'Virtuosity' [Blu ray]
(Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Kelly Lynch, William Forsythe, et al / Blu ray / NR / (1995) 2015 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: Two-time Oscar® winner Denzel Washington and Oscar® winner Russell Crowe square off on opposite sides of the law and on both sides of reality in this action-packed cyber-age thriller from the director of' The Lawnmower Man'.
Blu ray Verdict: Released for the first time ever now here on Blu ray, 'Virtuosity' begins in the near future. Parker Barnes (Denzel Washington) is an ex-cop who has been sent to prison for murder. The circumstances surrounding his crime are disheartening and elicit empathy. Now, he is offered a chance at freedom from prison. Parker must hunt down and destroy a murderous cyborg, SID 6.7 (Russell Crowe), who is menacing the general public after jumping out of a virtual reality program. The chase takes on many twists and turns as SID terrorizes, shoots and kidnaps victims in his path. Can SID be stopped?
It may not be a science fiction masterpiece, but this film is worthwhile and intriguing. A second viewing may be required to truly understand and appreciate its complex plot. Then, too, the marvelous special effects (for its time) enhance the look and feel of the film. It is not Denzel Washington's finest hour (he is adequate); however, Russell Crowe is positively gleeful in his portrayal of the ultimately designed killing machine.
There are some humorous moments, somewhat lessening the overall dark and somber tone. On the down side, the ending may be a little too pat and leave a few loose ends untied. Recommended for science fiction and action movie fans who are on the lookout for lesser known films that may satisfy them for an evening, 'Virtuosity' is perfect for an afternoon or evening when you are tired of the run of the mill fare you might have lying around. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.77:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.