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INSIDE MAN: thebland DVD Review

post #1 of 69
Thread Starter 
Story The film has an excellent cast of Clive Owen, Jodie Foster, Willem Dafoe, Denzel Washington and Christopher Plummer. Clive Owen stars as a 'moral' bank robber who robs a bank but does little in terms of stealing the cash. A well connected Jodie Foster is hired to protect the interests of Christopher Plummer (Bank's founder) who is hiding something in the bank. But while heavy on talent, the story is light on depth. In watching it last night and found it quite boring....Geez...this bank heist goes on forever and then the tidy little wrap up at the end is done in a matter of 10 minutes. It was easily 45 minutes too long and simply plods too much. It just seemed to go on and on and on and on. Jody Foster, for her limited screen time, was fun to watch. Her sophisticated look is capped with her bright red Birkin bag (for those who don't know, it is the bag of all bags to own and almost impossible to acquire from Hermes but has been the 'it' bag for well over 20 years. It's price is astounding and it is simply leather). However, it looks like she's put on some weight in the caboose. Somehow she has some dirt on Denzel and tries to use it to control him. But the highly educated Foster is no match for the street smart Washington (a tired old plot line). Denzel was Denzel (same character type in every movie) and his fedora was annoyed me, too. Who wears a fedora? There wasn't enough made of Christopher Plummer's past to make the whole story of more interest nor do we ever find out how Clive Owen knew of this dark secret that somehow escaped investigators of the past...It seemed like a lot of shallow stories wrapped up in one big film. Light on the intelligence and heavy on the boredom.

Picture 4/5: This DVD is filmed primarily in a dark bank and indoors with some outdoor footage. The overall feel is shadowy and it shows in the DVD. Contrast is deep throughout as are black levels. Colors are more muted in presentation fitting for the dimly lit scenes. EE is minimal and images can be sharp. However, there is a fair amount of softness to various scenes and color saturation is limited. All and all an adequate picture but little in terms of excellence.


Sound 3/5: Recorded level allowed for viewing at -5 from reference. Dialog for the most part was very good and well integrated. Most every line was easily intelligible. Surround activity was minimal to non-existent. Most of the film was dialog driven and so there were little in terms of effects. The soundtrack primarily delivered from the front 3 channels. Bass was also very light. I wondered if any LFE was used at all? Sure in some blasts there was some bass that kicked in but nothing that would stress the smallest of subs. Moreover, there was some inconsistency in the overall sound level at times. For instance, police cars arriving at the scene were overly loud and harsh sounding relative to the more quiet soundtrack. It didn't match the soundtrack's level at all. Dynamics were limited as well. Really nothing to get excited in this soundtrack. It certainly could have been improved..particularly with ambient sounds and such. I would rate it as barely passable.


My set up hads been recalibrated for HD DVD (and tweaked for DVD). So, look for some new reviews to start rolling out as my system is now back up to snuff.
post #2 of 69
The titile of this thread should be...Inside Man: thebland's fashion review.
post #3 of 69
post #4 of 69
Great review, Jeff.

My take on the movie is nearly the same.

Too bad this film was done sloppily.
The plot shows promise, unfortunately, not enough thought went into its execution.

BTW, good to hear your setup is up and running again.
Looking forward to your upcoming reviews.
post #5 of 69

And women bitch about a $3000 plasma. Just more reasons for my signature and title.
post #6 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by spyder696969 View Post

And women bitch about a $3000 plasma. Just more reasons for my signature and title.

But ... while everyone and his Joe Sixpack brother has or can buy a $3,000 plasma, how many of your wive's friends have a bejeweled exotic leather Hermes Birkin handbag? TV model and technology changes every 6-12 months and a depreciating item versus waiting 2-4 years for a work-of-art handbag that will only increase in value (if well taken care of)? Why, there's no comparison! Come on, buy her the bag!! Think of it as an "investment."

