In the early evening of August 21, 2015, the world watched in stunned silence as the media reported a thwarted terrorist attack on Thalys train #9364 bound for Paris—an attempt prevented by three courageous young Americans traveling through Europe. “The 15:17 to Paris” follows the course of the friends’ lives, from the struggles of childhood through finding their footing in life, to the series of unlikely events leading up to the attack. Throughout the harrowing ordeal, their friendship never wavers, making it their greatest weapon and allowing them to save the lives of the more than 500 passengers on board. The heroic trio is comprised of Anthony Sadler, Oregon National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, and U.S. Air Force Airman First Class Spencer Stone, who play themselves in the film.

1517parisbluStudio: Warner Brothers
Year: 2018
Release Date: May 22, 2018
Run time: 120 mins
Rating: R

Audio: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 mix
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Disc Spec: 1 BD50/ 1 DVD
Region: A

‘The 15:17 to Paris’ is written by screenwriter Dorothy Blyskal, adapting the book by Sadler, Skarlatos, and Stone (and Jeffrey E. Stern, another participant in the incident) and is helmed by Oscar-winning director Clint Eastwood. The decision to have the actual heroes play themselves in their story is a noble one and it pays off, as all three young men do a very good job, especially for three guys with no prior acting experience whatsoever (but who now all have agents and have decided to pursue careers in acting). Less wise was the decision to give most of the adult speaking roles to actors primarily known for film and/or TV comedies. (It was distracting and, as a group, they weren’t very good.) The kids playing the heroes as kids also could have been better cast – and their dialog definitely could have been better written. The script also awkwardly goes out of its way to impart religious significance to the film’s events. In spite of all this, the lives of these three young men are portrayed well and realistically (especially the two who served in the military), the movie is well edited and the terrorist attack and its aftermath is both exciting and interesting to watch as it plays out. This film represents a noble effort, it tells an inspiring story and it’s entertaining, but it could have and should have been better than it is.

Movie Content: 8/10

Print/Audio Quality

The print is presented in 1080p with a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. ’15:17′ has to be one of the best looking films on Blu-ray that I have seen yet on the format. This is quite a dark looking film, even more so when compared to the previous installments in the series. The presentation really shines here quite a bit, especially with the dark scenes. Blacks are deep looking and actually look black. The stylized colors used in ’15:17′ do an excellent job in bringing the dark atmosphere of the film come to life. Dark tinted blues are the primary colors that are used in the film. I found the details to be excellent considering that this is a darker looking film. The image quality is crystal clear providing some of the best visuals in the entire series.
Print Quality: 10/10

The audio is presented in Dolby TrueHD 7.1 mix. The sound in ‘15:17’ is fantastic and rocks the house during the many action sequences. This mix provides a really crisp and clean sound. From the battles to the dialog the mix makes it sound like you are in the center of all the action. The rears were working like a workhorse during the action sequences. The dialogue portions of the film is excellent and comes through very clear and well balanced to where I didn’t have to increase the volume once. This mix stays consistent throughout the entire film with the entire sound field.
Audio Quality: 9.5/10

Special Features

  • The 15:17 to Paris: Making Every Second Count [HD]
  • The 15:17 to Paris: Portrait of Courage [HD]
  • Introductory Trailer

Special Features: 7/10

The Final Word

I applaud Clint Eastwood for his bravery in bringing this act of heroism to the forefront, against much opposition from the entertainment industry. And shame on our media critics for their efforts to minimize this story. This is highly recommended.
Overall Rating: 8/10