A Few Words About A few words about...™ Battle Royale -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist

    Feb 8, 1999
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    Robert Harris
    Anchor Bay has released Kinji Fukasaku's 2000 Battle Royale, a move that will have many fans on line toward a purchase. This future sci-fi mini-epic, which would be the predecessor of The Hunger Games (opening March 23 in the U.S.)

    In some ways, this lowish budget Japanese production, which pits students against one another in a battle to the death, makes a film like Kill Bill look almost calm.

    This is the first time that a home video product of decent quality has been made available, and Anchor Bay's very nicely packaged set includes both the cut and un-cut version of the film on separate discs, in addition to the sequel and a fourth disc of extras.

    Quality-wise, I believe fans of the film will be thrilled, as the new Blu-ray is nicely produced, from quality elements, albeit not from what appears to be a new transfer. Resolution is very acceptable, and grain, which looks just a bit diminished, may be down by a second generation element.

    I have no idea what this film should sound like, but the track is uncompressed Dolby TrueHD.

    Personally, while I can think of more pleasurable way of spending my time than watching a group of teens kill one another, I'm the first to admit that I am not the target audience (no pun intended) for this film.

    Battle Royale is a quality package of a film for which many fans have been waiting. They're going to be more than pleased.

  2. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer

    May 9, 2002
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    Cameron Yee
    Thanks for covering this release. I jumped on this when Amazon was offering it for $20 pre-order.

    I'm currently on the third Hunger Games book and I miss some of the dark and subversive humor of BR.
  3. Jay G.

    Jay G. Agent

    Oct 28, 2007
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    Another early review indicates that the quality of this release is on par with the Arrow UK Blu-ray release, which was released over a year ago. The Arrow 4-disc LE also had more extras than this Anchor Bay release.


    Before that, the French R2 DVD had a good anamorphic transfer (on par with Arrow's DVD version of their Blu-ray release), although it didn't have any English subtitles, so of limited use to many in the US.



    This Anchor Bay release is notable in that it's the first official US release of these films. Tartan UK had a R0 NTSC of Battle Royale that was imported often, but wasn't a licensed US release.

    As for the film itself, I think there's more to it than just "watching a group of teens kill one another." There's some dark humor and pointed satire here. Not to mention the parallels with Lord of the Flies, a story that could also be miscategorized by the same reductive statement.

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