Blu-Ray Review: Kill Zone

killzone Blu Ray Review: Kill Zone 

Kill Zone is a 2005 Hong Kong martial arts flick starring Donnie Yen and Sammo Hung (both are also in Ip Man 2).   The movie  is  pretty dark for an action.  Detective Chan (Simon Yam) plays a cop trying to take down mob boss, Wong Po (Sammo Hung.)    Chan is close to retiring and hot headed Ma (Yen) is groomed to be the head detective.   The filmmakers try to imitate Infernal Affairs’ mood by having a glossy cinematography and depressed characters and it works on some levels.  There’s some scenes that makes the cops look worse than the bad guys they’re after.  The main characters has more development than your average kung fu flick and asks the viewers how far cops should go to catch them.  The villain played by Sammo Hung is too cool for his this kind of movie.  He beats up cops and gets away with it because he’s the mafia boss.  Didn’t make sense to me.  I’m not going to spoil it for you but  there are some inconsistencies that hurt the movie.  In the end, it’s worth watching for the action and unique story, but don’t expect it to be as good as Super Cop or Ip Man.
Grade: B

It’s presented in 1.85 anamorphic widescreen and it looks really soft. Some shots are clean but the movie is edge enhanced to death.  There are some grains on the night shots which I assume is from the original source.  Some might argue the transfer is bad because the source is from HK and that might be the reason but I just expected a much more better transfer.  It’s still better than its  DVD counterpart but don’t expect a good transfer.
Grade: C+

killzone2 Blu Ray Review: Kill Zone

While the video is underwhelming, the audio delivers.  The main track is a Cantonese  DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1.   The punches sound brutal and the gun fires are lively.  The rears are used creatively for the fight sequences and lets the viewers know when someone is attacking from behind.  There’s also an english track but I’m against dubbed movies and I suggest turning on the subtitles instead. 
Grade: A

Commentary by HK film historian Bey Logan – I first heard Logan in his commentary for Legend Of The Black Scorpion and I was impressed.  Logan is a walking and talking HK film encyclopedia.  He talks about the actors history, the locations and the theme of the movie.  It’s a great track that everyone should listen to. He explains the motives of the characters that I complained about but I still don’t agree with it.

Interviews with Cast and Crew – An extensive interview with the cast and crew consisting of Donnie Yen, Simon Yam, Sammo Hung, Jacky Wu, and Wilson Yip.  Hung’s interview is the highlight because he’s honest and natural.  He’s not trying to sell the movie, just his thoughts on the final cut.  All of the interviews are in standard definition.

Trailers –  TV spots are included as well as the Hong Kong and American trailers.
Grade: B

If you don’t pay attention to the story, Killzone is a fun movie just for the fight scenes alone.  Donnie Yen is always impressive and Sammo Hung is no slouch either.  The video is a disappointment but the audio is great.  The extra features would ‘ve been better if there was behind the scenes documentary but it was still informative. 
Overall Grade: B (Not an average)

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