Unlocked Blu-ray Review

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Rapace does Spooks

by Casimir Harlow Aug 27, 2017 at 7:10 AM

  • Movies review


    Unlocked Blu-ray Review
    SRP: £12.99

    Film Review

    Noomi Rapace stars in Unlocked a by-the-numbers, but still reasonably enjoyable, spy action thriller.

    Rapace plays a CIA operative with a checkered past, still reeling from a tragedy which left dozens dead in a terrorist attack she was too late to avert, called in to interrogate a suspect. Before long she finds herself up to her neck in a vast conspiracy, facing deadly assassins and on the run, with the CIA back in Langley wondering whether she herself has gone rogue. Reluctantly partnering up with Orlando Bloom's ex-military burglar, she desperately tries to get to the truth before she is silenced. Bond Director Michael Apted's Unlocked is a fairly standard thriller that benefits from a fairly strong cast and relies upon a sheer volume of twists and turns in a desperate attempt to at least keep you guessing about one or two of them.
    The supporting cast have a gas - Toni Collette sports her worst hair style yet but gets to blast up a tree with an assault rifle, Michael Douglas chews the scenery, and John Malkovich goes full-Malkovich, getting the best lines. Even Bloom plays it a little different, although its a slightly throwaway role, and Rapace... well Rapace really should have been catapulted to stardom after Prometheus, but perhaps films like this - which are arguably either the top end of DTV or the bottom end of theatrical - are the best we can expect given some of the other work she's been involved in recently. Fans of films like The Take and Spooks: The Greater Good will find this a similar, derivative-but-enjoyable low key spy action thriller.

    Picture Quality

    Unlocked Picture Quality
    Unlocked reaches Blu-ray complete with a strong 1080p/AVC-encoded High Definition video presentation, framed in the spy actioner's original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.40:1 widescreen. It may not quite have the gloss and perfection of some major, big budget releases, but it still fares pretty well with clean digital cinematography and a polished style despite the UK setting.

    The Blu-ray delivers a strong presentation

    Indeed it's another one of those films that makes London look unnaturally clean and modern, although some of the more grimy locations still show through, as the spy-on-the-run thriller takes us across the city. Detail is generally pretty impressive, whether on skin texturing - Bloom looks frighteningly weathered - or background nuance, and clarity doesn't come at the expense of any significant digital defects. The colour scheme is reasonably reflective of the UK climate, allowing for rich but seldom vivid tones, and good enough blacks to offer a backbone to the palette. Overall it's a strong presentation.

    Sound Quality

    Unlocked Sound Quality
    A solid audio track that ticks all the right boxes

    The accompanying DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 does a decent enough job too, offering strong presentation of the effects and score, whilst delivering dialogue centrally across the frontal array, with clarity and prioritisation. Effects take in the thwap of silenced (movie) handguns, and the thunder of those without silencers, spraying your living room, perforating the walls and upping the intensity in the action setpieces. It's not exactly Bourne, but - as noted - it fares well alongside the likes of the Spooks movie and The Take, with a decent amount of tension, suitably cracked by a generic though effective score which keeps the array more than entertained even in the less intense setpieces. It's a solid but standard track, ticking all the right boxes, but it does so with enough commitment to result in a decent enough aural presentation.



    Blu-ray Verdict

    Unlocked Blu-ray Verdict
    Fans of The Take and Spooks: The Greater Good will find this a similar, derivative-but-enjoyable spy action thriller

    Unlocked doesn't do anything new, but it's a perfectly enjoyable piece taken for what it is - which is basically a glorified DTV thriller with a strong cast. And suitably good video and audio (albeit with a dearth of extras) make for a decent enough purchase for fans.

    Suggested retail price when reviewed: £12.99

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