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Mandrill Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: Spanish DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/16-bit), English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/16-bit)
  • Subtitles: English, English Titles and Text Only, English SDH
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: R
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Run time: 88 Mins.
  • Studio: Magnolia Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: February 28, 2012
  • List Price: $29.98

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Mandrill - Widescreen Subtitle AC3

Purchase Mandrill on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Mandrill

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Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

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:3.5/5]

From Magnolia Home Entertainment’s Magnet label comes writer/director Ernesto Díaz Espinoza’s film Mandrill. It’s a sexy, slick, kick-ass, and campy action film that is part Jason Bourne, part James Bond, and part grindhouse cinema. Without being too over-the-top in any respect, Mandrill manages to offer up a satisfying blend of martial arts, gunplay, and campy grindhouse set against the beauty of the South American backdrop.

The story follows the Chilean orphan Antonio Espinoza (Marko Zaror) who as a child witnessed his parents’ murder at the hands of a hitman known as Cyclops. Raised by his uncle, the young Antonio develops a fascination for the 70s action star John Colt and patterns his whole life on him, eventually growing up to become a top assassin and bounty hunter seeking revenge for his parents’ death. When he is finally able to hunt down The Cyclops, however, complications arise in The Cyclops’ sexy daughter Dominik Del Solar (Celine Reymond). How can he use her to get to her father when he is falling in love?

Video Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Mandrill was originally captured in HD and it arrives on Blu-ray in a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 encodement from Magnolia Home Entertainment. I can’t say it’s the best transfer of a high definition production I’ve ever seen, but it isn’t the worst either. There seems to be a lot of artistic license taken in the color palette and contrast settings in order to give the film a gritty, ethereal sort of look. As a result whites are often blown out and color reproduction isn’t quite natural. Take a look at some of the shots of the pools and you’ll see an almost oddly azure appearance and clipped whites where reflected light should be. Video noise is prominent at times as well. Other times, the image looks pretty clean and straightforward.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4/5]

The Spanish DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kz/16-bit) is sometimes a little too boomy with boxy sounding dialogue, but there are wide dynamics and gunfire is punchy. The surround channels aren’t used as effectively as I would have preferred them to be for a film like this, but panning across the front is nicely aggressive.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating2/5]

There’s nothing really compelling offered up in these standard definition extras.

The supplements:

  • Behind the Scenes (1.78:1; SD; 00:02:32)
  • Anatomy of a Fight Scene (1.78:1; SD):
    • Hermanos
    • Casino
    • Coloso
  • U.S. Trailer (2.35:1; 1080p/24)
  • BD-Live

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

Mandrill is definitely worth a look if only for the beautiful locales, sexy women, and insane martial arts moves. No, it probably won’t win an Oscar, but it’s a pleasant distraction.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B006A9XTT4[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Mandrill - Widescreen Subtitle AC3

Purchase Mandrill on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Mandrill

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

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