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Kill Point, The
An adrenalin-infused mini-series about robbers, cops, and those standing in their way courtesy of Spike TV The Kill Point packs plenty of heat with little dialog of substance. Cameo performances by John Leguizamo and Donnie Wahlberg however bring much needed credibility to a storyline a few may find overly protracted.
Right from the get-go The Kill Point (2007) gets to the point - a bank robbery gone terribly wrong becomes a hostage situation with two central players (Leguizamo and Wahlberg). One is a cop, the other a gangster. The two undergo a sizable transformation while dealing with each other, gain respect. As time goes by the duo also realizes that in a way they have become victims of a system built upon injustice.
Cut-and-zoom camerawork, plenty of macho-talking, and tough-looking profiling aside The Kill Point does have an identity of its own. The script reveals relative depth while the two leads do an admirable job of reinventing the strengths of their characters for the durations of the show (approx. eight hours).
Somewhat controversial political innuendo has found a place in The Kill Point (references to the war in Iraq, etc) but fortunately enough it hardly detracts from its intended look. In fact, director Steve Shill (The Wire) and Co. do an excellent job in keeping the viewer's curiosity aroused with action abound.
As time goes by however it becomes increasingly difficult not to notice overused clichés pop up here and there. Fans of TV shows with similar plot limitations (HBO's Oz) will be more tolerable to the series while I assume newcomers will be somewhat turned off. Still, the pros significantly outweigh the cons with Spike TV having a winner in their hands.
Tech credits are really solid. Producer Jay Benson and team have done an excellent job of sustaining the tempo from the opening scenes. With each new episode a new dramatic twist is introduced carefully linking to earlier developments. Also, there are more than a few excellent stunts especially when the action gets hot and sizzling. The editing is also on par very much allowing The Kill Point to avoid becoming a bore with its duration of approximately eight hours.
How Does the DVD Sound?
Presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and enhanced for widescreen TVs the series look quite good. The fact that they were shot digitally brings forward some harp visuals but at the same time there are more than a few truly flat looking scenes. The actual transfer reveals a great contrast, lush color scheme, and lack of damage marks/spots. I did notice a few mildly disturbing occasions where edge-enhancement was problematic but overall this is a good presentation that should please fans of the show.
How Does the DVD Sound?
An English 5.1 track is offered with this print and it definitely gets the job done. The audio is very well mixed, with notable depth, and real punch throughout the shooting scenes. The surround speakers are quite active leaving very little for one to be unsatisfied with. On the other hand the dialog is crystal clear and very easy to follow. Optional English and Spanish subtitles are provided.
The only supplemental material you will find on this 2DVD set is a collage of very short interviews with the cast spread equally over the two discs. Quite frankly none of the comments provided inhere add anything of substantial quality to the presentation. As far as I am concerned these are mostly generic remarks which will not change your opinion on the quality of the show or its presentation.
For the genre it belongs to The Kill Point offers some good entertainment, given of course that your definition of it reflects what these type of shows are known to promote. Leguizamo and Wahlberg are the driving forces here and without their participation I have my doubts the subject matter would have been as effective. In terms of technical presentation the 2DVD set by Lions Gate Films is solid and fans of the show should definitely look out for it.