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post #1 of 21 Old 06-07-2009, 06:58 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=144643&d=1244382921
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

86






Studio and Year: Columbia Pictures - 2009
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 118 minutes
Genre: Thriller

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English/French Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Spanish/Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Starring: Clive Owen, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl
Directed by: Tom Tykwer
Music by: Tom Tykwer, Johnny Klimek, Reinhold Heil
Written by: Eric Singer
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 9, 2009







"Is your money making a killing?"



Film Synopsis:

Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is determined
to expose an arms dealing ring responsible for facilitating acts of terrorism around the globe. But as his investigation leads Salinger and his partner, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), deeper into the secret world of greed, corruption and murder, they become targets of a deadly conspiracy so vast, they soon find the only people left to trust are each other. This pulse-pounding thriller plays a high-stakes
game of suspense, intrigue and explosive action.



My Take:

Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Owen) has been hot on the trail of those running the International Bank of Business and Credit (IBBC) in order to expose their link to organized crime as well as the mysterious deaths of anyone who has interfered with their dealings. He witnesses the murder of a colleague that has just met with an informant who was set to provide a viable link that could bring it all down. Working in conjunction with Eleanor Whitman (Watts) of the Manhattan District Attorney's office he follows a trail of bread crumbs that takes him to Italy, Germany, New York and Turkey. What he uncovers about the internal workings of this corporation is both disturbing and viscous as they will stop at nothing to attain their goal. A lucrative arms deal that will net them billions. The question is whether or not Salinger and Whitman have the ability to prove their case and even if they can will the banks corruption extend beyond the criminal world to suppress it?

The International is a competent thriller that features two solid leads in Naomi Watts and Clive Owen. The plot has a few twists and turns but none that come as a surprise. The story seems relevant and the first two acts were intelligently written as they drew me in. Later as it unfolds I felt that it took a different turn where things that made sense earlier lacked that commonality and relied a bit too much on the suspension of belief. I found the ending to be a little bit of a let down. It covers all of the bases but the slow and seemingly deliberate pacing had me hoping for a bigger finale which in my opinion never materialized. In addition to Watts and Owen the cast featured two accomplished character actors in James Reborn (underused) and Armin Mueller-Stahl. I liked it but felt that the payoff didn't hold up when compared to the build up of the earlier plot points.





Parental Guide:

The rating is for some sequences of violence and action.






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: 82



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

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

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692



Video: 90


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


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

The International comes to Blu-ray from Columbia Pictures featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 28 mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel audio that has an average bitrate of 1.4 mbps.

This is an excellent high definition video presentation that offers impressive transparent imagery. The color palette is deliberately subdued and held to primary use of black, grays, whites, and blues that give it a cooler emphasis. Colors are rendered well with realistic looking depth and detail. This is a solid, high bitrate encoding that delivers superlative image resolution. Close ups revealed high level detail that allows the pores, stubble, peach fuzzy hair and subtle variations in the complexions of the cast to be perceivable. The texture on the surfaces of objects was just as defining which gave them visibly apparent structure and tangible quality. Black levels and contrast are excellent and visible detail within dark backgrounds and shadows equally as strong. The video had a pristine quality that appeared to be devoid of video related anomalies and artifacts. The Dolby TrueHD soundtrack delivered descriptive, supremely intonated dialogue, along with good dynamic presence and appreciable dimension and discernible separation across the front three channels. The mix is essentially front channel dominant for the majority of the film. The rear channels are utilized primarily for ambient extension with the exception of a large scale action sequence that engages the entire system and contains plenty of immersive surround activity. During this segment the front and rear speakers blend well to create a cohesive soundfield that contains a combination of discrete/spatial effects accompanied by potent dynamics and deep low frequency accentuation. The music score added synthesized bass that occasionally filled the room with palpably deep low frequency energy. Overall this is a satisfactory fine mix that left me wanting.

** CIH users should note that the subtitles appear in both the picture and letterbox area.**



Bonus Features:


  • Cinechat - Send onscreen messages to friends while watching the movie together

  • The International Experience: BonusView PiP interactive feature

  • Commentary with Director Tom Tykwer and Writer Eric Singer

  • (HD) Salinger & Whitman - extended scene

  • (HD) Making The International - 30 minute featurette

  • Shooting at the Guggenheim - 6 minute set design featurette

  • (HD) The architecture of The International - 6 minute featurette

  • (HD) The Autostadt - 5 minute feature

  • (HD) 11 BD Previews

  • BD-Live enabled

  • Digital Copy Bonus Disc - A standard definition version of the film that can be downloaded from a compatible PC to a portable media device
attachment.php?attachmentid=144644&d=1244382921



Final Thoughts:

The International is an above average thriller that reels you in but doesn't deliver a strong ending. Its story is engaging enough to keep interest high and Watts and Owen are credible in the lead roles. Its high definition presentation on Blu-ray Disc from Columbia Pictures is excellent and the bonus content contains Blu-ray Disc exclusives as well as offering a solid commentary track and decent documentaries. All in all this is a very nice package for fans and easily worth the cost of a rental to check it out.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 21 Old 06-07-2009, 09:34 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mikeyd2007 View Post

very awesome movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 8/10!

