Nov 282020

Collateral might not be an overly ambitious crime-drama from Michael Mann but it was a nice, slow ride (no pun intended) thanks to two great performances by Cruise and Foxx.




Suspense/Thriller, Drama, Crime
Paramount | R – 120 min. – $29.99 | December 8, 2020

Date Published: 11/28/2020 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Michael Mann
Writer(s): Stuart Beattie (written by)
Cast: Tom Cruise, Jamie Foxx, Jada Pinkett Smith, Mark Ruffalo, Peter Berg, Bruce McGill, Javier Bardem

Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Deleted Scene, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 2

Audio : English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), German (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video: 2160p/Widescreen 2.40
Dynamic Range: HDR10, Dolby Vision
Subtitles: English SDH, French, German
Codecs: HEVC / H.265
Region(s): A, B, C

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

Note: The screen captures were taken from the Blu-ray disc and do not represent the 4K Ultra HD transfer.


Plot Synopsis: After a long day, LA taxi driver Max (JAMIE FOXX) is about to knock off when sharp-suited Vincent (TOM CRUISE) offers him $600 to make five stops. Sounds good until Vincent turns out to be a merciless hitman and each one of those stops involves a hit. As the night goes on, Max starts to wonder if he’ll live to see the sunrise, as the pair are hunted by the police and the FBI.

Review: Back in 2004, director Michael Mann decided to experiment with a different camera technique versus the standard way big budget Hollywood films had shot, utilizing a mix of film and digital and I remember when Collateral  was released, kind of felt odd watching it in theater and subsequently at home. The lighting used seemed to be more on the natural front not to mention some heavy grain that, from my research, some was added in post. Funny thing is, with streaming and the further uses of digital cameras, this style doesn’t seem as out of place.

As for the movie, it’s pretty much a classic Michael Mann crime-drama. Doesn’t nearly have the scope as Heat or, two years later, Miami Vice (which I believe used similar cameras or techniques) not to mention seeing superstar Tom Cruise play a straight-up bad guy, an unapologetic, plus manipulative, assassin with no moral compass. His scenes opposite Jamie Foxx (who was nominated for Best Supporting Actor) was rather good, and kudos to Mann and screenwriter Stuart Beattie for making it quasi believable the cab driver could not escape (even when going inside an insanely crowded club).

I won’t say Collateral is one of Mann’s best films, still would rank Thief, Manhunter, Heat and The Insider ahead (maybe even Miami Vice which I’ve grown to appreciate over the years), however it’s still a highly entertaining crime-drama with some great and unique cinematography and lighting that does make it stand out from the rest.



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

DISC2 1 & 2 (4K UHD / BLU-RAY):
Audio Commentary — Director Michael Mann. As one of my favorite filmmakers, he makes for a fascinating listen even working solo, offering insights into the production, filmmaking techniques, working with the cast and within Los Angeles.

Theatrical Trailer (2:11)

City of Night: The Making of Collateral (40:59) — Lengthy behind-the-scenes featurette with on-location footage plus interviews with members of the cast and crew including Michael Mann, Tom Cruise, Jamie Foxx, Jada Pinkett Smith and others.

Special Delivery (1:09) — Fun little featurette on how Tom Cruise was a FedEx deliveryman with the objective of not being recognized. Includes some hidden camera footage.

Deleted Scene (1:57) — Singular scene that didn’t make the cut. Includes a non-optional commentary with Mann.

Shooting on Location: Annie’s Office (2:34) looks at filming one key sequence inside an office, in the dark, high up looking over the city.

Tom Cruise & Jamie Foxx Rehearse (4:13) with footage of the two actors rehearsing their scenes.

Visual FX: MTA Train (2:27) examines some of the effects work done (outside the window on the train) on the final sequence.

Teaser Trainer (2:11)


VIDEO – 4½/5

Collateral comes to 4K Ultra HD presented in its original 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and given a 2160p high-definition transfer. The picture looks pretty darn good here, detail is sharp and the oversaturated setting of the L.A. nightlife comes through and the film grain is excellent as is the contrast with certain shots, such as Cruise’s silver hair and suit. There were no signs of artifacting, aliasing, specs or other flaws, though from what I can tell, the Blu-ray didn’t look too bad either.

AUDIO – 4/5

The included DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is strong and effective, though I don’t think it was terribly overwhelming. However, any of the film’s depth comes via the soundtrack and score, which I consistently listen to on my iPod, but dialogue comes across the center speaker with fine clarity and there is some ambient noises well defined, even the quieter moments, such as in the office building, leading to some tension.


OVERALL – 4¼/5

Collateral might not be an overly ambitious crime-drama from Michael Mann but it was a nice, slow ride (no pun intended) thanks to two great performances by Cruise and Foxx, both in their element. The 4K Ultra HD release has respectable, albeit not outstanding, video and audio presentations but at the right price, worth picking up.

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