88 Minutes (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 09-03-2008, 08:42 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=117250&d=1219173021
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109942&d=1210373637

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

78






Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 2007
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 107 Minutes
Genre: Thriller

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English/French Dolby TrueHD 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
Starring: Al Pacino, LeeLee Sobieski, Amy Brenneman, Alicia Witt, Deborah Kara Unger, Benjamin McKenzie, William Forsyth
Directed by: Jon Avnet
Music by: Edward Shearmur
Written by: Gary Scott Thompson
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: September 16, 2008







"He has 88 minutes to solve a murder. His own"



Film Synopsis:

Al Pacino stars in this riveting thriller about a forensic psychologist who receives a phone call threatening that he only has 88 minutes to live. As the clock ticks away, tension mounts, suspicions rise and blood flows. With a serial killer he helped to convict awaiting execution and a copycat killer on the loose, Jack Graham has 88 minutes to solve the biggest murder of his career: his own.




My Take:

88 Minutes isn't exactly my idea of a riveting thriller. There is very little ground work laid out regarding the serial killer other than the film's opening scene which is poorly executed in my opinion. We are then taken to his trial where Dr. Graham testifies that Forster (McDonough) is a serial murderer who will surely kill again. He is convicted and sent to death row prison but not before he turns and looks at Dr. Graham and utters something like how do you think it would feel to know when you were going to die Dr. Graham, tick tock Doc tick tock. Fast forward 9 years, Jack is teaching classes on serial killers at the university. A murder that is identical to those perpetrated 9 years earlier that Forster was convicted for has occurred. Forster is due to be executed shortly and in light of the recent events questions are being raised about his guilt and Dr. Graham's testimony. The main characters are slowly introduced. Those that play important roles in the plot are several students from Graham's class, one of whom is his teaching assistant Kim (Witt), Mike (McKenzie) and Lauren (Sobieski). Then there is FBI special agent Frank Parks (Forsyth) and Dr. Graham's assistant Shelley (Brenneman). Jack is contacted by the FBI and Attorney General regarding the recent murder because the victim is one of his students. Shortly after this Dr. Graham receives a call on his cell phone and the caller tells him that he has 88 minutes to live tick tock Doc. A stranger dressed in leather biker gear begins to show up and appears to be following Jack. He becomes suspicious of his students and begins to have Shelley run checks on them. He receives intermittent calls from the same voice telling him how much time he as remaining. There are several flashback sequences that depict a young girl flying a kite who we later find out is Jack's little sister. She was the victim of a serial killer, years ago, who was seeking revenge on Jack. Jack becomes a suspect in the murder of his student after his DNA is found at the scene. Forster is granted a stay of execution and is interviewed live on TV. He challenges the conviction and Dr. Grahams credibility. Another murder victim surfaces and again evidence implicating Jack is at the scene. It now becomes obvious that Forster is orchestrating the copycat killings and Jack is being set up. The question is who is helping Forster and how can Jack's impending murder be stopped as the clock counts down?

It wasn't hard to figure out who was behind this. The plot was not only predictable but it wasn't very authentic. For me there were too many convenient coincidences and the perpetrator was infallible until the end when they became ridiculously stupid. The attempt at raising viewer suspicion among the various characters was transparent. We are talking about experienced law enforcement personnel and some of the things portrayed here made them look pretty silly. The ending was typical and when all the facts were revealed the motivation behind it all bordered on absurdity. I though that the casting was strong overall. I like Al Pacino but in all honesty prefer him in his earlier film roles. He seems to play pretty much the same character in his later films and although this one was a bit more vulnerable it still felt the same. Amy Brenneman was miscast in this role but I find her to be attractive and her presence certainly didn't make the film any less appealing. I though that Alicia Witt was solid and I haven't seen enough of LeeLee Sobieski to have an opinion one way or the other but she was fine. When all was said and done this one didn't work well for me.








Parental Guide:

The rating is for disturbing violent content, brief nudity, and language.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 80



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699



Video: 76


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

88 Minutes comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 30 mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel audio that has an average bitrate of 3.4 mbps.

The first thing that I noticed about this video presentation was its rather drab color palette. Colors are reserved and kept to more sullen tones that don't lend themselves to producing vivid textures that can look great in high definition. I thought that the colors used in the film appeared natural with good tonal depth and rendering. Flesh tones were flat with little delineation and appeared either pancake white or burnt orange. Detail was good in most respects with only a handful of shots where sharpness wavered and resulted in a slight softening effect. Contrast and brightness achieved a good balance although it wasn't really tested with film taking place in Seattle which kept even exterior daytime sequences on the gloomy side. Blacks were above average but far from the best that I have seen. The audio presentation was satisfying and competently conveyed the elements present in the film's soundtrack. Dialogue was crisp and well articulated. The front three channels delivered the bulk of the sound and did so with excellent clarity and imaging. The surrounds and sub saw occasional use and supported the front heavy presentation with ambient effects and the bass reproduction that accompanied the film's music.



Bonus Features:



The bonus content didn't provide a very in depth look at the production but it did offer a general overview. This came in the form of a 7 minute making of feature hosted by Jon Avnet, and a short piece hosted by Al Pacino where he discusses the film and his character. I thought that the alternate ending was better than the theatrical one. It provided a bit more closure for the Jack Graham character and detailed more of what transpired after the theatrical ending. The disc is BD-Live enabled however they are not active as of this writing. I expect they will be available by release day.




