Previously available on HD-DVD, "WE WERE SOLDIERS" is now available on BLU-RAY from PARAMOUNT. Andrew Wallace's 2nd time out as a director, he does a far better job here than he did with the dreadful "MAN IN THE IRON MASK". The film focuses around Lt. Colonel Hal Moore and his leadership within the first major battle of the VietNam War. Mel Gibson stars in the title role and is fantastic. He gives the character a depth that is on the same par in ability as Scott did with "PATTON", but as an entirely different type of character. The lesser roles are less competently acted. Greg Kinnear is fine, but ultimately wasted. The film's action scenes are terrific, but most of the story taking place back home is cliche after cliche and drags the film to a halt.
PARAMOUNT has provided the correct 2.35:1 aspect ratio with 1080p/MPEG-2 transfer. This image is on par with the HD-DVD. Most of the VIETNAM scenes are presented with incredible detail. The colors are rich and the blacks, especially in darker moments, are deep. Many of the scenes taking place back home tend to veer towards a softer, flatter look, which is disappointing.
PARAMOUNT has provided a Dolby Digital EX mix and DTS 5.1 mix. For some reason, the DTS mix is less impressive than the EX mix. We were used to it being the other way around when these type mixes were offered on standard dvd. Both mixes offer an extremely aggressive mix, with virtually non-stop discrete effects during battle scenes, as well as effective atmospheric surrounds during non-action scenes. The music is great and well complimented throughout. Dialogue is always intelligible, even when within layers upon layers of music and sound effects.
All of the extras from the dvd have been carried over, including a insightful commentary from Wallace, lengthy featurette and 10 deleted scenes, of which several really should've been left within the film. They really add context to the basic theme.