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12

review by Zach B.

 

 

MPAA Rating: PG-13 (For Violent Images, Disturbing Content, Thematic Material, Brief Sexual and Drug References, and Smoking)

Running Time: 160 Minutes

Starring: Sergey Makovetsky, Nikita Mikhalkov, Sergei Garmash, Valentin Gaft, Alexei Petrenko, Yuri Stoyanov, Sergey Gazarov, Mikhail Efremov, Alexei Gorbunov, Sergey Artsibashev, Victor Verzhbitsky, Roman Madyanov, Alexander Adabashian

Screenplay by: Nikita Mikhalkov, Alexander Novototsky-Vlasov, Vladimir Moiseenko

Directed by: Nikita Mikhalkov

 

Studio: Disney

Retail Price: $28.96

Features: Theatrical Trailer

Specs: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, Russian Dolby Digital 5.1, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Scene Selection (16 Scenes)

Released: July 12th, 2009


 

"12" is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen. The film's gorgeous and stylized look is nicely captured on this transfer, with a real film-like quality. Other than edge enhancement and some noise, this transfer is in tip-top shape. Detail is excellent, fleshtones are accurate and black levels are solid. Colors are also imbued with a fine sense of richness, everything from the pale surroundings of the school gym where the jurors deliberate to the snowy Russian exteriors where more dramatic events take place. The overall image quality is very sharp too, and really pops out at the viewer. A top quality transfer, overall. 

 

"12" is presented in Russian Dolby Digital 5.1. As to be expected, there is plenty of talking — and all of that comes clearly through the front. But the sound effects — and there are some violent ones — all sound pretty discrete, and often make good use of the rear channels. Even smaller sound effects, such as rain, makes a subtle imprint. The music, which includes Edward Artemiev's score, also sound fine through the channels. Subwoofer use is above average, and fits in fine with the film. This is a very engaging mix that captures the sonic essence of the story.

Subtitles in English and French are included.

 

The Theatrical Trailer is included, as are many previews for other Sony Pictures Classics releases.

"12" — which scored a Best Foreign Film nomination at the Oscars — is an intriguing, explosive and long-winded remake of a beloved American classic (that being "12 Angry Men"). The DVD is sparse. A rental should suffice for foreign cinema lovers, as well as those who want to see how it stacks up against Sidney Lumet's masterpiece.