Tube (2004)
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Cast: Sang-Min Park, Seok-Hoon Kim, Doo-Na Bae
Extras: Featurette, Music Video, Bonus Trailers

Out of Korea comes a new wave of action movies and in ’Tube’ we have ’Shiri’-director Woon-Hak Baek take on the subject of a runaway subway train to serve terrorists achieve their goals. From the first moments of the opening, a mind-boggling shoot-out at an airport, you will know that ’Tube’ is a super-charged actioner that won’t dilly-dally much in character development but much rather deliver the goods, and that it does. While there are some character moments, the majority of the film is about hairy situations, shoot-outs and the struggle between the police and government officials and the terrorists. It all culminates in a staggering finale.

Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment is presenting ’Tube’ in its original 2.35:1 widescreen aspect ratio on this DVD in a transfer that is enhanced for 16×9 televisions. The presentation is absolutely clean and clear without a hint of a mar. The colors are absolutely natural-looking with strong hues that are never oversaturated. Blacks are solid and create deep shadows, helping to add atmosphere to the dark subway tunnels and the eternal flickering of lights. There is no edge-enhancement that mars the image and no compression artifacts distracting from the presentation.

The DVD defaults to a 5.1 channel Dolby Digital track in English, which was not to my liking. Though the track is making good use of the surrounds, the amateurish quality of the overdub is just unbearable for me and I immediately switched to the original Korean Dolby Surround track that is also provided on the DVD. While not nearly as finely delineated, the track is nonetheless very good and serves the film nicely.

As extras Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment has added a ’Making Of’ featurette to the DVD that sheds some light on the production. With behind the scenes footage and interviews it gives viewers a nice glimpse at how the film was put together and how demanding some of the shoots were.

A Music Video and a selection of bonus trailers are also included on the release.

’Tube’ is a heart-pounding action flick in the vein of ’Speed’ and it does a tremendous job at it. The cast of characters is well-selected and delivers good performances while the special effects give the movie the bang it needs. I enjoyed it quite a bit and would definitely recommend it to any fan of explosive high tech action.