Buy it now for $7,000, get it in a year or two and store it securely and safely, and then sell it in 10 years for 2x-3x what you paid for it. (tax-free, too!)
post #7 of 69
Well, my gf doesn't believe in purses, so it would be a good buy for us...but how many women out there would take this thing out to show their girlfriends and get some damn "Azure Moonlight Effervescient Swirl #57" lipstick or a "mocha-latte-double-half-caf-chino-spresso" on it, thus making it worthless?
post #8 of 69


These links set off my Anti-Virus

Says it has PHISH/EBAYFRAUD.M embedded in the code.
post #9 of 69
Thread Starter 
Check eBay for the more 'reputable' dealers and you'll see that they go for $11K up to $40K. THe bags are so under the radar, Hermes doesn't even show them or mention them on their website..nor advertise them in magazines. You can't get the bags (purposely limited production), that is why they are so in demand.. Or you can get on the Hermes wait list and hoipefully you get a call in a few years.... Remember, this is the store that dissed Oprah..

post #10 of 69
A purse snatcher could throw away the contents and keep the purse.
post #11 of 69
I give this movie a little more credit than you guys have. Though Denzel played "Denzel", he still did it with the style and presence that makes him fun to watch. I liked the way he was #2 trying to keep a strong #1 image. The bank scenes had some nice things going on that may seem cliche to some, but I thought they were clever.

I thought the sound was good (4/5) especially the music at the beginning with the big, deep drum.

On the other hand, the Chris Plummer storyline was under developed, and the love story was a distraction at best. Some of the "twists" were obvious
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
that recorded speech, for example
. Still, I thought it was a fun, cerebral movie as long as you don't raise you expectations based on the cast.
post #12 of 69
I've never seen Jodie look as good as she did in this movie.
Tanned, relaxed, and with perfectly toned legs. She's a knockout!

Good movie, a bit long and drawn out with nothing much to distinguish it as a Spike Lee movie.

I'd definitely recommend it as a rental.
post #13 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tweakophyte View Post

the love story was a distraction at best.

Love story? Between Denzel and his fiance, or between the guy and his Albanian ex-wife?
post #14 of 69
I don't remember any bag.
Does someone have a screenshot?

Seth
post #15 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrikos View Post

I've never seen Jodie look as good as she did in this movie.
Tanned, relaxed, and with perfectly toned legs. She's a knockout!

I don't know, I always felt that she was a bit too "dykie" for my taste....I didn't particularly like the character she portrayed in this movie although she did it well. She represented those slimy money grubbing women who would lie right to your face with a big smile on her face. We have lots of those in New York City. Usually, those roles are reserved for men in movies...


Quote:
Originally Posted by sethwas View Post

I don't remember any bag.
Does someone have a screenshot?

Seth

I think the bag was only shown when she was in her office. It was sitting on the chair next to her desk with an Apple computer on it.
post #16 of 69
Great popcorn caper flick. Held my undivided attention from beginning to end. Loved all the pissing contests, battles of wits and twists and turns.
No negatives. Just Two thumbs up.
post #17 of 69
Well, I'd agree with you Robert, with the qualification that after its over I felt a little cheated. As a caper film, the solution didn't live up to the premise, at least for me.
post #18 of 69
I liked this movie. It's certainly worth the rental. However, I can't really argue with Jeff's review. All the points he makes are spot on.
post #19 of 69
Jeff, you didnt happen to catch this one in theaters right? When i saw it in the theater many scenes had weird 'tearing' like effect, like you see sometimes playing a 3d videogame when the video card cant keep up. I didnt notice it on the DVD so much, but some of the fast pans seemed to still be a little bit off. Notice anything similar?
post #20 of 69
Why was William Dafoe even in this movie? He had absolutely no character development which was sort of strange. They should have subbed Dennis Franz.

I thought some of the Director's techniques were sort of strange and distracting. I'm not really sure of the points he was trying to make with some of them.
post #21 of 69
Foster rocks in this, a real sophisticated sexy b....

this movie perhaps embarrassed some banks cf WWII...
post #22 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by No Clue View Post

Why was William Dafoe even in this movie? He had absolutely no character development which was sort of strange. They should have subbed Dennis Franz.

I thought some of the Director's techniques were sort of strange and distracting. I'm not really sure of the points he was trying to make with some of them.


