Movie Review: PUNISHER: WAR ZONE (4K Ultra HD Combo Pack)

PUNISHER: WAR ZONE is based on Marvel’s conic anti-hero. The movie was directed by Lexi Alexander from a screenplay by Nick Santora, Art Marcum and Matt Holloway and stars Ray Stevenson, Dominic West, Julie Benz, Colin Salmon, Doug Hutchinson, Dash Mihok and Wayne Knight.

Frank Castle, aka The Punisher (Ray Stevenson), turns the streets of New York City red as he wages a one man war against the crime syndicate responsible for the death of his wife and two kids. Aided by his trusted sidekick, Microchip (Wayne Knight), he almost kills Billy Russoti (Dominic West) and leaves him horribly disfigured. Billy renames himself Jigsaw and with the help of his crazed brother Loony Bin Jim, recruits criminals from every corner of the city to do battle with Frank.

Punisher: War Zone serves as sort of a reboot four years after the 2004 action-thriller arrived and takes the vigilante anti-hero down a much darker and extra violent path. There’s no catching up or refreshing of who Frank Castle is because the movie starts off with a bang and never slows down one bit until the end credits roll. The Punisher is now a seasoned vigilante and his reputation as a badass proceeds him. He gets into a fued with small-time criminal Billy Russoti and it leaves Billy horribly disfigured and this where he adopts the nickname of Jigsaw.

What happens is, Jigsaw makes a surprise return and starts to recruit more small time gangsters in the big city to help him declare war on The Punisher but the anti-hero is always ready for a new fight. The only setback Frank has to deal with is that some of his innocent friends get caught in middle of the fight but this just makes him even more numb to the cause when it comes to killing his enemies. The Punisher takes out Jigsaw’s goon sqaud one by one until the two finally throw down in a battle royale full of bullets and blood splatter where the vigilante ultimately takes the villain out in gory style.

The packaging comes with a slipcover/o-card. These Ultra HD movies all come in black keep cases which helps them easily standout from the popular blue cases that have been around since day one. The front features the artwork you see at the top of the page and the back includes movie details, some images and list of special features. The UHD disc and Blu-ray disc have matching artwork but the Blu has a blue stripe on it. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this 4K Blu-ray release were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio for this release. Fans will be able to experience this movie like never before with the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital HD) release. Experience four times the resolution of full HD with 4K along with Dolby Vision HDR, which brings entertainment to life through ultravivid picture quality.  When compared to a standard picture, Dolby Vision can deliver spectacular colors never before seen on a screen, highlights that are up to 40 times brighter, and blacks that are 10 times darker. The release also features Dolby Atmos audio mixed specifically for the home to place and move audio anywhere in the room, including overhead.

Bottom line is, Punisher: War Zone served as sort of a reboot and I honestly believe that recasting the main character is what hurt this box office flop the most because it was actually a good movie that was doomed from the beginning. Ray Stevenson just wasn’t right in this iconic role but the rest of the movie was so freaking cool in a number of ways. This one takes the violence to a whole new level because there’s more weapons, more bullets, more explosions and a lot more blood and gore. Just look at Jigsaw’s face! Lexi Alexander did a really good job directing the movie and gives it a dark and atmospheric look with the help of some amazing cinematography. I have to say that this underrated action-thriller gets better as it ages and will eventually earn cult classic status and deservingly so. Punisher: War Zone is now available on a 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital HD) and is worth adding to your 4K collection.

Distributor: Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Run Time: 123 Minutes

Rated: R

4K Format: Dolby Vision 2160P Ultra High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (2.35:1)

4K Audio Status: English Dolby Atmos 5.1 / French Dolby Audio 5.1

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (2.35:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 / Spanish Dolby Audio 5.1 / English Dolby Audio 2.0 Optimized for Late-Night Listening / EDA

Subtitles: English SDH and Spanish

Special Features: The extras include some audio commentary, five behind-the-scenes featurettes, theatrical trailer and a digital copy of the movie.

  • Audio Commentary with Director Lexi Alexander and Director of Photography Steve Gainer
  • The Making of Punisher: War Zone Featurette (09:02)
  • Meet Jigsaw Featurette (03:34)
  • Weapons of The Punisher Featurette (04:39)
  • Training to Become The Punisher Featurette (05:47)
  • Creating the Look of the Film Featurette (02:36)
  • Theatrical Trailer (01:08)
  • Digital HD Copy


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