Written by: Michael Den Boer on October 16th, 2006
Theatrical Release Dates: USA, 1975
Director: Edward Dmytryk
Cast: George Kennedy, John Mills, Raf Vallone, Barry Sullivan, Rita Tushingham
DVD released: October 31st, 2006
Approximate running time: 96 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
DVD Release: Dark Sky Films
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $14.98
Synopsis: John Kinsdale (George Kennedy) is a computer specialist for NATO who is currently living and working on Italy. One day he comes home from work only to find that his whole family has been murdered. After briefly contemplating suicide John decides too take the law into his own hands.
Revenge themed movies have had a wide variety of heroes / anti-heroes. The Human Factor had one of the more interesting choices for a character driven by revenge. First off George Kennedy in the lead role is not you’re a typical lead or hero. Casting him as a computer specialist who works for NATO is indeed an odd choice when you look at him with his bulking frame and standing all tall at 6’ 4’ ½ inches. On the surface he may not look like the obvious choice to play such a role what he does with the role is a completely different story. Besides being the imposing and menacing two things we have come to expect from him he also shows his more tender side as he mourns for this family.
The Human Factor was directed by Edward Dmytryk, whose other notable films include, The Caine Mutiny, Raintree County and Bluebeard. Dmytryk direction is tight and focused as the action is fast and he holds on for just the right amount of time during more emotional moments. Another one of the films strongest assets is Ennio Morricone’s evocative score that perfectly matches the action and moods as they happen. The films weakest link is the screenplay. Which leaves a lot things unexplained like the killers motivation for knocking off Kinsdale’s family. Overall The Human Factor travels a road that has been traveled many times over. So if you like films that often defy logic and have non stop action, then this film is for you.
The Human Factor is presented in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves the films original 1.85:1 aspect ratio. The image looks clean and sharp as it remains stable throughout. Colors look nicely saturated and flesh tones look natural.
This release comes with one audio option a Dolby Digital mono in English. The audio is free of any major sound defects and dialog is clear. Morricone’s score blends perfectly with the rest of the mix. Removable English subtitles have been included.
Extras for this release include a T.V. spot and a stills gallery. The main extra for this release is a twenty six minute interview with George Kennedy titled The Kennedy Factor: an Interview with George Kennedy. He discusses how he got into acting, working with Edward Dmytryk and working on The Human Factor. Kennedy has a lucid memory, which includes a humorous tale about a seven course dinner.
Overall Dark Sky Films gives The Human Factor, a solid DVD release, which is highlighted by the excellent interview with George Kennedy, recommended.