass heavy track which I found to suit the film very well.
The actual soundtrack to the movie compliments the video perfectly as it reminded me of the 80s action movies that I love to watch.
Now the majorly disappointing part of the review. The only extra on the disc is –
Bullet to the Head: Mayhem Inc – This clocks in at just under 10 minutes, and is a very brief behind the scenes look of the film. While it does add a little insight to the making of the movie, very little is touched upon and could’ve gone into much more insight into what went into making the film.
That’s it! No commentary, no deleted or extended scenes, no interviews with the cast or crew…….. not even a theatrical trailer! Very disappointing to see this as I would’ve loved to have had a commentary on this from Walter Hill and Stallone, as well as some good interviews with the cast and crew.
I unfortunately missed this at the cinema during it’s very limited short run. It was a film that I was very much looking forward too when I first read about Stallone being a part of it way back when it was first announced, so getting this review disc land on my door mat I was very excited to say the least.
I’m still trying to make up my mind as to what I think about the film. I really enjoyed it and it was nice and refreshing to see another violent action movie come out that was not toned down for the younger audience, that didn’t hold back on the violence, swearing and blood to then get the now standard ‘unrated cut on Blu-Ray’ rubbish that seems to be more of the norm. I didn’t know what quite to expect when I was waiting to see this. From the trailers I thought it would have had much more comedic elements to it, and would have been more of a cop buddy movie along the lines of Tango & Cash or 48 Hours maybe? I guess coming hot off the heels to Expendables 2 and having recently watched The Last Stand again, which while both are similar in action tone they are a bit more on the lighter side when it came to the comedic elements (especially The Last Stand) with both having some one liners that were laugh out loud, I was very surprised to find Bullet To The Head to be a much more serious film which to be honest I found did not work in it’s favour on my first viewing and certainly took me by surprise. I will need to re-watch this very soon and distance myself from the films I’ve mentioned previously and watch this on it’s own.
Having said that, I did enjoy it. Stallone was great as an aging hitman wanting to avenge the death of his partner and this movie shows the man can still pull off a great action film and I hope this will continue for a good few more years yet. Up in the role of the lead villain was Jason Momoa. Not being very familiar with his work it was awesome to see he was a mean son-of-a-bitch and played the role brilliantly. He came across very sinister, menacing and was very brutal in what he did. In a small supporting role was Christian Slater, which I’m always pleased to see. Whilst not a huge part, what screen time he does get he hams it up to the max playing a slimey underground lawyer working for the ‘baddies’. I felt however somewhat underwhelmed with co-star Sung Kang. I remember when this was first announced that Thomas Jane was lined up to play the role of the police officer working along side Stallone’s character only to be very disappointed when I heard that the role had been given to Kang. Having Thomas Jane in I felt could’ve been more of a new age Tango & Cash, and could’ve potentially built a great relationship between the two with some great banter. Stallone pulls of some good one-liners in the film, but when they’re directed towards Kang they just fell a little flat for me and got lost in the film. If this had been Thomas Jane, perhaps this might have been different?
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the film it was just different to what I was expecting overall.
As for the Blu-Ray, overall I’m impressed apart from a disappointing lack of bonus materials. The picture and sound are great, but with only one bonus feature it certainly feels as if you’ve been a little short changed. Don’t let this put you off though. The film is an absolute must for all Stallone and action fans out there, especially fans of the good old 80’s action movies, which I’m positive I will enjoy more and more on repeat viewings!