Plot: What’s it about?
In the world of martial arts and hand to hand combat there are so many disciplines and so many titles and champions, it is difficult to asses who is the better competitor and fighter when the disciplines rarely face each other. What if a sumo wrestler faced a karate champion, or a boxer went head to head with a jiu-jitsu master? These match ups would be interesting to watch and perhaps offer some answers, but how in the world would this ever happen? The answer is the Ultimate Fighting Championship where fighters of all disciplines can meet inside an octagon surrounded by chain link fence, trying to prove their personal discipline and skills are the finest on display. Whether you practice muay thai kickboxing, Greco-Roman wrestling, or even street fighting this is the place to show what you’ve got. Inside the octagon there are few rules and you’ve got to make your opponent tap out or knock them out.
This is the first is a hopefully ongoing series of Ultimate Fighting Championship releases on our beloved format and while I usually dislike “greatest moments” titles, this one is excellent. I was expecting this to a hacked together and poorly edited release, but I was way off base on this one. This release contains a series of the fastest paced and most brutal fights and usually shows them in their original length, though a few start later in the match when the action begins to heat up. There is no editing done once the fights begin and you can just back and watch them, even the original commentary is left on the matches. Between the matches there is a brief transition where an announcer gives a brief rundown on what we’re about to see. These pieces are well executed and seem very professional, which was very welcome. I didn’t expect much in terms of production value on this disc, but Trimark has issued a terrific disc that left me looking forward to future releases in this series.
If you’ve ever seen an Ultimate Fighting Championship event then you’re used to seeing a few exciting fights between many other slower, more technical matches. While the technical matches are interesting to watch, nothing beats a good brawl and this release is loaded from top to bottom with the best of the up tempo battles. In addition to being fast and furious, the included fights are usually bloody and brutal as well. So if you get queasy from the sight of blood or seeing someone get knocked unconscious by a stream of punches, this isn’t the release for you. But then again why would watch something called Ultimate Fighting Championship if you didn’t want to see an ass kicking? This offers an adrenaline pumping ride through some of the most brutal fights throughout the series of tournaments and I am pleased with the matches selected for this volume. This is non stop action and shouldn’t disappoint even the most ferocious UFC fans. If you like the Ultimate Fighting Championship then this is one release you’ll want to add to your collection.
Video: How does it look?
UFC Hits Volume 1 is presented in a 1.33:1 or full frame transfer, which retains the original aspect ratio. This looks much the events would appear on television, but sharper and crisper which is always good. If you have this release in a previous release I believe the improved video makes an upgrade worthwhile. Colors seem bright and never bleed, flesh tones are natural, and contrast is dark and accurate. I didn’t see any pixillation or compression artifacts on this transfer, either. If you’ve been waiting for a terrific looking UFC release, this is your ticket!
Audio: How does it sound?
This disc includes a stereo track which seems to replicate the original broadcast audio well, which is all you can ask for with this type of release. This is nothing but some guys beating each other up so not much audio range is called for, though this track makes sure the thumps and yells sound clear and audible. The commentators sound crisp and free from distortion and I didn’t notice any problems with this track.
Supplements: What are the extras?
This release contains promotional trailers for UFC events/releases, which serve as trailers for some fights within this release. A bonus fight has been included and you can view the action from three camera angles, which is a cool feature to be sure. The disc also contains a three and a half minute interview with Frank Shamrock and Tito Ortiz, two of the top UFC fighters.