dvd / blu-ray Review

Kidnap (DVD : Review


A straight-forward, simple story, if even a bit cliched. A mother, Karla Dyson (Halle Berry – X-Men: Days of Future Past)  is going through a divorce. She takes her son, Frankie (Sage Correa), to a park, and while on her phone arguing, the child is kidnapped. She sees him getting into a car, in the distance, and gives chase, with the entire film following this chase, mostly by car, and at times on foot.

A very simple story, devoid of any twists, but also devoid of any substance. Karla drives like a maniac, causing many terrible accidents along the road as she goes, and is constantly talking to herself or to the not present Frankie in the most annoying way. This is likely for want of exposition, to help the audience, or just to fill the scene with some dialogue while she careens down various highways.

So little background or backstory is given to either the protagonists or antagonists, that one eventually just wishes they whole lot would be captured, and we can be done with a rather boring film that falls way short of anything to do with a thriller or action piece.

This terrible B-grade film is a long way from the Oscar winning roles of Halle Berry. A film without any substance.


Overall, the disc for Kidnap is of a very high technical standard, however with no bonus material, and a main feature story that is likely to infuriate more than entertain.

Kidnap is available now, to purchase on disc, in South Africa.


Video is encoded at a high average bitrate, far higher than most other DVD discs. There are no visible on-screen artefacts, nor any colour bleed. Colour are rich and vibrant where needed, and detail in the few darker scenes is excellent.

There are many fast paced scenes in the film, and with the incredibly high bitrate, these look excellent. The video image scaled up to a larger and higher resolution screen looks great too, although results may vary depending on the hardware or software up-scaling method.


Audio is encoded at a high average bitrate, and presented in a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix, with a stereo 2.0 downmix. Switching between these two can only be done via hardware or software selection on the player, and not via the disc menu.

Dialogue is clear via the centre speaker, with the front channels used for environmental audio and music. The surrounds are used to great effect throughout the film, to expand the on-screen world and further draw the viewer into the action. The rear channels carry a significant amount of discrete audio.


Navigation is simple, and easy to follow. The main menu is static, with accompanying background music. There are text links to play the main feature, and for scene selection. Red is highlighted here, as some viewers may be unsure.

The scene selection sub-menus each have four small, motion, colour thumbnails each, for a total of twenty chapters. While these are numbered, they are not labelled, neither is there a chapter listing insert in the packaging. This would mean that navigating to a particular part of the main feature would require some guesswork. Viewers would be better of creating their own bookmarks using their hardware or software player.

Bonus Features

There are no bonus features on the disc, except for trailers to Wonder Wheel, Megan Leavey, and Breath. These autoplay at the beginning of the disc, and while they can be fast-forward or skipped individually, they can not be accessed again via the disc menu system.


Packaging is pretty standard, with a poster, title and cast name listing on the front. The back has a few stills from the film, a short synopsis, and the usual technical information about the disc.

There are no package inserts, such as chapter listing, included.


By Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers.

Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry.

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