THE PACKAGE – The Blu Review
THE PACKAGE is the generic title this generic new action movie deserves, a film solely aimed to deliver a parcel of brainless thrills. Steve Austin stars as club bouncer/combat vet Tommy Wick, who moonlights as an enforcer for a Seattle mob boss. Dloph Lundgren is `The German,’ an international crime lord and hardcore killing machine. When Wick is asked to transport a mysterious package to The German, he suddenly finds himself hunted by relentless teams of hit men, mercenaries, assassins and sadists. Regardless of its pedestrian and moronic execution, and despite that it contains nothing that you haven’t seen done hundreds of times before in any number of better, more exciting action films, THE PACKAGE manages to be a fun testosterone-soaked rollercoaster. It has a level of absurdity and blatant disregard for believability that actually works in its favor. As directed by Jesse V. Johnson, THE PACKAGE has the logic and pace of a comic book. The moment the going gets slow, someone show up with a high-powered weapon to blow everything in sight to smithereens. THE PACKAGE is mostly a catalog of increasingly brutal fights, which are the main attraction in and of themselves and they are presented in loud WWE fashion. THE PACKAGE is overloaded with a vast array of shoot-outs, explosions, and intense hand-to-hand fight sequences, all of which help ease the films hackneyed storyline into your brain without causing serious physical side effects. Steven Austin still can’t deliver a line without sounding as if he’s just recently been introduced to the English language but Lundgren fares considerably better in the smaller role and is the main reason to watch THE PACKAGE. After starting his career as an over-sized Russian robot in ROCKY 4, Lundgren has been given the chance to show off more of his personality. I’m not saying Lundgren should start working on his Oscar speech anytime soon, but he plays ‘The German’ with aplomb and the sort of light touch this dopey action flick needs.
Anchor Bay presents THE PACKAGE on Blu-ray in an AVC encoded 1.78.1 widescreen transfer that is clean, colorful and nicely detailed. The picture is very crisp and clean looking and it boasts very nice colors throughout. Black levels are pretty strong and skin tones look good. There’s some mild shimmering here and there but no heavy edge enhancement or noise reduction to note. Texture is pretty impressive, and there’s plenty of background detail to ogle throughout the movie. All in all, the movie looks quite good on Blu-ray. A DVD of the film is also provided.
The English language Dolby True HD 5.1 on THE PACKAGE is very solid. Gun shots pack a pretty strong punch and there’s a solid low end here that offers some nice rumble when the movie calls for it. Dialogue stays plenty discernible and simple to follow (of course this film could have been dubbed into Kazakh and it would have been easy to follow) as the levels are properly mixed ensuring that the performers never get lost in all the gunshots and explosions. Channel separation is frequent and generally handled quite well, a few of the shootout scenes have some nice pans across the room as the bullets fly. As you’d expect from such a recent film, there are no issues with hiss or distortion – everything comes up just fine here. Optional subtitles are provided in English SDH and Spanish.
No other extras are included.