HTF REVIEW: Swordfish - guilty pleasure DVD at its best!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ronald Epstein, Oct 17, 2001.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    [​IMG]

    SWORDFISH

    The beginning scene of Swordfish is
    absolutely brilliant. In these first moments,
    we are introduced to a suave, nameless mastermind
    (John Travolta), sitting seemingly by himself,
    giving us a remarkable dialogue about movies and
    reality. It's one of the coolest cinematic moments
    in recent memory. It's at this point that the
    film grabs you, pulls you in, and won't let go.
    Producers Joel Silver (Lethal Weapon, Matrix)
    and Jonathan D. Krane (Face/Off) manage to bring
    this high-tech thriller to the screen that manages
    to fool its audiance as much as its characters do.
    After all, the film was not received well by the
    critics. It's a less intelligently presented
    thriller with all sorts of impossibilities.
    However, deception runs so well with this film
    that you too will be fooled into having a great
    time with this movie.
    John Travolta makes this movie. This is
    certainly his best character since Pulp Fiction.
    This is the kind of man that can charm you and
    stab you in the back at the same moment. He
    enlists the help of a computer hacker (Hugh
    Jackman) to hack his way into Government networks
    where a payoff bundle is up for the taking. At
    his side is the very sexy Halle Berry. In pursuit
    is Don Cheadle (Traffic, Boogie Nights) who is
    one of my favorite recent character actors. It's
    a pretty well-rounded cast, and the total dumbness
    of this film is saved by the performance of the
    actors. The film moves along at an uneven pace
    throughout, but pays off with a tremendous visual
    ending that involves a bus.
    Chalk it up to Warner Brothers for doing yet
    another outstanding transfer that ranks with
    recent DVDs, Driven and Exit Wounds.
    The transfer quality is top-notch. The 5.1
    digital surround is also excellent, though not
    overused in this film. Most of the action takes
    place through the 3 front speakers.
    The film also has some nice supplements. First,
    there are the two alternate endings, which clearly
    are not as good as the one used. You have the
    choice of watching them with or without Director
    commentary.
    There is also a fun 15-minute HBO documentary
    on the MAKING OF the film. It involves
    all the principle actors. It's nice to see
    Travolta step in and out of character. He really
    knows how to step into characters that are so
    much different than his personal self.
    One supplement I urge you to watch is the
    EFFECTS IN FOCUS, which takes a very
    descriptive look at the final effects scene that
    involves the bus. You'll see how that entire
    sequence went from a computer roadmap to the
    streets of Los Angeles, to a large airport hangar
    and soundstage. It's one of those moments that
    you sit there amazed at how much effects work
    went into that film's ending sequence.
    Swordfish is truly a guilty pleasure.
    And, I warn you, because of its subject matter
    that so closely ties in with our world's recent
    terrorist events, you may feel guilty about
    watching it. On the one hand, I am surprised
    that Warner Brothers chose to put this out so soon.
    On the other hand, I applaud the studio for
    letting the public have the choice with what they
    want to watch.
    I reccomend this film for rental, although I
    think many renters may end up purchasing. All
    in all, I don't think this DVD should be passed up.
    And, if I may be unprofessional for just a moment --
    this film is worth watching just for Halle Berry's
    beautiful breasts. Whoo-Hah!
    ------------------
    [​IMG]
    Ronald Epstein (pronounced like the English "Ronald Epstein")
    Circa 2000
    Home Theater Forum Administrator
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  2. JohnS

    JohnS Producer

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    I ended up loving this movie. And NOT for the two obvious reasons.
    I'm BUYING this on Oct 30th!
    ------------------
     
  3. Rob Tomlin

    Rob Tomlin Producer

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  4. Peter Hollandare

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    It is reviews like this, that makes me poor [​IMG]
    Thanks Ronald!
     
  5. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

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  6. Steven Simon

    Steven Simon Producer

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    Man I can't wait for this DVD!!!!!
    ------------------
    Thanks,
    Steven R. Simon
    HTF Administrator
    Theater Pics Updated 9-11-2001
    Send Email:
    darth23@optonline.net
     
  7. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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  8. JasonKrol

    JasonKrol Supporting Actor

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    after hearing sooo much about how bad driven was, I was sure Id never see it. Then I read Rons review (which developed a mightly long thread/flame war) and was convinced to at least give it a rent. And yes, it sucked. But it did live up to Rons comments that its a great demo disk.
    that being said, I have been kind of excited to see Swordfish, although Ive heard similar comments about it being bad etc. I think this movie will be one that I will rent and ultimately end up buying.
    Thanks for the reviews Ron!!!
    ------------------
    - Jason
    My DVD Collection | My Home Theater
    "what ya got here is two people dragging a third..."
     
