Underground Cinema

Underground Cinema

Aug 24, 2009

There are more movie remakes, “re-imaginings,” reinterpretations and reboots—whatever directors want to call them—than at any other time in history. A more cynical soul than Blu-ray Bob might say that Hollywood is creatively bankrupt, but that person didn’t see this weekend’s number one movie, the brilliantly original Inglourious Basterds. No, the studios just want a safe bet, and a familiar story is a better gamble in these dour economic times than something unfamiliar. Sometimes the result will surprise you, like Tony Scott’s hit The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, a remake of the 1974 classic that was based on the novel by Jon Godey. After criminal mastermind Ryder (John Travolta) hijacks a New York subway train and threatens to kill passengers if he is not paid a ransom within one hour, MTA Dispatcher Walter Garber (Denzel Washington) has to diffuse the explosive situation by trying to rescue all the hostages, while not letting Ryder escape. The Taking of Pelmham 1 2 3 comes to DVD and Blu-ray on November 3 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment with a variety of special features, including commentary from Scott, “No Time to Lose: The Making of Pelham 1 2 3,” “From the Top Down: Stylizing Character,” and even a featurette on the NYC subway system itself. It’s unclear if the latter extra provides any tips about what to do when you miss that last train to Brooklyn or what language will get a response from those workers in the ticket booths. Maybe that will be covered via BD-Live extras on the Blu-ray, right Sony?

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