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DVD Review: UNLEASHED (Unrated)

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PHOTOGRAPHY

UNLEASHED Unrated

DVD review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 102 minutes, three featurettes, and two music videos

STUDIO: Rogue Pictures/ Europa/ Universal

RELEASE DATE: 10-11-2005

UNLEASHED has several things going for it: a few good actors (Morgan Freeman, Bob Hoskins, and one of Jet Li's best acting job) and a few fantastic fight scenes in the last 40 minutes. Whether you like where the film decides to go in the first fifty might get some mixed responses. UNLEASHED aka DANNY THE DOG (in non US countries) is the story of a man (Jet Li) who was raised to be a human pitbull from an early age by a terrible small time gangster (Bob Hoskins). Danny is emotionally shutdown. He goes into action when the collar comes off. It does change when he crosses path with Sam (Morgan Freeman), a blind piano tuner. After a few criminals try to knock off the gangster, Danny runs and thinks teh gangster is dead. Sam takes him in. Sam and Victoria (his step-daughter) try to get Danny to emotionally connect as a human being and Danny slowly begins to realize there is more to life than being a gangster's attack dog.

VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

Image detail is ahrp while colors (and shadow values) are good)

AUDIO: English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 5.1 DTS

Subtitles: French, Spanish, English captions

The sound is stellar. Dialogue is clear. Top notch.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

The extras could have been better. The only extras are two music videos (Massive Attack, The Rza) and three featurettes. The best featurette is the five minute featurette with Director Louis Leterrier. He doesn't offer any deep insights into making the film. The other two featurettes could have been edited down and combined into one. SERVE NO MASTER is a clip heavy look at the fight sequences created by Yuen Wo Ping while THE COLLAR COMES OFF is a behind the scenes look at UNLEASHED (interviews with jet Li, Morgan Freeman, and Bob Hoskins). Both have some behind-the-scenes footage, but they could have been combined into one featurette and lost some of the clips from the movie. This disc could have used an audio commentary with the director. Overall, a disappointing batch of extras.

FINAL ANALYSIS: The DVD should rent well and the fight sequences make UNLEASHED one to watch. I do wish the extras were much better.

this DVD Review is (c)10-8-2005 and cannot be reprinted without permission. send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com and look for additional content (and news/updates) at http://www.livejournal.com/users/enterlinemedia