February 10, 2016

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation Blu Ray Review

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Written by: Taylor Salan
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After seeing the film in theaters, I really enjoyed Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation. After watching it again several times on Blu-Ray, I have to admit that the film only gets better with time, offering a more complete experience each successive viewing. Check out my full review of the film here.


Video Quality:

The Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation blu-ray is presented using AVC MPEG-4 encoding, framed in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. Shot on film by returning cinematographer Robert Elswitt, this presentation has a very natural, soft quality to it. Skin tones are always natural, and the film’s variety of locations really show what this disc is capable of visually. The blu ray presentation of Rogue Nation really shines during the nighttime scenes, where blacks really pop, but never loose their detail. The color timing work is also fantastic here. From the gritty urban landscapes that dominate, to the film’s more natural settings, the colors and textures never feel muddled or compromised for the overall look. I had a hard time finding anything overwhelmingly wrong with the blu-ray presentation of this film. Simply put, this is a gorgeous looking blu ray that delivers visually.

STRICTLY EMBARGOED: 8:00am PST March 22, 2015 Rebecca Ferguson and Tom Cruise in a scene from the motion picture "Mission Impossible 5." Credit: Chiabella James, Paramount Pictures [Via MerlinFTP Drop]

Audio Quality:

The audio for Rogue Nation is presented in two separate mixes, both Dolby Atmos as well as a 7.1 Dolby TrueHD mix. For those that are unaware, Dolby Atmos is a revolutionary way of presenting sound in our films. Instead of using a traditional channel-based mixing process, Atmos uses a 180-degree hemisphere system to sweep sounds around and above the viewer, creating a more immersive experience. This track, in the absence of Dolby Atmos enabled gear, defaults to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD.

The sound quality presented on the Rogue Nation Blu-Ray is top notch. Action films often have superb sound mixes, as these kinds of films are heavily reliant on sound. In this sense, the transfer for Rogue Nation absolutely thunderous. All of the action scenes are fully realized using a great mix of ear-level dialogue and sound effects, accompanied with sparing use of score only when truly needed. The highlight of the disc is of course is the Vienna Opera sequence, which truly is brought to life by this 7.1 mix. The amazing thing about this disc is how varied the mix actually is. Bullets whiz and vehicles scream, but there’s always room for silence and undertones so subtle that they can only be heard by sitting really close to stuffing your ear into the speaker. Overall, show-piece quality sound resides abound.



Special Features:

  • Audio Commentary Actor Tom Cruise and Director Christopher McQuarrie deliver a stellar commentary that covers all aspects of the filmmaking process. What I appreciate so much from a commentary like this one is how both Cruise and Mcquarrie are with themselves about the story. Tom Cruise makes a point to say the he always likes to “challenge the material” , something that really shows in the final product. This commentary really covers all of the bases, from development, writing, casting, shooting, and re-writing. Overall a very insightful nuts and bolts looking the making of the film.
  • Lighting the Fuse (1080p, 5:57): This featurette focuses on the inception of the story, how Christopher McQuarrie came to be a part of the project (after serving as a writer on Ghost Protocol), the evolution of and focus on the story. Mostly talking head interviews, interspersed with clips of the film.
  • Cruise Control (1080p, 6:33): This featurette focuses on Tom Cruise’s involvement int the film as both an Actor and Producer. Despite the feelings that people have toward Tom  Cruise’s real life public persona, this does a really nice job of showing all of the undying commitment to making the story the best that it can possibly be. This featurette gives some nice BTS footage over the talking heads.
  • Heroes… (1080p, 8:06): Focuses on the formation of the team for this installment, and how each of the returning members adds to their previously established characters. The featurette also highlights Rebecca Fergusson as Ilsa Faust, and how they made a point to make her and equal to Ethan, describing the film as a “date movie”. Mcquarrie also makes a point to further the journey for all of the established characters, but Fergusson stars the show here, just as she does in the film.
  • Cruising Altitude (1080p, 8:23): This featurette focuses on the much-publicized airplane sequence that opens the film. Mcquarrie mentions that it’s a “right of passage” to have a showpiece stunt in a Mission: Impossible film. In perhaps the biggest stunt in the franchise’s shortest “big stunt” sequence to date, this covers the logistics of actually accomplish the stunt. What really amazes me here is that Tom Cruise had the dedication to do not one, but eight takes of the stunt. After watching this, you can’t really question Tom Cruise’s dedication to his craft.
  • Mission: Immersible (1080p, 6:45): This featurette covers how the filmmakers achieved the underwater sequence in the film. Since the several minute sequence takes place entirely underwater, they decided to only build part of the set (since there was no way to shoot it for real), requiring a heavy VFX presence in the sequence. In preparation for the scene, both Tom Cruise and Rebecca Fergusson trained with an underwater breathing experts, sometimes doing “breathless” for up to six uninterrupted minutes. Overall a great insight into making this incredibly complex sequence.
  • Sand Theft Auto (1080p, 5:35): Focusing on the back to back car/motorcycle chase, this featurette gives a short, but insightful look into one of the longer chases that we’ve seen in the franchise. The sequence was shot in Morocco, and painstaking labor was put into achieving the filming of the sequence. Apparently they only had partial control of the streets, forcing Tom Cruise to most of his own driving for the sequence.
  • The Missions Continue (1080p, 7:08): This final featurette offers a look into the past, and future of the Mission Impossible Franchise. More of a puff piece than anything, this featurette does a serviceable job of summing the franchise up in 8 minutes



While the technical aspects of the disc itself are top notch, I can’t be slightly disappointed by the selection of special features. The commentary is defiantly the highlight here, and only a few of the featureless are memorable. Regardless of this, the Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation gets better and better with each subsequent viewing, only lessening the blow of the mostly lackluster bonus features. Overall a solid disc, recommended.

Overall Blu-Ray Rating: 8/10

About the Author

Taylor Salan
Taylor Salan
Taylor Salan is a independent filmmaker who currently resides in the San Fernando Valley. Since childhood, Taylor Salan had a fascination with movies. Although he was an avid fan of film as a child, it wasn’t until his years as a young adult that his passion for the art of filmmaking truly came to fruition. A current student of the film production program at California State University Northridge, Taylor studies Cinematography but ultimately has plans to direct full time if afforded the opportunity. In his spare time, Taylor produces audio podcasts and blogs about film for ageofthenerd.com. He is also a longtime musician, playing drums for over 8 years.



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Check out our review of Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation after the jump!
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