Based on The New York Times best-selling true story of heroism, courage and survival, Lone Survivor tells the incredible tale of four Navy SEALs on a covert mission to neutralize a high-level al-Qaeda operative. The four men must make an impossible moral decision in the mountains of Afghanistan that leads them into an enemy ambush. As they confront unthinkable odds, the SEALs must find reserves of strength and resilience to fight to the finish.
Studio and Year:
The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Universal - 2013
Feature running time:
English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, Spanish DTS 5.1
English SDH, Spanish
Mark Wahlberg, Ben Foster, Emile Hirsch, Taylor Kitsch, Eric Bana
Written & Directed by:
Peter Berg Based on the book by Marcus Lutrell
Explosions in the sky & Steve Jablonsky
Blu-ray Disc release Date:
June 3, 2014
"Never stop fighting….based on a true story"
Four US Navy SEALS departed one clear night in early July 2005 for the mountainous Afghanistan-Pakistan border for a covert mission that was expected to go by the numbers. Five days later, only one of those Navy SEALS made it out alive. <i>Lone survivor</i> tells the true story of the only survivor of Operation Redwing, and the extraordinary firefight that led to the largest loss of life in American Navy SEAL history.
I have heard some describe this film as heavy handed in its account of the tragic events of June 2005. While there is no denying that writer/director Peter Berg paints a visceral picture of what occurred I think that anything other than attempting to portray these men, what they encountered and how they handled it in painstaking detail would be disrespectful. I think that Peter Berg, his crew and the cast did a terrific job in capturing the essence of not only the heroism, courage and fortitude of the Seal Team but the esprit de corps of the unit as a whole. Based on the subject matter the film doesn’t play out via a traditional narrative however the opening does an excellent job connecting us briefly to the four men on a personal level as well as conveying their devotion and excellence at what they do.
It quickly moves into the Afghan mountains and the series of events that follow. This is a powerful and engaging film that grabs hold after the opening act and doesn’t let go until the credits roll. It’s hard not to be moved and astounded by it as the escalating events unfold in startling detail toward their inevitable conclusion. The dramatic events that take place in the village are emotively stirring in their display of humanity while the building suspense shoots off the charts. As I watched Lone survivor
I couldn’t help but be reminded of another engaging and unforgettable war drama, “Saving Private Ryan”. This film shared the same intensity and riveting ferocity found in several scenes from that film. Here the scope and script aren’t as far reaching but then again they are truly different films.
I appreciated the fact that Lone Survivor
depicts the unfortunate and cold realties that war can be. It reminds us that the true heroes are the men and women who put it on the line in the defense of freedom. It’s an unforgettable film that I thoroughly enjoyed.
The rating is for strong bloody war violence and pervasive language.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
= 92-100 / EXCELLENT
= 83-91 / GOOD
= 74-82 / AVERAGE
= 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE
= under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency effects:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- *Low frequency extension (non-rated element):
Lone Survivor comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 30 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.5 Mbps.
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
This film looks superb on Blu-ray Disc and features superb high definition video quality that exhibits high level detail, razor sharpness and exquisite definition that brings out lifelike textures captured by the camera’s lens. Dimensional perspective has a near infinite appeal that can be visually stimulating. Close ups are noticeably refined and revealing of the subtlest details within facial features and objects within the frame. Mid level camera pans are equally enriching and offer excellent depth and dimension. Colors are appreciably delineated with natural rendering and punchy primaries that stand out among the remaining spectrum of secondary hues. Fleshtones are rendered with vivid tonality and discerning complexional depiction. Contrast is boldly applied without overstatement as it enlivens colors and drives brightly lit scenes without whitewashing detail. Blacks are gradational and deep which emboldens sequences containing a mix of light and dark elements. Detail in uneven light and darkened environments reveal visible shapes and structure that enhances depth perception. This is a pristine and reference quality presentation that looks terrific on my big screen.
The DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio soundtrack is technically proficient and sounds terrific. This is a supremely articulated and commanding presentation that will reward those with systems capable of thoroughly reproducing its elements. This is not an overtly aggressive presentation but it definitively produces powerful dynamics and deep bass transients that underscore the action with aplomb. This is an engaging and purposeful sound design that transforms the room into a three dimensional soundstage that creates an immersive web of sound that encapsulates the sweet spot with its plethora of sounds/ effects that seem to emanate from every direction during the films active moments.
Pinpoint imaging draws out both large and small sounds and by allowing their directional correlation (based upon the onscreen events) to be definable within the room’s acoustic boundaries. The music score helps set the stage with its perfect blend of evocative instrumentation and rousing orchestration. Dialogue is reproduced with lucid expression and exacting clarity. I never had any trouble distinguishing even the slightest changes in the pitch or tonal inflection of voices. If I had one very minor nit to pick is that I would have preferred a bigger kick in the low end. That isn’t to suggest that this mix is lacking in terms of its overall bass response as there is plenty of LFE. Truth be told I found the presentation to be completely involving and a perfect companion to the video quality.
- (HD) * Exclusive * Will of the Warrior: An in-depth look at Marcus Luttrell, the real-life Navy SEAL who received the Navy Cross and Purple Heart for his actions in Operation Red Wings – 28 minute documentary
- (HD) * Exclusive * Recreating the Firefight: Reveals how Lone Survivor’s action-packed stunts were choreographed and shot. This featurette includes interviews with Director Peter Berg, Actors Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Ben Foster and Emile Hirsch and stunt coordinator and 2nd unit director Kevin Scott – 10 minute featurette
- (HD) * Exclusive * Learning the Basics: Watch as Mark Wahlberg, Emile Hirsch, Taylor Kitsch and Ben Foster go through rigorous SEAL training in weapons handling, communication/patrolling and simulated attack drills. Along with Marcus Luttrell, Peter Berg enlisted the help of active Navy SEALS to help the actors accurately portray the fallen soldiers of Operation Red Wings – 6 minute featurette
- (HD) * Exclusive * The Pashtun Code of Life: Learn why Marcus Luttrell’s rescuer, Mohammad Gulab, risked his life and the lives of everyone in his village in order to save Marcus – 4 minute featurette
- (HD) Bringing the Story to Light: Marcus Luttrell’s story of survival under extremely dire circumstances is an inspiration to anyone who hears it. Director, producer and writer Peter Berg, Producer Sarah Aubrey, and the four lead actors (Mark Wahlberg, Emile Hirsch, Taylor Kitsch and Ben Foster) reveal their passion for the project and why it was so important to them to tell this story – 4 minute featurette
- (HD) The Fallen Heroes of Operation Red Wings: Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Ben Foster and Emile Hirsch profile the real-life heroes who inspired their characters: Marcus Luttrell, Michael Murphy, Daniel Dietz and Matthew Axelson. Family members provide intimate accounts of what these brave men were like in their private lives, as well as perspective on their decisions to join the military and make the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Also included is a tribute to the team of Operation Red Wings, using personal photos.
- Bonus DVD
- Ultraviolet Digital Copy
Based on The New York Times best-selling true story of heroism, courage and survival, Lone Survivor
tells the incredible tale of four Navy SEALs, Operation Redwing, and the extraordinary firefight that led to the largest loss of life in American Navy SEAL history. I found this to be a powerful and riveting film that painstakingly recreates the tragic events of June 2005 and the heroism, esprit de corps and devotion of those involved. It comes to Blu-ray from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring superb high definition video and reference quality DTS-HD Master Audio surround sound mated with a solid supplemental package that pays tribute to the source material. Lone survivor
is an unforgettable film that comes highly recommended on Blu-ray.
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews
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JVC DLA-RS4910 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6 Meter from Spectracal)
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV8801 11.2 Channel Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-103D Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (With Darbee video processing)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SVS PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package