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Dale Rasco 08-05-11 12:37 PM

Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

Title: Source Code
Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan
Directed by: Duncan Jones
Written by: Ben Ripley
Studio: Summit Entertainment
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 93 Minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: 7/26/2011


Movie: :4stars:
Video: :4.5stars:
Audio: :4stars:
Extras: :2stars:
Overall: :4.5stars:




HTS Overall Score:80

Colter Stevens (Gyllenhaal) is a US Army pilot who wakes up on a commuter train dazed and confused and sitting across from a woman named Christine (Monaghan) that knows him by the name Sean Fentress, but who he has no recollection of. As the next eight minutes play out, the viewer is witness to several confusing tidbits of information before the train blows up and Colter wakes up in a small geodesic type of dome being greeted by someone named Goodwin that is trying to calm him down and help him gain control.

At this point the viewer is given very little information as to what is going on other than Colter is going back into the “simulation” and again has eight minutes in which to locate the bomb and identify the bomber before the train explodes again. Still trying to get more information from Goodwin about what is going on, Colter is suddenly thrust back into the “simulation” where he once again finds himself in front of Christine having the same conversation he had with her only moments ago before the last simulation ended so violently. As Colter learns more and more with each trip back into the simulation, it becomes increasingly clear that this is no ordinary simulation and that thousands of lives may depend on him successfully completing his task.

I remember seeing the trailers for Source Code and thinking that it looked like a pretty good movie, but it also reminded me of Vantage Point from several years ago which I did not personally care much for. After viewing Source Code I can say that it is nothing like Vantage Point and that it is in fact a very solid sci-fi action thriller. Don’t get me wrong, Source Code definitely has its share of plot holes but this is the movies gang; check your brain at the door and enjoy the ride.

Jake Gyllenhall has really come a long way since 2002's “Bubble Boy” and has really started showing signs that he has what it takes to really pull off the leading man roles. Michelle Monaghan turns in a fair performance as does the rest of the cast, but it’s definitely Gyllenhaal that carries the load in this one.

I thought the effects were pretty well done and Duncan Jones follows 2009’s ‘Moon’ with another wonderfully directed effort. The films pace is pretty much perfect and Jones is able to add just the right amount of drama without drowning it in some verbose social commentary on the ethical treatment of the military. Additionally Jones has a superb eye for catching every nuance and giving balanced attention to every detail. The movie looks great and sounds great and is a very enjoyable ride.


Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some violence including disturbing images, and for language

Video: :4.5stars:

Source Code looks awesome in 1080P! With a 1.78:1 aspect ratio, Source Code is a solid transfer with incredibly well defined details that practically pour out of every scene. Fleshtones go from natural to slightly warm yet never fully pop out as the entire transfer is slightly muted giving a cinematic quality to the film. Natural grain is prevalent but not overpowering which only enhances the cinematic quality of the transfer. There are no deficiencies that I could find in this transfer. Black levels are gradational with near infinite depth in the capsule that Colter occupies between trips. Shadow delineation is nearly flawless and smoke plumes billow out with great depth from the explosions. While not a reference grade transfer, Source Code does sport a near flawless transfer that must be seen to be appreciated.




Audio: :4stars:

While not as good as the video transfer comparatively, the DTS-HD-MA 5.1 on this disc does handily get the job done. The action explodes with an authoritative LFE presence that will rip through the viewer’s room each time the bomb on the train detonates. The surround channels add the perfect amount of atmosphere to the soundstage as there is plenty of general ambient sound to immerse the viewer into each scene and there is an overwhelming feeling of chaos that is inherent in the massive destruction that unfolds each time the train comes off of the tracks. I did however think that there were some missed opportunities for some VLF a time or two, but it did not detract from my enjoyment of the movie in the least. Dialogue reproduction was perfect throughout the film and busy train station scenes and other loud atmospheres noises did nothing to intrude on the clarity and crispness. There were no deficiencies with the audio on this disc to speak of or complain about; I’ve just heard better presentations.



Extras: :2stars:
  • Director Commentary
  • Behind the Science

Overall: :4.5stars:
I have only watched Source Code once so far, but I have no doubt that there are a lot of details that I missed on my first viewing. The story is solid and believable, as long as you don’t spend too much time thinking on it and trying to pick it apart. The overall feel of the movie is sci-fi action, but it does have a few shades of a typical thriller as well. The tight timeframe with which Colter has to work with each time he goes in can get a bit taught and put the audience on the edge of their seat and at other times Jones and crew are actually able to pull off a more “oh well maybe next time” feel. In the end Source Code isn’t trying to rewrite a genre or tell a new tale and at its heart is a fun ride. I highly recommend this one to anyone looking for a good sci-fi action type of film with a few twists and turns, but nothing revolutionary.


Recommendation: Rent It!

Official Blu-Ray Reviews Scoring

GranteedEV 08-05-11 03:21 PM

Re: Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

It's a good rental. My sub is out of commission so I never got any LFE when I watched it but it was well put together. The ending was kind of predictable but overall there were enough layers to the movie to keep it engaging and tense.

Jon Liu 08-06-11 05:18 PM

Re: Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

Thanks for the review! I really enjoyed this one and look forward to watching it again!

typ44q 08-09-11 09:58 AM

Re: Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

I agree with the check your brain at the door comment. I really enjoyed the movie but I wish they could of come up with a better story as to how the technology worked to avoid some of the plot holes.

Todd Anderson 11-21-11 03:35 PM

60 Attachment(s)
Good review - good movie. Duncan Jones was a classmate of mine in college. Didn't know the guy tho... But his dad (david Bowie) came to our graduation, which was interesting. At any rate, the few times I talked to him he came across as a very understated and well grounded person. All that being said, I enjoyed Moon as an original movie -- and felt source code was also a solid effort. I look forward to his next film...

Prof. 11-21-11 04:21 PM

Re: Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

Good review Dale..as always!
Sounds like one to consider...I enjoyed "Unknown" and it sounds like this one is of a similar genre..

d12d 12-21-11 04:11 PM

Re: Source Code - Blu-Ray Review
 

This is a good movie and worth watching. This has a good story and is somewhat different than most movies that have come out recently. I don't recall anything special in the bass department but I watched this movie several months ago. Worth watching. 7/10


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