Jul 152016

Criminal is your run-of-the-mill action/thriller that succeeds mostly with a strong ensemble cast led way by Kevin Costner who gives a nice performance while Gary Oldman, Tommy Lee Jones and Ryan Reynolds are more background noise. This is the perfect movie as a rental, but not much more.




Genre(s): Action, Suspense/Thriller
Lionsgate | R – 113 min. – $39.99 | July 26, 2016

Date Published: 07/15/2016 | Author: The Movieman


Directed by:
Ariel Vromen
Writer(s): Douglas Cook & David Weisberg (written by)
Cast: Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Tommy Lee Jones, Ryan Reynolds, Jordi Molla, Gal Gadot, Michael Pitt, Alice Eve, Antje Traue, Scott Adkins
Select Scene Commentary, Featurette, Deleted Scenes, Music Video
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: Blu-ray, DVD
Number of Discs: 2
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Disc Size: 43.9 GB
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A


THE MOVIE — 3.0/5

CIA agent Bill Pope (RYAN REYNOLDS) has been killed by the ruthless Xavier Heimdahl (JORDI MOLLA) following a torture session to find the location of a hacker named The Dutchman (MICHAEL PITT) who is willing to divulge a dangerous loophole in the United States’ defense system in which anyone can launch missile, in exchange for $10 million, a passport and asylum.

In order to find the location of the Dutchman, CIA operations director Quaker Wells (GARY OLDMAN) utilizes an experimental procedure created by Dr. Franks (TOMMY LEE JONES) by which the memories of the deceased Pope can be transferred into someone else. And that someone else is Jericho Stewart (KEVIN COSTNER), a violent sociopath who cares about no one. At first the procedure didn’t seem to work but after escaping transport back to prison, Jerico ends up at Pope’s old home. Armed with the entry code, he goes inside and begins to assault Pope’s wife, Jill (GAL GADOT), but then suddenly starts seeing, and worse yet, feeling Pope’s life in flashes.

Soon enough, Jericho takes on the personality of Pope, meaning he can speak multiple languages, has the smarts to escape just about any situation and even love towards Jill and her daughter; love, as he mentions in the film, is a term he knows nothing about. However, his more greedy part of his personality does come through especially when he knows Pope hid a bag full of money.

Meanwhile, feeling left out in the wind following Pope’s murder, The Dutchman makes plans of his own, first offering the wormhole code to the U.S. arsenal to the Russians while international terrorist Heimdahl and his seemingly endless number of henchmen, not to mention his right-hand woman (ANTJE TRAUE), want the tech as they were once comrades in the fight against the world powers.

Listen, Criminal isn’t some masterful or smart thriller, albeit at times I think it thinks it’s smarter than it actually is, and it is utterly uneven with at times reminding me of the Bourne franchise sans any of the fun factor with a mixture of the wonky science in Face/Off. Still, the performances headlined by Kevin Costner with the other veterans like Gary Oldman and Tommy Lee Jones merely filling generic roles and newcomers Gal Gadot and, especially Alice Eve, being underutilized. Ryan Reynolds has a brief role though strangely despite seeing a comeback with Deadpool, his image and name are nowhere to be seen on the box art or even in the credit block (he is in the end credit scroll however).

Directed by Ariel Vromen who previously helmed a few halfway quality drama-thrillers including The Iceman with Michael Shannon, Danika starring Marisa Tomei and Rx with Eric Balfour, none of which were particularly memorable yet passable entertainment, Criminal is more of the same; makes for a decent enough rental, not much more.



This release comes with a glossy and reflective slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital Copy and a DVD Copy.

Criminal Intent (40:03; HD) is a behind-the-scenes making-of featurette comprised of interviews with members of the cast and crew discussing the plot and characters. It’s far better than the usual EPK-like features I’ve come across.

Director’s Notes (40:04; HD) is a select-scene commentary with director Ariel Vroman.

Deleted Scenes (4:20; HD) – Here we get a few scenes cut down or completely removed, none of which would’ve added to the plot.

Music Video (3:54; HD) – ‘Drift and Fall Again’ by Madsonik

PreviewsSicario, Gods of Egypt, The Trust, I Am WrathHeist


VIDEO – 4.5/5

Lionsgate releases Criminal on Blu-ray presented in its original 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. The detail on this movie is well defined and sharp throughout while colors are generally bright while nothing overly vibrant in keeping with the darker tone for the genre. There’s some natural grain but otherwise it’s a clean looking transfer with no major instances of dust marks, aliasing, banding or other flaws.

AUDIO – 4.0/5

The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is a bit mixed. While it does provide for clear dialogue levels and the music/soundtrack makes nice usage of the front and rear channels, the LFE track does seem to go into overdrive and rather than giving anything strong or robust, it was more of an annoyance more than anything. Aside from that, it’s still a satisfying track that will test your system.


OVERALL – 3.0/5

Overall, Criminal is your run-of-the-mill action/thriller that succeeds mostly with a strong ensemble cast led way by Kevin Costner who gives a nice performance while Gary Oldman, Tommy Lee Jones and Ryan Reynolds are more background noise. This is the perfect movie as a rental, but not much more than that and with some choice editing, is poised to air on USA in a year or two.





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

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