Transporter 3 (Blu-ray)
US DVD Release Date: March 10, 2009
Movie: out of
Jason Statham returns as Frank Martin in Transporter 3. In this installment of the series produced by Luc Besson (The Fifth Element, Le Femme Nikita), Frank has to deliver the kidnapped daughter of a Ukranian diplomat, ransomed in exchange for signing a contract involving the disposal of toxic waste. In an obvious nod to John Carpenter’s Escape From New York, Frank and his passenger, Valentina (newcomer Natalya Rudakova), must stay within 75 feet from the car or else the bracelet bombs on their wrists will explode.
Yes, the plot here is ludicrous, but that is half of the fun of this kind of movie. It is the action sequences that make this movie such an enjoyment to watch. The sequences are frequently over the top, but never overstay their welcome. Director Olivier Megaton (a good name for an action director, by the way) keeps the pacing rather tight, with enough room between sequences to allow the audience to catch their breath. Statham is in fine form playing a character he is obviously familiar with. Rudakova, in her acting debut, give a decent performance, portraying Valentina as a spoiled daddy’s girl. Francois Berleand reprises his role as Inspector Tarconi, bringing some dry humor to the film. And Robert Knepper (from TV’s Prison Break) is very good as the villain, Johnson, a business man who is just trying to do his job and doesn’t necessarily see what he is doing is wrong.
Video: out of
Lionsgate has provided Transporter 3 with a 1080p transfer using the AVC codec. This is a clean, sharp transfer with deep blacks and a nice color palette. I noticed no compression artifacts, and film grain has thankfully not been scrubbed away through the use of DNR, providing a nice film-like presentation.
Audio: out of
In usual Lionsgate fashion, Transporter 3 sports a 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. Since my receiver is not capable of DTS-HD playback, I was only able to access the 5.1 lossy DTS core at 1.5 Mbps. This is a very active mix, with fighting thuds and fiery explosions that will envelop and rock your viewing space. Lionsgate has also provided a Dolby Digital 5.1 track in French, encoded at 640 kbps.
Special Features: out of
This Blu-ray edition includes all of the same features from the DVD version (and in standard definition).
Director’s Commentary with Olivier Megaton Megaton has a lot to say about this production, albeit in a very thick, and often difficult to understand, French accent. He does make one obvious error very early on, saying that he first became involved with the film in December 2008. I assume he meant 2007.
Special Delivery: Transporters In The Real World This 14 minute featurette (in 16:9 widescreen) includes interviews with security experts and former government agents discussing what a real Transporter does.
Making of Transporter 3 An above-average EPK featurette, lasting 16 minutes (in non-anamorphic widescreen), that covers the making of this film, including pre-production costume tests and stunt rehearsals and shooting.
Storyboard Comparisons Not really comparisons, since only the storyboards are shown for two sequences, one of which was cut prior to principal photography.
Visual Effects The two big action sequences from the third act are featured in this way too short (2:30) featurette.
The Sets Olivier Megaton discusses the production design of the movie. I was very surprised that Frank Martin’s house was built from scratch.
Theatrical Trailer presented in high-definition and Dolby Digital 5.1.
Also From Lionsgate A collection of trailers, all high definition.
Crank 2: High Voltage
MoLog Lionsgate’s BD-Live feature, sort of a cross between the My Scenes and My Chat features on many of Universal’s BD-Live titles. I found the feature to be way too complicated for it own good, with absolutely no instructions on the disc or Lionsgate’s MoLog website on how to use it. What I was able to do was litter my screen with small icon animations and text. I plan on revisiting this feature and add to my review shortly after street date.
Digital Copy Lionsgate has provided an extra disc to download and install the film on your PC, MAC, or portable media player (iPod or Windows Plays For Sure device).
Overall: out of
Transporter 3 is a fun, exciting distraction of a movie with a nice high-def transfer and rocking soundtrack, with a standard set of extras. Lionsgate does need to work on making their BD-Live feature, MoLog, more user-friendly.
This DVD was reviewed on the following home theater gear:
- Toshiba 56HM66 DLP HDTV
- Sony Playstation 3 (outputting to 1080i)
- Yamaha HTR-5940 Home Theater Receiver (in 5.1 configuration)
- Yamaha NS-AP2600 Home Cinema Speaker Package
- Yamaha YST-SW010 subwoofer