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PARAMOUNT

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Trey Parker
Cast:
Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Kristen Miller
Writing Credits:
Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Pam Brady

Synopsis:
Popular Broadway actor Gary Johnston is recruited by the elite counter-terrorism organization Team America: World Police.

Box Office:
Budget
$32 million.
Opening Weekend
$12,120,358 on 2539 screens.
Domestic Gross
$32,786,074

MPAA:
Rated R

DISC DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio:
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
German Dolby 5.1
Spanish Dolby 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Latin Spanish Dolby 5.1
Italian Dolby 5.1
Japanese Dolby 5.1
Portuguese Dolby 5.1
Subtitles:
English
Spanish
Latin Spanish
German
French
Italian
Norwegian
Portuguese
Finnish
Swedish
Dutch
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles:
None

Runtime: 98 min.
Price: $12.99
Release Date: 10/13/2015

Bonus:
• None


PURCHASE @ AMAZON.COM

EQUIPMENT
-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


RELATED REVIEWS


Team America: World Police [Blu-Ray] (2004)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (April 25, 2018)

For fairly obvious reasons, Hollywood never embraced marionette-based films. Trey Parker and Matt Stone - best known as the guys behind South Park - sought to change that with 2004’s controversial Team America: World Police.

The film starts with the attempts of Team America to halt terrorists in Paris. They kill their foes - and destroy the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and the Arc de Triomphe while they’re at it. Team member Carson (voiced by Trey Parker) asks Lisa (Kristen Miller) to marry him but a terrorist immediately kills him.

From there we head to Broadway where Gary Johnston (Parker) stars in the musical Lease. Spottswoode (Daran Norris) acts as TA’s representative, and he recruits Gary to portray a terrorist to learn about their foes’ plans.

Gary doesn’t immediately agree, but he comes to the group’s South Dakota hideout and meets the Team members. These include former quarterback Joe (Parker), empathic Sarah (Masasa), martial artist Chris (Matt Stone), and psychologist Lisa. Eventually Gary reluctantly agrees to become part of the Team.

Next we meet North Korean President Kim Jong-Il (Parker) and learn he’s the one who supplies the terrorists. TA gets Gary into Cairo to go undercover, where he infiltrates the terrorist organization. When he travels with them, TA goes on the offensive - and wreaks more havoc.

This leads to protests from Hollywood notables who belong to the Film Actors Guild (FAG). Alec Baldwin (Maurice LaMarche) leads the group that also includes Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Liv Tyler and Matt Damon. Terrorists attack Panama as retribution for the events in Cairo and FAG mobilizes against TA.

Eventually FAG forms a partnership with Kim Jong-Il when they think he’ll help create a peace ceremony. The rest of the film follows the Team’s adventures as they battle against the odds to ensure life, liberty and the American way.

I had high hopes for Police, but it only occasionally lives up to those expectations. That’s often true for the work created by Parker and Stone.

For every solid hit like South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut and certain episodes of that series, they punch out a dud like Orgazmo or Cannibal! The Musical. Police doesn’t fall flat ala those last two, but it lacks the consistency to make it a classic.

The filmmakers do offer a virtually perfect parody of big-budget action flicks, though. They’re too clever to simply replicate scenes from famous movies in that lazy Scary Movie manner.

Instead, they simply steal every stylistic, character and story concept that you’ll find in the genre. From the dialogue to the personalities to the music to the cinematography, Police nails its inspirations.

As one who sometimes enjoys Bruckheimer-style movies as a guilty pleasure, I’m embarrassed at how close they hit the mark here. Police nails all the clichés you’ll easily recognize, and it does so with great humor and insight. The flick doesn’t often provoke a “laugh out loud” response, but it comes across as consistently clever and amusing.

Of course, some specific film references occur, though they usually remain pretty subtle. For example, there’s one fairly incongruous mention of the terrorist attacks as being “the worst parts of the Bible” that deftly lifts from Armageddon.

