Courageous Blu-ray Review
- Aspect Ratio: 2:35:1
- Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
- Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
- Audio Codec: English, French DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
- Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish
- Region: A (Region-Locked)
- Rating: PG-13
- Run Time: 129 Mins
- Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
- Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
- Blu-ray Release Date: January 17th, 2012
- List Price: $35.99
Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures
(All Blu-rayDefinition.com screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)
Courageous takes place in Albany, Georgia, a county riddled with drug smugglers. After a recent survey shows that fatherless children typically grow up to be criminals, deputies Adam Mitchell (Alex Kendrick), Nathan Hayes (Ken Bevel), Shane Fuller (Kevin Downes) and rookie David Thompson (Ben Davies) aim to fix this. Due to this, the sheriff urges these men to spend more time with their children. Each of them have their own problems with their children, some get along with and understand their kids, while others are distant. Soon the four of them witness something horrible. It’s after this incident that they all turn to their faith to their Holy Lord, in hopes of passing His message on to each other and their community. What results is the kind of film that does have a quite the uplifting message.
The message of figuring out how to better yourself is nothing new. This has been done countless times before, in any genre of film. With Courageous being rather heavy on the religious tones, I was initially turned off. I don’t necessarily mind religion, I’ve never found any enjoyment when people overly try to make me follow it. I understand why people do, and I never judge, but it’s just not for me. With that bit of background, I found Courageous to be better than your run-of-the-mill religious film. The acting is realistic and, most importantly, the message is convincing.
Sometimes it takes that event, that sudden loss of life, to make you change your direction. Such is the case for our four main characters. After Mitchell’s daughter is killed by a drunk driver, the friends aim to teach their neighbors the importance of having faith in their lives. Of having faith in each other. A message like this is extremely important, for if you can’t have faith in one another, what’s life worth then? These thoughts and emotions are brought to the table with fine acting. None of the performances felt ‘phoned-in’. Perhaps this was because a majority of the actors were members of the town of where they shot the film. I’ll easily admit that Courageous can be a bit over-the-top at times (I felt some of the action moments were a bit forceful), but the overall impact of the film is there. If that’s what the filmmakers aimed to accomplish, then I guess they succeeded.
The 2:35:1 framed, AVC/MPEG-4 encoded transfer is quite good. A quick glance over to IMDb shows this film was shot using the Red One Camera. The film uses the kind of color palette that shows natural colors. Georgia’s sun soaked heat is brought out in the kind of colors that compliment the image. Dark reds, sun baked yellows and blacks dominate here. Contrast levels are accurate throughout as I didn’t notice any incorrect flesh tones or anything that felt out of place. As seen in the 2nd ‘additional’ capture, the close up shows a pleasant image. All in all, as per Sony’s day-and-date titles, this is a solid transfer.
The film’s provided DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is fairly solid. Dialogue does comprise a majority of the film via the center channel. The dialogue itself is clean and is reproduced well. Atmosphere is quite good throughout, especially during the heightened action sequences. It’s here that little discrete effects, shouts and yells, can be heard throughout the room. This basically places the viewer directly in the action giving us a solid sense of sound direction. Speaking of sound direction, pans between rears are invisible creating a truly smooth aural experience. LFE also offers up a good amount of response. All in all, this is a solid effort from Sony.
The included features are shown in HD:
- Commentary with the Kendrick Brothers
- The Making of Courageous – This runs 23:21 and glances into the behind-the-scenes of the film. Interviews with the cast and crew as well as production issues are discussed.
- Deleted Scenes – 12 scenes totaling 11:43 are shown. The scenes themselves are worth a look and do offer a bit more background on our main characters.
- Outrageous: Outtakes and Bloopers – 7:17 of bloopers are shown, most of which aren’t really that funny.
- Courageous in 60 Seconds – Well more like Courageous in 1:15.
- The Heart of Courageous – Running 3:19, this shows the story behind the film.
- The Story of My Father – This runs 8:52 and informs us of the real meaning behind Courageous.
- UltraViolet Digital Copy
The Definitive Word
While the film may not be completely original, I’ll give Courageous points for driving home an important message. This message is delivered with fine results, as per Sony’s day-and-date titles. If the subject matter interests you, definitely give this one a glance.
Additional Screen Captures