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Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - May, 2012

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"Haywire" (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Jim Milton

movies-may-2012-haywire

Synopsis

This dynamic action-thriller introduces mixed martial arts (MMA) superstar Gina Carano as Mallory Kane, a black-ops agent for a government security contractor. After freeing a Chinese journalist held hostage, Mallory is double-crossed and left for dead – by someone in her own agency. Suddenly the target of assassins who know her every move, Mallory unleashes the fury of her fighting skills to uncover the truth and turn the tables on her ruthless adversary. Featuring Carano performing her own high-adrenaline stunts and an all-star cast, this action-packed film will leave you wondering why a seemingly simple job could go so terribly haywire.

 

Specifications

  • Lionsgate Studios
  • 2011, Color, R, 91 Minutes
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.35:1
  • Codec: MPEG4
  • 1080p
  • English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
  • Starring: Gina Carano, Michael Fassbender, Channing Tatum, Michael Douglas, Antonio Banderas
  • Directed by Steven Soderbergh
Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: Yes
  • Sex: None
  • Language: Yes

Commentary

Carano may not display a lot of acting chops in this, her debut film, but boy can she beat men to a pulp! Soderbergh literally built this movie around her after watching her in action on a bout on TV. The story wastes no time on plot development (we have all seen this script a dozen times before), but focuses on Carano's technical skill. Don't get me wrong, I think she does well as an emotionless assassin and this movie delivers unflinching violence without the "shaky" camera technique that is so prevalent in action movies theses days. The fight scenes are well choreographed and quite realistic. Carano's physicality is astounding! I have no idea how they made the action look as real as it does, but I really enjoyed watching her do her stuff. Her dark, smoldering eyes were both sexy…and dangerous. Antonio Banderas still mumbles his few lines and his part could have gone to any other number of lesser actors. Same for Douglas, but ultimately, they all play a minor role to the action star.

Technical

Shot with a Red One digital camera, the movie looks great. Skin pores (and flaws) show up with great detail. Textures look exquisite and even the dark scenes look three dimensional. The sound was stunning as well. The smack of a fist into the face of an assailant sounded "strikingly" real. The surrounds and sub are used to good effect throughout the entire movie. I even enjoyed the soundtrack which reminded me of action films from the 70s.

Extras

Not a whole lot for extras here: Behind-the-scenes featurette exploring Carano's transition from the MMA world to film and a look at the men of Haywire.