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I found myself watching this film unable to 'watch the film'. What do I mean by that you may be thinking - and if you aren't thinking that I'm going to tell you anyway.  Several things were running through my mind - "ooh, this picture is nice", "that sounded really clear", "what the hell is this drivel" - things like that.

I'd not seen this film before I got the review copy, not heard much about it at all if I'm honest but I had nagging doubts when I saw the name "Lou Diamond Phillips". I may be mistaken but, Young Guns apart, I can't think of a single film I've enjoyed that he was in.

I was not in a positive frame of mind going into this I can tell you.  However, I'd just got my brand new Pioneer 656 DVD player (cheers hifistore) and this was going to be the first film I'd actually watched using it.  It was also the first Superbit title I've had so that was another thing to look forward to.

The general idea is that a gang of hit-men of headed up by Melvin Smiley (Mark Wahlberg) and Cisco (Phillips) decide to branch out into kidnap to raise some extra cash. For ruthless trained assassins you'd think this would be like taking candy from a baby. Unfortunately the candy in question is the goddaughter of their particularly ruthless boss Paris (Avery Brooks).

Will you stop fidgeting!
Without throwing in too many spoilers the rest of the film is based around Melvin trying to get away while falling in love with the rather attractive schoolgirl outfit wearing kipnappee Keiko Nishi (China Chow). Going back to my earlier analogy this girl certainly is eye-candy.

Anyway we get lots of jokes, lots of explosions, shootings and that sort of thing - but the film doesn't actually seem to really go anywhere with it all. Don't expect to get a brain workout during this one.

Being a Superbit title you'd expect the picture to be a bit special and it certainly is. I was utterly blown away by what my TV was suddenly capable of doing - I'd doubted that Superbit could improve that much on standard picture quality but it most certainly does.  With the bitrate consistently up above 9.0 (most films hover at 5-6) it half makes you think extras are a waste of space and let's have pictures like this all the time.

Who smashed the table?
Of course, Superbit isn't just about Visuals - they really go to town on the old audio front too. With both a Dolby 5.1 track and a DTS track on offer you really are spoilt. Fidelity is dynamic and clear in a way not often heard in the home. The surround sound is highly aggressive, with gunshots flying past your head in all directions and explosions that will have you diving off your seat looking for cover. Both tracks are incredible but having listened to them both, I think the DTS offers slightly better channel separation and just edges it on the bass.

The A-Team was never like this
This is Superbit - we don't do extras.  You do get some English subtitles but that's your lot.

Watch me dive, watch me dive!
This disc has several things going for it. Great picture, awesome sound and it's less than an hour and a half long!  I've tried to like the film, and some bits are amusing, but the way it's all been put together just leaves me feeling let down.  Even taking into account the A/V quality I won't recommend it as a demo-disc because the other Superbits probably sound and look as good with a better film attached (Godzilla excepted of course).  The tagline for this movie is "Hit Happens" and I found myself unable to disagree.