Informant, The

Featured In Issue 147, March/April 2010

WSR Score3.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Warner Home Video
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Not Indicated
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Steven Soderbergh
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Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1
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Based on the book The Informant by Kurt Eichenwald, this is a true story about the U.S. government going after an agri-business giant with a price-fixing accusation. The evidence is based on that submitted by their star witness, Vice President-turned- informant, Mark Whiteacre (Damon). Even as he exposes his company's multi-national price-fixing conspiracy, Whiteacre envisions himself being hailed as a hero of the common man and handed a promotion. But before all that can happen, the FBI needs evidence, so Whiteacre eagerly agrees to wear a wire, imagining himself as a kind of de facto secret agent. However, Whiteacre's ever-changing account frustrates the agents and threatens the case, as it becomes almost impossible to determine the truth. (Gary Reber)

The combo pack contains a Blu-ray Disc™, DVD, and a digital copy of the film. Special features include commentary by Director Steven Soderbergh and Screenwriter Scott Z. Burns and four deleted scenes (SD 06:25).

The 1080p 1.78:1 VC-1 picture is digitally photographed with The Red One HD Camera. The appearance is filtered, to produce a soft cinematic look, but the result produces a diffuse imagery. Bright backgrounds and lighting are flared throughout. Every scene is stylized in this manner, resulting in a strange, unnatural appearance, with colors that appear filtered and tinted. Yet at times colors are very vivid and richly hued. Fleshtones are inconsistent in naturalness, at times, perfectly accurate and other times pushed to red. Colors are impacted as well—natural but unnatural. The imagery is soft throughout. While contrast is decent, shadow delineation is a bit vague. While pristine, the filtering effect is just unnatural. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby® TrueHD 5.1-channel soundtrack has a terrific music score that is beautifully recorded, with a wide and deep soundstage presence that wraps subtly but effectively into the surrounds. Matt Damon's narrative is nicely balanced, but dialogue is not well integrated spatially, especially Damon's, whose lines particularly sound forward. At times dialogue sounds muffled as well, no doubt due to the production sound-recording method. Sound effects are few, as this is a dialogue-focused movie. The music score is definitely the highlight of the soundtrack. Otherwise, this is an undistinguished soundtrack. (Gary Reber)