Obsessed with Star Wars, Parker and Stone also toss out a cool allusion when we go to an Egyptian cantina. I also like the decision to make Kim Jong-Il similar to a Bond villain.

When I read some comments about Police, I found a few criticisms of the flick’s politics. I’ve seen the views of Parker and Stone referred to as “ugly”, but for the life of me, I can’t figure out why.

The movie skewers both conservatives and liberals. I think you'd be hard-pressed to figure out exactly what Matt and Trey think about politics, as hypocrisy becomes the movie’s only unifying theme.

It’s rare to find a picture that jabs at both sides of the political fence in such a balanced way - not that it always does so with subtlety. The entire opening sequence offers an obvious metaphor in that TA does more damage with their rescue than the terrorists could ever do. In addition, the decision to create the “FAG” acronym is obvious and somewhat cheesy.

Still, the movie gets in its pokes and does so well for the most part. The choice to use marionettes makes the entire enterprise all the more absurd.

Actually, the puppets seem surprisingly demonstrative and expressive. They’re much less stiff than I anticipated and the whole project looks quite good.

I feared that high production values might harm the project, as it seems like it’d benefit from cheesiness. However, it works better with qualities that reflect its high-budget inspirations, as it doesn’t try to wreak many laughs from those elements. It fares best as a pure parody because the movie so closely looks like other action flicks.

Team America: World Police sputters too often to achieve total success. Nonetheless, it gets in a lot of good zingers and presents a deft spoof of action movies while it mocks both sides of the political coin. Don’t expect a classic but give it a look anyway.

Note that this Blu-ray provides the theatrical version of Team America. The DVD brought us the “Uncensored and Unrated” cut, one that differed in a few ways, but most notably via a longer, more graphic sex scene.

Why does the Blu-ray go only for the “R”-rated cut? I have no idea, but it’s a disappointment.


The Disc Grades: Picture B/ Audio B+/ Bonus F

Team America: World Police appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a good but erratic presentation.

Sharpness was a bit spotty at times. Granted, those instances were infrequent, as the vast majority of the flick looked detailed and concise. Nonetheless, more than a few scenes seemed a little soft and ill-defined. The film boasted a broad palette that the disc replicated nicely – most of the time. A few instances could seem a little bland, but most showed nice vivacity. With all its action scenes, the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Team America: World Police offered many opportunities for activity. It usually took advantage of these, though it didn’t come across as stellar enough to inch up to “A” territory.

The soundfield presented a fairly broad and engaging setting. The score and songs demonstrated good stereo delineation, and the various effects were accurately placed. They meshed together smoothly and added a fine sense of environment.

The surrounds came into play mostly during the action sequences. The fights kicked the spectrum into higher gear, as did shots with vehicles. The part with the sky battle offered the movie’s most impressive piece, though a number of other scenes were strong as well.

No issues with audio quality manifested themselves. Speech always remained natural and concise, with no edginess or issues related to intelligibility. Music was broad and dynamic.

Effects sounded clean and accurate, and they packed a nice punch when appropriate. Across the board, the movie boasted tight, firm bass response. Though the mix lacked the dazzle factor necessary for “A” consideration, it worked well enough to assure itself a sold “B+”.

How did the Blu-ray compare to the original 2005 DVD? Audio showed a bit more punch, while visuals appeared tighter and more precise. Even with the image’s ups and downs, the Blu-ray upgraded the DVD.

Although the DVD included a long roster of extras, the Blu-ray drops all of them. We get absolutely nothing here.

Like most efforts from Trey Parker and Matt Stone, Team America: World Police never manages to really take flight and soar. However, it parodies a number of subjects well and remains entertaining and insightful enough to work. The Blu-ray offers good picture and solid audio but it lacks supplements. Though it presents the movie better than the DVD, the absence of bonus features and the unrated cut makes the Blu-ray a disappointment.

To rate this film visit the DVD review of TEAM AMERICA

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