Very constructive...

Very nice review Ralph, I will definitely be checking this out after reading your review
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post #3 of 21 Old 06-07-2009, 11:45 AM
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i watched this movie yesterday and i almost fallow sleep very boring to me, the AQ and PQ where very good

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post #4 of 21 Old 06-07-2009, 10:57 PM
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This movie was pretty good. I enjoyed it. The movie had an interesting concept to it. I loved the scene with the shootout in that one building. It reminded me of Clive Owen in Shoot 'Em Up!
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post #5 of 21 Old 06-08-2009, 12:03 AM
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I don't know. With the exception of the museum shoot-out I thought it pretty boring.
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post #6 of 21 Old 06-08-2009, 07:05 AM
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First two acts were enjoyable and interesting, the final act fell apart and left me wanting a lot more. Not a terrible movie by any means, but very middling.

Nice review Ralph...the video encode is fabulous!

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post #7 of 21 Old 06-08-2009, 08:13 AM
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This movie was...Oh Yeah!! Awsome!

Except for the last part. As what Dave said kind left the moviegoers hanging. In the end i was like uummm where's the rest? But nonetheless i thought the whole movie was great.

Definitely picking this one up.

Cheers
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post #8 of 21 Old 06-08-2009, 09:07 PM
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Awesome movie,will pick this one.
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post #9 of 21 Old 06-09-2009, 12:21 AM
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Some of you are saying the movie was mediocre. I liked the movie quite a bit, but I do understand where you guys are coming from. If this movie had more action in it then it would have probably been an excellent movie.
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post #10 of 21 Old 06-09-2009, 07:50 AM
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I really liked the only other Tom Tykwer film I've seen (Run Lola Run) and was quite interested in seeing this one. I enjoyed the old school feel of The International--holding the camera steady and suppressing the urge to insert cuts every couple of seconds are lost arts that many of today's directors need to rediscover. I also enjoyed that Clive Owen wasn't fighting his way in or out of trouble every couple of minutes; heroes who try to work out problems with their intellect are, sadly, an endangered species in today's cinema.

Unfortunately, this movie, with the villainous organization being a multinational juggernaut and the changing of locations from one exotic locale to another, is inevitably going to be compared to the hyperkinetic Bourne movies and the latest Bond film. The International is actually a thriller that harkens back to '70s classics like The Conversation, which is about the hunt and matching wits against an opponent rather than grunts unloading endless rounds of ammunition at each other. Having said that, the set piece in the Guggenheim is extremely well done, but it seems rather out of place given the pace and tone of the rest of the film. I don't know if the backers of this film ordered Tykwer to insert the wild shootout to entice action fans, but I think that gunfight, as great as it is, really should have been saved for another film, one that is more action oriented.

Undoubtedly, The International is a flawed film, but it is nevertheless a welcome echo of the great thinking man's thrillers of the past. I'm very much hoping that we get more of these types of films since good, adult-oriented thrillers (or even adult-oriented movies) are so hard to come by these days.


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post #11 of 21 Old 06-13-2009, 07:37 AM
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Saw this last night. Sadly, BB was out of the BD version however.

We enjoyed the movie. While I like some action movies, it's a pleasure to see a movie carried with dialogue and plot. I would have preferred the movie be a little longer to allow the plot to develop more. I would have liked to know more about the inter-relationships between IBBC and the various governments and their agencies.

The ending is probably much more realistic then what you might typically get from Hollywood.
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post #12 of 21 Old 06-13-2009, 07:23 PM
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Saw this the other night. Thought it was okay.

The picture quality and audio quality, on the other hand, were reference.

That opening scene in the car with rain dropping down was spectacular. Some of the best usage of surround and ambience I've heard in a while, and the shootout in the museum..AWESOME!. If there was just a little more action, I would have probably enjoyed this more and would have picked up the disc when it got cheaper.