  • Dirtector audio commentary with Jon Avnet

  • Alternate ending

  • Director's point of view: featurette

  • The character within: featurette

  • (HD) 9 Blu-ray Disc previews

  • BD-Live
attachment.php?attachmentid=118784&d=1220456198



Final Thoughts:



Al Pacino fans will probably be disappointed with 88 Minutes. It is not the worst thriller within the genre but it does not have the substance to make it a standout. It doesn't boast high gloss high definition video quality and earth shattering surround sound but it is certainly acceptable. I would recommend this one as a rental only.







attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 17 Old 09-03-2008, 11:09 PM
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This also got a bad video review over at highdefdigest. I was looking forward to this release, but not so much now. However, I will definitely give it a rent.
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post #3 of 17 Old 09-04-2008, 06:11 AM
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I was looking forward to this, but after this and other reviews(including a friends) I will wait until it's on cable.
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post #4 of 17 Old 09-04-2008, 09:18 PM
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Ralph,

Good review, but 2/5 is WAY too generous for this one. IMO, this is one of the worst films of 2008 because it assumes the audience is completely clueless and insults our intelligence. I hate films like that! I rated it 2/10, although my review won't post until next week because of CEDIA coverage that is going on right now. I pretty much agree with you on the audio and video though.

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post #5 of 17 Old 09-05-2008, 02:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Ralph,

Good review, but 2/5 is WAY too generous for this one. IMO, this is one of the worst films of 2008 because it assumes the audience is completely clueless and insults our intelligence. I hate films like that! I rated it 2/10, although my review won't post until next week because of CEDIA coverage that is going on right now. I pretty much agree with you on the audio and video though.

Greetings,

Perhaps, although my perception was more that it was simply poorly written rather than its assumption that I was clueless and insulting to my intelligence. You had stronger feelings about it because as you say you hate movies like that. I think I detailed my feelings pretty well in the review. The fact you would have rated it a bit lower is probably moot because in both cases we arrived at the same conclusion.

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post #6 of 17 Old 09-05-2008, 07:31 AM
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Agreed Ralph. I think in your line of work you would find it ESPECIALLY tiresome!

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post #7 of 17 Old 09-05-2008, 08:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Agreed Ralph. I think in your line of work you would find it ESPECIALLY tiresome!

Greetings,





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post #8 of 17 Old 09-05-2008, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dj matt View Post

i was looking forward to this release, but not so much now. However, i will definitely give it a rent.

+1

My mom works for Sony, and she brought home a copy of "Starhawk BETA"
I quickly slipped it into my trusty PS3, and started playing.


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post #9 of 17 Old 12-23-2008, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Al Pacino fans will probably be disappointed with 88 Minutes.

Couldn't have said it better myself.
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post #10 of 17 Old 12-30-2008, 10:11 PM
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I saw this movie 6 months before it was in the theaters. the cut was horrible, one scene Al is driving in a damage car then the next frame he is in a clearly different car with no damage. I hope they fixed that scene before they released it. this film clearly sliped under Al's radar.
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post #11 of 17 Old 01-09-2009, 08:08 AM
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Seems like I AM the miniroty. A friend brought this over with alot of other DVD's (Yes DVD, and burnt to boot)
So I can't say anything for picture quality.
But if you leave your brain at the door its enjoyable ride.
And yes theres some continuity problems.
My friends also enjoyed it, maybe its a Canadian thing :P
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post #12 of 17 Old 01-09-2009, 09:44 AM
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There haven't been many Al Pacino films that I didn't enjoy to some degree. This film however is a real stinker. It's been a while since I saw it but all I can remember about it is Al talking into a cell phone for about 90 minutes (or was it 88 minutes?).

thanks for the review Ralph. Loved you in Die Hard btw. Did you really eat all those Twinkies?
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post #13 of 17 Old 01-09-2009, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnj1958 View Post

thanks for the review Ralph. Loved you in Die Hard btw. Did you really eat all those Twinkies?

Greetings,

Every last one.....


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post #14 of 17 Old 01-09-2009, 10:58 AM
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^^^

Is there something I'm missing here?
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post #15 of 17 Old 01-09-2009, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rveras View Post

^^^

Is there something I'm missing here?

Greetings,

rveras, my impression is that he thinks that I look like Reginald Vel Johnson who played the LAPD sergeant in Die Hard. While I don't agree with him I really like Reginald Vel Johnson so what the heck?

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post #16 of 17 Old 03-12-2009, 10:56 AM
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I saw this last night as a BB rental. Worth a rental, not a purchase.

Good audio but pq is flat and uninteresting. I have difficulty understanding how pros continue to get flesh tones off, but they do.

Al looked like a wax version of himself, but he continues to have great hair!!

Although accurate, I find watching characters continually talking on cell phones distracting. This film had excessive cell phone use, to the point that it was used as a way to spell out the plot and thoughts of the actors.

Still good to see actors like Pachino on the big screen. Even if they are just collecting a paycheck to round out their income in the golden years.

I am glad they didn't partner Pachino with a younger "partner" like is done to attract audience when so many older leading men are in starring roles.
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post #17 of 17 Old 03-12-2009, 01:29 PM
 
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I am a huge Al Pacino fan, had to see this movie....I bought it out of instinct...

Wish I would of rented it first.
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