Aug 012018
 

Lionheart is a film with the right mixture of cheese and genuine entertainment and was one of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s breakout role. Although his acting still wasn’t great (seemed to get better the more major roles he received), I still enjoyed the film in spite of the flaws.

 

 

Lionheart
(1990)

Genre(s): Action
MVD Visual | R – 104 min. / 110 min. – $39.95 | June 19, 2018

Date Published: 07/29/2018 | Author: The Movieman


MOVIE INFO:
Directed by: Sheldon Lettich
Writer(s): Jean-Claude Van Damme (story), S.N. Ward (original screenplay), Sheldon Lettich & Jean-Claude Van Damme (screenplay)
Cast: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Harrison Page, Deborah Rennard, Lisa Pelikan
DISC INFO:
Features: Commentary, Featurettes
Digital Copy: No
Formats Included: Blu-ray, DVD
Number of Discs: 2
Audio: English (PCM 2.0)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 1.85
Subtitles: English
Disc Size: 42.9 GB
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A, B, C

MVD Visual 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 — 3.0/5


Plot Summary: Upon receiving news that his brother in Los Angeles is seriously injured, Lyon Gaultier (JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME) deserts the French Foreign Legion from a remote outpost in North Africa. Fleeing from two of the Legion’s security force who have orders to bring him back at any cost, Lyon reluctantly turns to the illegal, bare-knuckles underground fighting circuit to raise the money he needs to help his brother’s family.

Quick Hit Review: Lionheart, following his bad guy bodyguard role in Black Eagle, is a cheesy and ultimately fun little action-thriller that propelled Jean-Claude Van Damme into super stardom. No, his acting skills were not the best and the screenplay (by director Sheldon Lettich along with Van Damme) didn’t exactly have the sharpest dialogue, yet the film kept me entertained, especially the final fight scene which really showcased JCVD’s talents.

 

SPECIAL FEATURES – 4.5/5


This release comes with a DVD copy and a slip cover and its great throwback cover artwork; this is #8 in the “MVD Rewind” collection. Included here is the 110-minute extended cut in HD and a fold-out poster.

Audio Commentary – Co-Writer/Director Sheldon Lettich and Actor Harrison Page chat together and recollect their time making the movie. This is available only on the extended cut.

The Story of Lionheart (47:28; HD) – This is an extensive retrospective documentary with new interviews with co-writer/director Sheldon Lettich, co-writer/actor Jean-Claude Van Damme, actors Deborah Rennard & Harrison Page, producer Eric Karson and others discussing the story, characters and the production progression.

Inside Lionheart with the Filmmakers and Cast (25:52; HD) seems to be some extra interview footage with the participants from the previous feature.

Lionheart: Behind the Fights (10:18; HD) is another new featurette where the cast and crew talk about the fight sequences.

‘Making of’ Featurette (8:52; SD) is an archival feature with old on-set interviews.

Interview with Sheldon Lettich (25:51; SD) and Harrison Page (13:04; SD) – These are old interviews, I assume filmed somewhere in the early 2000s.

Behind the Scenes of the Audio Commentary (5:39; SD) is some footage of Lettich and Page about to record their commentary track.

Rounding things out: Behind the Scenes Photo Gallery (4:45; HD), 5 Promotional TV Clips and the Theatrical Trailer (2:06; SD), plus trailers for Black Eagle, Return of Swamp Thing and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes.

 


VIDEO – 4.0/5


Lionheart is shown here in its original 1.85 widescreen aspect ratio and given a, presumably, new 1080p high-definition transfer which does look quite good. There is some heavy amount of grain and noise that permeates many scenes but detail still looked sharp while colors were nice and bright without appearing oversaturated.

AUDIO – 3.0/5


On the (slight) downside is the PCM 2.0 track included might’ve had good and clear dialogue levels, which did come through nicely enough, I did notice several instances where some of the sound effects, like footsteps on the sidewalk especially, had an almost echo-y reverberation, not to the point that it took me out of the movie of course, but still very noticeable.

 


OVERALL – 3.5/5


Overall, Lionheart is a film with the right mixture of cheese and genuine entertainment and was one of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s breakout role. Although his acting still wasn’t great (seemed to get better the more major roles he received), I still enjoyed the film in spite of the flaws. As for this latest release in the MVD’s Rewind Collection, the video transfer looked very good, the audio was fine but imperfect, and an excellent selection of bonus material.

 

 

 

 

Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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