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Old - 4K UHD Blu-ray Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook Review

Old

If your maitre d’s offer of free private access to a secluded beach that you will share with only a few select fellow guests seems too good to be true, it’s probably because it is.

But that doesn’t stop husband and wife team Guy (Gael García Bernal) and Prisca (Vicky Krieps) from happily accepting that offer. Unfortunately, it’s also the first of many stupid choices the characters in M. Night Shyamalan’s new film, Old, will make throughout the course of their anything but typical holiday stay at an upscale resort.

"is mostly ruined by sketchy dialogue, poor decisions by characters, and an eye-rolling twist at the"


Unnatural human behavior is just one of the many missteps and outright fails that plague this twisty-turny tale about the consequences of aging and the absolute certainty of death. That’s right. There’s plenty of blame to go around and most of it centers on Shyamalan himself and the poor decisions with the script he adapts from Pierre Oscar Levy and Frederik Peeters’ graphic novel called Sandcastles.

The premise is a good one: vacationers who opt for a secluded beach excursion soon find themselves quickly aging, and no matter what they do to try and leave the beach, they can’t. What (or who) is causing the aging? Should suspicions rest on the friendly Maitre D who arranged the excursion? Is the stranger they encounter on the beach with a bloody nose responsible for the dead body washed up on the shore? Is the culprit behind the elaborate prank one of the fellow guests?

What sounds like the perfect setup for an intriguing tale of mystery, horror, and suspense capped off with a signature Shyamalan curveball is mostly ruined by sketchy dialogue, poor decisions by characters, and an eye-rolling twist at the end.

Also starring Rufus Sewell as an egomaniacal physician, Abbey Lee as his trophy wife, psychologist played by Nikki Amuka-Bird, Nurse Ken Leung, Aaron Pierre as a rapper, and a host of child actors who portray the kids at different ages, the acting is quite adequate, especially the stand out performances from Bernal and Krieps. The two anchor the story and give it a much-needed human dignity when the reason for their vacation is revealed.Old

However not a single actor is able to rise above the poorly written dialogue and forced scenarios that are downright silly at times. What would a mother do when she sees her daughter emerge from the other end of the beach pregnant with child? Of course, she would turn her head and bury it in her husband’s arms. What would be your first reaction to the news of someone developing cancer while on the beach? Why, cut it out with a pocketknife, of course. And do we feel better when the man selected to swim around the rock outcroppings to get help says, “I was on my swim team.” What swim team? High school? You’re 50 years old! And let’s not even get into the stilted dialogue that would feel right at home in a high school drama. It’s all so slapdash amateur.

To be fair, there are a handful of successes scattered throughout, including some compelling special effects, one in which a frighteningly twisted body skitters across the sand a la Samara’s crab crawl in The Ring. And rather than deploying budget-busting CGI shots of actors aging or plastering them in pancake makeup, Shyamalan effectively drops in look-alike actors at different stages of the aging process – a clever technique that seamlessly melds with his nifty camera handling.

Additionally, the idea of growing old before one’s own eyes is an absolutely terrifying thought in and of itself. We learn that the characters age at something like one year for every thirty minutes. And what is more heartbreaking than watching your adolescent children become teenagers right before your eyes?

When the closing twist is finally revealed, there’s not really a “wow” moment as much as there is a slump-shouldered reluctance to accept the explanation. Old is simply more of the same from a filmmaker who once showed such promise, but who now can only wow us with a “hmm.”

1/5 stars

 

Old

Blu-ray Details

4K UHD + Bluray- Digital Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook Edition

Home Video Distributor: Universal
Available on Blu-ray
- October 19, 2021
Screen Formats: 2.39:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, French, Spanish
Audio:
English: Dolby Atmos; English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1; French: Dolby Digital 5.1; Spanish: Dolby Digital Plus 7.1
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set: Digital Coupon
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Universal has released M. Night Shyamalan's thriller Old in a number of editions including Blu-ray + DVD + Digital edition, a 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital Edition, and a 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital Code Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook edition which we are highlighting here.

Inside the outer shrinkwrap is a steelbook surrounded with a half slipcover that, when removed, reveals monotone artwork on the book's front and back covers. Inside are a blu-ray disc, a 4K UHD disc as well as a digital Movies Anywhere digital coupon.

Video

Rather than with bright, vivid ocean hues and a tropical crispness, Shyamalan bathes his presentation in a warmer haze that leaves hints of a sepia tone treatment. Not sure what he was going for, and to be fair, it doesn't distract from the viewing experience, but just doesn't seem necessary. Sure, we get bright blue skies, the deep azure of the ocean, and accurately rendered skin tones, but you won't get the pristine color palette you would expect from a tropical adventure film.

Black levels are good and fairly consistent, and details hold up well in the darker shots like inside the resort or inside a cave. The 4K presentation does offer some added crispness of detail, but there's not a dramatic difference between the 1080p and the 2160p presentations.

Audio

The location and atmosphere play a big part in what we hear in the room. With waves constantly crashing and voices that echo inside caves, there's some good atmospheric action going on in the rears and mid-levels, but not so much from the front of the house. Simply nothing to write home about.

Supplements:

Commentary:

Special Features:

With regards to bonus content, the Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook Edition comes with nearly a dozen deleted scenes, a discussion with the director and his film-making family, an interview with Shyamalan on the strength and limitations of timing on a beach, a featurette that highlights the search for the perfect beach location (best of the bunch), an oddly melodramatic piece on the companship experienced by all on the ste.

Blu-ray Rating

  Movie 2/5 stars
  Video  4/5 stars
  Audio 3/5 stars
  Extras 4/5 stars

Composite Blu-ray Grade

3.5/5 stars

Film Details

Old

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for strong violence, disturbing images, suggestive content, partial nudity and brief strong language.
Runtime:
108 mins
Director
: M. Night Shyamalan
Writer:
M. Night Shyamalan
Cast:
Gael García Bernal Vicky Krieps Rufus Sewell
Genre
: Horror | Mystery
Tagline:
It's Only a Matter of Time.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Dad, why are you looking at me like that?"
Theatrical Distributor:
Universal Pictrues
Official Site: https://www.facebook.com/oldthemovie
Release Date:
July 23, 2021
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:

Synopsis: This summer, visionary filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan unveils a chilling, mysterious new thriller about a family on a tropical holiday who discover that the secluded beach where they are relaxing for a few hours is somehow causing them to age rapidly - reducing their entire lives into a single day.

Art

Old

 

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