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Blu-ray Review The Transporter Refueled Blu-ray Review

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Matt Hough, Dec 23, 2015.

  1. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Director

    Apr 24, 2006
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    Charlotte, NC
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    Matt Hough
    XenForo Template The Transporter Refueled Blu-ray Review

    2015 has been a watershed year for reviving franchises. Unfortunately, for every Star Wars or Mad Max that successfully reestablished itself in the hearts of cinemagoers everywhere, there have also been the inevitable failures like this year's Terminator reboot or, in the case this review, The Transporter. After three previous movies in the series, there probably wasn't a great deal more that could be done with the concept, but Camille Delamarre's The Transporter Refueled doesn't even come close. With a new star attempting to carry on the saga of Frank Martin, driver of anything anywhere anytime, The Transporter Refueled definitely traverses over very familiar ground but inevitably spins its wheels rather inconsequentially.

    Cover Art

    Studio: Fox

    Distributed By: N/A

    Video Resolution and Encode: 1080P/AVC

    Aspect Ratio: 2.39.1

    Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HDMA

    Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

    Rating: PG-13

    Run Time: 1 Hr. 36 Min.

    Package Includes: Blu-ray, UltraViolet

    keep case

    Disc Type: BD50 (dual layer)

    Region: A

    Release Date: 12/08/2015

    MSRP: $39.99

    The Production Rating: 2/5

    Transporter Frank Martin (Ed Skrein) is hired by an enigmatic woman (Loan Chabanol) who we later learn is called Anna to pick up her and her package (that turns out to be two more woman who we later learn are Maria and Qiao - Tatiana Pajkovic and Wenxia Yu) at a certain point. Subsequently, it comes out that the women have committed robbery, the first part of an elaborate scheme to gain vengeance on Russian mobster Arkady Karasov (Radivoje Bukvic) who had been pimping them for fifteen years. Though his rules for his job ordinarily demand a no name and no information policy so he can maintain positive deniability, Frank gets drawn into assisting with the complex scheme when his ex-spy father (Ray Stevenson) is kidnapped and held for ransom, first by another woman in the cabal – Gina (Gabriella Wright) and later by the mobsters.


    As with the other yarns in the Transporter series, Frank may start out with no involvement rules for using his service, but he always gets drawn into these elaborate schemes and gets personally enmeshed with his female clients. As scripted by Adam Cooper, Bill Collage, and Luc Besson, the movie’s rickety narrative is simply a prop for a succession of car crashes, chase scenes, and elaborate fights. The crashes are certainly spectacular and the chase scenes involve some mighty fancy driving; the fights are a combination of ordinary fisticuffs with various martial arts techniques and the use of nearby objects to assist in his combat. Rarely is Frank pitted against an opponent of equal size and skill (though that does happen in the very predictable climactic face-off between him and the gangster Karasov). More often (as in the Jason Statham-led earlier films in the series), he must fight a cadre of muscle-bound giants coming at him at one time. Director Camille Delamarre helms the action stuff dexterously (as a former film editor, he makes sure he has enough coverage for all of the major set pieces even if they’re more noise and chaos than well planned scenes of destruction), but he can’t perform miracles with the ridiculous dramatic license used in the movie (people shot and sporting serious wounds are up and around in a matter of an hour or so with no apparent lingering side effects from their injuries; Frank’s father, a retired espionage agent, is routinely kidnapped and easily held until at the end he recovers his former skill as a fighter and tactician to turn the tide in favor of his son).


    As the new Frank Martin, Ed Skrein may have the moves and the muscles, but he lacks the kind of charismatic bad boy persona that Jason Statham brought to these films. There is one really impressively staged fight scene in a narrow room lined with filing cabinets, but otherwise, he seems to owe much of his pugalistic skill to the movie’s film editor. Ray Stevenson as Frank, Sr. doesn’t bare even a passing resemblance to Ed Skrein, and he’s given the kind of whimsical movie dialogue no actor can really make believable, but he’s an affable presence and does the movie no harm. Because the movie demands it, there is a romantic match between Frank and Loan Chabanol’s Anna (though why he would succumb to a woman who’s lied to and abused him is never considered), but Anna is a victim on paper, out for revenge and a big payday. This sometimes gets lost in the mess of a screenplay the film is dealing with. Radivoje Bukvic makes a decent adversary as the strutting Russian mob boss who thinks himself invincible until he’s hoodwinked by these plucky former sex slaves. Noémie Lenoir plays his current squeeze who’s nothing if not loyal to her man.

    Video Rating: 4.5/5  3D Rating: NA

    The film’s theatrical aspect ratio of 2.39:1 is faithfully rendered in a 1080p transfer using the AVC codec. Apart from some long shots of the French Riviera which seem a bit soft and ill-defined, sharpness is quite good with lots of detail, and color is vivid and appealing throughout. Contrast has also been expertly sustained while black levels are very good. The movie has been divided into 27 chapters.

    Audio Rating: 4.5/5

    The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix gets some excellent split surround activity during the extensive car chases and resulting crashes with effective panning across and through the soundstage. Dialogue has been well recorded and has been placed in the center channel. Alexandre Azaria’s forceful music gets an impressive spread through the fronts and rears.

    Special Features Rating: 2.5/5

    Frank Martin: The Reluctant Hero (9:18, HD): director Camille Delamarre talks about his casting of Ed Skrein for this reboot of the franchise. The actor is feted by a barrage of compliments on his serious work ethic to train for the role by the likes of Loan Chabanol, Gabriella Wright, and Ray Stevenson.


    The Coeur Bris: Les Femmes of Refueled (5:32, HD): Each of the five female stars of the film offer sound bites about their characters with additional comments by director Camille Delamarre and actors Ray Stevenson and Ed Skrein.


    Rocketing From 0-60 (5:40, HD): with cars figuring so importantly into the movie, actor Ed Skrein praises the Audi cars he gets to drive in the movie (and the two that got wrecked during the course of production). Director Camille Delamarre discusses his extensive storyboarding for the action scenes of the movie. Other behind-the-scenes views of filming are offered along with sound bites from the film’s stunt car coordinator as well as actors Ray Stevenson, Loan Chabanol, Tatiana Pajkovic, and Gabriella Wright.


    Theatrical Trailer (2:20, HD)

    Promo Trailers (HD): Deadpool, Spectre, Hitman Agent 47, and Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials.


    Ultraviolet: code sheet enclosed in the case.

    Overall Rating: 2.5/5

    Chases, crashes, and fights are the capstone of The Transporter Refueled, so if those things are your meat, gorge yourself on one of the year’s more forgettable action films.

    Reviewed By: Matt Hough

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