10/23/2017  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Jennifer Esposito Is Your Newest NCIS Agent in Season 1...
Critics Are Split on Ghostbusters Reboot ...
'Respect is key': The Game, Snoop Dogg lead march to LA...
Kristen Stewart's Sheer Dress At 'Equals' Premiere -- S...
"A Slow Slipping Away"-- Kris Kristofferson's Long-Undi...
Fox News' Roger Ailes Sued for Sexual Harassment by Ous...
Garrison Keillor Retires from 'Prairie Home Companion' ...
Jennifer Aniston is Pregnant: Star Steps Out in Loose D...
Hiddleswift Is One Big Song Promotion -- A Theory...
Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie Presley files for ...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

New Line Home Cinema presents
Running Scared (2006)

"I did not marry an evil man. And I know that's not what I see when I look in your eyes."
- Teresa (Vera Farmiga)

Review By: Joel Cunningham  
Published: June 28, 2006

Stars: Paul Walker, Cameron Bright, Vera Farmiga
Other Stars: Chazz Palminteri, Karel Roden, Johnny Messner, Ivana Milicevic, Alex Neuberger, Bruce Altman, Elizabeth Mitchell, John Noble
Director: Wayne Kramer

MPAA Rating: R for pervasive strong brutal violence and language, sexuality, and drug content
Run Time: 02h:02m:18s
Release Date: June 06, 2006
UPC: 794043103056
Genre: action


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A B+AA+ B-

DVD Review

When you think about it, fairy tales are pretty gruesome things to share with young children. If you go with the old-school Brothers Grimm versions, you've got Little Red Riding Hood eaten alive, Cinderella's sisters slicing off hunks of their feet, and giants who favor bread made with ground bones. Director Wayne Kramer, who made the feel-good Vegas dramedy The Cooler a few years back, obviously understands this. Based on the premise alone—small-time hood must cover his tracks before his criminal cohorts catch up with him—Running Scared may seem like your typical thriller, but it's really an updated story of a little boy who is lost in a dark and spooky forest, where dangerous creatures lurk and terrible things happen children.

The little boy in this case is 10-year-old Oleg (Cameron Bright), who lives next door to Joey Gazelle (Paul Walker) and his family. Joey is a clean-up man for the local mob, responsible for disposing of weapons that have done very bad things. Except he doesn't ditch the guns so much as hides them in his basement, and one day, his son is down there playing with Oleg when they come across the stash. Oleg, whose heavily bruised back gives you an idea of what his home life is like, steals one of them. Unfortunately, it's the one that was used to plug a corrupt cop.

Oleg's step-dad is Anzor (Karel Roden), a Russian immigrant who grew up watching John Wayne's The Cowboys over and over, a thousand times. But it was a short version, made safe for children, and it didn't include Wayne's climactic demise. Anzor came to America, saw the entire movie, and realized he was living in a world where heroes die. The discovery has left him bitter and abusive. But Oleg has had enough, watched his mother, a former prostitute, beaten up once too often. He shoots Anzor and takes off into the night.

The rest of the movie is a ferocious, blood-spattered journey through an urban jungle. Joey has to find Oleg and get the gun back before his bosses (or the cops) find it. Oleg, meanwhile, is the one stuck in a fairy tale, but instead of the big bad wolf, he's chased by a sadistic pimp. Instead of a good fairy, he meets a hooker with a heart of gold. And the witch in a gingerbread house seems tame compared to a pair of pedophiles (Bruce Altman and Elizabeth Mitchell) who lure children into a candy-colored penthouse stocked with toys and videogames and devour them in more ways than one. Other people to avoid in dark alleys: Joey's ruthless boss, played by character actor Arthur Nascarella, and a dirty cop (Chazz Palminteri) who recognizes Oleg's gun and has a pretty good idea where he got it. Vera Farmiga plays Joey's wife, a role that goes far waiting on the sidelines for the man to come to the rescue, a payoff too good to spoil.

There is a plot here, but it doesn't really matter all that much. Just know that things start out badly, and keep getting worse, both for Joey and for Oleg. Saying it goes over-the-top is an understatement (Roger Ebert mused that it goes so far over the top, it circumnavigates the top and goes over it again); by the time Oleg's prostitute friend helps him refill an asthma prescription at gunpoint, you pretty much know if this is a movie for you or not. A lot of people are killed along the way, and the gore is sudden and intense, with little of the comedic excess of Kill Bill, to which many will liken it. The sexuality is almost as graphic, at least in Hollywood terms (it's not for nothing the film's online marketing included, I kid you not, an oral sex videogame). But it's also been put together with a lot of technical skill—the computer-aided editing is stylish but never distracting, and the cinematography has a sort of gritty elegance.

