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Film Review

SNAKE EYES (2021) Blu-ray Review

J-L takes a look at the home video release of Paramount Pictures SNAKE EYES: G.I. JOE ORIGINS, available on DVD and Blu-ray now.



Snake Eyes (Paramount Pictures)

Robert Schwentke’s 2021 action outing Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins is now available to own on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD from Paramount Pictures.

Notably, the UHD and Blu-ray versions of the G.I. Joe franchise prequel both also include a series of bonus features that make for interesting viewing. These special features include:

Morning Light: A Weapon with Stories to Tell: discover the secrets of Snake Eyes’ legendary sword, Morning Light, in this all-new short film.

Deleted Scenes: what you didn’t see in theaters.

Enter Snake Eyes: find out what it took to bring the iconic hero’s origin story to life.

A Deadly Ensemble: meet fan-favorite heroes, villains, and new characters in the G.I. Joe franchise.

Arashikage: dive into the elite ninja warrior world of the Arashikage clan.

The Morning Light: A Weapon with Stories to Tell short film is a beautifully animated crash course in the history and lore of the titular weapon that finds itself front and centre of Snake Eyes’ origin story. This short piece is entertaining and informative in equal measure, and can serve as either an educational prelude to a first watch of the main event or as an effectively concise yet comprehensive refresher for returning viewers.

Meanwhile, the deleted scenes in particular are rather intriguing, offering a number of different alternative sequences that were ultimately omitted from the theatrical release of the film. These range from out and out action segments from the final act of the film, such as Blind Master’s Kunai Throw and House Attack, to more developmental beats, like Akiko Trains and Snake Eyes’ Sword Play. The deleted scene with arguably the most cause to have been included in the wide release is Tommy Unleashed, which seemingly combines the overt action and the character progression of the aforementioned scenes that ended up on the cutting room floor. Nonetheless, all of these scenes shared a couple of commonalities: all were really short, sported the generally impressive visuals that are on display throughout the film and would likely have improved the scenes around them and the film as a whole, so it is unfortunate that these were not included. However, they are definitely worth a watch to explore and expand upon the final narrative.

Elsewhere, Enter Snake Eyes, A Deadly Ensemble and Arashikage are more typical behind the scenes featurettes that offer compelling glimpses into the production and filming of the movie, as well as deep dives into the characters and the narrative, alongside a number of interviews with various members of cast and crew. However, watching these kinds of breakdowns of practical effects and stunts, the production design and stunning fight choreography courtesy of Kenji Tanigaki, and the spectacular real life sets of Japanese castles and temples may ultimately make you wish that these elements had been better utilised and employed throughout the film, or wondering what could have been if the film was slightly more consistent, as opposed to simply marvelling at the technical quality. For instance, the at times erratic editing and questionable overused implementation of shaky cam unfortunately detracts from Tanigaki’s stellar work on the stunt front.

Be sure to check out our full review of Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins itself, which you can find here:

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