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The FP

Blu Ray

  • Score
    61
    from 3 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • The FP: Technically solid but critically flawed, it's a niche, silly ride not for all.

    The FP Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
    71
  • The FP's Blu-ray offers a solid 1080p transfer, capturing its gritty, low-budget aesthetic with clean imagery and varied colors, despite occasional banding and softness.

  • Audio
    68
  • The DTS-HD MA 5.1 track excels with loud club music and a major pyrotechnic event, though dialogue clarity and sound depth reflect budget limits. Despite these, it delivers an engaging audio experience.

  • Extra
    68
  • The Blu-ray extras delve into 'The FP's' DIY spirit, from its humble origins to detailed costume design and scoring, mixed reactions to commentary, and a nostalgic return to Frazier Park, retaining a light, fun tone amidst technical challenges.

  • Movie
    53
  • The FP, a film aiming for cult status, struggles with its identity, overstretches a thin joke, and engages in excessive misogyny amidst a bizarre dance-fight dystopia.

    Video: 71

    The FP," despite its inherent limitations due to a modest production budget, receives a commendable Blu-ray video presentation from Image Entertainment. Utilizing Canon XH-A1 digital cameras, an equipment choice stemming from cinematographer Brandon Trost's experience on "Crank 2," the film manages to produce a visually engaging output. Though the absence of a full digital intermediate is noted, some degree of color grading appears to have been implemented, likely through PC software, enhancing the video's overall clarity and depth. This technical background contributes to a video that is clean and sharply processed, showcasing excellent framing with a keen eye for detail.

    The visual palette of "The FP" is notably diverse, ranging from the artificially vibrant hues of club scenes at night to the more subdued and natural colors of daytime exteriors and the decrepit surroundings of Frazier Park. These variations in color and lighting conditions are adeptly rendered on the 1080p, AVC-encoded Blu-ray, preserving the fidelity of the film's diverse aesthetic intentions. Black levels and contrast are executed proficiently, ensuring that darker scenes, particularly those set in clubs and interior spaces, maintain adequate depth without sacrificing shadow detail. The projection of blacks occasionally tends towards flatness, somewhat diminishing the desired grittiness, yet this is a minor flaw in an otherwise solid transfer.

    While the source's cleanliness and absence of distracting noise commend the presentation, some issues like light banding and occasional softness detract from the overall sharpness. The banding, more prominent in scenes with significant expanses of lighter colors such as the sky or club lights, alongside a variable sharpness that oscillates between crisp and slightly gauzy images, hints at the limitations posed by the production's budgetary constraints. Nonetheless, these moments do not overly detract from what is fundamentally a strong transfer. The digital filmmaking approach, echoing the techniques of the Trost Bros.' mentors Nevaldine/Taylor, pays off with a visually compelling rendition that balances the gritty realism of its setting with the energetic vibrancy of its nocturnal scenes.

    Audio: 68

    The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track for "The FP" brilliantly captures the essence of its club dance music and the adrenaline-fueled atmosphere of its unique setting. The audio track excels in delivering loud, powerful beats that ensure the movie's techno and dance tracks, particularly during the intense dance battles, resonate deeply with the audience. George Holdcroft's inventive score is a standout, skillfully filling the surround sound space and offering a cohesive auditory experience that significantly contributes to the film's unity. Despite a few synchronization issues at the movie's start, where voices and lips don't perfectly align, this problem quickly resolves, leaving an immersive audio experience for the remainder.

    However, the audio presentation isn't without its faults. Dialogue clarity suffers throughout "The FP," not due to the technical capabilities of the DTS lossless track but rather the film's choice of vernacular, leading to often unintelligible exchanges. Additionally, while the subwoofer tirelessly conveys the movie's generic techno music with commendable enthusiasm, certain sound effects, such as gunshots, are criticized for sounding tinny and lacking impact. These issues aside, the surrounds are engaging, adding a layer of ambiance to club scenes and dance-offs, elevating the overall auditory experience.

    Interestingly, alongside the robust DTS-HD MA 5.1 track, a Dolby Digital 5.1 option is included at a lower bitrate of 320 kbps, the purpose of which remains unclear. Despite some mixed results in dialogue audibility and specific sound effect quality, "The FP's" audio track, for the most part, surpasses expectations. It strikingly showcases the film’s vibrant soundtrack and creates an enveloping atmosphere that somewhat compensates for its other auditory shortcomings.

