Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ghost Town Blu-ray Review

Ghost Town Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys Johnson
Disc Size: 35.7 GB
Film Size: 28.6 GB

Video
Ghost Town comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The video features great colors, each bold and vibrant. Black levels were quite good as well, although felt a bit weak during a few scenes. Detail was strong, and the film was nice and sharp overall. 8.5/10.

Audio
A 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track is included, and sounds just as I had expected. The romantic comedy sounds very nice for the most part. Dialogue was nice and clear at all times, staying front and center. The film's score expanded more into the surround area, but very lightly. This track won't blow you away, but it sounds very nice for the type of film that it is. 7.5/10.

Extras
Commentary by David Koepp and Ricky Gervais
Making Ghost Town (22:40) (HD)
Some People Can Do It (6:21) (HD)
Ghostly Effects (2:01) (HD)

Blu-news Summary
Ghost Town was a nice surprise, and while I did find it overly obnoxious for my liking at first, I really ended up enjoying it very much. The film is very clever, and I found myself laughing throughout. I think the acting was great, particularly the performance from Ricky Gervais. It's a film I can definitely see myself watching again, it's a film that is easy to sit down and watch at anytime, and it's just a lot of fun.

The Blu-ray presentation is very good, featuring an impressive video presentation, and decent audio. There are not many extras, but what was included was entertaining, anything behind-the-scenes is great, and all in high-def as well. I would have no problem saying that Ghost Town is definitely 'Recommended.'

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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Day The Earth Stood Still Blu-ray Review

The Day The Earth Stood Still Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys Johnson
Disc Size: 40.9 GB
Film Size: 22.8 GB

Video
The Day The Earth Stood Still comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. I was very impressed, especially when you consider the age of the film. The film has quite a bit of detail, and is overall very sharp. Black levels were very solid. The presentation isn't free of a few flaws such as specks here and there, but it's hard to complain with a film this old. 8/10.

Audio
A 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is included and sounded very good. Dialogue sounded quite clear, and the film's score sounded very beautiful as well. The film's score stayed a bit more front heavy, with other effects throughout the film making more of a surround speaker use. Overall I was left very impressed. 8/10.

Extras

Commentary by Director Robert Wise & Nicholas Meyer (Director, Star Trek II: Th Wrath Of Kahn)
Commentary by film & music historians John Morgan, Steven Smith, William Stromberg & Nick Redman
Isolated Score Track (5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio)
The Mysterious, Melodious Theremin (5:40) (HD)
The Day The Earth Stood Still Main Title Live Performance by Peter Pringle (2:17) (HD)
Interactive Theremin: Create Your Own Score
Gort Command Interactive Game
The Making Of The Day The Earth Stood Still (23:53) (HD)
Decoding "Klaatu Barada Nikto": Science Fiction As Metaphor (16:14) (HD)
A Brief History Of Flying Saucers (34:02) (HD)
The Astounding Harry Bates (11:03) (HD)
Edmund North: The Man Who Made The Earth Stand Still (14:43) (HD)
Race To Oblivion: A Documentary Short Written & Produced By Edmund North (26:52) (SD)
Farewell To The Master: A Reading By Jamieson K. Price Of The Original Harry Bates Story (1:36:56) (HD)
FOX Movietonews (1951) (6:21) (SD)
Teaser Trailer (1:04) (SD)
Theatrical Trailer (2:09) (SD)
The Day The Earth Stood Still (2008 Trailer) (1:47) (HD)
Sneak Peek Of The Remake (7:41) (HD)
Galleries

Blu-news Summary
Watching the film was a lot of fun, and I found it surprisingly enjoyable. The film has a lot of cheesy moments that did make me laugh, particularly when the crowd was walking but sped up in the intent to make them look frightened. The film is really great though, and despite it's cheesy effects, it has help up very well over time.

The Blu-ray presentation is fantastic in all departments, and will definitely show questioners how 'old movies' or black & white films can benefit from a high-def presentation. There are a ton of extras on the release, I was very impressed to see such an amazing effort from FOX on this release. Fans of the film, this is a 'MUST OWN', to all others I would say 'Recommended.'

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Monday, December 29, 2008

The Longshots Blu-ray Review

The Longshots Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys Johnson
Film Size:
23.5 GB

Video
The Longshots comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The film has a stylistic look to it, and includes a pretty dull color palette, and a washed out look throughout. That being said though, detail is quite impressive for the most part, and shines whenever the scene allows. The film doesn't pop or leap off the screen, but it's still quite good. My biggest complaint has to do with the actual source having the washed out look, and not just the high-def transfer. 7/10.

Audio
A 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track is included, and sounded quite decent. The film didn't really make much use of the surround speakers, and never really impressed, but I can't say it sounded bad. The track is very front heavy, with dialogue being front and center, and the film's music making a light use of the surround speakers, while also staying a bit more front focused. Dialogue was clear, as was the film's score, I just wish it was more aggressive. 7/10.

Extras
Deleted Scenes (19:24) (SD)
Making The Longshots (8:06) (SD)
A Conversation With Ice Cube (5:30) (SD)
A Conversation With Director Fred Durst (7:27) (SD)
Jasmine Plummer: The Real Longshot (6:45) (SD)
Theatrical Trailer (2:33) (HD)

Blu-news Summary
The Longshots is a very well done film for the most part, I really enjoyed the story inspired by Jasmine Plummer. Keke Palmer and Ice Cube both put in quite impressive performances, and really brought a lot of heart to it. The film is great for families, and entertaining for all. The film has a great message, and it's just a lot of fun. The video and audio presentations are not impressive, but good for the most part. The extras are all in SD, other than the theatrical trailer. Overall I would say it's 'Worth A Look.'

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Eagle Eye Blu-ray Review

Eagle Eye Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys Johnson
Film Size:
31.4 GB

Video
Eagle Eye comes to Blu-ray with a fantastic 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The film has a very natural look, and while the colors are rich, they aren't exactly vibrant. Detail was stunning from start to finish, and film grain was subtle for the most part. The film does have a bit of a muted style to it, that doesn't exactly make you think Blu-ray, but all considered it looks very very good. 9/10.

Audio
A 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track is included, and also is very impressive. The film is intense from beginning to end, and any scene with even a bit of action really shines. The music really gave the film an epic feel, and also made a nice use of the surround speakers. Dialogue was clear for the most part, although there were a few moments where it felt a bit too quiet when compared to the overall track. Overall though, I was very impressed and very pleased, it just wasn't quite perfect. 9/10.

Extras
Deleted Scenes/Alternate Ending (4:38) (HD)
Asymmetrical Warfare: The Making Of Eagle Eye (25:32) (HD)
Eagle Eye On Location: Washington, D.C. (5:58) (HD)
Is My Cell Phone Spying On Me? (9:14) (HD)
Shall We Play A Game? (9:22) (HD)
Road Trip: On Location With The Cast And Crew (3:05) (HD)
Gag Reel (7:00) (HD)
Photo Gallery
Theatrical Trailer (2:35) (HD)

Blu-news Summary
Eagle Eye is an intense and fun action film, and I really enjoyed the first half of the film. It fell apart though towards the end. My biggest complaint was the amount of buildup in the film, that it did not deserve the overall ending it received. The alternate ending featured in the extras did nothing but open up the possibility for a sequel if they wanted to. The film wasn't bad though, just a bit disappointing.
The Blu-ray release is great, with very impressive video and audio. The extras are quite entertaining as well, and the behind-the-scenes material was very cool to see. Overall, Eagle Eye on Blu-ray is 'Worth A Look.'

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Last Holiday Blu-ray Review

Last Holiday Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys JohnsonFilm Size:
31.2 GB

Video
Last Holiday comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The film looks very good, and just as I expected. Colors are rich and vibrant, and detail is very strong as well. Film grain makes an appearance for almost the entire film, but it's very subtle and never took away from the high-def experience. 8/10.

Audio
Paramount has included a 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track for Last Holiday, and it was surprisingly better than I expected. The film is front heavy for the most part, but also used the surround speakers very well when the scenes called for it. Dialogue was always nice and clear, and the film's light soundtrack sounded very nice as well. 8/10.

Extras
Last Holiday: Packing Light (15:24) (SD)
Last Holiday: Last Look (7:45) (SD)
Last Holiday: 23 Years in the Making (7:12) (SD)
Deleted Scenes (2:18) (SD)
Theatrical Trailer (HD)

Blu-news Summary
Last Holiday is a really beautiful film, I really enjoyed the story. The story is pretty predictable, but I don't think it ever was supposed to be unpredictable. Queen Latifah is fantastic as the lead role of Georgia Byrd, and the rest of the cast is very funny and enjoyable as well. The film is great for anyone looking for a nice feel-good movie.

The Blu-ray release is very good, and just as I had expected. The video transfer is sharp, vivid, and colorful. The audio also packed quite a punch, making an above average use of the surround speakers for the type of film it is, while always sounding nice and clear. The extras are a bit lacking, but still retained all the features from the previous DVD release. Last Holiday on Blu-ray is 'Recommended.'

Additional Screenshots:
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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The House Bunny Blu-ray Review

The House Bunny Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys JohnsonVideo
The House Bunny comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The transfer features fantastic colors, excellent detail, and solid black levels. The presentation is bright and vibrant, while still keeping a natural film look. The transfer was sharp and filled with detail. I was very pleased with the transfer, and definitely impressed. 9/10.

