Bombshell – Blu-ray Review


When I reviewed the film in December, I initially gave it a great review. Upon a secondary viewing, my thoughts on the film have changed. Bombshell had all the ingredients in the world to be an engaging and eye-opening film. Unfortunately, screenwriter Charles Randolph doesn’t quite nail the tension and witty dialogue from his other film, The Big Short.

First of all, none of the characters have any depth to them. All characters—including the main characters—are used as simple plot devices rather than developing them to impact or inspire the audience.

A lot of that has to do with the lack of focus within the story. None of the main three’s storyline goes into great depth to effectively tell their version of the story. It also doesn’t combine into the telling of the story of their joint efforts to take down Roger Ailes. It doesn’t quite go all-in on the themes and message that it’s trying to tell.

The film also goes off on multiple tangents that derail the telling of the story. Instead, the film attempts to humanize the characters through mundane everyday life activities. Unfortunately, it doesn’t do that and it also doesn’t add to the development of the character.

What the film successfully does is paint Roger Ailes as this evil scourge of the news world. He’s a vile and disgusting man who abuses his power consistently. He’s a man that you want to be taken down. You want these strong and brave women to take him down. A lot of credit goes to normally likable John Lithgow who goes all-in on the vileness of the character.

Not to be outdone are the amazing performances by Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, and Margot Robbie. Due to the makeup, body language, and voices, you forget that Theron and Kidman are playing these roles. But far and away, the best performance from the film comes from Charlize Theron. She’s deserving of her Oscar nomination because of her multilayered performance.

Overall, Bombshell is a solid film that could’ve been a great one. Unfortunately, too many missed opportunities and story choices derailed this all too important story.

Movie Rating: 3.5/5 atoms


Bombshell - Charlize Theron and Liv Hewson

Bombshell hits Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-AVC with a 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The picture has a medium-high contrast which also raises the brightness level too. Thankfully, the bright whites don’t lead to any bloom whatsoever. The black levels have a wide dark grayscale which doesn’t showcase any flaws like loss of details in the shadows. It also comes as no surprise that the colors have a natural saturation to them. The colors don’t need to be bold because this isn’t that type of film. The details are also very clear as well. Overall, the picture quality is great in this release.

Video Rating: 5/5 atoms


Bombshell - John Lithgow

Bombshell hits Blu-ray with a 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. Since this is a dramatic film, don’t expect a lot of activity in your sound system. There isn’t a lot of sound movement or immersive sound placement. Much of the mix’s emphasis is on the dialogue clarity. Every piece of dialogue can be heard. Also, the atmospherics do appear a lot in the audio mix. They’re distinct and accurate to the scene. Theodore Shapiro’s score blends well with the mix and complements the mix nicely. Overall, this is a good audio mix for the kind of film that Bombshell is.

Audio Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Special Features

Bombshell - Margot Robbie and Kate McKinnon

Bombshell has the following special features on the Blu-ray disc:

  • No Easy Truths: The Making of Bombshell
    • Convergence: Genesis of the Film
    • Quid Pro Quo: Charlize, Nicole, Margot, John
    • Human Dynamics: The Ensemble Cast
    • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Visual Design
    • Layer By Layer: Make-Up, Hair & Clothing
    • A Unique Skill Set: Jay Roach
    • Catalyst for Change: Parting Thoughts
  • Theatrical Trailer

As you can see above, the documentary covers a TON of subjects in its hour and thirty-minute runtime. It even covers the topic of a man directing a film about women’s issues. It also showcases all of the work Charlize, Kidman, Margot, and Lithgow went through to get into their characters. Also, we get to see much of the Oscar-winning work done by the hair and makeup crew.

Special Features Rating: 4/5 atoms

Overall, Bombshell is a solid drama that could’ve been a phenomenal one. Unfortunately, the uneven and unfocused script derails the potential of the film. The video quality and the audio mix are both good (for this type of film), and the special features are both in-depth and informative.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by Lionsgate Home Entertainment.

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