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September 14, 2011
Thirteen Blu-Ray Review
Cinema Release Blu-Ray Release Distributor Director
31/12/201014/9/2011Icon FilmsGéla Babluani
Video Codec Sound Format OFLC Rating Star(s)
AVC MPEG-4DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1MA15+Jason Statham

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Jason Statham stars in 13/Thirteen.

If there's one thing that will get people interested in this movie it's the stellar cast. While lead actor Sam Riley may not be too well known it's the support cast which includes Jason Statham, Ray Winstone, Mickey Rourke, Alexander Skarsgard, Emmanuelle Chriqui and 50 Cent. It's an impressive list and makes the movie all the more interesting. So what's Thirteen about then?

When Vince (Sam Riley) steals an envelope meant for someone else he assumes a dead man's identity and finds instructions for a mysterious job that promises to pay out a fortune. When he reaches his destination he finds himself embroiled in an underground world of power violence and luck where men gamble on the lives of others. He soon discovers there is no way out in this deadly high stakes game of chance.

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Sam Riley is decent as Vince.
Thirteen is actually a remake of the French film 13 Tzameti - a film which we haven't seen so can't compare this version to however it has the same Georgian writer and director, Géla Babluani so we assume the story, themes and acting are comparable, or perhaps slightly altered to suit the writer/director's intent, the actors involved and a Western market. Admittedly the film is pretty plain, its predominantly shot in a single building, but the tension that builds as each deadly round comes to its conclusion is heart stopping.

We've already listed the impressive cast above and while Sam Riley holds the dominant role throughout the film seeing acting greats such as Statham, Winstone, Rourke, Skarsgard and Cent (well, 50 Cent) should be enough to get many people watching this film. Just keep in mind though that some of these roles are fairly limited - 50 Cent in particular is only on-screen for a few minutes - but Statham has a much more prominent role.

So it's not the greatest film of all time, but this film is pretty tense and it's a fantastic cast for such a (we assume) low budget feature film. It's certainly not a movie for kids, the MA15+ rating is justified, but it offers something a little unique.

Visually Thirteen isn't anything to exceptional. That's not a fault of the transfer but rather the original source material. The majority of the film takes place within a single house so there isn't much natural light, or vibrancy to the image, and even the participants of the game in the house, and those betting on them are typically in dark clothing.

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Mickey Rourke and 50 Cent appear in 13.
From a technical level though this AVC MPEG-4 encoded video retains the film’s original 2.40:1 aspect ratio and with a bitrate that is often quite high the fine detail remains evident during the film.

There is only one single audio track on the disc a lossless DTS-HD Master Audio track (16-bit/48Khz). Admittedly this isn't the most exciting sound track we've ever heard although the surround sound channels do get a nice workout on occasion while dialogue is clear throughout with the one exception being 50 Cent's grumbly voice. Never fear though as he only has a couple of lines in the film so never becomes annoying.

There is only one single subtitle track on this disc which will get the job done if you need to read English subtitles. For those requiring other languages you're out of luck I'm afraid.

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13/Thirteen is a remake of 13 Tzamet.
Unfortunately this is pretty much a bare-bones disc which only includes a couple of trailers before the film automatically starts.

Trailers (5:33/HD): Prior to the movie we have trailers for Tucker And Dale Vs Evil (1:44) which looks pretty amusing actually, the Asian film Mulan (2:08), and Captifs (1:41) which is only presented in Standard Definition.

I had absolutely no idea what to expect from 13, or Thirteen depending which territory you're in, prior to firing up this disc, but it was a decent movie with a very impressive cast and some quite tense moments. For most this will suffice as a rental disc.

Review By: Dave Warner


Note: All images in this article are Copyright© Icon Films. They are only indicative of the movie and not sourced from the vastly superior Blu-Ray disc format.