Dragged Across Concrete Blu Ray Review (Lionsgate)
Dragged Across Concrete is a 2018 crime film written & directed by S. Craig Zahler (Bone Tomahawk & Brawl in Cell Block 99). Brett Ridgeman (played by: Mel Gibson from Lethal Weapon franchise, Mad Max franchise, Braveheart, & Payback) & Anthony Lurasetti (played by: Vince Vaughn from Psycho, Swingers, Brawl in Cell Block 99, & Clay Pigeons) have been working together for awhile on the job. They are the police unit that covers the urban beat in Bulwark & investigate some of the worst crimes in the city. During a drug bust, Ridgeman takes it too far on a suspect & Lurasetti joins in after watching the veteran use excessive force. Unfortunately, the whole incident is caught on video & exposed to the public. Lt. Calvert (played by: Don Johnson from Miami Vice, Vengeance, Django Unchained, & Machete) suspends both men without pay over the embarrassing situation. Bad timing for both, Ridgeman’s wife Melanie (played by: Laurie Holden from The Walking Dead, The Americans, The Shield, & Pyewacket) is sick & Lurasetti is about to propose to his girlfriend.
Desperate for cash, the two officers use their criminal knowledge to set them up for a payday while they are not making any money at the police department. Friedrich (played by: Udo Kier from Flesh for Frankenstein, Blood for Dracula, Suspiria, & Blade) owes a favor & gives them inside information for a robbery put together by Lorentz Vogelmann (played by: Thomas Kretschmann from Avengers: Age of Ultron, Blade II, King Kong, & Resident Evil: Apocalypse). Ex-con Henry Johns (played by: Tory Kittles from True Detective, Colony, Sons of Anarchy, & Olympus Has Fallen) is trying to put his life back together so joins up with his childhood friend Biscuit (played by: Michael Jai White from Spawn. The Dark Knight, Triple Threat, & Black Dynamite) for the mysterious job that turns out to be the same one that the disgraced cops are watching. Vogelmann’s crew pulls off the heist with a brutal approach & bank employee Kelly Summer (played by: Jennifer Carpenter from Dexter, Brawl in Cell Block 99, Batman: Gotham by Gaslight, & White Chicks) is at the wrong place at the wrong time. This doesn’t sit well with Henry & Biscuit, this leads to a deadly showdown with the criminals plus the cops are waiting to cash in any minute after the smoke clears. Who will make it out alive with the gold? Is this sacrifice worth losing it all????
Dragged Across Concrete is one of the best films this year! Mel Gibson makes a triumph return to the crime genre after a decent hiatus. He doesn’t do much these days & that’s a shame considering all his past work. Vince Vaughn has found his director in his later years. He’s mainly known for comedy when it comes to the general public but back in the day he did some really dark stuff plus he’s actually a real good actor. Both leads did an amazing job in this especially Gibson, I know he’s been kinda blacklisted in Hollywood for awhile now but I would love to see more material like this from him. The chemistry between the two is amazing. I’ve never really noticed Tory Kittles before but he came in there & just stole the show, he is just as important as the other two in Dragged Across Concrete. Those three are back up by a top notch supporting cast that includes Don Johnson, Udo Kier, Jennifer Carpenter, Laurie Holden, Michael Jai White, & Thomas Kretschmann really brought to the production to whole another level. S. Craig Zahler is on fire & he hasn’t done wrong yet, I like how you can tell it’s his film without even seeing his name attached to it. The soundtrack is one of those things that really guides his visual style. I will say, it could have been edited down a little because it did have a extended running time that no pun intended dragged at times. I enjoyed how it was kinda set up like a mini series with so many different subplots & characters so when they all actually met up it meant so much more! Patience will be tested at times with this character driven flick but the pay off is definitely worth it. Dragged Across Concrete was everything that I expected & more, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Lionsgate! This 1080p (2.39:1) transfer is gritty visual treat from director S. Craig Zahler. It has two different audio options which includes English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 & Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1 on the release. It’s dialogue heavy & it’s all crystal clear here. The action has a nice boost to it especially towards the end. The score & soundtrack sound amazing on this, it just adds so much to this production. It also has English, English SDH, & Spanish subtitles.
Let’s discuss the special features from Lionsgate on this blu ray. “Moral Conflict: Creating Cinema that Challenges” featurette is a little over 7 minutes. It has interviews with director S. Craig Zahler, actors Mel Gibson, Vince Vaughn, & various members of the production. They all talk about doing exactly what they want rather than worrying about what the public or studios expect. They chat about doing a project with an old school vibe that’s about the material & not trying to be watered down for the masses. They bring up under-appreciated stuff that later gets recognized as a gem & picking work that gets them excited. “Elements of a Crime” is a three part documentary that includes segments “Criminal Intent”, “Criminal Act”, & “Criminal Concurrence”. It’s almost 41 minutes. It has interviews with director S. Craig Zahler, actors Mel Gibson, Vince Vaughn, Laurie Holden, Tory Kittles, & various members of the production. S. Craig Zahler talks about his writing process. He says he had a few books & script written before doing this. He says working with Vince Vaughn before helped him get Mel Gibson’s interest in this. The cast & crew chats about his unique writing style. They say it say it plays out like a book & it grabbed their attention for this project. They bring up working with each other & how they got their roles. They go over the visuals & the look of the production. S. Craig Zahler talks about the performances & how they matched his script exactly how he meant it to be. They chat about writing & creating the score for the film. They bring up how important music is for the feature. It also includes a slipcover, a digital code, & a DVD copy of the release. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!