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Hostage (2005) 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
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: R
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: Lionsgate/Miramax
  • Blu-ray Release Date: August 23, 2011
  • List Price: $14.99

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BestBuy.com:
Hostage - Widescreen Dubbed Subtitle AC3

Purchase Hostage on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Hostage

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:4/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG  thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:3.5/5]

Bruce Willis treads very familiar terrain in this action/thriller from director Florent Siri (L’ennemi intime; video game Splinter Cell). The actor is once again in a character he plays best, he’s a cop having to diffuse a hostage situation while also saving his own family. There aren’t as many explosions and car chases that Die Hard fans may be looking for, but the suspense, twists, and gunfire make up for some of that.

Willis plays Jeff Talley, a former L.A. hostage negotiator who has moved to a quiet, affluent suburb and taken on the job as their Chief of Police after a hostage negotiation back in L.A. went horribly wrong. Soon, however, a call to investigate a tripped silent arm turns into a crisis when three thugs take a wealthy man and his two children hostage in his mansion, shooting and killing a police officer in the process. Talley finds himself drawn into just the sort of situation he was hoping to avoid. Making the matter even more complicated is that this man, Walter Smith (Kevin Pollack), seems to have criminal connections and information in his house, now under a security lock down, that some very dangerous people want. They’re willing to kidnap and perhaps kill Talley’s wife and daughter to get it. It’s left up to Talley to work both sides to save the hostages in the house and his own family, by recovering the data.

Hostage isn’t exactly Oscar material; in fact, Hostage isn’t even the best action film we’ve seen Willis in throughout his career, but he plays this kind of character well and Siri has a good eye for this sort of action.

Video Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

This is a high quality transfer from Miramax and certainly near, or at, the top of the recent crop of releases from the studio. The relatively recent vintage of the film and a solid AVC/MPEG-4 transfer have converged to create inky blacks, sharp foregrounds, extended shadow delineation, and a thin layer of grain.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack is pretty engaging. The surrounds give you helicopters flying over, some bullets whizzing by, and cars racing. Dialogue is clear and there’s a good bit of heft to the sound as well.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2.5/5]

The supplements outside of the audio commentary from Siri are made up mostly of deleted and extended scenes. There’s also one brief behind-the-scenes featurette that feels rather promotional.

The supplements provided with this release are:

  • Audio Commentary with Director
  • Taking Hostage Behind the Scenes (1.33:1; 480i/60; 00:12:40)
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Director Florent Siri (1.33:1; 480i/60):
    • Jacking Cars
    • Meet Flores
    • Flores Checks Out the Trucks
    • Mars Won’t Go
    • Tommy Won’t Leave the House Without His Sister
    • Mars Takes Out FBI Team #1
  • Extended Scenes with Optional Commentary by Director Florent Siri (1.33:1; 480i/60):
    • Gun in Mouth
    • Mars Immolates Himself

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4/5]

A solid effort, but not the best we’ve seen Willis in, the action/ thriller Hostage is still a good way to waste a bit of time and certainly is at least a no brainer as a rental.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B0055OTJNA[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Hostage - Widescreen Dubbed Subtitle AC3

Purchase Hostage on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Hostage

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:4/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

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