I have no idea how this scored an 82 here...
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post #13 of 21 Old 06-14-2009, 02:36 AM
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Yes I agree the picture on this puppy was incredible, just wow and wasn't even blu ray. Too bad it's a crapper and confusing as hell. You had to be a freakin detective to follow this thing.

CLIVE OWEN IS NOT leading man material. Lacking charisma and star power.
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post #14 of 21 Old 06-16-2009, 04:39 AM
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Quote:


** CIH users should note that the subtitles appear in both the picture and letterbox area.**

Thanks for that Ralph, will be watching this in the next couple of nights.

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post #15 of 21 Old 06-16-2009, 07:36 AM
 
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Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

Yes I agree the picture on this puppy was incredible, just wow and wasn't even blu ray. Too bad it's a crapper and confusing as hell. You had to be a freakin detective to follow this thing.

CLIVE OWEN IS NOT leading man material. Lacking charisma and star power.[IMG]http://***************/9/P/i.jpg[/IMG]

Lol I agree..I picked it up after reading this, I enjoyed it but I do agree with the 'detective' thing
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post #16 of 21 Old 06-16-2009, 08:05 AM
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Agreed, reference PQ here! The AQ wasn't too shabby either.

The movie itself was pretty good and it maintained my interest till the end. I wasn't prepared for the graphic nature of the museum shootout though. It seemed out-of-place with the rest of the movie.

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post #17 of 21 Old 06-16-2009, 09:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

Yes I agree the picture on this puppy was incredible, just wow and wasn't even blu ray. Too bad it's a crapper and confusing as hell. You had to be a freakin detective to follow this thing.

CLIVE OWEN IS NOT leading man material. Lacking charisma and star power.

I tend to differ there. I find Clive Owen does a great job as a leading man material. He was fantastic in Children of Men.

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post #18 of 21 Old 06-16-2009, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vpn75 View Post

Agreed, reference PQ here! The AQ wasn't too shabby either.

The movie itself was pretty good and it maintained my interest till the end. I wasn't prepared for the graphic nature of the museum shootout though. It seemed out-of-place with the rest of the movie.

A bit of a spoiler but, since it's out there, I agree with you. Museum shootout is unrealistic and almost lame. Movie was a bit of a drag for me.
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post #19 of 21 Old 06-17-2009, 07:14 AM
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I finally watched this movie, and it was decent overall. However, I found myself snoozing through some of the dialog driven scenes. I thought the shootout scene was going to a lot better than it actually was. I guess the buzz on the internet was just too overblown. That happens sometimes. I still like Clive's other films like "Shoot 'em Up" and "Children of Men" better.

The PQ & AQ of this film were outstanding though. I don't see myself watching this movie again.
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post #20 of 21 Old 06-19-2009, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundnexx View Post

I finally watched this movie, and it was decent overall. However, I found myself snoozing through some of the dialog driven scenes. I thought the shootout scene was going to a lot better than it actually was. I guess the buzz on the internet was just too overblown. That happens sometimes. I still like Clive's other films like "Shoot 'em Up" and "Children of Men" better.

The PQ & AQ of this film were outstanding though. I don't see myself watching this movie again.

Watched this last night and have to admit also I ended up snoozing also. Its ok but certainly not worth bragging about to your mates.

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post #21 of 21 Old 06-21-2009, 09:38 AM
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I took a chance and rented this movie from BB only because I have never seen a Clive Owen movie that I didn't like. The International was no exception. As others have noted, the PQ is wonderful, in fact I thought it was demonstration quality, one of the most beautifully shot films I can remember. The Dolby TrueHD audio, while just fine, was not particularly memorable.

As to the film's merits, I loved it. Even its dark, mordant ending worked for me. There is nothing uplifting about The International but, thanks to Ralph's review and a couple of reviews I read online, I was ready for it.

The International is a thinking man's thriller. Every scene is so carefully crafted that not a frame is wasted. The shootout in the Guggenheim Museum, for example, moved the story along in a very exciting way with an almost complete absence of dialog. Some of the long shots, the shot of Manhattan with the Triborough Bridge (I think) in the foreground and the long shot of Calvini Arms Company across open water come to mind, were dazzlingly beautiful.

I fear that many viewers will react as Ralph and some other posters here have done by downrating the film because of its cynical ending. I understand that sort of thing is not for all tastes but the movie as a whole gave us a sad but true picture of a man deeply dedicated to his job who, despite his dedication, could not substantially reduce the international arms trade. Nevertheless, he did end up with consolation of a sort that he was not expecting. Who better than Clive Owen to portray such a man?

Highly recommended, 8 out of 10 Stars.
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