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The Aggression Scale (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
attachment.php?attachmentid=245695&d=1336353468
The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373697

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109940&d=1210373697

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

87






Studio and Year: Anchor Bay Films - 2012
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 85 minutes
Genre: Action, Thriller

Disc Format: BD-25
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Fabianne Therese, Ryan Hartwig, Ray Wise, Dana Ashbrook and Derek Mears
Directed by: Steven C. Miller
Music by: Kevin Riepl
Written by: Ben Powell
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: May 29, 2012







"ag·gres·sion scale: (noun)
The Aggression Scale is a psychological test measuring the frequency of overt aggressive behaviors that may result in physical or psychological injury to others"



Film Synopsis:

Four heavily armed hitmen and two unusual teenagers go to war over $500,000 of stolen cash.




My Take:

attachment.php?attachmentid=245696&d=1336353555The Aggression Scale was a surprise. Not knowing anything about this one, I became intrigued by two of the top billed cast (Ray Wise and Dana Ashbrook) being Twin Peaks vets. No this isn't at all like Twin Peaks, it is more like taking Home Alone and blending it with Straw Dogs and adding a splash of MacGyver. Got your interest? Well I should as this is a cool, flew under the radar flick.

When a Mob Boss played by Ray Wise (Twin Peaks, RoboCop) finds out 500k of his money has been taken while he was away in jail, he send his men after the possible thieves. He tells the guys to be “loud and messy” as to send a message that no one f's with him. When the hit-men show up at one of the possible thieves homes they end up with a lot more on their hands then they bargained for. They are faced off with two teens, Owen, who is a disturbed kid who has been locked up with aggression issues and his new annoying older step sister, Lauren.

The Aggression Scale was brutal and had no time for fluff. It seemed Director/Editor Steven C. Miller had a firm grasp on what worked here and cut the film perfectly. Yes, the film had a few moments of improbability, but its strength was in its unique spin on the recently played out "Home Invasion" genre. Some of the acting was questionable (check out the hit-man smoking. It was hilarious as it was obvious the actor is not a smoker), and the clichéd and terribly written older sister drove me batty. These faults were forgivable when the young Owen turns on the bad guys and start to open up his bloody and unforgiving can of whoop-a$$. The brisk pacing kept the level of suspense up the entire runtime of the thriller. This one was super fun (I was rooting for the kid!) and worth a viewing, if only to see the young Owen and whiny sister going completely mental on the bad guys.



Parental Guide:

Rated R for strong bloody violence 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: 88



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699


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

Video: 86



  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

The Aggression Scale comes Blu-ray Disc from Anchor Bay Entertainment & Starz featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 25.2 mbps and Dolby TrueHD sound that has an average bitrate of 3.3 mbps

The Dolby TrueHD soundtrack was very strong, and shall I say, Aggressive? Gunshots really felt like a gun was shot in the room as I felt the pressure and heard the bullet whizzing by. Dialouge was always intelligible and surrounds were used with real life ambiance in mind. The track's sound-stage brought me into the scenes, adding the the films suspense. Video-wise, things were not as impressive but still very nice. The over all look of the film was a little soft, where close-up imagery was detailed but backgrounds were lacking delineation. Black levels never wavered and colors were this movies biggest asset as they always looked real, even with the images slightly enhanced contrast.

attachment.php?attachmentid=245697&d=1336353555



Bonus Features:


  • (HD) The Making of The Aggression Scale

  • (HD) Previews: The Wicker Tree, Battle Royale, Seeking Justice




Final Thoughts:

I really enjoyed The Aggression Scale. People into violent thrillers and action flicks will have some fun with this one. Don't expect a masterpiece but do expect to root this kid on as he wrecks the bad guys! The Audio and Video are well above average, however, the lack of extra features make my recommendation a rental.



attachment.php?attachmentid=157497&d=1257542613







Lee Weber
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews




Reference Review System:



JVC DLA-RS45 3D 1080p 3D High Definition Front Projector
Screen Innovations Solar HD 1.3 120" 2.40:1 CinemaScope Screen
Onkyo PR-SC5508 Pre/Pro
Sunfire Theater Grand 7201 Amplifier
Sony PS3 Slim Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
MK Sound S-150MKII LCR
MK Sound S-150T Tripole Surrounds
MK Sound MX-350MKII Subwoofer
post #2 of 12
I've been having great luck with "under-the-radar" flicks lately...finding them often more entertaining than many higher-profile movies, so I'll be checking this one out. Thanks!
post #3 of 12
any titles to recommend?
post #4 of 12
Wait...Lee, you actually got to review a seemingly good movie?
post #5 of 12
Quote:
The Aggression Scale was brutal and had no time for fluff. It seemed Director/Editor Steven C. Miller had a firm grasp on what worked here and cut the film perfectly. Yes, the film had a few moments of improbability, but its strength was in its unique spin on the recently played out "Home Invasion" genre.



well - this is the line that got my attention. Gotta see this one.
post #6 of 12
Think this is going to be a good one.
post #7 of 12
I'm gonna blind buy it based on the review, Amazon's confirmed it! .
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevink109 View Post

any titles to recommend?

Just recently saw DISAPPEARANCE OF ALICE CREED, REPEATERS, and GOD BLESS AMERICA. But my tastes may not match yours!
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cinema13 View Post

Just recently saw DISAPPEARANCE OF ALICE CREED, REPEATERS, and GOD BLESS AMERICA. But my tastes may not match yours!

Let us know your thoughts on Alice Creed here:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1289028

Lee
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Weber View Post

Let us know your thoughts on Alice Creed here:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1289028

Lee

Alice Creed was pretty good! Gonna have to check out this aggressive flick.
post #11 of 12
Going to give this one a rent based on Lee's review. I tend to like these sort of movies.
post #12 of 12
Just watched this flick, Lee is right, it doesn't disappoint. The character Owen is quite a piece of work. On one hand, he'd be a hell of an ally. On the other, it might be better if he never even knew you existed.
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