WSR Score4
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Universal Studios Home Entertainment
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Dan Gilroy
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Nightcrawler follows a freelance cameraman addicted to the high-speed world of Los Angeles journalism. Finding a group of freelance camera crews who film crimes, fires, murder, and other mayhem, Lou (Gyllenhaal) muscles into the cut-throat, dangerous realm of nightcrawling––where each police siren wail equals a possible windfall and victims are converted into dollars and cents. Aided by Nina (Russo), a veteran of the blood-sport that is local TV news, Lou blurs the line between observer and participant.

Special features include commentary with Writer/Director Dan Gilroy, Producer Tony Gilroy, and Editor John Gilroy; the featurette If It Bleeds, It Leads (HD 05:15); upfront previews; and an UltraViolet digital copy.

The 2.40:1 1080p AVC picture was photographed digitally with the Arri Alexa XT camera system. The imagery is darkly produced and focused on nighttime Los Angeles, with brooding and raw-edge imagery of mayhem. Shadow delineation is realistic and black levels are deep, with contrasting lighting highlights. The color palette is strongly saturated but otherwise is natural, with rich hues and strong primaries that punctuate the darkness. Fleshtones are naturally rendered but varied in intensity, depending on the scene’s lighting. Resolution is softly focused in the background but sharp in close-ups, with fine detail exhibited in facial features, hair, clothing, and object texture. The picture realistically depicts the imagery of violent or accidental death and injury.

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is dynamic sounding, with a terrific orchestral score that spreads wide and deep, with excellent stereo separation and envelopment due to the aggressive extension to the surrounds. Atmospherics and sound effects are directionalized and realistic sounding. At times bass accentuates the sound effects, for heightened engagement. Dialogue is natural and intelligible throughout, with excellent spatial integration. This is a powerfully disturbing soundtrack that through convincing holosonics® effectively gives life to the dark visuals. This is a disturbing but engaging sonic experience.