Hey folks, Valkor here. When Warner Home sent over a copy of "Invictus" for me to view, I was all but ready to pass it off to Ace… you know, to make him suffer. Because my first thought of the film, was that it was another "Remember the Titans" or "Mighty Ducks" type tale - you know the story: loser team gets a cool new coach and they end up the champions. Well, I'll be damned when I started watching and I saw Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela??? What this now? Needless to say I was… impressed!
The story of Invictus revolves around the true story of Nelson Mandela; recently freed from prison, he's now elected president of South Africa and must somehow make right what apartheid put wrong. To help bring singularity to a nation divided amongst blacks and whites, he looks to the country's rugby team: the Springboks, as a start to bringing it all together. Though his cabinet is adamantly against the idea, and afraid it just won't work, Mandela perseveres and looks to Francois Pienaar (Matt Damon), captain of the Boks, to gain the support from his teammates, in hopes of winning the 1995 World Cup against New Zealand, which in turn will bring the people of South Africa together.
You know when it comes to movies based on real life events, I usually take a pass. But I'm kinda glad I didn't miss out on "Invictus". I mean I knew of events in South Africa, but I never knew anything about Mandela using Rugby as a springboard towards togetherness amongst his people. But overall it's amazing piece of filmage and an instant classic in my book. And what blew me away even more… it's directed by none other than Clint Eastwood. I knew the man had the skillz, but wow!! On the acting side, Morgan Freeman IS Nelson Mandela, not just in his looks, but toss in his voice and mannerisms and he nails it! Though Matt Damon isn't crazy present in the film, he still does a bang-up job, especially in the rugby scenes.
The BD is produced in hi-def 1080, 16X9 with a contrast ratio of 2.4:1. Picture quality is quite good; the darks are strong and the brights are subtle yet they stand out; overall a solid, crystal clear picture presentation. On the audio side, you're given DTS-HD Master Audio, English 5.1 in Dolby Digital, Espanol 5.1, and French 5.1. Audio quality is amazing, especially when it comes to the World Cup scenes and the crowd going nuts; it really sucks you into the moment.
First off the BD is a combo pack so you're given one Blu-Ray disc and one DVD, which also contains a Digital Copy of the film. So no matter where you are – on the road or in your home, you have the pleasure of watching the film.
Next up is Mandela Meets Morgan – The academy award winner Morgan freeman meets the great president of South Africa Nelson Mandela, where they discuss the film, how Morgan was brought on and, of course, the meeting of the two greats.
Matt Damon Plays Rugby – the cast and crew discuss the game of rugby, what goes into the sport and also when Matt meets the real Francois Pienaar. The Eastwood Factor – it's a look back at Clint's past films. Definitely, a must see, especially for the fans of his movies.
The Invictus Movie Trailer – the trailer of the film done to the song of South Africa.
You know, after my first viewing of Invictus, I've gone ahead and watched the film three more times after and it just keeps getting better with each viewing. I highly recommend it to any and all to enjoy. So out of TOV 5 stars, I give Invictus Blu-Ray Combo Pack 4.5 stars and it's been Valkor tested, TOV Approved.