Saving Leningrad AKA Battle of Leningrad
R2 - United Kingdom - Signature Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Rick Curzon (29th October 2019).
The Film

Dunkirk meets Titanic is this gripping true story about the “Barge 752” tragedy during WWII.

September 1941. A barge, evacuating people from sieged Leningrad gets caught in a dramatic and violent storm. Terrified and fighting for life, the boats 1,000 evacuees descend even further in to hell when, instead of rescuers, the boat is targeted and attached by Nazi war planes.
The Battle of Leningrad is a charged look at violence and tragedy of World War II.

Video

A solid WWII action flick of the old school - originally called Saving Leningrad - bringing in disaster film elements that doesn't outstay it's welcome and holds the interest. Set in 1941 this is a very Russian production with dramatic elements tending towards the melodramatic.

A typical digitally shot modern production which favours naturalistic colours during daylight scenes and a blue patina during action and night scenes. In fact, there seems to be a blue bias overall.

Detail is fine for standard def but there is a softness to the image which is to be expected. Black levels are very rich with surprisingly no crush and some detail. Contrast is supportive with no blowouts.

Being digitally shot in and standard def I noticed no grain to speak of. The disc is single layered with a reasonable bitrate but a dual layered disc might have afforded more breathing room and boosted the visual distinction.

Decent overall image but I have no doubt this would look several grades better in full HD on a BD50. I wish Signature would release all of their films on BD.

PAL / 2.35:1 / 93:38

Audio

Russian Dolby Digital 5.1
Russian Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo
Subtitles: English (burnt in)

The 5.1 is the best option here despite being recorded at a lower level than the less robust 2.0 which sounds louder. Depth and range are pretty decent with no distortions but as is to be expected this lossy rendering is not up to the full bore nature of the lossless HD. Occasionally a little tinny and hollow but that may be down to the original sound design. Sadly, the English subtitles are burnt in and there are no English hard of hearing options for the hearing impaired.

Being from Signature Entertainment this is a more than reasonably priced disc and for that you get a clean, adequate presentation of the film.

Extras

Startup Trailers:
- Kursk: The Last Mission (1:20)
Night Hunter (2:26)


Nothing worth bothering about just trails for other forthcoming releases.

Packaging

Standard black DVD Keepcase.

Overall

Solid standard definition rendering of this modern digitally shot production. You'd have thought that a wartime action fest with disaster film elements like this would warrant the HD treatment as in other territories, but Signature Entertainment have decided not to.

The Film: C+ Video: B Audio: C+ Extras: E Overall: C

 


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