Audio
Sony has included a 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio track for the film, and it was actually better than I expected. The film is extremely dialogue based, but the surround speakers get a were balanced use all things considered. The film's pop soundtrack sounds awesome while in use, and the occasional sounds effects sound very good as well. It's hard to demand much from the type of film in the audio category, but it turned out better than I thought it would. 8/10.

Extras
Deleted Scenes (12:01) (SD)
Anna Faris: House Mom (5:51) (HD)
The Girls Of Zeta (5:27) (HD)
The Girls Upstairs (3:13) (HD)
Colin Hanks: Mr. Nice Guy (4:49) (HD)
From Song To Set: Katharine McPhee (4:24) (HD)
From Tourbus To Trailer: Tyson Ritter (5:19) (HD)
Look Who Dropped By (4:29) (HD)
House Bunny Style (6:12) (HD)
Zetas Transformed (2:37) (HD)
Getting Ready For A Party (3:27) (HD)
Calendar Girls (3:57) (HD)
House Bunny Memories (4:20) (HD)
'I Know What The Boys Like" - Introduction (:30) (HD) Music Video (2:21) (HD)
Previews (HD)
BD-Live

Blu-news Summary
The House Bunny is one of my favorite comedies of the year, yes it is a chick flick as well, but one of the best of the year. The cast is fantastic, and I really enjoyed all of the characters. It was also nice to see Beverly D'Angelo (National Lampoon's Vacation films) in the film. Anna Faris was extremely funny at all times, and I really love the film's story. The Blu-ray presentation is top notch, with great video and audio presentations. There are a surprising amount of extras, and they are actually all very interested. There is a ton of behind-the-scenes, and I really enjoy that. I was also very pleased to see all the extras in high-definition. This is a fantastic package, and would not hesitate to say 'Recommended'.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian Blu-ray Review

The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian Blu-ray Review
Written by Loys Johnson
Video
Prince Caspian comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation that is sure to impress. Detail s spectacular, and colors are extremely rich and vibrant. Black levels were always deep. The special effects translate very well to the high-definition presentation, and are filled with impressive detail as well. The film's scenery is very beautiful, breathtaking even. Nobody could be disappointed with the transfer, as it provides some of the best high-def moments of the year. 10/10.

Audio
Disney has included a 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track for the release, and it sounds fantastic. The film's score was beautiful, and made use of every speaker. Dialogue was nice and clear, and even during the battles I felt it was just right. The battle scenes were the most impressive audio moments, with every little detail sounding so clear, with the sound of arrows being shot coming from every direction. The track started off as demo material, and ended as demo material. There's nothing bad I can say about this spectacular audio presentation. I also hope Disney begins to make 7.1 a more and more common thing as Blu-ray progresses. 10/10.

Extras

Disc 1:

Audio Commentary
Circle-Vision Interactive: Creating The Castle Raid (HD) - with Introduction (2:01) (HD)
BD-Live: Movie Chat, Movie Challenge, Movie Mail, and Movie Rewards.

Disc 2:
Inside Narnia: The Adventure Returns (34:45) (HD)
Sets Of Narnia: A Classic Comes To Life (23:44) (HD)
Big Movie Comes To A Small Town (23:19) (HD)
Previsualizing Narnia (10:09) (HD)
Talking Animals And Walking Trees: The Magical World of Narnia (4:51) (HD)
Deleted Scenes (11:15) (HD)
The Bloopers Of Narnia (3:06) (HD)
Secrets Of The Duel (6:46) (HD)
Becoming Trumpkin (4:48) (HD)
Warwick Davis: The Man Behind Nikabrik (11:08) (HD)

Disc 3:

Disney-File Digital Copy (Compatible with PC and MAC)

DVD Comparison:
The DVD from the start was no competition to the Blu-ray. I sampled all different types of scenes in the film to compare, and just as expected, the Blu-ray ruled in every aspect. The video presentations can not even compare, the difference is quite huge. Audio is where I was even more impressed, the 7.1 DTS-HD Master audio track on the Blu-ray release was so beautiful, while the DVD felt dull when compared. Extras are the same for the most part, other than a few exclusive features, such as BD-Live, which is a very welcomed feature. If you purchased the DVD, and want to upgrade to Blu-ray, do it with out hesitation.

Blu-news Summary
Prince Caspian is definitely an improvement over the first film, I feel that it just flows better. The action scenes in the film are massive, and extremely impressive. The characters are quite enjoyable, particularly the new additions. The story is also definitely better, and I can't wait for the 3rd, which is up in the air whether it will happen or not.
The Blu-ray presentation is perfection, with some of the best video and audio on Blu-ray this year. The extras are also quite expansive, and I'm very happy to say that they are all in high-definition as well. Disney just keeps impressing with their fantastic Blu-ray releases. Prince Caspian on Blu-ray is definitely recommended, and a 'Must Own' for those looking for an impressive Blu-ray release.

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