Blast Blu Ray Review (MVD Marquee)
Blast is a 1997 action film written & directed by Albert Pyun (Mean Guns, Captain America, Cyborg, Nemesis franchise, & Kickboxer 2/4). The world’s finest athletes come together for the Olympic summer games in Atlanta. The women’s swimming team (which includes in her feature film debut Shannon Elizabeth from American Pie franchise, Jack Frost, Night of the Demons, Scary Movie, & Thir13en Ghosts) lead by coaches Diane (played by: Kimberly Warren from Mean Guns, Sorcerers, & Future Murder) & Bill (played by: Thom Mathews from Mean Guns, The Return of the Living Dead 1/2, Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI, Crazy Six, & Dangerously Close) is taken hostage during practice. Security is breached & Omodo (played by: Andrew Divoff) from Wishmaster 1/2, Oblivion 1/2, Another 48 Hrs., A Low Down Dirty Shame, & Air Force One) leads a dangerous team of terrorists to carry out a explosive plan. They take out every possible threat at the location. At least they thought they did.
Jack Bryant (played by: Linden Ashby from Night Angel, Mortal Kombat, Resident Evil: Extinction, & Wyatt Earp) is a former athlete that’s now a janitor for the sporting event. He also was married to coach Diane years ago. He’s the only one left in the building to stop the bad guys & save the day. The Police Commissioner (played by: Tim Thomerson from Trancers franchise, Dollman franchise, Near Dark, & Cherry 2000), local city counsel (which includes Tina Cote from Mean Guns, Dark Side of Genius, Heatseeker, & Omega Doom) & the government (which includes Yuji Okumoto from Mean Guns, American Yakuza, The Karate Kid Part II, & Better Off Dead…) try to negotiate with the crazed Omodo before the President arrives. They are forced to bring in his rival & terrorist expert Leo (played by: Rutger Hauer from Blade Runner, The Hitcher, Hobo with a Shotgun, & Sin City). After suffering a life changing accident & losing his entire team from a past event it’s very personal & he’s out for revenge. Can they stop this chaos before it gets worse?
It’s loosely based off a true story of what would have happened if a terrorist group wasn’t stopped before they could execute their plan. This is basically Die Hard at the Olympics! During the late 80s & 90s low budget action films took advantage of the popularity of the franchise with their own spin on it. Some of them were actually really good & others were just cheap imitations with nothing new added to the genre. I’d rank Blast in the middle of all those similar productions & that’s honestly still good considering the amount of features with the same concept made back then. Blast had a surprisingly good cast for being a smaller film. Albert Pyun used lots of his regulars in this. When it comes to playing a great villain, character actor Andrew Divoff always delivers! Rutger Hauer gives a crazy performance in this & his character is very memorable.Remember Johnny Cage from the original Mortal Kombat movie? He’s the lead here & I can see why he did a decent amount of action flicks back in the day because he pulled off the hero role very well. The visual effects were a little silly at times & definitely showed it’s small budget but everything else made up for it. It’s awesome to see more direct to video & limited theatrical releases get some HD love these days. I had so much fun with this, it was pure entertainment & I am looking forward to more material like Blast from MVD Marquee in the future. Especially something like Mean Guns which is one of my all time favorite films. Blast had some of the same cast & crew from that production. For those of you that don’t know, it’s a new label from the creator of the MVD Rewind Collection & they are already off to great start. They have already announced various titles. RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from MVD Marquee! Blast makes it’s U.S. debut for blu ray with this release. This 1080p (2.35:1) is a huge upgrade from the previous 1998 VHS release from Warner Home Video. It never got a official DVD here so it’s a big leap in the quality between those formats. The original 2.0 stereo audio track is a major improvement & it elevates all the explosive action moments in this. Anthony Riparetti’s (Mean Guns, Dollman, Arcade, & Dollman vs. Demonic Toys) score shines on the track & gives the film the boost it needs. There’s no extras on this disc besides a Trailer for Blast, Walking Tall, & Crazy Six which is also from the same director as this. It’s available everywhere on August 28th, check it out!!!!