Fury (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)
January 18, 2015 by Dennis Amith
“Fury” is a unique type of war film and there is no doubt that it is the best war film to feature tank battles on the big screen. The Blu-ray itself looks fantastic and sounds magnificent that videophiles and audiophiles will be proud with this release. A captivating and riveting war film, David Ayer’s “Fury” is highly recommended!
FILM RELEASE: 2014
DURATION: 135 Minutes
BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition (2:40:1 aspect ratio), English, French 5.1 DTS-HD MA, Spanish and English – Audio Description Track 5.1 Dolby Digital, Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
COMPANY: Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Release Date: January 13, 2015
Directed by David Ayer
Written by David Ayer
Produced by David Ayer, Bill Block, Jon Lesher, Ethan Smith
Co-Producer: Jon Lesher
Executive Producer: Anton Lessine, Alex Ott, Brad Pitt, Sasha Shapiro, Ben Waisbren
Music by Steven Price
Cinematography by Roman Vasyanov
Edited by Jay Cassidy, Dody Dorn
Casting by Lindsay Graham, Mary Vernieu
Production Design by Andrew Menzies
Art Direction by Phil Harvey, Mark Scruton
Set Decoration by Lee Gordon, Malcolm Stone
Costume Design by Maja Meschede, Anna B. Sheppard
Brad Pitt as Don “Wardaddy” Collier
Shia LaBeouf as Boyd “Bible” Swan
Logan Lerman as Norman Ellison
Michael Pena as Trini “Gordo” Garcia
Jon Bernthal as Grady “Coon-Ass” Travis
Jim Parrack as Sergeant Binkowski
Brad William Henke as Sergeant Davis
Kevin Vance as Sergeant PEterson
Xavier Samuel as Lt. Parker
Jason Isaacs as Captain Waggoner
Anamaria Marinca as Irma
Alicia von Rittberg as Emma
Scott Eastwood as Sergeant Miles
Laurence Spellman as Sergeant Dillard
April, 1945. As the Allies make their final push in the European Theatre, a battle-hardened army sergeant named Wardaddy commands a Sherman tank and his five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Out-numbered, out-gunned, and with a rookie soldier thrust into their platoon, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
With the Nazi Germany tank squadron overpowering America’s tank squadron, an army sergeant and his five-man crew inside a Sherman tank, must try to strike against the Nazi’s despite them being outnumbered and outgunned. Will this crew survive the fight?
This is the story from filmmaker David Ayer (“Training Day”, “The Fast and the Furious”, “End of Watch”), who felt inclined to write a story about set in World War II after a family members who fought in the war, began talking about their involvement. Also, inspired by Belton Y. Cooper’s “Death Traps” which was about armored warfare in World War II.
The film stars Brad Pitt (“Inglorious Basterds”, “Fight Club”, “World War Z”), Shia LaBeouf (“Transformers” films, “Disturbia”), Logan Lerman (“The Perks of Being a Wallflower”, “Percy Jackson” films), Michael Pena (“Shooter”, “End of Watch”, “American Hustle”) and Jon Bernthal (“The Wolf of Wall Street”, “The Ghost”, “Fury”).
The film budgeted at around $68 million, would go on to earn over $201 million in the box office.
And now, “Fury” will be released on Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
“Fury” takes place during the war when the Allies are making their final push into Nazi Germany.
Army Staff Sergeant of the 66th Armored Regiment, 2nd Armored Division, Don “Wardaddy” Collier (portrayed by Brad Pitt) commands a M4A3E8 76mm Sherman tank named Fury.
Having seen comrades decimated by the Nazi Germans, he has become hardened during the war and is upset at the death of his top driver/bow gunner.
His staff includes gunner Boyd “Bible” Swan (portrayed by Shia LaBeouf), loader Grady “Coon-Ass” Travis (portrayed by Jon Bernthal) and driver “Trini “Gordo” Garcia (portrayed by Michael Pena).
While arriving at an Ally camp and the only survivor of a Tank division decimated by the Nazis, he is given another driver/bow gunner, an Army typist named Norman Ellison who has never seen war before and is not sure why he is assigned to fight in a tank.
As Wardaddy is dismayed that he is getting someone with no experience and also someone who is full of fear, he gives Norman to get acclimated by cleaning all the blood inside the tank.
