Million Dollar Baby: 10th Anniversary Edition
It's been ten years since Clint Eastwood's masterpiece, "Million Dollar Baby," was released into theaters back in 2004, and it still packs one hell of an emotional punch today.
As a director, Eastwood has quite an eclectic and highly impressive filmography. He's directed a total of thirty-one pictures, including the Oscar-winning western "Unforgiven," the haunting crime drama "Mystic River," and the riveting war epics "Flags of Our Fathers" and "Letters From Iwo Jima." As great as those movies are, though, Eastwood has never made anything more heartfelt than this powerful film that tells the story of a female underdog boxer, and the bitter old trainer who took her under his wing.
This anniversary edition of the 2004 Best Picture-winner is stunning and deserves a spot within your Blu-ray/DVD collection. The high-definition transfer is identical to the previous Blu-ray release in terms of its video format, but while nothing has been upgraded in terms of how the film looks, the images are still quite sharp, presenting all of the characters' blood, sweat and tears in a beautifully crisp resolution.
The sound, on the other hand, has replaced the DD 5.1 track of the previous edition with a newly upgraded DTS-HD MA 5.1 track, providing an even more visceral experience of the film, especially for scenes taking place in the boxing ring. You feel every punch that's being thrown, both through the gritty camerawork (some of which is hand-held) along with the raw impact of its newly improved audio quality.
In terms of bonus features, this release includes a new, half-hour long documentary featurette titled, "Million Dollar Baby: On the Ropes," in which members of the cast and crew discuss the difficult process of bringing this profound boxing story to cinematic life, drawing ironic parallels to the obstacles that its female protagonist must overcome in many aspects. It also features a new commentary by producer Albert Ruddy, along with three other featurettes and the theatrical trailer for the film, which have been transferred over from the earlier Blu-ray release.
"Million Dollar Baby" may be ten years old, but it's lost none of its electrifying impact and is fresher than a majority of the new releases being distributed out of Hollywood today.