Driving across country while relocating from their previous home, an unnamed man and his girlfriend, Betty, stop for food at a remote roadside diner deep in redneck country. A minor run-in with a member of a ruthless criminal gang based in the area leads to the couple being taken hostage and installed in an abandoned farmhouse. But all is not as it seems. When Betty is unexpectedly killed and a shocking discovery is made in the trunk of her car, the tables are dramatically turned when the true identity of her boyfriend is revealed. Soon, the gang members find themselves up against a smart and urbane, but equally ruthless and fearless killer, who adheres to a terrifying personal motto.
Presented in a 1080p AVC encode, the picture is of that high standard for what we would come to expect of such a recently made film. Predominantly set in night time surroundings, the black levels are very good and no details are lost. The day time scenes that are present, although give off a slightly hazy look, are again very good, but on a whole are quite bland which is more suiting to the film. Indoor scenes are darker again and as before, the detail level is kept to a high standard with nothing being lost. Close up facial detail reveals some very good definition on the actors faces. The real stand out was the blood. Lots and lots of blood is used in the film, and the red jumps out the screen being very prominent and stands out from the rest. The film does have a low level of grain throughout, but I found this suited the film. It certainly didn’t detract from my viewing experience. Overall a very good video presentation on this disc.
Just the one audio track on the disc, Dolby Digital True HD 5.1, and aside from a couple of small moans, it’s a good one.
The track is pounding from the start, with the sub kicking out some great bass from the off. All speakers are used to maximum effect with a great surround mix throughout the whole track. The front speakers pick up everything that’s going on, with the rears picking up the small details that bring the audio track together. Sound effects are very good, with the small amounts of gunfire that there is, along with the firings of a crossbow, bullets and arrows fly from everywhere, and this is replicated in the surround mix very well. The sub gets a great workout through all of the film and really pounds its way until the very end. The score to the film is delivered with great clarity and adds that bit of extra tension to the film when needed, and builds the atmosphere. My only real moan about the track is with regards to the dialogue. Whilst it is delivered clearly, I found it to be somewhat quieter than the rest of the track and is lost within the sound mix at times. I was frequently turning the volume up and down to compensate for this. Aside from this, a very good track.
Optional English subtitles are also included.
Only the one extra on the disc, which is a hearty 28 minute ‘Making Of’ featurette (presented in HD with DD2.0) entitled ‘From the Script to the Crypt’.
It’s a decent extra that has some brief interviews with Luke Evans and other cast members as well as the director Ryuhei Kitamura amongst others. A lot of time is spent looking at how the ‘body suit’ scene was done with the use of practical FX, as well as some of the other action scenes along with the copious amounts of blood used throughout the film.
Really a disappointing set of extras for this fun movie. As I usually mention, it would’ve been nice to have a commentary with director Ryuhei Kitamura, especially as he came over extremely enthusiastic to make the film. A commentary with him and star Luke Evans would’ve been nice also. Perhaps some deleted scenes, and some of the other usual extras could have made an appearance also. Having said that, it’s not as disappointing as it looks as the making of more than makes up for the distinct lack of extras.
I’m quite the fan of director Ryuhei Kitamura’s work (especially ‘Midnight Meat Train’ and his Japanese Zombie film ‘Versus’ – which I HIGHLY recommend!) so seeing his name attached to this naturally had me intrigued, add that to having Luke Evans in the starring role (who I thought played a great leading villain in the highly entertaining ‘Fast & Furious 6’) I was very excited at having the chance to watch ‘No One Lives’.
As the film started, I thought to myself “Here we go again, same old same old”, but I was pleasantly surprised to be wrong. I had this on my radar to watch, but made sure I kept away from any information about the film and didn’t watch any trailers for it. The film, for me, ended up being a fun 90 minute horror ‘slasher’ movie with a bit of a twist. It’s not often you find a movie where the bad guy kills the bad guys. I don’t want to say too much as I would hate to spoil it for anyone. Don’t get me wrong, ‘No One Lives’ is not a cinematic masterpiece and it won’t win any awards but it is great fun from the start with tonnes of blood and some inventive kills. Certainly one to keep the gore fans out there very happy.
I hope this film will give Ryuhei Kitamura more openings for the US market as he is a very good film maker who isn’t scared to push the boundaries of gore, and likewise with Luke Evans. He was great as the lead in this as the nameless anti-hero serial killer delivering some great one liners throughout the movie. The cast outside of Evans were nothing to shout home about and carry the story forward nicely. Evans steals the show throughout and was great to watch.
An impressive AV Blu-Ray with a decent making-of documentary makes this disc overall a good one. Some more extras would have been nice, but it’s not the end of the world. Sit back, and enjoy the blood!