Marauders - Blu-ray Review - Home Theater Forum and Systems -

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Marauders - Blu-ray Review

Title: Marauders


HTS Overall Score:74

Ugghh. It’s almost like clockwork now. If you see Bruce Willis’s face on the cover of modern movie and it does NOT say “Expendables” or “Die Hard” for the title than you should be VERY worried. It seems that the once great actor (and he was one of the greats for the action genre) has gone the way of Seagal, Cuba Gooding Jr. and countless other actors who couldn’t make it work outside of the leading man role. Basically it’s the scenario where Willis is plastered all over the front cover of the movie and then he’s in it for a grand total of 15 minutes at MOST (usually 5-10 minutes) wherein he looks like he’s on Vicodin pills or just plain bored out of his skull (the facial expressions are about the same). You can tell that he got paid a quick and dirty paycheck to be associated as the villain, or side hero, and then run as fast as possible to the bank to cash it in case it bounces. “Marauders” is another such DTV film, with very little redeeming value, and Willis adding nothing to that minimal value that IS there (that actually lies with Dave Bautista and Chris Meloni).

This time Willis is playing Jeffrey Hubert, a rich philanthropist who owns a banking company which suffers a major loss when a group of 4 commando type of guys in masks and high tech devices rob his bank of millions and executes his manager on camera. Well, that kind of brings the attention of the FBI to bear on the situation, and lead agent Montgomery (Christopher Meloni) is hot to trot and ready to bring these bag guys in by the short hairs of their chin. The only thing is that all their leads point towards a dead guy. A dead guy who was killed in Afghanistan for supposedly being a traitor. Not to mention that his efforts are thwarted by a dirty cop who is skimming money off of drug busts.

Like usual there are plot twists, and twists within twists that are meant to dazzle and shock the audience in the third act. But, like usual, these third act twists within twists meant to keep the audience from guessing the real men behind the masks is just a smoke screen. An easily seen through one as well. The movie tries so hard to point the finger at the dirty cops and even the FBI agents themselves, that it really only leaves a few choices left. Especially if you look carefully at the first act and see the setup for the reveal within the first 10 minutes of the movie in a conversation that pretty much paints a bullseye on the real villain.

I can’t say that “Marauders” is actually a horrible movie. It’s not a good movie, but I’ve become used to Bruce Willis DTV action films being SOOOOOOOOOOOO bad, that this one left a LESS sour taste in my mouth than others did. The basic idea of the gang of super robbers going on a Robin Hood type spree works well. That and some good actors (and a few decent ones) make it a cut above the normal “Beverly Hills 90210” actors that can’t act their way out of a paper bag if they were given a map and a pair of scissors. Christopher Meloni is actually rather good as the tortured Agent Montgomery. I’ve loved him ever since I saw him as the slightly cooky chef in “Wet Hot American Summer” and he’s made a name for himself as playing very hardnosed characters. Here is no different either. Dave Bautista is another one that I have to give begrudging credit to. I’m not labeling him the next great actor, or even action hero, but he is doing better and better in every movie he’s done lately. I thought he was going to be a train wreck of an actor, but the hulking bodybuilding and WWE star actually has charisma and a physicality that rivals the Rock. Sadly he doesn’t have much of a role here, and comes and goes out of the picture at will. The rest of the cast are thruway characters, especially Willis, who you wish WOULD be thrown away after the opening scene where it looks like he’s nodding off on Camera.

Much of the flaws in the film come from the writing and editing. The writers seemed to go all M. Knight Shamalamadingdong on us here and tries WAY too hard to try and have a twist within a twist within a twist to the point of being ludicrous. The same thing goes for the editing. The film jumps from plot twist to plot twist so quickly that you’re left wondering what is going on sometimes. Time shifts and character shifts without proper exposition leaves you sitting their rewinding several times just trying to figure out where the break was.


Rated R for strong violence, language, brief drug use and nudity

Despite being a low budget film, the Red Epic cameras used in the process make for a pretty picture. The image tends to be a bit dark most of the time as they cops run in and out of dark buildings, as well as make lots of deals at night. Still the fine detail is exemplary, showing off every fiber on Montgomery’s cheap suit, as well as the slight silver that is creeping into his facial stubble. Black levels are deep and inky, with very little crush at all despite the tons of blacks floating around. Colors tend to be stable, but a bit drab and leaning towards a grey tone. Bright CGI reds pop up for the blood effects (man I miss the days of practical bullet wounds and squibs), and the contrast levels are well within reason, making for some very neutral skin tones.

The 5.1 DTS-HD MA track is aggressive and forceful, opening up with a bank robbery that is filled with deep explosions and that sort of bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwww associated with slow motion action shots. However, it tames itself a bit with long stretches of dialog heavy scenes where the surrounds and LFE channel get a little less to work with. It’s a good track, just pretty simple considering the low budget sound design and the heavy use of one note bass that is actually used quite effectively. Bullets have weight but down sound like a shotgun for every 9mm shot, and the bank robberies are actually quite dynamic when things get going.


• Commentary with Director Steven C. Miller and Cinematographer Brandon Cox
• The Making of Marauders
• Deleted/Extended Scenes
• Cast/Crew Interviews
• Trailers


I wasn’t horrified or insulted by “Marauders”. The acting of Meloni and Bautista made for a semi enjoyable police hunt, but the rest of the movie dives off the deep end into run of the mill DTV territory pretty quickly. Much of the good is sadly lost amongst the sea of bad, leaving the viewer just waiting for the film to be over with so they can do something more interesting, like watch their nails drying, or clipping their cat’s claws. Audio and video are actually quite nice, but don’t let that fool you. This is a rental at best.

Additional Information:

Starring: Christopher Meloni, Bruce Willis, Dave Bautista
Directed by: Steven C. Miller
Written by: Michael Cody
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1
Studio: Lionsgate
Rated: R
Runtime: 107 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: September 13th, 2016

Buy Marauders Blu-ray on Amazon

Recommendation: Skip It

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