Safe House

Featured In Issue 169, September 2012

WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
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Strong violence throughout and some language
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Not Indicated
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Daniel Espinosa
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DTS HD Lossless 5.1, DTS 5.1
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Tobin Frost (Washington), one of the CIA's most dangerous traitors, resurfaces in South Africa after eluding capture for almost a decade. During his interrogation, the Safe House is attacked by brutal mercenaries, forcing rookie agent, Matt Weston (Reynolds) to take the infamous Frost on the run. As the masterful manipulator toys with his reluctant protégé, shaking the young operative's morality and idealism, the unlikely allies must fight to stay alive long enough to uncover who wants them both dead. (Gary Reber)

Special features include Picture-In-Picture pre-visualization and storyboard comparisons; seven featurettes: Making Safe House (HD 11:16),
Hand-To-Hand Action (HD 07:54), Shooting The Attack (HD 05:17), Building The Rooftop Chase (HD 03:59), Behind The Action (HD 08:00), Inside The CIA (HD 06:07), and Safe Harbor: Cape Town (HD 08:51); My Scenes; D-BOX® Motion Code™; an UltraViolet digital copy; and BD-Live functionality.

The 2.40:1 1080p AVC picture is stylized with a gritty, raw, filtered appearance, to intensify the sense of intrigue and constant danger. Contrast is pushed to extremes, with blacks and whites crushed, completely lacking in detail. Shadow delineation also is muddled as a result, with no delineation in dark scenes. This is the intended cinematic look, as otherwise this would be a poorly photographed feature. Colors are deeply saturated as well, with fleshtones appearing unnaturally pasty. Resolution amongst this stylization retains excellent detail, especially during close-ups of facial features, hair, clothing, and object texture. While the overall appearance is rough edged and grain permeated, the effect creates a striking and engaging visual experience that doesn't detract from the storytelling. (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is intensely dynamic, with a consistently aggressive bombardment of car chases, crashes, gunfire, and shattering debris, interspersed with quieter moments of dialogue. But always the excitement is just waiting behind the next door and street. All this ruckus and intensity fills the soundfield with aggressive directionalized surround immersion. The orchestral music score fittingly enhances the tension and danger that constantly lurks. Deep bass effectively exaggerates the sound effects with energized impact. Atmospherics nicely envelop the soundfield with nuanced sounds that add to the sense of realism. Dialogue manages to stay intelligible and integrated spatially above the ruckus. This is an exciting, dynamically charged holosonic® soundtrack that delivers a lot of punch and dimension. (Gary Reber)