The Art of the Steal appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was an up and down transfer, but it usually looked good.
Sharpness was the least consistent aspect of the image. Though most of the flick looked accurate and concise, exceptions occurred and some mild softness resulted. Despite those problems, I felt the majority of the movie offered nice clarity. No issues with jaggies or moiré effects materialized, and edge haloes were absent. Source flaws failed to become a factor here; some marks showed up during a flashback, but those were intentional.
In terms of palette, Art went with a desaturated look. That made sense given the movie’s subject matter and its content. This made it tough to comment on colors, though, as the flick was often borderline monochromatic, but they hues were fine for the intended palette. Blacks were reasonably dark and tight, while shadows showed decent to good delineation. Overall, the image looked fine, though the issues with sharpness led me to a “B“ grade.
I thought that the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Art proved effective. With its hyper-stylized feel, the movie boasted opportunities for exaggerated elements. These didn’t dominate, actually, as a fair amount of the movie stayed with general atmosphere; a lot of the flick focused on the build-up to the action scenes, and those didn’t offer a great deal of information.
Nonetheless, they used the speakers to create a good feeling for the various settings, and the more active scenes kicked the package into higher gear. Those blasted various elements all around us to form a vivid setting.
No issues with audio quality occurred. Speech was consistently natural and concise, without edginess or other problems. Music sounded lively and full, while effects appeared accurate. All of this created a soundtrack that suited the material.
As we hit the disc’s extras, we locate an audio commentary from writer/director Jonathan Sobol and producer Nicholas Tabarrok. Both sit together for a running, screen-specific look at sets and locations, story/character issues, cast and performances, music and editing, and a few related subjects.
Here we find a perfectly decent commentary but not one that works better than that. The track covers the requisite details and throws out a reasonable amount of info, so I can’t complain. However, it simply does ever become especially insightful or entertaining, which makes it firmly average.
Two featurettes follow. Doing the Crime: Making The Art of the Steal runs 29 minutes, 36 seconds and includes notes from Sobol, Tabarrok, and actors Kenneth Welsh, Kurt Russell, Jay Baruchel, Chris Diamantopoulos, Matt Dillon, Jason Jones, and Katheryn Winnick. The show covers the story and screenplay, characters, cast and performances, what Sobol brought to the shoot, visual design and camera work, and general thoughts. We get another decent look at the film here, with a nice array of comments but not a ton of depth.
The Making of ‘The Theft of the Mona Lisa’ lasts five minutes, six seconds and features visual look at the sequence. We see the components for the scene in question and watch how they were put together. It’s fun but I’d have liked comments about the work involved.
The disc opens with ads for Blue Ruin and Man of Tai Chi. No trailer for Art shows up here.
While The Art of the Steal wears its influences on its sleeve, it delivers far too much entertainment for me to fret over its lack of originality. Buoyed by a strong cast and brisk pacing, this turns into a fun ride. The Blu-ray brings us mostly positive picture and audio along with a few acceptably informative bonus materials. Fans of heist movies will want to give Art a look.