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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Heist > The Italian Job (2003/Blu-ray)

The Italian Job (2003/Blu-ray)


Picture: B+     Sound: A-     Extras: C+     Film: C+



Here is another Paramount title we have looked at three times now in three formats, with the link to the HD-DVD version here:





It itself connects to reviews of both versions of the film (this remake and the 1968 original) on regular DVD.


Also, the sound and picture performance are the same for both HD versions of this 203 version.  To recap, the 1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image can only do so much for the modern, limited color and Super 35mm cinematography.  With that said, this is rich, fuller and just more refined enough to rate higher than the surprisingly good standard DVD.  That is thanks again to cinematographer Wally Pfister, A.S.C., for bringing a subtly underlying gloss to the usual action happenings.  The sound on the standard DVD was plain old standard Dolby Digital 5.1 and one of the best Dolby 5.1 tracks we had heard.  We had hoped for DTS 5.1 and get that along with Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 and they are also fuller and more well-rounded.


That DTS HD and Dolby TrueHD are not here points to the fact that even the producers and studio knew that soundtrack would hit some kind of wall if pushed too far.  Paramount could have even used DTS 96/24, but despite the disc saying DTS is present, it turns out it is not and was something I originally missed.  Here is the story.


I have been thinking the disc run was not defective or in error, but after a few people told me others were not finding the DTS track, it turns out they were right and we thought we were hearing DTS when we were hearing Dolby.  The Dolby sounds different here than on the HD-DVD and when I though I was hearing DTS, I was convinced there was no problem, which is ironic since I do not like Dolby as much as DTS and the regular DVD of this title was one of the rare times I liked the Dolby enough to be impressed.  Of all the times anyone made such an error it had to be on a title I liked both soundtracks on.  Oh well.


The same extras are here as in the standard DVD and HD-DVD, but in a neat little move on Paramount’s part, the trailer is an HD version.  Too bad they did not include one for the 1969 version as well.  The Brazilian Job is the sequel to the remake still not here, but Paramount wants this film all over the place as much as possible before then.  We’ll see if that pays off.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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