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From Dusk Till Dawn - Blu-ray Review

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From Dusk till Dawn - Blu-ray Review

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4 stars

The first I heard of this film was that it was gonna star that TV heartthrob from ER (that I had never seen), who had also been chosen to be the new Batman. I was not yet familiar with Robert Rodriguez and was only just aware of Quentin Tarantino, but can you imagine what a hoopla there would have been, were all three of these names mentioned today? Forget Clooney’s turn as Batman (I still maintain he would have been a good one, had Warners not chosen to brighten and completely screw the franchise), this was the film that put him on my radar and many others not privy the workings of Doctor Doug.

Seth (Clooney) and Richie (Tarantino) are lawless bank robbers on the lamb from the cops in Texas. They kidnap a family, consisting of a faithless preacher (Harvey Keitel) and his two kids (Juliet Lewis and Ernest Liu) in their RV and hot tail it over the border into Mexico… And that is where shit hits the fan—the bar they stop at is actually an ancient vampire temple, and they are dinner.

If you’ve never seen the flick, it makes for a confusing and then exhilarating ride. The first half is a straightforward bad guys flee the law flick, and, once they get to Mexico, it almost instantaneously becomes a schlock horror movie to the goriest extreme.

Most of the characters are well drawn and highly memorable, but the standout for this reviewer is Michael Park’s Texas Ranger, Earl McGraw (who also popped up in Tarantino’s Kill Bill flicks.) The writing, not surprisingly, is sharp and oozing with Tarantino-isms: foot fetish makes its most graphic arrival in the guise of Selma Hayek’s toes being crammed into Tarantino’s mouth. It is humorous, unpretentious, and just a fun flick to watch.

It is as entertaining now as it was back then, and has lost none of its value with the passing of time. What may have been forgotten is the controversy of the production using a non-union crew to shoot it. Folk were up in arms and attempts were made to shut the production down. This reviewer is glad they were unsuccessful; the filmmakers claimed in their defence that they were using a tightly banded bunch of people to make an old school film, fun and unhindered by strict union rules­—it worked.

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{2jtab: Film Details}

From Dusk till Dawn - Blu-ray ReviewMPAA Rating: R for strong violence and gore, language and nudity.
Director
: Robert Rodriguez
Writer
: Quentin Tarantino
Cast:
George Clooney; Harvey Keitel; Quentin Tarantino; Juliette Lewis; Salma Hayek; Cheech Marin;  Danny Trejo
Genre: Horror | Action
Tagline:
How far can Too Far go?
Memorable Movie Quote: "We're having a wet bikini contest, and you just won."
Distributor:
Dimension Films
Release Date:
January 19, 1996
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
May 3, 2011

Synopsis: Fugitive Gecko brothers Seth (George Clooney) and Richie (Quentin Tarantino) fleeing the F.B.I. and Texas police after Richie has broken Seth out of prison in a bloody shootout. Seth Gecko is a cold, tough anti-hero, while his younger brother Richie is a delusional, homicidal serial rapist.

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{2jtab: Blu-ray Review}

From Dusk till Dawn - Blu-ray Review

Component Grades
Movie

Blu-ray Disc
4 stars

3 Stars



Blu-ray Experience
3.5 stars

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - May 3, 2011
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: None
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Discs:
25GB Blu-ray Disc; Single disc (1 BD)
Playback: Region A (B, C Untested)

Wish I could say the high-definition treatment was as stellar as the film itself, but it ain’t so, folks; it’s inconsistent at best, sometimes being extremely crisp (with occasional evidence of edge enhancement) and at other times flat and lifeless. It’s a clean print, with very little sign of artefact or gunk, colours are oversaturated (deliberate) and unnatural and the film grain is intact and welcome. Sound is better: the DTS-HD lossless audio gives the speakers a fine workout. It’s not of the modern calibre, but it sure as hell helps sell the films bonkers third out effectively. Nothing impressive about the special features, with just the same old crap from the special edition DVD attached.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

  • There are none

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