The Infiltrator (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)
October 13, 2016 by Dennis Amith
Brad Furman’s “The Infiltrator” is an entertaining film about one of the biggest drug busts in American history. While some scenes felt they were thrown in for action-sake (specifically to show how great the danger is for the main protagonist), “The Infiltrator” is an entertaining film from beginning to end and I recommend it!
TITLE: The Infiltrator
FILM RELEASE: 2016
DURATION: 127 Minutes
BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, (2:40:1), English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, Espanol DTS Digital Surround 5.1, Subtitles: English SDH and Espanol
COMPANY: Broadgreen Pictures
RATED: R (StrongViolence, Language Throughout, Some Sexuality, Nudity and Drug Material)
RELEASE DATE: October 11, 2016
Based on the book by Robert Mazur
Directed by Brad Furman
Screenplay by Ellen Sue Brown
Produced by Paul M. Brennan, Miriam Segal
Co-Producer: Nicole Boccumini, Jess Fuerst, Matt Ruskin, Paula Turnbull
Executive Producer: Bryan Cranston, Kate Fasulo, Cam Galano, Peter Hampden, Scott LaStaiti, Robert Mazur, Norman Merry, Jill Morris, Martin Rushton-Turner
Music by Chris Hajian
Cinematography by Joshua Reis
Edited by Luis Carballar, Jeff McEvoy, David Rosenbloom
Casting by Gail Stevens
Production Design by Crispian Sallis
Art Direction by Karen Wakefield
Set Decoration by Cathy Cosgrove, Scott Jacobson
Costume Design by Dina Collin
Bryan Cranston as Robert Mazur
John Leguizamo as Emir Abreu
Juliette Aubrey as Evelyn Mazur
Diane Kruger as Kathy Ertz
Benjamin Bratt as Roberto Alcaino
Elena Anaya as Gloria Alcaino
Jordan Loughran as Bianca Alcaino
Daniel Mays as Frankie
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor as Steve Cook
Amy Ryan as Bonni Tischler
Joseph Gilgun as Dominic
Jason Isaacs as Mark Jackowski
Eric Wellman as Mark Holden
Rubin Ochandiano as Gonzalo Mora Jr.
Simon Andreu as Gonzalo Mora Sr.
Based on a true story, Federal agent Robert “Bob” Mazur (Bryan Cranston) goes deep undercover to infiltrate Pablo Escobar’s drug trafficking scene plaguing the nation in 1986 by posing as slick, money-laundering businessman Bob Musella. Teamed with impulsive and streetwise fellow agent Emir Abreu (John Leguizamo) and rookie agent posing as his fiancé Kathy Ertz (Diane Kruger), Mazur befriends Escobar’s top lieutenant Roberto Alcaino (Benjamin Bratt). Navigating a vicious criminal network in which the slightest slip-up could cost him his life, Mazur risks it all building a case that leads to indictments of 85 drug lords and the corrupt bankers who cleaned their dirty money, along with the collapse of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, one of the largest money-laundering banks in the world.
From filmmaker Brad Furman (“The Lincoln Lawyer”, “Runner Runner”, “The Take”) comes his American crime thriller “The Infiltrator”.
Featuring a screenplay by Ellen Sue Brown and based on a true story by Robert Mazur, a U.S. Customs special agent who risked his life in the 1980’s to take down Colombian drug lord and drug trafficker Pablo Escobar’s money-laundering organization by going undercover.
The film stars Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad”, “Argo”, “Godzilla”, “Malcolm in the Middle”), John Leguizamo (“Moulin Rouge!”, “Romeo + Juliet”), Diane Kruger (“Inglorious Basterds”, “National Treasure”, “Troy”), Juliet Aubrey (“The Constant Gardner”, “Iris”), Benjamin Bratt (“Law & Order”, “Miss Congeniality”, “Demolition Man”), Elena Anaya (“The Skin I Live In”, “Van Helsing”, “Talk to Her”), Olympia Dukakis (“Moonstruck”, “Steel Magnolias”, “Look Who’s Talk”), Amy Ryan (“Gone Baby Gone”, “Birdman”, “Escape”) and more.
And now “The Infiltrator” will be available on Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of Broadgreen.
