The Usual Suspects (Blu-ray)

A $91 million cocaine heist...a devastating boat explosion...two survivors. U.S.Customs agent David Kujan (Chazz Palminterir) is determined to find out who and what's behind the melee. As he pieces the clues together with the help of a half-charred Hungarian gangster and an outspoken, crippled con man from New York (Kevin Spacy), Kujan soon finds out this story actually begins with five criminal minds and one infamous mastermind.

Second-time director Bryan Singer showed he had the chops to direct feature films with this classic hit from 1995. The ensemble cast includes Stephen Baldwin, Kevin Pollack, and Benicio Del Toro, but it's Spacey who steals the show as the con man Verbal Kint. Like The Sixth Sense, this is a movie that actually gets better the second time around because you start to notice the subtle hints that point towards the surprising resolution at the end of the film.

Video Highlights

  • MPEG-2/1080p encode on a BD-25 disc
  • Retread of the 2007 Blu-ray release
  • Occasional edge enhancement
  • Veil of film grain
  • Bold color palette
  • Deep blacks and stable contrast

Audio Highlights

  • DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack
  • Pedestrian sound design
  • Tepid bass
  • Engaging score from John Ottman
  • Intelligible dialog

The MPEG-2 encode is a dead giveaway that this is a rerelease of the same disc from 2007 with the addition of the digibook packaging. The video encode is serviceable but the pedestrian sound design won't woo the audience.

Bonus Materials

  • Digibook packaging

I'm a huge fan of this film and still believe that it's Spacey's finest performance of his career. The presentation is a decent upgrade over the DVD and this definitely is a movie I can watch over and over again. Recommended.

Release Date: May 10, 2011
Studio: Fox

Movie: 10/10
Picture: 8/10
Sound: 7/10

Review System

Source
Oppo BDP-93 Blu-ray player

Display
JVC DLA-RS40 projector
Stewart FireHawk screen (76.5" wide, 16:9)

Electronics
Integra DTC-80.2 pre/pro
Anthem PVA-7 power amplifier
Belkin PVA-PF60 power conditioner

Speakers
M&K S-150s (L, C, R)
M&K SS-150s (LS, RS, SBL, SBR)
SVS PC-Ultra subwoofer

Cables
Monoprice HDMI cables (source to pre/pro)
Best Deal analog-audio cables
PureLink HDC Fiber Optic HDMI Cable System (15 meters) from pre/pro to projector

Acoustical treatments from GIK Acoustics

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COMMENTS
aopu.mohsin's picture

Dave,

I agree with you. I can watch films like "The Usual Suspects", "Silence of the Lambs" over and over again without getting bored. But unfortunately, their "Bluray" upgrades do not match up with the movie themselves. I was really hoping to get them in my bluray collection.

I own both movies on DVD. Now, not sure if I am ready to buy the Blurays for these. Highdefdigest website also gave low ratings for their A/V qualities.

Thanks for your review.

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