The Hurt Locker – The Hurt Locker Blu-ray review Dom Robinson reviews

The Hurt Locker You’ll know when you’re in it.
Distributed by
Lions Gate Home Entertainment Blu-ray:


  • Cert:
  • Running time: 131 minutes
  • Year: 2009
  • Released: December 2009
  • Region(s): 2, PAL
  • Chapters: 12 plus extras
  • Picture: 1080p High Definition
  • Sound: DTS 5.1 HD Master Audio Lossless
  • Languages: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Widescreen: 1.85:1
  • 16:9-Enhanced: Yes
  • Macrovision: Yes
  • Disc Format: BD50
  • Price: £24.99 (Blu-ray); £19.99 (DVD)
  • Extras: Behind the Scenes, Interviews, Backstage, Photo Gallery
  • Vote and comment on this film: View Comments


      Kathryn Bigelow

    (Blue Steel, The Hurt Locker, K19: The Widowmaker, Mission Zero, Near Dark, Point Break, Strange Days, The Weight of Water, TV: Homicide: Life on the Street, Wild Palms)


    Kathryn Bigelow, Mark Boal, Nicolas Chartier & Greg Shapiro


    Mark Boal


    Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders

Cast :

    SFC William James: Jeremy Renner
    Sgt. JT Sanborn: Anthony Mackie
    Spc. Owen Eldridge: Brian Geraghty
    SSG Matt Thompson: Guy Pearce
    Contractor Team Leader: Ralph Fiennes
    Colonel Reed: David Morse
    Connie James: Evangeline Lilly
    Col. John Cambridge: Christian Camargo
    Beckham: Christopher Sayegh

The Hurt Locker begins with a robot examining a suspect package after the town has been evicted. Uncovering the item, we see that confirms it contains a bomb. However, upon taking back some explosives to deal with it, a wheel comes off the cart and one of the soldiers dealing with it has to go out there and do what the robot can no longer achieve. Alas, a resident still in the area triggers the thing… And for the soldier having to run like hell away from it? Well… find out.

Taking over from him is maverick SFC William James (Jeremy Renner, right), and disarming bombs in the heat of Iraq and Afghanistan is what these guys do. They’re currently in the former place with 38 days left on Bravo Company’s rotation and they soon realise that James would rather walk towards a bomb in a protective suit than send the robot in, which not only unsettles the rest of his team but also completely pisses them off because he’s putting them in danger too, namely, Sergeants Sanborn (Anthony Mackie) and Eldridge (Brian Geraghty), as is very obvious from the poster, below-right, where he unwittingly lifts up several bombs at the same time. They have the option of going to talk to their psych doc, Col. John Cambridge (Christian Camargo), but I can’t see that really solving the problem.

There are several jaw-dropping moments in this film after you see what the EODs (Explosive Ordinance Disposal technicians in the US Army) have to go through as they’re in an impossible situation in a country we never should’ve invaded, and it’s an easy watch to go through, but you soon realise that there’s not a great deal to it, and what there is, is very bitty and brief.

For example, Ralph Fiennes turns up along the way with a team who have captured some of the Iraqis on the playing cards; and usual film baddie David Morse turns up as a nasty bastard who’d rather shoot an injured Iraqi, that they come across, rather than let him be taken away for treatment, a man who would’ve survived had they got him away within 15 minutes. It’s like a fly-on-the-wall as Eldridge and Sanborn get to know their new team leader, James, who also talks about his family life at times, but you just don’t really care about him or his situation.

If I had to give credit for this, it would be for the fact that it features a mostly unknown cast and there’s a lot more movie makers out there who should also take a punt on this as it would save having to see the same old faces turning up in many films and TV shows. For fans of Lost, there’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it performance from Evangeline Lilly as James’ wife Connie.

The film is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen ratio and there’s a gritty look to the picture but it’s one that’s intentional and not a defect. For the record, I’m watching on a Panasonic 37″ Plasma screen via a Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-ray player.

The sound is in DTS 5.1 HD Master Audio Lossless, although I only had access to it in DTS 5.1, and as you’d expect there’s gunfire and explosions – although not as much as you’d think, but the atmosphere goes well to create tension at times.

The extras are as follows:

  • Behind the scenes (12:31): Interview snippets with various key cast and crew amongst B-roll footage.

  • Interviews (11:28): Well, snippets of comments, rather than anything particularly insightful. With 17 chapters in this piece, it’s far better-chaptered than the film itself!

  • Backstage (12:55): B-roll footage without interruption.

  • Photo Gallery: Does what it says on the tin.

The menu mixes in a slow piece of music from the film with various slooooooooooooooow explosive moments – very effective. There are English subtitles but the chaptering is ridiculous with only 12 throughout the 131-minute film. Come on, Lionsgate, sort it out!


Review copyright © Dominic Robinson, 2010. View the discussion comments powered by Disqus = 0) {query += ‘url’ + i + ‘=’ + encodeURIComponent(links[i].href) + ‘&’;}}document.write(”);})();//]]]]>]]>

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