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Warrior 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 7.1, English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, Dolby Digital 2.0
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: R
  • Run Time: 140 Mins
  • Discs: 2 (1 x Blu-ray + 1 x DVD + Digital Copy)
  • Studio: Lionsgate
  • Blu-ray Release Date: December 20th, 2011
  • List Price: $39.99

[amazon-product]B0034G4P9E[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Warrior (2011) - Widescreen Subtitle AC3 Dolby

Purchase Warrior on Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

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

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:4.5/5]

Warrior tells the story of two estranged brothers, Brendan (Joel Edgerton) and Tommy (Tom Hardy), who enter a mixed martial arts tournament for different reasons. For Tommy, a former U.S. Marine, hopes to win in order to give the money to the family of a fallen soldier. Brendan, a former UFC fighter turned high school teacher, enters in the hopes of gaining some money to pay off his mortgage as well as support his wife and two daughters. The two have had a rough past, mostly due to their alcoholic father Paddy (Nick Nolte),  but their problems with each other  will ultimately be settled in the middle of the ring. The resulting film is much, much more than a typical ‘fighting’ film but rather one that has real emotion, real power all highlighted by three truly excellent performances from Edgerton, Hardy, and Nolte.

Right off the bat, I was reminded of last year’s equally great boxer film The Fighter. Like that film, the real power of Warrior comes not only from the story, but the actors portraying them. Of particular excellence is that of Nick Nolte. His performance is raw, stunning and truly moving at times. He not only battles inner demons from his abusive, alcoholic past, but also the fact that due to said alcohol, he pretty much abandoned his two sons. While he does agree to help train Tommy, it becomes evident that neither he nor Brendan want anything to do with him. Paddy struggles with this, turning to the Holy Lord for answers.

These topics are covered and displayed by Nolte in the kind of performance that will be remembered come February when they’re handing out statues for Best Supporting Actor. Whether he channeled his past acting roles or his real life, Nolte has delivered the kind of role that will be talked about for ages. I truly hope more audiences will find Warrior now that it’s out on Blu-ray. This really is one of the best films I’ve seen all year.

Video Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

The 2:35:1 framed, AVC/MPEG-4 encoded transfer is nearly perfect. The film tends to use the kind of color palette that focuses on a more natural look. There’s many instances where the colors do look realistic, flesh tones in particular. Contrast levels are accurate as well with no notice of an overly ‘bronzed’ look to anyone. Detail is excellent as any real closeup showcases fine textures on clothing or any background. Clarity is impressive too, of particular notice during the final closing fight. Here we notice the little beads of sweat dripping down Brendan and Tommy’s faces. Black levels are fine with no instance of crush. All in all, this is a great effort from Lionsgate.

Audio Quality

[Rating:5/5]

Three different audio codecs are included here, a DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1, a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, and a Dolby Digital 2.0 mix. I’m not equipped for 7.1, so I chose the 5.1 mix, which sounded excellent. Dialogue is well reproduced via the center channel. Atmosphere…whew…atmosphere is some of the best I’ve heard in recent times. A true demo sequence for some just may be the closing fight sequence. Here the sound field opens up to, literally, place us right in the middle of the action. Turn your head around and notice the cheers of the audience. Turn left and hear a booming blow to each fighter’s face. Turn right and hear a vicious grunt as the two get into the mix. LFE is deep too, offering some truly fine response. I’ll be honest and mention that I’ve been a bit skeptical on upgrading my system to 7.1, but this film and this mix just may have pushed me over the edge. Wow…truly amazing audio here.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:4/5]

The included features are shown in FULL HD:

  • Cheap Shots – Roughly 4 minutes of gags are shown.
  • Brother vs. Brother (Anatomy of the Fight) – Just shy of 12 minutes, this glances into the final fight and how the scene came about.
  • Redemption: Bringing Warrior to Life – About 32 minutes of cast interviews, comments and the like are shown. While some of the interviews do feel a bit run-of-the-mill at times, the feature is still quite interesting.
  • Audio Commentary with Filmmakers and Actor Joel Edgerton
  • Philosophy in Combat – Running 21 minutes, this feature has real MMA fighters discussing the film and what the making of the film consisted of.
  • Simply Believe: A Tribute to “Tapout” Creator Charles “Mask” Lewis, Jr. – A 14 minute homage to the Tapout creator. This one is quite sad considering Lewis died so young.
  • Full Contact: Feature Length Enhanced Viewing Mode – This serves as a kind of picture-in-picture with cast interviews and behind-the-scenes bits.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4.5/5]

In 1976, a film called Rocky came out and amazed my parents. In 2011, a film called Warrior amazed me. Warrior is my generation’s Rocky. Do yourself a favor and check out this amazing film. You won’t regret it.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B0034G4P9E[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Warrior (2011) - Widescreen Subtitle AC3 Dolby

Purchase Warrior on Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

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

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