  9. stephen la

    stephen la Stunt Coordinator

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    I think Halle Berry stole the show.. I didnt really car for her in anything before this movie.. with this movie.. she made a new fan out of me.. I forgive her for those lame lines as storm in Xmen
     
  10. Tina_H_V

    Tina_H_V Supporting Actor

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    Yes, yes, Ron, way to go!!!!!!!!!
    I truly dug your review!!!! It was totally outstanding!!!!!
    And the way you broke down each of the rles of the four principles was very down and to the point.
    Do not worry about me renting this one: THIS SHALL BE A BAR-NONE(!) PAYDAY PICKUP!!!!!!!! THIS IS ONE I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR!!!!!!
    I knew this DVD was a priority purchase from the time I saw it on my birthday back in June. I had a feeling the DVD presentation was going to be nothing less than sensational. And now, it looks like Ron has concurred my thoughts on this one. Thank you very much for that, Ron.
    Oh, yes, and as for what you said about unprofessionalism Ron, do not worry: even though I am a woman myself, I also came away impressed with Miss Halle's breasts as well as all the others who did here and elsewhere!!! [​IMG]
    And I am not ashamed to admit it!!! [​IMG]
    ------------------
    The Acid Queen Still Rocks and Souls!!!! ;D
     
  11. Justin Lane

    Justin Lane Cinematographer

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    From all those exclamation marks I know tina is going to be the first one in line when this disc streets [​IMG]
    Count me in too. I have been waiting for this title, and am glad Warner decided to release it now, and not delay the film just to be PC. It sounds like a great package. It looks like the disc will have another great Warner transfer.
    J
     
  12. Keith_R

    Keith_R Screenwriter

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    I liked this movie ever since I saw it in June. I'm definently going to buy it when it comes out.
    ------------------
    -Keith-
     
  13. Tina_H_V

    Tina_H_V Supporting Actor

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    That's right, Justin!!! Not only do I promise I shall be there to get it right on October 30, 2001!!!!...
    ...but this shall as well be the first DVD I run through my new HT receiver--the Onkyo TX-DS797--as it is due to FINALLY come out for good next month!!!
    That, along with Swordfish, I look forward to bringing in in the weeks to come!!!!! [​IMG]
    ------------------
    The Acid Queen Still Rocks and Souls!!!! ;D
     
  14. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    I call this a "guilty pleasure" disc because
    the movie opened to critic bashing. Even
    before I had this disc in my hand, I knew that
    Swordfish was not well received.
    If you dissect this film and take away the
    action, the film has a lot of flaws, uneven
    pacing, and (as I mentioned) so many
    impossibilities. Take away Travolta from
    this film and it would never stand on its own.
    Yet, I was floored by this film because of
    Travolta and the action sequences. It's a
    really fun disc.
    ------------------
    [​IMG]
    Ronald Epstein (pronounced like the English "Ronald Epstein")
    Circa 2000
    Home Theater Forum Administrator
    All forum questions & to get on our private forum mailing list (new members)... Email: hometheaterforum@home.com
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    Email Packy packy@hometheaterforum.com
     
  15. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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  16. SteveGon

    SteveGon Executive Producer

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    Sounds good. I'll be renting this one, though. Looking forward to seeing Halle Berry... [​IMG]
    ------------------
    He thought on homeland, the big timber, the air thin and chill all the year long. Tulip poplars so big through the trunk they put you in mind of locomotives set on end. He thought of getting home and building him a cabin on Cold Mountain so high that not a soul but the nighthawks passing across the clouds in autumn could hear his sad cry. Of living a life so quiet he would not need ears. And if Ada would go with him, there might be the hope, so far off in the distance he did not even really see it, that in time his despair might be honed off to a point so fine and thin that it would be nearly the same as vanishing.
    -- Charles Frazier, Cold Mountain
     
  17. Quint van der Vaart

    Quint van der Vaart Second Unit

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    Thanx for the review Ron !!
    I realy loved this movie.
    John Travolta was way cool and the action was also very nice.
    I realy liked the soundtrack of this movie especially the track that is being played with the end-credits, that was such a cool track.
    Anyway I will be buying this one !!!!
    It's a must-have in my opinion.
    Greetz
    ------------------
    There is another world....The DVD WORLD !!
     
  18. mark_d

    mark_d Second Unit

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    This has been on pre-order for a good while now. Thanks for the reassuring review, Ron [​IMG]
    This is the one the missus and I get something out of - she gets a topless Mr Jackman and I get... [​IMG]
    Mark
     
  19. mark_d

    mark_d Second Unit

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    In fact, I think my wife and I will have a little competition - see who can do the loudest PHWOAR! during the movie...
    Mark
     
  20. David Oliver

    David Oliver Second Unit

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    I am buying this disk, but no just because of Halle's breast mind you. But also for Halle in nothing more than her underwear and a wire ;-)
    ------------------
    Go Packers!!!
     

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