10.9 C
New York
Saturday, November 28, 2020
Advertisement

Hoffa [Filmmakers Signature Series] Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit), French Dolby Digital 2.0, Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: ABC (Region-Free)
  • Rating: R
  • Run Time: 140 Mins.
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Digital Copies: N/A
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 18, 2012
  • List Price: $24.99

Overall
[Rating:4/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:4/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:3/5]

Biopics are tricky business. They can easily cross the line into canonization or outright fiction in a hurry, before one even realizes it. While Danny DeVito’s 1992 film Hoffa doesn’t quite make the mistake of turning in a work of outright fiction, despite his working in of the fictionalized Hoffa best friend Bobby Ciaro (played by DeVito himself), it does suffer from a bit of a lack of real vision. DeVito’s efforts at crafting a film epic in scope only succeeds on that part due to the fantastic larger than life performance as James Hofffa by Jack Nicholson and the sweeping musical score from composer David Newman. Otherwise, DeVito’s film that touches on all the key moments in the life of Hoffa from the depression era, including his battles with Roosevelt, his battles with Robert Kennedy, time in prison for corruption, his presidential pardon by Nixon and even the end of his life, reworked here into a new theory. But we don’t really get any insight into Hoffa the man that isn’t gleaned from the headlines. Hoffa, the film, is all big events – senate hearings, labor strikes, riots, mafia dealings – hardly a personal moment. So, the film also fails as canonization, because it doesn’t even bother to try to make Jimmy Hoffa into a saint, merely present everything we already know from the newspaper clippings and TV snippets. Some of the blame falls on David Mamet’s screenplay that paints in broad strokes, without defining Hoffa the man or digging down into the nitty gritty of why he wanted to become head of the Teamsters Union. Coming away from the film, the question still isn’t answered where his ultimate motivation came from. Fortunately, Nicholson towers over the scenes so highly that he infuses more power and depth into the entire film that may actually be there.

Video Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

Shot with anamorphic lenses on 35mm film using Panavision cameras, Hoffa comes to Blu-ray in an extraordinary AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encodement from Fox. There’s lots of fine detail here and textural information with a strong layer of grain that never becomes overwhelming, but does impart a very sharp, film-like appearance. There’s a strong sense of contrast with very inky blacks, nuanced shadows and bright lighter areas with no clipping. The image looks very natural and lacks any evident issues of DNR or edge enhancement.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

The provided DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit) spruces up the sound rather nicely as well, surrounding one in the sounds of riots, panning sound effects like trucks and through the room. Dialogue is punchy and clear and there are good dynamics and balance in the mix.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:4/5]

This Filmmakers Signature Series edition of Hoffa is packed with so many supplements one might mistake it for a Criterion release.

The supplements:

  • Commentary by director Danny DeVito
  • The Music of Hoffa: A Conversation with Danny DeVito & David Newman (1.78:1; 1080p/24; 00:10:31)
  • DeVito’s Speech at the 2011 Teamsters Convention in Las Vegas (1.78:1; 1080i/60; 00:15:16)
  • Excised Scenes (1.33:1; SD; 00:05:18)
  • Historical News Coverage of Hoffa (1.33:1; SD; 00:07:54)
  • Personal Anecdotes from Members of the Teamsters Union (1.33:1; SD; 00:06:36)
  • Special Shots (1.33:1; SD; 00:14:13)
  • DeVito’s 11 ¼ (1.33:1; SD; 00:11:02)
  • Siskel & Ebert (1.33:1; SD; 00:04:28)
  • Discussion After First Script Read-Through (1.33:1; SD; 00:03:34)
  • Theatrical Trailer (2.35:1; SD)
  • Production Gallery (1080p/24)
  • Shooting Script (1080p/24)
  • Booklet: We get a lengthy booklet with an essay on the film and bios on the actors.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4/5]

Jack Nicholson saves this film from being a completely ineffective biopic. Fortunately, due to his performance, a fantastic score from David Newman, and wonderfully cinematic Blu-ray, this Filmmakers Signature Series is a rather enjoyable release.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B008YAPRQK[/amazon-product]

Purchase Hoffa [Filmmakers Signature Series] on Blu-ray  at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

[amazon-product]B008YAPRQK[/amazon-product]

Purchase Hoffa [Filmmakers Signature Series] on Blu-ray  at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:4/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:4/5]



Advertisement

Related Articles

TheaterByte’s Holiday Gift Guide for 2020

Let’s focus on the donut here: BEST Home Entertainment Holiday EVER.

The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

A stunning 4K Ultra HD restoration of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy arrives.

My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent entry (or farewell?) for this beloved franchise with lots of action and great animation.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

301FansLike
0FollowersFollow
723FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

TheaterByte’s Holiday Gift Guide for 2020

Let’s focus on the donut here: BEST Home Entertainment Holiday EVER.

The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

A stunning 4K Ultra HD restoration of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy arrives.

My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent entry (or farewell?) for this beloved franchise with lots of action and great animation.

Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula (Blu-ray Review)

This is an uneven but still fun to watch sequel to the 2016 smash hit zombie/action movie lands on Blu-ray with a rollicking Atmos mix.

Chernobyl (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The account of the 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster in Ukraine, Soviet Union, and the subsequent health and political fallout is told in five gripping episodes.
%d bloggers like this: