Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Miami Vice (2006) Blu-ray Review

Miami Vice (2006) Blu-ray Review
by Loys Johnson

Universal brings Miami Vice to Blu-ray with a 1080p VC-1 video transfer. I aquired the HD DVD to compare the video, and found no differences, video noise and all were still very alive in the presentation. The colors were quite vibrant, blacks seemed a bit washed out at times. You will especially noticed the vibrant colors right from the beginning of the film, the blue skies, the boats all over the water, each with their own bright and bold colors. The darker scenes tended to have the most noticeable video noise, giving the film a slighly less high-def look. It has a similar look you might have noticed in the high-def presentations of Ocean's 11, 12, and 13. It's the source that's really the issue, not the transfer, but the film manages to still look quite good in high-def. 8/10.

Miami Vice gets bumped up to a DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. Like I mentioned earlier, I was able to compare the HD DVD with this release, and found the audio to be quite improved on the Blu-ray version. The most notable improvements were in any action sequences, everything just came to life. The music in the movie also showed to be a significant improvement over the HD DVD, it sounded nice and clear. I found the club scene at the beginning of the movie to sound extremely impressive, Linkin Park singing Numb, in the later released rap mix never sounded to awesome. The music composed for the film was always very nice as well, bringing a lot to the atmosphere of the film. Dialogue was decent, it could have been just me, but I found certain scenes quite hard to understand, although I had the same issue with both the HD DVD and Blu-ray. Overall I was impressed, the DTS-HD Master Audio improvement was certainly noticeable, and a welcome improvement. 8/10.

Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Michael Mann
Miami Vice Undercover Featurette
Miami & Beyond: Shooting On Location
Visualizing Miami Vice
Behind-the-Scenes Featurettes

Blu-ray Exclusive:
Tech Specs
Cast Bios
Production Photographs
Picture in Picture

The extras were all presented in standard definition, which isn't my favorite thing to encounter, but I'm glad no features were missing from the release. Exclusive to the Blu-ray is U-Control. The Picture in Picture track was very entertaining, providing a significant look at behind the scenes of the film. The GPS was a nice little feature, although really nothing significant, as were the Tech Specs, it is great for fans of the movie though. 7/10.

Blu-news Summary:
Miami Vice is a film that seems to be rather liked or disliked. I personally enjoyed it, It's a great action movie, but the story leaves a bit to be desired. The video presentation was great considering the source, and the audio showed a significant boost from the previous HD DVD release. Extras were quite good, with a fantastic Picture in Picture track to boot. Keep in mind, the movie is not for everyone, but it would make a solid rental. As a new fan of the film though, I will say 'Recommended.'

NOTE: Amazon.com has the Action Starter Pack (U-571, Miami Vice, and End Of Days) for 41.95, bringing each title to 13.98. If you have interest in at least two titles, it wouldn't hurt to get the Action Starter Pack, as the third title is essentially free.

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