Giovanni Ribisi and Kevin Pollak were previously in George Gallo's earlier movie Middle Men. ~ IMDB
I caught a trailer for Columbus Circle about a week before it landed in my work pile and I thought that the film looked like it could be an excellent thriller. A missing heiress named Abigail Clayton (Selma Blair), who has been an agoraphobic shut in and hasn’t been seen by anyone in the apartment building for years, gets new neighbors, one of which turns out to be an abusive husband (Jason Lee). One day Abigail hears her neighbors fighting and finds the woman (Amy Smart) laying beaten in the hallway. Deciding to get involved Abigail rescues the woman which sets off a string of events that puts her life in danger.
Despite how awesome the trailer was the film fails in several ways. At first it’s a very promising opening and then before the film even hit’s the halfway mark (not that you hadn’t already guessed what was going on) the film opens up it’s reveal, a bit too soon if you ask me. From then on in it’s a cliché of thriller devices that are poorly executed and badly acted by the entirety of the cast. Selma Blair can’t seem to decide how to emote her character, Jason Lee is at best a non-character, and Amy Smart manages to give her character just a little life before screwing it all up in the back end of the film. The only real convincing characters in the entire film are Giovanni Ribisi and Beau Bridges, possibly because their roles are so limited. In the end though it just seemed like someone took a really solid idea, started writing it, then gave up and just wrote anything. Sadly it could have been great.
Universal does it again, releases a film that really could have used a lot of polish to make it worth a BD transfer. There are some night aerial shots of the city that look really good, a lot of up close tight knit shots that look amazing, but everything else seems wallow in a variety of maladies. The very same aerial shot that looked so amazing at the start of the film finds itself later devoured by a barrage of white film. Wide street shots have detail and clarity broken down by excessive grain. In some scenes the picture becomes so dark that your not quite sure what your looking at. You can hear it, you know what’s happening because you’ve been lead to this conclusion, but poor lighting or poor camera placement makes this particular scene an absolute mess. I’m a viewer who likes to believe that if you’ve purchased a Blu-Ray your going to get Blu-Ray quality, or at least close enough to Blu-Ray quality that the little discrepancies found within can be forgiven. Columbus Circle? It’s like watching a combination DVD/BD hybrid. Terrible stuff that.
Audio is at least decent. Despite Blair attempting to make her character the shy quiet (too quiet) type by mumbling around with her words dialogue is captured pretty well. There are some interesting moments on the disc where immersion occurs (broken glass scattering across the floor), but for the most part your getting the basic quality surround sound.
Zero, zip, nada, zilch. I guess the overall consensus was, Why bother? Seems a bit strange since so many of the actors helped produce the film you'd think they would have been on board to offer some sort of supplement section. Sadly not.