Entebbe Blu-ray Review
Where's the Delta Force when you need them?
Entebbe Film Review
Taking a more documentary-style approach to the events that inspired The Delta Force, Entebbe somehow drains the tension out of an extremely tense situation.The Israel/Palestine conflict, as with many, has thoroughly blurred the lines between the concepts of freedom fighters and terrorists. When it comes to hijacking passenger aircraft, however, few find as much grey area, leaving it an easy set-up for thrilling action films about special ops groups trying to rescue innocent people caught in a confined space thousands of feet into the air. Whether we're talking The Delta Force or Executive Decision, or numerous others, few of these films have even tried to justify the actions of the terrorists.
Entebbe attempts to rectify that, looking behind the machinations of the PLFP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine), an increasingly desperate organisation that, in the film, find themselves on the brink of collapse at the hands of the Israeli forces and compelled to take some drastic action to free their incarcerated comrades, namely, hijacking a plane with 200-odd passengers, en route from Tel Aviv to Paris, and landing in Africa. Personally welcomed by Idi Amin, the quartet of terrorists find their numbers bolstered by the Ugandan military, leaving the Israeli Government in a bind over how to get the hostages back in one piece.
Entebbe doesn't know what it wants to be and suffers greatly as a result
It's hard to know whether it would be possible to ever really get behind the people who hijacked this plane, but Director Jose Padilha's attempts are distinctly ineffective. Indeed the excellent and seemingly pro-Israel Spielberg movie Munich often afforded a much more interesting look at both sides through the moral quandary that the protagonists find themselves in, and in attempting to stay out of politics to merely describe events, Padilha seldom gets into the mindset of either the freedom fighting terrorists or the armed forces behind the desperate raid, leaving Entebbe a stodgy film but one with no depth.
The acting is solid, given what they are working with, but Entebbe (also known as 7 days in Entebbe - which was somewhat wisely removed given that almost nothing happens over that entire week) doesn't know what it wants to be and suffers greatly as a result.
Entebbe Blu-ray PictureEntebbe comes to Region B locked UK Blu-ray courtesy of Entertainment One, afforded a very good and largely demo quality 1080p/AVC-encoded video presentation framed in the movie's original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.4:1 widescreen.
Very good and largely demo quality
Detail is excellent, with superior clarity throughout. There's a 70s tone to the piece but it isn't derived from grainy tones, instead revelling in the sun-drenched locales and period clothing. Softness is never an issue, and whilst a couple of CG-backdrop shots do become vaguely apparent, there's little really to complain about in the image, which benefits from rich tones, solid blacks and almost no defects.
Entebbe Blu-ray SoundA strong track
The accompanying DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track never really gets better than its opening few minutes, as the introductory crawl is punctuated by perfectly choreographed drum beats (later replicated for the raid). Unfortunately that brief spell of imagination doesn't really seep into the rest of the piece until towards the very end, which leads to a distinct loss of momentum in between; something seldom rectified by the background score. Dialogue remains firmly prioritised across the array, and a few gunshots ring true, with the authentic aircraft noises affording a persistent background. It's a strong track, but never as innovative as that opening crawl.
Entebbe Blu-ray ExtrasNothing but some additional dance sequences and a brief Featurette
Entebbe Blu-ray VerdictA solid release
Entebbe is a tale which has been told many times before, with largely fictionalised accounts often providing the most entertainment. A more politically-infused approach is welcome, but this angle doesn't always work with this particular production, which never really gets to know its key players, and drops the ball on tension in its attempt to be more documentary-like in nature. Argo and Munich covered similar territory much more effectively, whilst pure entertainment value is still owned by the likes of The Delta Force.
The UK Blu-ray affords the film excellent video and strong audio, as well as a smattering of extra features, leaving it a solid release for fans of the film to check out.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £9.99
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