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Blu-ray Review: HARDWARE

DVD Review by David Blackwell
DETAILS:  103 minutes, audio commentary, deleted scenes
VIDEO:  2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
Subtitles:  English, English SDH
STUDIO:  SPHE/ Destination Films/ Samuel Goldwyn Films/ UK Film Council/ Prescience/ Framestore/ Marv Partners
RELEASE DATE:  8-31-2010

Harry Brown is retired and living in a crowded apartment complex (aka council estates).   The buildings are terrorized by a gang of youths.   He loses his wife to cancer and his friend to the gang.   He decides to take justice into his own hands and his old Marine training kicks in.   HARRY BROWN is a cinematic crime drama that paints violence as ugly and shows a side of the United Kingdom the world rarely sees.  It is steeped in truth and twists into a drama about an old man with nothing to lose and a police that barely can keep crime down.  Detective Inspector Alice Frampton is trying to do her job and investigates the murder of Harry’s friend.  Will she discover Harry is behind the growing body count of criminals?


HARRY BROWN touts another high caliber performance from Michael Caine.   The movie is gritty looking with a powerful score.   It starts slow and builds tempo with scene.  Director Daniel Barber creates a world that is filled with truth and pull out one of the best Michael Caine films in quite a long while.   He imagined the film as a British Western and Michael Caine in the Gary Cooper role.   HARRY BROWN is a masterful crime drama worth seeing.



The audio commentary with Director Daniel Barber, Producer Kris Thykier, and Michael Caine features plenty stories about the making of the film while Michael Caine amuses with a few entertaining (and sometimes funny) stories from his career and life.


Seven deleted scenes (17 minutes total) feature visible boom mikes more than once, but it does have three good scenes- Harry’s conversation with a priest, Harry discussing chess with DI Frampton, and an extended scene that includes the best line in the film (You failed to maintain your weapon, son) and the best line cut from the film (Perfect Planning prevents piss-poor performance).   What is missing from the DVD is the theatrical trailer.


FINAL ANALYSIS:   HARRY BROWN is an unflinching film that showcases another great performance from Michael Caine in a gritty crime drama with a powerful music score.  


This DVD review is 9-1-2010 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.  Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com