As the crew are given a new mission, Norman driving the tank sees an SS soldier but instead of shooting him, he allows the soldier to shoot at an ally tank in front of him, which leads to their death. Wardaddy is insulted that Norman didn’t do anything and Norman tells him that he didn’t shoot because they were young. Wardaddy and the crew, who have been together since the North African campaign, remind Norman that this is war and he must shoot at them no matter what.
While continuing on their mission, the crew must worry if their new driver/bow gunner will have their backs during this war or will his negligence lead them to their death?
“Fury” was mastered in 4K and is presented in 1080P High Definition. The cinematography is absolutely breathtaking as detail is superb, from the closeups of everyone’s face during battle. Closeups of the tank to even bullet trails flying all around looks fantastic.
Skin tones look natural, black levels are nice and deep, there are no signs of banding or compression artifacts during explosions.
“Fury” looks impressive on Blu-ray!
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
Along with amazing picture quality, “Fury” delivers with a magnificent lossless soundtrack. Presented in English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, everything about this film, may it be the rumble of the tanks, explosions, bullets whizzing in the air, the sound of infantrymen singing from a distant, this is one immersive soundtrack that sounds fantastic!
Definitely a Blu-ray release showcasing a wonderful lossless soundtrack to kick off 2015, “Fury” sounds magnificent in HD!
Subtitles are in English, English SDH and Spanish.
“Fury” comes with the following special features:
- Deleted and Extended Scenes – Featuring 16 deleted and extended scenes.
- Blood Brothers – (11:08) The actors discuss working with each other and also working with the veterans and how they became brothers during filming.
- Director’s Combat Journal – (17:32) A look at David Ayer’s challenge to direct the film and to make the film look and feel authentic down to the technical details and action.
- Armored Warriors: The Real Men Inside the Shermans – (12:11) A featurette featuring veterans of World War II who were on Shermans discussing the war and their memories from the past in battle.
- Taming the Beasts: How to Drive, Fire & Shoot Inside a 30 Ton Tank – (12:48) How the tanks were secured for the film and how to have the actors interact with them.
- Photo Gallery – Featuring images/stills of the cast, crew and veterans.
“Fury” comes with a slipcover and an UltraViolet code.
When it comes to World War II films, there have been many movies about the war but when it comes to featuring armored warfare, there are only a handful of films that focus specifically on tank battles.
There is the 1951 Lewis Seiler film titled “The Tanks are Coming” and you also get a little of it in the Franklin J. Schaffner 1970 film “Patton”, but there is no doubt that director David Ayer did a magnificent job in order to show his respect for the veterans of World War II by trying to make the most authentic war film focusing on tanks.
From the beginning of the film, you feel that the crew of the Fury are walking into an uphill battle against an enemy that has shown itself to be a juggernaut. Of course, we know the Panzer units of World War II were key to the success of Nazi Germany and the Allies had a hard time facing the Germans as they were outnumbered, outgunned but through key strategy between the Allies and Russia, were able to defeat Nazi Germany and win the war.
But this film is not about winning the war, it’s about a hardened army sergeant and his crew who are sent out on missions knowing that their chances are slim. But on duty, these men have the honor to fight in belief that the war will be over soon, but until then, many men will have to die. And they must continue their duty and strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
David Ayer does a fine job on focusing on the war, the technical issues that the crew must face and showing them at war.
Brad Pitt does a fantastic job of playing a sergeant who is strong and cold in front of his crew, but when alone, he suffers from PTS and doesn’t want his crew to know that behind-the-scenes, while a strong man, he hates the war and the Nazi’s.
The film also gives actor Logan Lerman to take on a role of a young soldier put into the battlefield with no experience and see his transformation of fear, anguish but then seeing the war upfront, the people dying and eventually, becoming a soldier.
Of course, one of the best part about the film is the cinematography and how the war is presented. David Ayer does his utmost best to showcase these armored battles with efficacy and going through a lot of research in order to bring these tank battles to the big screen.
On Blu-ray, the 4K mastering bring amazing detail and the film looks magnificent on Blu-ray. And along with the detail, comes a magnificent and immersive, lossless soundtrack. There are a good number of special features, including interviews with veterans who fought during World War II via Sherman tanks.
Overall, “Fury” is a unique type of war film and there is no doubt that it is the best war film to feature tank battles on the big screen. The Blu-ray itself looks fantastic and sounds magnificent that videophiles and audiophiles will be proud with this release.
A captivating and riveting war film, David Ayer’s “Fury” is highly recommended!
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