Set Up appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was usually a pretty terrific presentation.
My only minor complaint related to shadow detail, as low-light shots tended to be somewhat thick and heavy. I suspect that this was mostly intentional, but it created some unappealing shots along the way. Many of the concerns affected African-American actors, as they could get lost in the murk. Since the lead character fell into that category, the issue became more noticeable.
Otherwise, the image worked very well. Sharpness was virtually immaculate. Even the widest shots looked well-defined and distinctive, without jaggies or shimmering. I noticed no edge haloes, and the movie lacked print flaws.
Set in cold, harsh Detroit, one wouldn’t expect a dynamic palette from Set Up. Chilly blues ruled the day, though interiors went with a warmer amber look much of the time. Within the film’s production design, these looked fine, and blacks seemed dark and tight. Really, only the murky low-light shots caused any concern; otherwise this was a strong image.
I thought the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack worked nicely as well. The soundfield opened up best during action scenes, as those used guns and vehicles to create a lively setting. Other sequences delivered a nice sense of place and environment.
Audio quality was fine. Speech seemed concise and distinctive, while music was bright and clear. Effects also appeared accurate and dynamic, with good impact across the board. Though the soundfield wasn’t quite involving enough for “A”-level consideration, this was still a strong mix.
Despite its low profile, Set Up comes with a decent array of supplements. We open with an audio commentary from co-writer/director Mike Gunther and stunt coordinator Kyle Woods. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific examination of sets and locations, stunts and action, cast and performances, music and editing, and a few other areas.
Very few, in fact - not that they tell us much about the rest of the film. A slow-paced track, the guys throw out the occasional banal remark amid a lot of dead air. They talk about how great and fun all involved were and even deliver the occasional semi-useful nugget - but only occasional. This is a sluggish commentary that doesn't deliver enough information to make it worthwhile.
Some featurettes fill out the set. Making Set Up goes for nine minutes, 17 seconds and includes notes from Gunther, and actors Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and Randy Couture. The show looks at story and characters, cast and performances, and general thoughts. No information of substance emerges here. We get a few mildly interesting shots from the set but otherwise this is a fluffy snoozer.
Inside the Gun Locker: The Weapons of Set Up lasts three minutes, 37 seconds and features assistant prop master Matthew Stratton. He takes us on a tour of the firepower featured in the flick. This becomes a better program than its immediate predecessor, but it’s still not especially fascinating.
Under Interviews with Cast and Crew, we get three clips. We hear from Gunther (12:27), Jackson (8:33) and Couture (3:36). Gunther discusses aspects of the film’s development and story as well as other production areas. Jackson chats about his role and aspects of his career, while Couture does the same. The Gunther and Jackson bits sag at times but deliver a reasonable amount of information. Couture’s piece is less interesting.
The disc opens with ads for Hostage, House of the Rising Sun, Blood Out and Caught in the Crossfire. These appear under Also from Lionsgate as well, and the disc tosses in the trailer for Set Up too.
While I like gritty crime movies, I can’t find anything of worth in Set Up. Chock full of amateurish filmmaking and acting, the movie never becomes anything even vaguely interesting or compelling. The Blu-ray delivers very good picture and audio, though, and it also tosses in some generally mediocre supplements that include one of the least interesting audio commentaries I’ve screened in a while. Although this is a high-quality Blu-ray, the flick itself is an amateurish clunker.