ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13
Directed by Jean-François Richet
Written by James DeMonaco
Produced by Pascal Caucheteux, Stephane Sperry & Jeffrey Silver
Based on an original film by John Carpenter
Cinematography by Robert Gantz
Music by Graeme Revell
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Laurence Fishburn, John Leguizamo, Gabriel Byrne, Brian Dennehy, Maria Bello & Drea de Matteo
2.40:1 anamorphic/English/US/NTSC Region 1
Review from Universal DVD
Its New Year's Eve and the old and run-down Precinct 13 is about to close its door forever. Sergeant Jake Roenick (Ethan Hawke) is there along with officer Jasper O'Shea (Brian Dennehy), the sexy secretary Iris (Drea de Matteo) and the even sexier psychologist Alex (Maria Bello). They are drinking, dancing and about to celebrate their last night at the precinct when a prisoner's bus is forced to stop because of a very bad snow storm. The prisoners are sent to separate cells... one of them is the notorious gangster called Bishop (Lawrence Fishburne). Soon the precinct is attacked by well trained and armed men surrounding the location. Roenick decide to let the prisoners help them fight the enemies outside but things won't necessarily be easy.
As most of you already know, this is a remake of John Carpenter's 1976 b-movie classic ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 which was already a loose remake of RIO BRAVO. This time the Street Thunder is replaced by the heavily armed police/swat team. Also gone is the memorable Napoleon Wilson character this time replace by the cold and Morpheus-like, Bishop. Screenwriter James DeMonaco (who previously gave us THE NEGOCIATOR) wrote an interesting and character driven tale with enough twists to keep us on the edge of our seat. Also quite surprisingly, most of the leads actually violently die which is something we rarely see in a movies anymore. Overall, this remake was much better then the french remake from a few years ago called NID DE GUEPES but its far from being as good as Carpenter's classic. And where is that little girl with the ice cream?!
Universal and Rogue Pictures have released ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 on DVD in a nice edition. The movie is presented in its original 2.40:1 aspect ratio and it is anamorphic. Like most recent movies coming to DVD, the transfer is simply perfect. The colors are rich, vibrants and perfectly saturated. The movie mostly happen during night so a nice transfer is very important. The blacks are deep and there is no sign of compression or artifacts. There is three audio tracks, a English DTS and two 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks, one in English and the other in French. All three sounds very good, are loud, crisp and clear. They also make great use of the subwoofer during the action oriented scenes. There is optional English, French and Spanish subtitles.
The disc features a couple of small featurettes. "Armed and Dangerous" is a cool but rather short 4 minutes featurette about the weapons used in the film. "Behind Precinct Walls" is a look around the precinct, how it was designed and built. In "Plan of Attack" we follow the stunt coordinator through some of the stunts in the film. In "The Assault Team" we follow the director, cast and crew talking about the movie, its background and the director. There's also an ok commentary track with Jean-François Richet the director, screenwriter James DeMonaco and producer Jeffrey Silver who goes into much of the details behind the movie. We get five deleted scenes with optional commentary track by the director. "Caught in the Crosshairs" is your typical featurette featuring the cast and crew talking about the film mixed with clips from the movie. The film is separated in 20 chapters, features nice animated menus, comes in a keep case which itself comes in a special embossed paperboard package. It also comes with an inlay card about other releases from Rogue Pictures and Focus and trailers for UNLEASHED, WHITE NOISE and SEED OF CHUCKY.
This Film Features:
Review by Kim Dubuisson. All Right Reserved. 2005. ©