Friday, February 6, 2009

THE FINAL COUNTDOWN (Blu-Ray)

In 1980, the American aircraft carrier Nimitz sails through a blue-laser time warp, and ends up in 1941 on the eve of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Once they realize the truth of their situation, the captain (Kirk Douglas) and his officers (James Farantino, Martin Sheen) are faced with a dilemma: should they intervene and possibly change history, or stand by and watch the U.S. navy be destroyed?

Essentially a two-hour TWILIGHT ZONE episode, THE FINAL COUNTDOWN benefits from a great cast, a thoughtful, intelligent script, and incredibly high production values, including the actual U.S.S. Nimitz and its aircraft. There’s no CGI here, kids – when the F-14s engage in dogfights with Japanese Zeroes, they’re real planes and real pilots, and it’s all the more exciting because of it.

Blue Underground’s new Blu-Ray edition of this science fiction classic presents the film in its proper 2.351 widescreen ratio, at full 1080p high definition on a 50GB dual layer disc. The picture is beautiful. Audio options include 7.1 DTS-HD, 7.1 Dolby True HD, and 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround. Bonus features include an audio commentary by cinematographer Victor Kemper, an interview with Associate Producer Lloyd Kaufman (now of Troma), interviews with the pilots who served on the Nimitz at the time and flew in the film, and a selection of trailers and TV spots.

An intelligent science fiction film, presented to perfection. Recommended.

BUY: The Final Countdown [Blu-ray]