    Extra: 68

    The Blu-ray extras for "The FP" serve as an insightful and multifaceted exploration of the film's creation, offering a behind-the-scenes look that ranges from the genesis of the project to its execution and reception. From the Trost Bros.’ commentary, revealing the unique conditions of the film's production and their personal connections to Frazier Park, to the detailed making-of featurette that delves into the challenges and innovations in costuming and scoring on a shoestring budget, each extra enhances the viewing experience. However, the commentary track suffers from poor audio mixing, requiring a high volume to discern the brothers' subdued tones—a stark contrast to the film’s eccentricity. The inclusion of trailers and a booklet with essays from notable directors further enriches the collection, although an opportunity was missed by not featuring the original short film that inspired "The FP". Despite these minor drawbacks, the extras package successfully paints a comprehensive picture of a passion-driven project realized against all odds.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Commentary with the Trost Bros.: A window into the film’s origins, production experiences, and the Trost Bros.' connection to Frazier Park.
    • Never Ignorant Getting Goals Accomplished: The Making of THE FP: A three-part documentary covering the development, costuming by Sarah Trost, and score by George Holdcroft.
    • THE FP in The FP: A Return to Frazier Park: The Trost Bros. host a screening in their hometown, offering personal insights and a tour of film locations.
    • Trailers: Includes both Green Band and Red Band trailers, presenting different aspects of the film.
    • Booklet: Features essays by Rob Zombie and co-directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, along with publicity stills and other photos.

    Movie: 53

    The FP," a film that attempts to carve its niche within the realm of cult classics, falls into a peculiar category of cinema that straddles earnest ambition and self-indulgent parody. Directed by the Trost Brothers, Jason and Brandon, this family-produced project turns the spotlight on Frazier Park (The FP) - a dystopian wasteland where turf wars are settled through the arcade dance-fight video game "Beat-Beat Revelation." The demise of hometown hero BTRO at the hands of the nefarious L Dubba E propels JTRO into a self-imposed exile, setting the stage for a traditional tale of revenge and redemption, albeit in an untraditional setting. The question of whether a film can intentionally aim for cult status while retaining genuine appeal is boldly posited, yet answered with varied degrees of conviction throughout its runtime.

    Technically speaking, "The FP" leverages its low-budget constraints to deliver a visually unique experience that pays homage to genres spanning sports movies, post-apocalyptic narratives, and dance competition films. The incorporation of digital camera work manages to maintain a certain grittiness essential to the film's atmosphere, reflecting both a creative utilization of resources and a heartfelt nod to influential predecessors like "The Warriors" and the "Mad Max" series. However, the film's reliance on heavily stylized dialogue - a mélange of profanity-laced vernacular and invented slang - serves as both a distinctive feature and a barrier, occasionally obscuring the line between parody and authenticity while undeniably contributing to its unique identity.

    Despite the commendable commitment of its cast and the evident passion behind its production, "The FP" grapples with an extended joke that seems to stretch beyond its effective limits. The concoction of earnestness and exaggerated tropes yields a divisive outcome; what some viewers might find humorously engaging, others could perceive as an exercise in tedium. The movie's handling of thematic elements, especially its portrayal of women and societal decay, further complicates its reception, leaving audiences to navigate the murky waters between satirical critique and tasteless execution. In encapsulating "The FP," one is left to contemplate the intrinsic value of a film that oscillates between homage and farce, ultimately resting on individual predilections towards its defiantly quirky essence.

    Total: 61

    The FP," a film that delves into the quasi-dystopian world of competitive dance-fight video games, strikes an odd balance between ambition and execution. At its core, the movie presents a concept that is both unique and comical—taking the idea of Dance-Dance Revolution to an extreme, life-or-death level of seriousness. However, this singular joke, while capable of eliciting a few chuckles, particularly in trailer form, struggles to sustain an entire narrative. The film's ambition is apparent but undercut by its thin plotting and a lack of depth in character development. Moreover, the treatment of female characters leaves much to be desired, reducing them to mere props in a male-dominated storyline.

    Technically, the Blu-ray release of "The FP" shines where the narrative stumbles. It boasts a solid video transfer that ensures the film's heavily stylized world is vivid and engaging, accompanied by a potent soundtrack that lends some credibility and energy to the viewing experience. The addition of a nice collection of extras may appeal to those fascinated by the film's creation or those few who find themselves enamored with its bizarre charm. These technical merits may not redeem the film in its entirety but do serve to enhance the viewing experience for its niche audience.

    In conclusion, while "The FP" benefits from a technically adequate Blu-ray presentation, including commendable audio-visual quality and an assortment of bonus features, these aspects cannot fully compensate for the film’s fundamental flaws. The movie's reliance on a singular, albeit original, gag fails to evolve into a cohesive or compelling narrative, significantly hampered by lackluster character development and questionable portrayals. Though it might find favor with viewers inclined towards its specific brand of silliness and excess, "The FP" ultimately struggles to justify its own concept beyond a fleeting amusement, making it difficult to recommend wholeheartedly.