Thursday, September 17, 2009

Iron Monkey Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 21.0 GB
Film Size: 18.6 GB
Film Rating: PG-13
Region Free

Iron Monkey comes to Blu-ray with a solid 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The release looks pretty decent overall, featuring a solid amount of upgrade from DVD. Daytime scenes are generally impressive, featuring much more detail than the uglier darker lit scenes.

The film's grain is there, and luckily the presentation featured no noticeable DNR or edge enhancement. There was a bit of dirt at times, and black levels weren't always as solid as I would have hoped though. This one won't be demo material for anyone, but I'm sure fans will be pleased with the upgrade. 6/10.

An English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is included, while the original Chinese audio mix gets Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. The DTS-HD Master Audio track's mix is aggressive and powerful, but the English dub itself is both annoying and felt unfitting.

The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix presents the film in the language it was meant to be heard. but the difference between high-def sound and lossy sound becomes clear when comparing the two. The Dolby Digital track felt much more flat in general, despite some good surround use. 5/10.


Quentin Tarantino Interview (19:18) (SD)
Discussion with Quentin Tarantino about the codes, themes and styles "of the greatest genre of cinema," kung fu.

Donnie Yen Interview (6:21) (SD)
Actor Donnie Yen reminisces about the early days of his martial art career and gives insight about his work in Iron Monkey.

Blu-news Summary
Having only ever seen the U.S. cut of Iron Monkey, I have always felt the film a bit lacking. It was entertaining, with very cool action scenes and some solid humor throughout the film. But to be honest, it's the type of film that you can like, but then live with out seeing it again.

The Blu-ray release itself is a tad disappointing, with it's video transfer being the best thing about it. The audio of course is lacking, and there's not much as far as bonus features are concerned. The video upgrade should be appreciated by fans of the film, but other than that it's 'A Solid Rental.'

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