Invictus, Blu-ray (2-Disc Set) (2009)

by | Jun 13, 2010 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Invictus, Blu-ray (2-Disc Set) (2009)

Starring: Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon  
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Studio: Warner Home Video [5/18/10]
Video: 2.40:1 anamorphic/enhanced for 16:9 1080p HD
Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 Surround; French, Spanish DD 5.1 Surround
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Extras: “Vision, Courage and Honor” picture-in-picture feature; “Mandela Meets Morgan” featurette; “The Eastwood Factor” featurette; “Matt Damon Plays Rugby” featurette; Invictus movie trailer; BD-Live; standard DVD copy; digital copy
Length: 133 minutes
Movie Rating: ****             Video Rating: ****              Audio Rating: ****

“Invictus” is the latest directorial film from Clint Eastwood.  The film tells the uplifting true story of how Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) joined forces with Francois Pienaar (Matt Damon), the captain of South Africa’s rugby team, to help unite their country.  Only a few years removed from being released as a long-detained political prisoner, newly-elected President Mandela knows his nation remains racially and economically divided in the aftermath of apartheid.  Mandela believes that he can bring his country together through the universal language of sport.  Mandela calls upon Pienaar and together the two men rally South Africa’s rugby team in a historic run to the 1995 Rugby World Cup Championship match.   
I’m not a follower of the sport of rugby, but that didn’t diminish my enjoyment of “Invictus”.  I liked the ‘triumph of the underdog’ storyline particularly so in this movie because it was based on true events.  If for no other reason, Morgan Freeman’s outstanding portrayal of Nelson Mandela is worth checking out this fine Blu-ray release.  Recommended.  

The overall high definition video quality of this Blu-ray DVD is very good.  Images have a soft quality to them but still exhibit fine detail.  Black levels are inky black throughout the movie.  Colors are vibrant and bright with well-saturated hues.  Although film grain is present is some scenes, picture defect mastering is otherwise top-notch with no major flaws or compression artifacts.  The overall audio quality is also very good.  The soundtrack does a nice job of incorporating all of the discrete channels into its mix.  During the first half of the film where the story is largely dialogue-driven, with vocals crisp and natural sounding.  In the second half where the rugby action takes place, the surround channels are very active in reproducing the sound effects of the game plus the music score.  Several split rear surround effects are also discernable.  The low frequency effects channel produces deep and palpable bass.  

– Calvin Harding Jr.

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