Savages (Two-Disc Combo Pack: Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet)
Entrepreneurs Ben (Aaron Johnson), a peaceful and charitable marijuana producer, and friend Chon (Taylor Kitsch), a former Navy SEAL, run a lucrative, homegrown industry - raising some of the best weed ever developed. They also share a one-of-a-kind love with Ophelia (Blake Lively). Life is idyllic in their Southern California town... until the Mexican Baja Cartel decides to move in and demands that the trio partners with them. When the merciless head of the BC, Elena (Salma Hayek) and her enforcer, Lado (Benicio Del Toro), underestimate the unbreakable bond of the three friends, Ben and Chon - with the reluctant assistance of a dirty DEA agent Dennis (John Travolta) - wage a seemingly unwinnable war against the cartel. And so begins a series of increasingly vicious ploys and maneuvers in a high stakes, savage battle of wills. – Universal ©
Whatever shortcomings the film itself may have, the high definition presentation here is near perfection. The Laguna Beach sequences here are simply gorgeous, with lovely teal colored water, baking white beaches and a serene clarity that contrasts rather nicely with the "smoky" subject matter. Fine detail is exceptional throughout this presentation and it all looks spectacular on this Blu-ray. There are one or two extremely minor and momentary banding issues, typically with bright sunlight aimed directly at the camera, but otherwise this is a crisp and extremely appealing looking transfer.
The sound design here is rather aggressive in several key action sequences, where everything from the sudden punch of a gunshot to the roar of engines and helicopters sets the listener firmly in the center of some very well rendered sonic activity. But even in the quieter moments, as in the relatively peaceful opening act, there are some very nicely immersive moments, including the gentle wash of ocean waves against the beach. The dialogue and effects are very well mixed.
I’m just going to cut to the chase…Savages for me is one of the best movies in the last year or so that I have had the privilege to watch. The acting is superb. The storyline is pure brilliance. The scenery is breathtaking. This is by no means a family movie. The violence is graphic but yet intense throughout the movie. If you didn’t know the interworking’s of a powerful drug cartel and what they are capable of, this movie will show you some very disturbing practices that occur. Savages has a little bit of everything you look for in a brutal thriller. Sit down, buckle up and enjoy this intense look into a ruthless drug cartel and the individuals who decide to take them on.
Posted by Ryan Gibbs, November 22, 2012 7:55 AM