Movie Review: Hackers (20th Anniversary Edition) Blu-ray


Hackers was directed by Iain Softley and stars Angelina Jolie, Jonny Lee Miller, Fisher Stevens, Penn Jillette, Jesse Bradford, Matthew Lillard, Wendell Pierce, Felicity Huffman and Marc Anthony. The movie features a pulsating electronica score by Simon Boswell that includes songs from The Prodigy, Orbital and Underworld.

While practicing the tricks of the trade, a neophyte “hacker” accomplishes the nearly impossible: he hacks the highly secured computer at the Ellingson Mineral Corporation. But in doing so, he unknowingly taps into a high-tech embezzling scheme masked by a computer virus with the potential to destroy the world’s ecosystem! And when the young hacker and his pals are targeted for the crime, the group must launch a massive cyberspace attack—one that will hopefully clear their names and prevent ecological disaster.

This highly stylized cyberpunk exploitation fantasy from 1995 is a unique watch to say the least and a movie that honestly came along way before its time. The movie focuses on this young group of highschoolers who are also genius hackers and they get in way over their heads when they hack into the wrong system. Of course doing this, they also uncover a sinister plot to do some major eco-damage and they come up with a plan to help and stop it. Of course, the kids get in way over their heads, the government gets involved but the bad guy is ultimately stopped and the kids somehow get out of all the crap they got themselves into.

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The story for this was cheesy but it was also a lot of fun. It’s all about hacking but it does sort of have a love story. The movie focuses on the internet during its infancy and way before it became such a mainstream must have for so many people. You do remember the AOL days and dial up don’t you? Remember either being online and somebody had to use the phone or vice versa? Remember how long it took sometimes for your computer to actually get online and that annoying sound it made connecting? I remember all of  this because I had one of those bulky desktop computers and I haven’t looked back since. It’s truly amazing how far technology has come in just 20 years and this movie focuses on a very young computer age and those pesky hackers. The strange styles and slang thrown around in this cyberpunk world are both weird. The movie shows bars where people can rollerblade inside and even the villain of the movie rides a skateboard! 

The front of the packaging features the artwork you see up top and the back includes movie details, an image and list of extras. The reverse sleeve also features some alternate artwork and movie credits. Inserting the disc, the cool “Matrix-like” menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition release were crisp and clear.

Bottom line is, this Hackers (20th Anniversary Edition) Blu-ray was fun revisiting after all of these years. It’s really weird watching it and seeing how Iain Softley captured the young computer age and this group of hackers. A lot of truth is captured within this movie while some of it ended up looking like some kind of spacey alternate reality of the computer age. The movie is an interesting watch and this Blu-ray releases on August 18th.

Distributor: Shout! Factory

Run Time: 107 Minutes

Rated: PG-13

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2.35:1)

Blu-ray Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0

Subtitles: English

Special Features: Good Stuff! The extras include a brand new 3-part documentary looking back at Hackers. There’s all-new interviews included that go into detail about the making of this movie that set a new trend and underground movement and the real life hackers that helped out behind-the-scenes.

  • The Keyboard Cowboys – A 3-part documentary looking back at Hackers including brand-new interviews with director Iain Softley, cast members Fisher Stevens, Matthew Lillard and Penn Jillette, visual effects artist Peter Chiang, wardrobe designer Roger Burton, hacking consultants Nicholas Jarecki and Emmanuel Goldstein and film critic Mark Kermode.
  • Original Theatrical trailer
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