This is not a film designed for deep thoughts and serious conversation afterward; like many thrillers, the plot sort of falls apart if you overanalyze it. On a gut level, though, it sticks with you—watching it can be a pretty harrowing experience, and I'm still thinking about those soulless pedophiles several days later. There's something to be said for a movie that can do that to an audience, whatever its other merits. And even if you don't agree that this is a gloriously gonzo exercise in exploitation, you have to admit, Kramer knows how to mess with your head.

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: B+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio2.35:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: This dark and gritty film looks fantastic on DVD. Colors are lurid and saturated and blacks are rich and deep. Dark scenes show excellent detail, while the image as a whole is solid and free from grain, artifacts, and edge enhancement.

Image Transfer Grade: A

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes
DTSEnglish 6.1 ESyes


Audio Transfer Review: The disc offers DD 5.1 and DTS 6.1 mixes. Both sound great, but the addition of the rear center in the DTS mix is an obvious advantage, because this is a track that makes good use of all the channels. Dialogue comes across clearly even as the action circles the room, with gunshots blasting from all directions. Even during quiet moments, the surrounds are used subtly to provide atmosphere and amp up the tension.

Audio Transfer Grade: A+

 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 21 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish with remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
2 Other Trailer(s) featuring Blade: The Series, Cyber Wars
1 Documentaries
1 Feature/Episode commentary by director Wayne Kramer
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: RSDL

Extra Extras:
  1. Wayne Kramer's storyboards
  2. Comic book
Extras Review: Whether the film's theatrical vanishing act had anything to do with it or not, the DVD is a little light on bonus features, but there are a few goodies for the fans.

Director Wayne Kramer chatters non-stop in his feature commentary, finding a nice balance between talking about the story themes, technical details (the trick editing involved some near-invisible CGI), and behind-the-scenes tidbits. If you appreciate what he was trying to do with this movie, you'll probably want to hear what he has to say.

An 18-minute making-of is a little on the short side, but it provides a decent, fluff-free look at the production. There are also storyboards for a few sequences drawn by Kramer himself, the trailer, and a special insert that translates the bloody climax at the ice rink into a handy, graphic-novel format.

Extras Grade: B-

 

Final Comments

A surreal, violent fairy tale of a thriller, Wayne Kramer's Running Scared will probably split audiences right down the middle (er, not literally, though you have to watch out with this one). Substance-free but stylish and certainly not stupid, it's nevertheless got a certain everything-and-the-kitchen-sink style you'll either love (Demonic pedophiles! Sadistic pimps! Crooked cops! Buckets of blood!) or loathe (Demonic pedophiles? Sadistic pimps? Crooked cops? Buckets of blood?). Thus, it's sure to become a cult classic.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, jennifer esposito, blue bloods, ncis, mark harmon. duane henry, wilmer valderrama, michael weatherly, bull, movie, ghostbusters, comedy, chris helmsworth, melissa mcarthy, kristen wiig, celebrity, rap, game, shoop dogg, jayceon terrell taylor, alton sterling, kristen stewart, equals, jonathan simkhal, nicholas hoult, music, kris kristofferson, country music hall of fame, alzheimers, lyme disease, fox news, gretchen carlson, fox and friends, steve doocy, roger ailes, the real story with gretchen carlson, radio, garrison keillor, a prairie home companion, jennifer anniston, baby bump, justin theroux, taylor swift, tom hiddleston, calvin harris, lisa marie presley, michael lockwood, riley and benjamin keough, danny keough, michael jackson, nicolas cage, tom affleck, boston fan, bill simmons, hbo show, any given wednesday, tom brady, deflategate, hamilton, lin-manuel mianda, periscope, heart tweet machine, hamilton mixtape, cable, hbo, curb your enthusiasm, larry david, bernie sanders, saturday night live, maya and marty, christina grimmie, murdered, plaza live, before you exit, marcus grimmie, nashville, cmt, president brian phillips, the tonight show, jimmy fallon, president obama, the roots, hillary clinton, tim mcgraw, faith hill, maggie mcgraw, humble and kind, ellen degeneres show, titi pierce, coldwell banker robbins & free realty, hairspray live!, tracy turnblad, york theatre company, john waters, jennifer hudson, harvey fierstein, martin short, derek hough, j.k. rowling, harry potter and the cursed child, noma dumezweni, emma watson, judd apatow, paul freig, melissa mccarthy, romance, history channel, roots, remake, anika noni rose, t.i., malachi kirby, josh duhamel, transformers, fergie, black eyed peas, axl, double dutchess, abc, music city, grand ole opry, chip esten, lennon stella, the voice, alisan porterm, christina aguilera, ceelo green, ariana grande, sia, the little big town, 2016 billboard music awards, pink, just like fire, pamela neal, warrior princess, send my love (to your new lover), billboard music awards, adele, patrick daughters, bryan cranston, lbj, all the way, melissa leo, frank langella, todd weeks, hard sell, kristin chenoweth, wicked

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store