The film is set in 1985 in Tamba Bay, Florida and U.S. Customs Service special agent Robert Mazur (portrayed by Bryan Cranston) is tasked to take on an investigation code-named “Operation C-Chase”. While Robert could retire with full benefits, Robert decides to take this last mission.
“Operation C-Chase” was an operation that would be carried out by U.S. authorities to infiltrate a substantial money-laundering enterprise utilized by drug cartels and ran by Pablo Escobar and Manuel Noriega.
With a team of over 200 people, Mazur would take on the undercover alias “Bob Musella”, while agents Emir Abreau (portrayed by John Leguizamo) and Kathy Ertz (portrayed by Dian Kruger) would also go undercover and each must gain the trust of crooked bankers and deadly Colombian drug traffickers.
Because the severity and the high level of danger surrounding the mission, Robert is quick to find out that the high risk of his job could get him killed but also putting his own family in jeopardy if he’s not careful.
“The Infiltrator” is presented in 1080p High Definition (2:40:1 aspect ratio). The film looks very good in HD as closeups show great detail and also capturing an ’80s feel to the film. I didn’t notice any problems with overall video.
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
“The Infiltrator” is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and Espanol DTS Digital Surround 5.1. The film features crystal clear dialogue and the film features a decent amount of actions at times.
Subtitles are in English SDH and Spanish.
“The Infiltrator” comes with the following special features:
- Audio Commentary – Featuring audio commentary by director Brad Furman and Bryan Cranston.
- Deleted Scenes – (8:45) Featuring five deleted scenes.
- The Three Bobs – (3:18) A featurette about Bob Mazur and his different identities and three characters Bryan Cranston plays in the film.
- How to Infiltrate – (5:49) Short featurettes on psychology, identity and danger.
“The Infiltrator” comes with an UltraViolet code.
Back in the ’80s, Robert Mazur and a team of over 200 people pulled off the most dangerous yet elaborate sting to bust many drug dealers and to take down significant banks involved in the money laundering of drug dealers in America.
While what many of us who remember this situation back in the ’80s, remember of how significant the bust was. What we didn’t really see or read i in the news at the time was how Robert Mazur and his team were able to pull this off and not get killed.
As the story goes, U.S. Customs Service special agent Robert Mazur was a guy who was supposed to retire and catch his benefits and be with his family. Instead, he chose to take one more case offered to him and it was his most significant and riskiest job yet and that was to infiltrate a substantial money-laundering enterprise utilized by drug cartels and ran by Pablo Escobar and Manuel Noriega for “Operation C-Chase”.
Everything had to be thoroughly planned and improvised as agents Emir Abreau had to gain their trust and Kathy Ertz had to play the perfect wife of Mazur’s undercover alias “Bob Musella”.
He needed to show he was just as bad as them and many times, he and Emir would have to win each of the drug trafficker’s trust and eventually do what it takes to elevate himself to the top, even if it means playing a bad guy in front of them.
But at what cost will Mazur go to bust these individuals, when his family are drawn in by his job?
While actor Bryan Cranston is known for his role in the popular drama series, “Breaking Bad”, this time he plays an undercover agent infiltrating drug traffickers, unlike his “Breaking Bad” character of constructing and selling drugs. He does a magnificent job of playing the dedicated agent but also the kind father who knows this last job is taking its toll on his marriage and his family.
Supported by an entertaining cast, while the film is entertaining and the film is based on a true story, these are action scenes that go a little over the top and made me question if they were even worth it.
But for its gritty storyline and giving us a perspective of how the major sting operation in the mid-80’s transpired, one will no doubt be surprised of how far Mazur and crew went to bust these bad guys. And to this day, he still lives in secrecy because of what he had done (and many of the people he busted are out of prison).
As for the Blu-ray release, picture quality is great as it manages to capture an ’80s feel with its costume design and lighting. Losless audio features crystal clear audio and good use of the surround channels for the more action-driven scenes. And there are a few special features included!
Overall, Brad Furman’s “The Infiltrator” is an entertaining film about one of the biggest drug busts in American history. While some scenes felt they were thrown in for action-sake (specifically to show how great the danger is for the main protagonist), “The Infiltrator” is an entertaining film from beginning to end and I recommend it!
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