I am on board with you. I was thinking the same thing about Willem after the first scene with him. Denzel was well, Denzel. The plot had one big hole in the end,
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
how did the others make it out?
Jodie, although she had some good scenes, I couldn't help but think "Why does her role exist in the film", although I guess it does tie in (but strangely imo). The robbers were too darned nice.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
"You do that and I'll shoot you" then beats the guy.
It was a boring caper imo, and the "surprise" scene at the end was kind of like a big let down. Plus the shifting back and forth was too subtle and it wasn't until it had occured several times that I realized this was all afterwards. I was fairly un-entertained by the scripted, been-there-done-that plot. 3/5 and that is being generous .

[edit] now that is funny, I just realized I repeated the words from the original post: Denzel is Denzel. That is funny. And I intended the same meaning. Reminds me of Cruise in that regards. [/edit]
post #23 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebisch View Post

The plot had one big hole in the end,
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
how did the others make it out?

You weren't paying attention.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Of course they all walked right out with the hostages.
That was why they'd all donned the same uniforms and masks as the hostages.
No one, except Dalton Russell, had been seen by anybody.
So there was no way for the cops to determine who was a hostage and who was a perpetrator.
post #24 of 69
And...
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Throughout the whole thing, the bank robbers were mixing in with the hostages. Like the girl with the rack, the guy that took his mask off and was mouthing off and got dragged into the other room. They did this so the other hostages would remember seeing them, and could say "that guy was a hostage, I saw them drag him off" or whatever.

Actually when the shot pans over to the bus, the bank robbers are all sitting in the window seats from front to back.
post #25 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertWood View Post

You weren't paying attention.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Of course they all walked right out with the hostages.
That was why they'd all donned the same uniforms and masks as the hostages.
No one, except Dalton Russell, had been seen by anybody.
So there was no way for the cops to determine who was a hostage and who was a perpetrator.

This is correct. Smart move on the part of the "bank robbers".
post #26 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertWood View Post

You weren't paying attention.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Of course they all walked right out with the hostages.
That was why they'd all donned the same uniforms and masks as the hostages.
No one, except Dalton Russell, had been seen by anybody.
So there was no way for the cops to determine who was a hostage and who was a perpetrator.


Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Wouldn't the hostages recognize the guards' voices?
And the guards' voices would have been recorded in their post interviews with the cops and recognized by the hostages later?
Or even matched electronically?
post #27 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Wouldn't the hostages recognize the guards' voices?
And the guards' voices would have been recorded in their post interviews with the cops and recognized by the hostages later?
Or even matched electronically?


Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

The "guards" didn't talk much to the hostages, except for barking a few commands and saying "Stevie / Steve-o, Steven." There were probably 30 people, give or take. They used pictures, not voice recordings of the other people. And they wouldn't have anything to "electronically match".
post #28 of 69
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Wouldn't the robbers' voices be recorded digitally inside/outside the bank and therefore, could be compared to the group caught/questioned after the surrender?
Even if the robbers attempted to "mask" their voices, there are devices that can tell the difference. This is quite basic nowadays.
post #29 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Wouldn't the robbers' voices be recorded digitally inside/outside the bank and therefore, could be compared to the group caught/questioned after the surrender?
Even if the robbers attempted to "mask" their voices, there are devices that can tell the difference. This is quite basic nowadays.


Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Where would their voices be recorded? Video surveillance doesn't have audio. They had to put the bugs in the pizza containers to hear anything at all. Why would there be microphones in the storage rooms and offices downstairs, etc.?
post #30 of 69
LOL. oink, you've been watching too much CSI.

While the technology is there for such a thing, it's not very accurate or typically court-admissable, not to mention too expensive for most PDs. One of my favorite stories is when we went to the crime lab for school and all my classmates were dumbfounded that it took an entire team of professionals months to match fingerprints well enough to be used in court. One girl asked, "Well, where's the machine that instantly matches the prints like the one on CSI?" The head technician and myself were nearly in tears. In a class of 28 people, nobody else got it.
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