||DOLBY DIGITAL 5.1
Even this veteran reviewer falls into the bad habit of being fooled by
artwork sometimes, and “BATTLE OF THE BRAVE” proves one can’t ever judge a film,
or its potential, by its dvd cover.
“BATTLE OF THE BRAVE” aspires to be a historical epic. Set in 1759, in Quebec,
the film revolves around Marie-Loup, a kind of “DR. Quinn: Medicine Woman/widow”
and her young daughters. Enter “Francois”, a young trapper, who has just
inherited his father’s estate and crossed paths with the young woman, after
witnessing her defiantly defending her adopted daughter from insensitive
authorities. Sparks are in the air, and it’s all too predictable that these two
will become lovers. There are, of course, various conflicts along the way. A
rich lord wants her for himself and a corrupt priest schemes to use Francois in
a plot to maintain French control of the land. The “historical” backdrop,
involving the French and English fighting for control of Canada, is just that,…a
backdrop and there are plenty of historical mistakes throughout. That said, the
“big” problem for the film, lies in its overall atmosphere of “been there, done
that”. There’s just nothing really surprising anywhere in the film. The
locations are beautiful, the acting, except for some over-the-top moments, is
decent, but the script is only average. While it feels like “BATTLE OF THE
BRAVE” may have been better, given more time to flesh out the characters, as
evidenced by the script, it could very well have been slower and longer than
Michael Cimino’s “HEAVEN’S GATE”, if the filmmakers had been allowed to!
SONY has presented a 1.85:1 aspect ratio with 16:9 enhancement. Colors are bold
and solid throughout. This is a great looking transfer, complimenting great
looking cinematography. Grain is almost non-existent and the detail is
impressive in virtually every scene.
SONY has presented a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. Surrounds are restrained for the
most part, and even front separation is limited. However, a few scenes provide
effective separation effects, opening up the environment. Dialogue is always
intelligible and free from distortion.