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Touchback Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1:78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1 (DVD)
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Run Time: 121 Mins
  • Discs: 2 (1 x Blu-ray + 1 x DVD)
  • Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • List Price: $29.99

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1/5]

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]

Touchback tells the story of Scott Murphy (Brian Presley), high school football star turned farmer/family man. Given the unique opportunity to relive his glory days that took place during the state championship, only for them to be cut short with a permanent knee injury, Scott jumps at the chance to prove the naysayers wrong. Under the counsel of Coach Hand (Kurt Russell), Scott’s longtime mentor on and off the field, Scott must know figure out the exact path that will lead him to his destiny, his future, his fate. What results is yet another feel good sports film.

Akin to the similar feel good, man given a 2nd chance sports film Invincible, the real charm in Touchback is just that, the underdog story. It’s that simple aspect, the idea of the common person rising up and making something of themselves that defines us as the human race. No one can read this review, and pause to think for a moment, ‘nah, I wouldn’t want to rise up and do something that would leave my mark outside of my family.’ If so, well I hate to break it to you, you’re deceiving yourself. Really, in the end, touching that part that makes us human, is what really brings these kinds of movies, despite being kind of re-hashed, home in a manner that, at least for me, will never become dull.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Touchback arrives with a 1:78:1 framed, AVC/MPEG-4 encoded transfer, which for all purposes looks quite good. The film has a rather bright palette, meant to capture the Ohio landscape. Blues of the sky, golds of the uniforms, greens of the grass, and browns of the leaves dominate the transfer all. All of these examples, for the most part, pop off the screen with vibrant colors, and quality detail. Speaking of detail, beats of sweat on the players, and little fabrics on the players’ uniforms are simple examples of the all around fine transfer here. Flesh tones and contrast levels are accurate, with no real over saturation or pumped up contrast. All in all, I was pleased with what Anchor Bay put together here.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Featuring a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track, this provided mix for Touchback debuts with fairly good results. Immersing the sport genre qualities into this track, dialogue is well reproduced throughout via the center channel. Atmosphere is rather reserved to items like background dialogue or a car passing by/birds chirping. Once the games begin, the crushes, crunches, and slams of each player hitting one another, amps up the mix. It’s also the cheers and jeers of the crowd that makes us feel like we’re right in the middle of the action. All in all, this track suits the film well.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:1/5]

The included supplements are featured in High Definition:

  • Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Don Handfield and Producer/Actor Brian Presley
  • The Making of Touchback – This runs 5:48 and details some of the making of the film via cast/crew interviews.
  • DVD – A DVD of the film is included on a separate disc.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

While the concept of Touchback isn’t anything remotely new, I still found the film highly enjoyable. Equally solid is Anchor Bay’s Blu-ray for the movie, with a fine video transfer and an effective audio mix. I’m going to recommend this one as a strong rental for those who enjoy feel good films as much as I do.

Additional Screen Captures

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Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1/5]

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