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Edward Drake
Bruce Willis, Lochlyn Munro, Corey Large
Edward Drake

In custody in New York, Detective James Knight finds himself in the middle of a jailbreak led by The Christmas Bomber, a brutal fanatic whose Santa Claus disciples are terrorizing the city. With the promised return of his badge in exchange for taking out the terrorists, the steely-eyed Knight doles out mercy for the just...and merciless justice for all the rest.
Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 97 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 1/17/2023

• “A Christmas Surprise” Featurette
• “Drawing Inspiration” Featurette


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-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Detective Knight: Redemption [Blu-Ray] (2023)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 19, 2023)

2022’s Detective Knight: Rogue began a direct to video trilogy. 2023’s Detective Knight: Redemption continues this journey.

The “Christmas Bomber” (Paul Johansson) leads a reign of terror across New York City. He and his Santa-clad minions attack various institutions and cause anarchic mayhem.

Currently incarcerated, disgraced Detective James Knight (Bruce Willis) gets a chance to redeem himself after the Bomber leads a jailbreak. Police Captain Anna Shea (Miranda Edwards) frees Knight if he agrees to pursue the Bomber so Knight heads back on a mission.

If you scour this site, you will not find a review for Rogue. I guess Lionsgate never offered me a review copy, but since they tossed Redemption my way, I decided to give it a look.

Honestly, I don’t even recall if I felt aware Redemption acted as a sequel when I requested it. In any case, nothing about the movie relies on foreknowledge of Rogue to follow, as it comes with a fairly standalone tale – and some flashbacks to recap the first film anyway.

The most pressing question relates to the film’s lead actor. As anyone who reads this review will likely know, Willis was forced to retire from acting in summer 2022 due to a condition that impacts his ability to communicate.

Willis completed a bunch of projects before that time, since we continue to find new releases nearly six months later – with more on the way. The well will eventually run dry, but not yet.

Other circa 2021-22 Willis films went to extremes to hide the actor’s declining abilities. Redemption felt like it offered more of a challenge because Knight appeared to exist as the story’s focal point.

And he does – in theory. In execution, though, Willis spends much more time off the screen than on.

For a movie titled Detective Knight: Redemption, Detective Knight doesn’t get much to do. The movie revolves around a melange of semi-related domains that leave Knight out of the picture the vast majority of the time.

We understand the necessity for this due to Willis’s status, but Knight’s regular absence makes Redemption a bizarre tale. Shouldn’t a movie about a specific cop actually involve that cop most of the time?

I would love to know if Redemption - and the other two Knight movies, which I assume also barely feature Willis – were written with the actor’s restrictions in mind or if the filmmakers adapted the screenplays to accommodate him.

Whatever the case, it doesn’t work, and Willis seems woefully weak during his precious few onscreen moments. Willis reads his lines in a wooden, detached manner with none of his trademark spark.

Even if we ignore Willis’s weaknesses, Redemption flops. Whether due to the need to hide Willis or simply bad writing and directing, this film rambles and lacks coherence.

Actually, Redemption starts with some promise. The opening reminds us of flicks like Point Break and The Dark Knight, as the bank assault by masked criminals shows room for an exciting tale.

After that, however, Redemption quickly descends into sub-mediocrity. It spends far too much time on pointless character domains and too little on the main plot.

Again, I get that the film can’t devote much real estate to its title role given Willis’s inability to deliver even the basic level of competence as an actor. Nonetheless, Redemption fails to find engaging ways to work around him.

This leaves us with a slow, confused narrative that can’t fulfill its basic goals. It comes with a loose, random story that fails to capitalize in the basic “cop chases robbers” tale at its heart. This makes Redemption a tedious and excitement-free thriller.

The Disc Grades: Picture B/ Audio B/ Bonus C-

Detective Knight: Redemption appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. For the most part, the transferred looked good.

Sharpness was generally fine. A little softness occurred at times, but those didn’t become a concern. Overall definition seemed solid.

I noticed no jagged edges or moiré effects, and the presentation lacked apparent edge haloes or other artifacts. I also saw no print flaws, as the movie always seemed clean.

In terms of colors, Redemption went with a dingy mix of red and green much of the time, apparently to reflect the Christmas setting and the dark nature of the story. We also get some of the usual amber and teal. The colors looked fine within the design parameters.

In addition, blacks were dark and tight, while low-light shots were decent; some could be a bit dense, but they weren’t bad. This was a generally positive presentation.

As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it added breadth to the experience. The movie didn’t deliver a rock-em-sock-em soundscape, but it managed to open up well enough, especially during the occasional violent sequences.

The emphasis on general environment remained, and that was fine. I felt the soundfield fit the material.

Audio quality always pleased. Speech remained natural and concise, with no edginess or other flaws.

Music sounded full and dynamic, while effects came across as accurate and clear. All of this suited the film and earned a solid “B”.

Two featurettes appear here, and A Christmas Surprise runs four minutes, three seconds. It offers notes from writer/director Edward Drake.

“Surprise” looks at story/characters, cast and performances, and photography. We get promo fluff and not much more.

Drawing Inspiration goes for 16 minutes, 58 seconds and involves Drake as he provides some select-scene commentary. He also adds a little telestrator work to spotlight various aspects of the image.

Drake covers cast, sets/locations, effects, photography and related topics. Though brief, Drake offers some good notes.

Each new Bruce Willis movie becomes more depressing than the last, as his cognitive limitations seem more and more apparent every time. Detective Knight: Redemption continues this sad trajectory, as it presents a muddled and badly flawed action thriller. The Blu-ray offers generally positive picture and audio along with two featurettes. Skip this clunker and rewatch Die Hard instead.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
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