Jul 052018
 

Rampage is not great yet still a fun and entertaining enough action film that features Dwayne Johnson pretty much playing a similar character to that featured in San Andreas, but still his charisma does go a long way.

 

 

Rampage
(2018)

Genre(s): Action, Science Fiction
Warner Bros. | PG13 – 108 min. – $44.95 | July 17, 2018

Date Published: 07/05/2018 | Author: The Movieman


MOVIE INFO:
Directed by: Brad Peyton
Writer(s): Ryan Engle (story), Ryan Engle and Carlton Cuse & Ryan J. Condal and Adam Sztykiel (screenplay)
Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Malin Akerman, Jake Lacy, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Joe Manganiello, Marley Shelton, P.J. Byrne, Jack Quaid, Will Yun Lee
DISC INFO:
Features: Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Gag Reel
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 2
Audio (4K): English (Dolby Atmos), English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1), Portuguese (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Audio (BD): English (Dolby Atmos), English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1), Portuguese (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video (4K): 2160p/Widescreen 2.40
Video (BD): 1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Dynamic Range: HDR10, Dolby Vision
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Codecs: HEVC / H.265 (4K), MPEG-4 AVC (BD)
Region(s): A, B, C

Warner Brothers provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.


THE MOVIE — 3.25/5


Rampage is based on the classic arcade game from the 1980s that I’ve heard of but don’t ever recall playing. But leave it to Hollywood to take an arcade game and make a $100M+ budgeted blockbuster film starring one the few true stars today in Dwayne Johnson. I don’t know about the game, but the movie? It was alright actually with a decent enough story and a sense of genuine fun amongst the CGI carnage.

The plot centers on Davis Okoye (DWAYNE JOHNSON), primatologist and former US Army Special Forces working for the San Diego Wildlife Preserve, teaching the primates sign language, including albino gorilla, George. When mutation capsules, nicknamed CRISPR created by the evil Energyne Corporation, crash onto earth following a disaster on a space station, they disperse a gas infecting anything making contact, including George as well as a wolf and alligator, named Ralph and Lizzie respectively.

The following morning, Okoye is called when George had escaped his enclosure, killed a grizzly bear and substantially grown. Coming to his aid is former Energyne geneticist Dr. Kate Caldwell (NAOMIE HARRIS), creator of the CRISPR program. Soon enough spooky government agents, headed by Agent Harvey Russell (JEFFREY DEAN MORGAN), are on the scene, capturing George, despite warnings from Okoye that is a bad idea. And indeed it was.

Meanwhile, Energyne CEO Claire Wyden (MALIN AKERMAN) and antsy brother Brett (JAKE LACY) desperately want this mutagen and the only way is to extract from the infected creatures. So, Claire sends out a strong signal from the top of their corporate offices sending out a beacon for the mutants to converge on the city of Chicago, as if that town hasn’t been destroyed enough in Transformers: Dark of the Moon

If you’ve seen the trailers, you know that George escape, plane crashes and somehow our faithful central characters manage to survive (RIP extras). Now it’s up to Okoye and Caldwell to track them down and figure out a way to save the population before the military uses what is called the MOAB (mother of all bombs) on the city.

Rampage is a movie that actually was a tad better than expected. Is it dumb? Sure, but I can’t say I was never entertained especially seeing someone like The Rock teaming up with an albino ape. Sure, you do get plenty of destruction porn but a bit new with the mutant animals taking down skyscrapers in spectacular fashion.

There’s not much to the performances. Dwayne Johnson more or less is the same Dwayne Johnson you saw in Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle or San Andreas (where he also flew a chopper), meaning he’s basically a bad ass. Outside of him, Harris was fine in the female lead, Akermon as the nasty villain was a treat, especially her demise, while Jeffrey Dean Morgan was having a hell of a time in his supporting role; and Joe Manganiello as a mercenary has a brief role before being dispensed.

The film sees Johnson reteaming with director Brad Peyton from Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and the aforementioned San Andreas (with a sequel on Johnson’s massive slate). The pair seem to work well together and although there are flaws, mainly for me it’s hard to watch extensive scenes of CGI vs CGI characters, they produce fun movies and Rampage is no different, and likely those who played the arcade game might have more appreciation.

 

SPECIAL FEATURES – 3.5/5


This release comes with a slip cover and inside is the redemption code for the Digital HD copy.

Not Just a Game Anymore (6:15; HD) is a look at the original game and adapting it into feature film form from the filmmakers who were fans (including The Rock himself).

Deleted Scenes (10:12; HD) – There are 5 scenes here removed, likely due to pacing as they didn’t add anything to the plot or characters and one was more of a pre-viz to final film comparison and another was a teaser involving a mutated octopus.

Gag Reel (2:43; HD) filled with all kinds of line flubs.

Rampage: Actors in Action (10:45; HD) – The featurette covers the challenge of making the movie, upping the action mixed with the actors.

Trio of Destruction (10:08; HD) profiles the three monsters: George, Ralph and Lizzie.

Attack on Chicago (10:23; HD) is a behind-the-scenes featurette on the mass destruction of Chi-Town.

Bringing George to Life (11:53; HD) looks at how the gorilla was brought to the screen with the actor (Jason Liles) using mo-cap and the vigorous training to the visual effects by WETA.

 


4K VIDEO – 5.0/5, BD VIDEO – 5.0/5


Warner Brothers unleashes Rampage onto 4K UHD and Blu-ray presented in its original 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and 2160p and 1080p high-definition transfers respectively. Not surprisingly, the movie looks tremendous in both formats, though the 4K does have sharper detail and courtesy of the HDR slightly brighter and vibrant colors, which is on display throughout the film’s entirety.

4K/BD AUDIO – 4.75/5


Both discs come with a Dolby Atmos track which does sound exceptional both with the (few) quiet scenes where dialogue is clear as well as the action-packed sequences including the (new) destruction of Chicago with skyscrapers falling, windows crashing intermixed with the gnarls of the mutant creatures. This is certainly reference quality material here (and I include the video) as it will give your surround sound system, and every speaker, an incredible workout.

 


OVERALL – 3.75/5


Overall, Rampage is not great yet still a fun and entertaining enough action film that features Dwayne Johnson pretty much playing a similar character to that featured in San Andreas, but still his charisma does go a long way. The central story actually wasn’t too bad although the villains are quite cartoony which I guess works for a movie about three mutant creatures tearing a major city a part… This 4K/BD combo pack release from Warner offers up excellent video/audio transfers and an okay amount of bonus material.

 

 

The screen captures came from the Blu-ray copy and are here to add visuals to the review and do not represent the 4K video.

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