3.28- TUBE DVD review

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3.28 (April 8, 2004)

DVD Review: TUBE

by David Blackwell

PLOT: Former undercover agent T is betrayed by the government and he is out for revenge. T wants the Korean Prime Minister to kill him or T will send a subway train crashing into something that will cause the deaths of 13 million people. Detective Jay gets onto the hijacked train after a call from Kay, his ex-girlfriend. Jay must stop T, but T also wants to kill Jay because Jay killed T's girlfriend years ago. T left Jay a warning before by cutting off one of Jay's fingers. The Prime Minister will do anything to stop T to cover up what he did to T's team even if it means the passengers on the train have to die.

TUBE is a good action movie from Korea. You have interesting characters, a good pace, and an unexpected ending.

DVD TRANSFER: The movie is presented in 2.35:1 widescreen, but sometimes it looks like the transfer is a letterbox within a letterbox. At those moments, the differing shades of black around the picture suggests they stuck a 2.35:1 within a 1.85:1 widescreen, but it probably just how the black bars are presented.

The colors are good. The blacks are fine. The only problem is the whites are too bright. When you see light on skin in well light areas, it looks too shiny. It is like they didn't light the scenes correctly when they shot the movie, or the transfer is at fault like the brightness levels are turned up too much on the whites and light blues.  You can see the whites on some walls and other areas as very shiny to the point that it muddles any detail within that white area. However, the brightness make the gunfire flashes really stand out.  The brightness problem with light relections aon people and surfaces may just be a problem of bad lighting when they filmed the movie.  It looks like the movie wasn't remastered in High Definition (it's not listed on the DVD back cover).

AUDIO: You have the choice to choose from 5.1 English and 5.1 French Dolby Digital, but the Korean audio track is only in 2.0 Dolby Digital. You have the option of English, French, or Spanish subtitles.

MENUS: The main menu is a motion menu showing clips from the movie to a music track, and subway motion video is shown as you go to other parts of the menu.    The sub-menus are only still photos.

EXTRAS: There are trailers for TUBE, DOUBLE VISION, THE RETURNER, and SO CLOSE. Also on the DVD is a music video (that shows footage from the movie to the end credits song of TUBE) and a behind-the-scenes featurette.

The behind-the-scenes featurette is 25 minutes long (subtitled in English), and it has a 15 minute Making of Tube and highlights of the action scenes from TUBE filling out the last ten minutes.

The Making of TUBE has interviews with three leads and the director, features some behind-the-scenes from the production including footage of the subway set being built, and narration from a very commanding Korean voice. TUBE took eight months to film, featured extensive CG work, was the first movie allowed to film a shoot out in an actual Korean airport, and filmed in the subway system during the hours when the subway didn't operate.

FINAL ANALYSIS: The DVD is worth a rental and Asian Action movie fans should buy this great Korean movie on DVD.

this review is(c)4-8-2004 David Blackwell and this review can't be reprinted without the author's permission. send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com  and check for additional content (and site updates) at http://www.livejournal.com/users/enterlinemedia