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May 12, 2011
Takers Blu-Ray Review
Cinema Release Blu-Ray Release Distributor Director
18/11/201016/2/2011Sony PicturesJohn Luessenhop
Video Codec Sound Format OFLC Rating Star(s)
AVC MPEG-4DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1MPaul Walker

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Paul Walker stars in Takers.

Despite Takers being listed on IMDB as making it to Australian cinemas in November 2010 I can't honestly say I'd heard about the film, and a search of box office takings didn't even place it in the Top 20 films for the week - it must have been a very limited release indeed. In any case this heist film starring Paul Walker, Matt Dillon, Chris Brown, Hayden Christensen, Trip "T.I. Harris and Michael Ealy is out now and given the cast alone it was one we were fairly keen to check out.

Plot-wise Takers isn't something too unique. After pulling off a spectacular series of brilliantly planned bank robberies, a notorious team of professional criminals attempts one last heist, a once-in- a-lifetime job with a $25 million payoff. And all that stands in their way is a cop, played by Matt Dillon, hell- bent on doing whatever it takes to solve the case and bring the "Takers" down.

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Blu-Ray detail levels are impressive.
While it couldn’t be said that there is an A-list cast in this movie, the actors are all solid enough to never pull the movie down. The storyline too is pretty interesting and a decent script and direction keeps the film moving during its 107 minute runtime. With the occasional twist and turn Takers remains fresh and rapidly moving to it's somewhat surprising conclusion.

One actor that actually surprised, and impressed, in this movie was Chris Brown who is decent enough as an actor, but really proved a great action star performing many of his own stunts particularly during a chase sequence where he is leaping over railings, cars and other obstacles to avoid the cops. It is indeed one of the highlights of the movie and knowing Chris Brown did most of the stunt work himself impresses. Also surprising was the concluding act of the film which offers a few great moments and surprises.

Takers isn't the best heist movie around, but it's watchable, includes some entertaining moments and a great ensemble cast. If you like action movies and/or heist movies this is probably one to check out.

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Under the blue lights in the club.
Sony Pictures generally provide very solid transfers of movies, and Takers, being such a recent release is no exception. Encoded using the AVC MPEG-4 codec this film is presented in the original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.35:1 and having been shot on the Panavision Genesis HD Camera the film is free of any film artifacts such as dirt of scratches. In terms of the actual encoding Takers has a great, vibrant, colour palette with plenty of fine detail although we did sense a lack of detail in dark scenes or on dark objects such as shirts. Still, this is a pretty nice transfer.

Takers has been released on Blu-Ray with two audio tracks. The first, which the vast majority of people will use, is a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track (24-bit/48Khz) provides a wonderful lossless experience which despite the odd line here and there which is hard to understand generally gets the job done very well indeed. Despite a list of big-name artists the soundtrack in this film is pretty upbeat and lively and is superbly mixed into the film. Of course being such an action based film the surround sound channels get a workout with numerous shootouts, car chases and other sequences.

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Pulling off the heist with a bang!
This Blu-Ray only comes with one other audio track, that being an English Descriptive Audio Service which is encoded with Dolby Digital 5.1 at 640kbps. It's certainly a lot weaker then the lossless track in terms of clarity and punch, but for those with the need, it's on the disc. Subtitles are provided in English, English SDH, and Hindi while the Audio Commentary also has English subtitles. We sampled the English subtitles and they were accurate to dialogue.

Sadly this release is lacking in the extras department a bit with only a few extras, and what is there - except the commentary - is pretty much EPK styled.

Audio Commentary with Director John Luessenhop, Producers Will Packer, Jason Geter and Tip "T.I." Harris: As far as audio commentaries go this is moderately interesting with discussions about the creation of the scenes, the films production, and how elements of the story came together.

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Zoe Saldana has a cameo role in Takers.
Trailers (8:09/HD): Here we have a series of trailers including Blu-Ray Promotional Clip (2:05), Easy A (2:31), The Green Hornet (2:29), The Social Network (1:04)

Deleted and Extended Scenes (11:13/HD): While all the main players are interviewed this is pretty much your standard EPK styled piece which does more to sell the movie then tell the real story behind its creation.

Take Action! (10:08/HD): This featurette focuses on the action sequences in the movie including Chris Brown's performance, the exploding helicopter and the armored van heist sequence.

"Yeah Ya Know (Takers)" Music Video (4:31/HD): A music video clip for the movie which is fairly decent if you like rap music.

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Matt Dillon as Jack Welles in takers.
PS3 Theme (HD): It's not really a theme, but just a background image showing the main characters.

MovieIQ (HD): MovieIQ returns on this Blu-Ray disc and provides details on the actors, cast and music in each of the scenes in the movie. This feature has really grown on me and will be particularly useful to those who like to know details about actors.

Takers isn't a heist movie in the caliber of Heat or the Ocean trilogy, but with a strong cast and decent storyline this movie is worth checking out. As such a recent release the transfer is pretty spectacular and there are a few extras to keep you busy.

Review By: Dave Warner


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