One of those rare occasions where I find myself in agreement with the Academy.
It’s certainly a reserved film, more interested in characters and the spaces between them than an overwhelming amount of action. It doesn’t shy away from a few confronting moments though, with the film bookended by them – the opening scene is particularly effective.
The story is not an overly original one – we’ve seen someone pulled out of retirement for a mission before. That’s why it’s interesting that it manages to impress so much. That’s really down to the writing and the cast.
Speaking of the cast – Eastwood, Hackman, and Freeman – what a line-up. Eastwood isn’t exactly out of his comfort zone, but he does what he does well. Freeman is rock solid. Hackman deserved his Oscar – what a knockout turn. He knows when to breathe fire and when to dial it back.
It’s not often I find myself becoming more impressed by a film over time, but here we are.
Format: 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray
A stunning restoration that thoroughly trounces the old Blu-ray. Increased detail, immensely better colours, and spot on levels. It might not be the sharpest transfer due to how it was lensed, but it’s a faithful one.
Finally presented with lossless audio, it’s a good track with decent separation and strong clarity for the dialogue, score, and effects. The only disappointment is the lack of an Atmos track.