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June 20, 2013
Stolen Blu-Ray Review
Cinema Release Blu-Ray Release Distributor Director
14/9/2012 (USA)5/6/2013Village RoadshowSimon West
Video Codec Sound Format OFLC Rating Star(s)
AVC MPEG-4DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1MNic Cage

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Nicolas Cage stars in the 2012 film Stolen.

Nicolas Cage is one of our favourite actors of all time. While is output of late has been plentiful it hasn't seen the best quality films. Still, we have some enjoyable moment so when Stolen turned up in the post we were keen to give the disc a spin to check out his latest effort - and a film which sees him re-team with his Con- Air director Simon West (who most recently directed the rather fun action film The Expendables 2.

Nicolas Cage plays master thief Will Montgomery, who was sent to prison for 8 years when a heist goes wrong. Upon his release he visits his daughter, and promises his past is behind him however someone from his past is convinced that the $10 million loot stolen in the heist has been hidden by Will and demands the cash in exchange for the safe return of Will's daughter Alison who is kidnapped. With the FBI unwilling to help, or even believe, Will that his daughter is missing he has to take action into his own hands to save her.

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Federal agents keep an eye on a diamond shop.
With a budget reportedly around the $US35 million mark and a worldwide box office of $US2.1 million around the globe it's clear that this film struggled to find an audience. Of course, success at the box office is never a guarantee of quality - in fact it's often the reverse - but in this case it's probably not a surprise that this "pedestrian" thriller struggled.

While this starts out as a heist film it soon transforms into a kidnapping dramatic film before ending with, well, we won't spoil it. There really is little in this film that we haven't seen before. Nicolas Cage is actually quite restrained from his usual zany persona, but this is still Nicolas Cage so if you're not a fan then this isn't the film to change your mind about him. Stealing the show though is Josh Lucas (who you may know from American Psycho, Hulk and the Australian film Red Dog) who plays a rather disturbed one-legged Vincent. Were it not for his performance this film would have descended into the scrap pile even quicker. Actually both Sami Gayle as Will's daughter Alison, Mark Valley as FBI agent Fletcher, and Malin Akerman as Will's friend Riley also both put in solid performances.

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Stolen looks quite impressive on Blu-Ray.
Stolen isn't one of Nicolas Cage's best films, but it's no a disaster either. Perhaps the most interesting aspect is that Cage, who usually plays the wild character in the film, is out-wilded by Josh Lucas who is superb and a highlight of the film.

Video in Stolen is presented in the film’s original 2.40:1 aspect ratio and has been encoded using the AVC MPEG-4 codec. With many scenes in the film taking place either at night or in poorly lit scenarios the overall presentation is impressive with a natural presentation in terms of tone and colours while the fine detail shines be it on distant shots of the city, or close up facial detail. We didn't notice any glaring issues with the transfer - the occasional extremely light colour banding, so fans of the film will enjoy this high definition transfer.

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Malin Akerman as Riley Jeffers in Stolen.
Stolen is presented on Blu-Ray with a lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track (this differs from the American release which contained a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track although in theory they should be near identical lossless tracks) that generally conveys the action pretty well. We noticed a few moments where the dialogue was a little muffled, sections where we wanted a little more sub-woofer grunt, and at times the track became a little front heavy, but in general this is a solid audio experience. At the very least this Blu-Ray would offer a vast improvement over the Dolby Digital 5.1 track at 448kbps on the DVD version in Australia.

The disc states it also has a Dolby Digital 5.1 track through the menu however by selecting this it switches the audio between the lossless DTS-HD track and a Dolby Digital 2.0 track encoded at 192kbps. The Blu-Ray also contains an Audio Description track for the Vision Impaired also encoded in Dolby Digital 2.0 at 192kbps and while it gets the job done a surround sound track would have been nicer. The disc contains only a single Descriptive Subtitle track for the Hearing Impaired which is colour coded to the person talking and is mostly accurate to the dialogue with some brief shortening.

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Checking out the bank vault for a robbery.
The Stolen Blu-Ray starts up with trailers for Silver Linings Playbook (2:26), Safe Haven (2:15), and Beautiful Creatures (1:44). Beyond that there is, well, absolutely nothing by way of extras on this disc. This is made even more disappointing with the knowledge that the American disc includes about 40 minutes of cast and crew interviews, and some other small featurettes.

Stolen has its moments, but it's neither a great Nicolas Cage, nor great heist film. Still, the film looks and sounds the part on Blu-Ray so fans may want to grab this, but without any bonus materials and an average film it’s probably a rental at best.

Review By: Dave Warner


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