Survive the Night AKA The Long Night
R2 - United Kingdom - Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Rick Curz (8th July 2020).
The Film

Screen legend Bruce Willis (Die Hard franchise) drives the action in this gripping home-invasion thriller.

After two brothers commit a robbery that goes wrong, one of them, Mathias, is mortally wounded, forcing sibling Jamie to stalk a trauma doctor named Rich (Chad Michael Murray, "One Tree Hill") from the hospital to his home. While holding Rich’s wife and daughter hostage, Jamie forces Rich to operate on Mathias. For the family to survive the night, Rich must team up with his estranged tough-as-nails father, retired sheriff Frank (Willis), in order to gain the upper hand and turn the tables on the criminals.

Video

Watchable, predictable, solid suspense film puts in mind The Desperate Hours (1955 and 1990 Michael Cimino remake); not a patch on the classic but better than the shite Cimino flick. Image is decent for standard definition but won't rock anyone's world; it's a grim low-key palette; there are some moments where colour is richer but for the most part nowt stands out. Black levels are deep and rich and afford about as much shadow detail as one could expect for DVD and a new film. Contrast is low key and supportive with detail being best in closeups, less of interest in long shots.

The increased use of the bogus Univisium 2:1 aspect ratio (Popularised by professional eccentric Vittorio Storaro is annoying as it seems to be driven by download platforms and seems wilfully silly when displays are 1.78:1. The encode is more than up to the task and there are no major worries like digital artefacts and obviously no print damage (B)

MPEG-2 / PAL / 85:35 / 2:1

Audio

English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English HoH

Sound is excellent however for the format with a loud, robust sound field. Many DVDs I get to review these days (and some BDs) have rather quiet sound levels so I have to increase the volume to compensate; not so here. Lots of aurround aftuvity and about as good as we can expect for a lossy DVD 5.1.

Subtitles for the hearing impaired are present and welcome (B+).

Extras

"The Making of Survive the Night" 2020 featurette (9:34)

Standard EPK making off; talking head interviews with key personnel interspersed with clips.

Cast & Crew Interviews (Play All - 30:37):
- Chad Michael Murray (5:39)
- Jessica Abrams (3:54)
- Lydia Hull (2:59)
- Matt Eskandari (8:20)
- Shea Buckner (6:06)
- Tyler Olson (3:36)


More interviews with a bit more depth but not much; everyone has been mostly asked some stock question that repeat with each interviewee.

Startup Trailers:
- Arkansas (2:20)
- Trauma Center (2:02)


Promos for other Lionsgate releases.

Packaging

Standard black DVD Keepcase.

Overall

Fairly run of the mill home invasion thriller reminded me a little of The Desperate Hours (1955) in some respects; not as good as the original obviously but better than the ludicrous 1990 Michael Cimino remake (C+). Picture quality is decent for standard definition but won't blow anyone away with it's muted colour palette. The increased use of the silly 2:1 aspect ratio is annoying as it seems to be driven by download platforms like Netflix; even the BBC uses it these days (see recent series of Doctor Who) (B). The encode is decent and there are no major issues. Sound is excellent however for the format with a loud, robust sound field. Many DVDs I get to review these days (and some BDs) have rather quiet sound levels so I have to increase the volume to compensate; not so here (B+). Extras are EPK puff piece glibness but acceptable (D+).

An affordable release and recommended for the casual purchaser; more committed collectors will go for the foreign Blu-rays (C+)

The Film: C+ Video: B Audio: B+ Extras: D+ Overall: C+

 


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