Pompeii Blu Ray Review

Pompeii brings a love story in middle of a volcano disaster, but its the bromance that makes it epic. Even before the ashes blacken the sky the visually stunning camera work tries to make up for its more than gaping plot holes.

Paul W.S. Anderson's Pompeii, brings up thoughts of Mrs. Potts singing "Tale as old as time." The story line is nothing new. It's another sword and sandal epic packed full of gladiator sports and bloody battles in grand arenas. Milo (Kit Harington) watches his family slaughtered before being captured himself and forced into the life of a gladiator. Milo's band of gladiators is brought to Pompeii for some games and along the way be comes acrossed the dow-eyed Cassia (Emily Browning), when he has to use his brute strength to put down her injured horse. It's lust at first sight. 

Once in Pompeii Milo becomes the interest of Atticus (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), who is just one big fight away from freedom. He watches him as the other gladiators pick fight with the prize pony. Their final battle versus each other is on the horizon, but it doesn't stop the bunk mates from forming a strong bond of friendship and risk their very lives for eachother.

Cassia comes back into play in a lopsided love triangle. Though she has shared less than a handful of sentences with Milo she desires him, and him her so much so that he risks his life to save her. She had returned home to Pompeii to try to escape Senator Corvus (Kiefer Sutherland) who sought her hand in marriage, but not only did he follow her, he is still intent on her being his bride. To make matters worst, he's the man who slaughtered Milo's family and his entire village.

Milo doesn't so much plot the death of his captors or the Senator, but rather takes advantage of the chaos of the natural disaster. When the ash starts to fly and the volcano erupts no one is safe, not even those who make it to the ships in the harbor. 

The Video conversion looks fantastic whether blu ray or digital copy. The colors stand out fantastically. The entire presentation is very lively and highly textured. The audio is pretty darn good as well, whether its whispers between Milo and Cassia or the roar of the volcanic eruption. The audio is as crisp and clean as the video. As par with a disaster flick the second half it really picks up and tests the subwoofer capabilities, but I would expect nothing less. 

There are plenty of extras on the blu ray, many featurettes that focus on stage design, visual effects, characters and performances, gladiators and stunt coordination, costuming and Mount Vesuvius but my favorite has to be the featurette Pompeii: Buried in Time. It takes an interesting look at the production, the cast and the story along with the history of the Roman city and the filmmakers' dedication to accuracy. There is also the normal Audio Commentary and Deleted Scenes, none of which added anything to the storyline, and trailers. 

When it's all said and done, Pompeii may be a poorly told love story, but it is no less entertaining. The love story really is secondary, no matter what the posters try to lead one to believe. It's a Gladiator filled disaster epic that translates well onto Blu-ray. The cast is composed of many well like actors, though not all of them are used to their strengths like Cassia's parents (Carrie-Ann Moss and Jared Harris). Pompeii may not be the best sword and sandal film, but it's worth a dvd rental.


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