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The Many Saints Of Newark Blu-ray Review

“The Many Saints Of Newark” is slight, but solid.

Writer/creator David Chase makes his hotly anticipated return to the world of “The Sopranos” with the prequel film “The Many Saints Of Newark.” Contrary to early reports, the story is less about a young Tony Soprano (who really doesn’t come into focus until about midway through the film) and more aboutTony’s Uncle Dickie Moltisanti’s arc and journey. Storylines include a riot backdrop in 1967, Dickie’s father, Dickie’s relationship with Giuseppina, the new character of Harold McBrayer, Dickie taking Tony under his wing and Dickie’s life unraveling at the seams. 

Directed by Alan Taylor, “The Many Saints Of Newark” received a bit of a mixed reaction from critics and audiences perhaps due to elevated expectations or the hope that it would be a bigger story. Admittedly, it’s not on the level of “The Sopranos,” but few things are as the family crime saga series truly changed TV. As a feature film, ‘Newark’ has a clunky first hour, but it settles in and ultimately works as a prequel digging into the past of certain characters we already know and some we don’t. The film even hints at future events in “The Sopranos.” Perhaps the most intriguing aspect here is the new character of Harold McBrayer who is a black man that starts his own criminal enterprise having previously worked with Dickie. 

The biggest problem with ‘Newark’ is that it feels like a pilot to a prequel series and not a movie. Chase seemingly has no interest in creating a new series, but would reportedly make another movie if given the chance. It just seems odd since the ending feels like it’s setting up more (and not just “The Sopranos”). The aforementioned character of Harold particularly feels like he’s positioned for his own show or at least more stories (which would be great to see).

Performance wise, there are 4 standout actors here- Ray Liotta (who is exquisite in dual roles), Alessandro Nivola (who steals the movie as Dickie), Michael Gandolfini as Tony (James Gandolfini’s son who really channels his father) and Leslie Odom Jr. as Harold (whose career continues to evolve in exciting ways).

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 2.39:1 1080p. How does it look? Viewers can expect a crisp hi-def transfer. Note: This title is also available on 4K.

Audio Track: Dolby Atmos and Dolby Digital 5.1. How does it sound? The Atmos track provides an active audio experience.

Extras:
* Digital copy
* 3 deleted scenes
* “The Making Of Newark” contains film clips, set footage, interviews, discussions about “The Sopranos” and this new movie.
* “Sopranos Family Honor”- A featurette that sells the movie and explores its ties to “The Sopranos”

December 21, 2021 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , ,

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