Friday, December 11, 2009

Julie & Julia Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 44.4 GB
Film Size: 25.1 GB
Film Rating: PG-13
Region: Free

Julie & Julia comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. The film looks fantastic in high-definition, like almost any new release film. The presentation is free of any technical flaws, and you will be in awe from the very first frame.

What I loved most about the film in high-def is the depth present, everything in the picture is crystal clear and everything has dimension to it, allowing a truly eye popping presentation. The transfer never looks flat or disappointing in any aspect, I was very impressed at all times.

The many locations featured in the film are truly beautiful. From the textures of buildings, to food and clothing, everything just looks sharp and filled with detail. Colors are extremely rich and everything just pops. This is an extremely pleasing high-def presentation, one that easily trumps DVD from beginning to end. 10/10.

A 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is included. The track is almost as impressive as the video presentation. No surprise, Julie & Julia does not feature robots fighting or epic battles in space. Despite having neither of those moments, it doesn't keep Julie & Julia from being impressive.

Dialogue is crisp and clear at all times, staying front and center as expected. What the mix does especially good is create the perfect sense of environment and direction. Whether in France or an apartment in a busy neighborhood above a pizzeria, it all features fantastic surround use and really immerses you in to the film.

The music in the movie also is extremely beautiful and clear as it expands into the surround area. I was absolutely delighted by the audio presentation and I'm sure you will be too. 9/10.


Audio Commentary
With Writer/Director Nora Ephron

Secret Ingredients: Creating Julie & Julia (27:44) (HD)
A behind-the-scenes look of the film

Family & Friends Remember Julia Child (47:40) (HD)
Julia Child's grandnephew, an editor of her book,

Julia's Kitchen (22:32) (HD)
Three staff members of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History discuss. They talk about their experience talking to Julia Child about her kitchen, and ending up collecting the entire kitchen.

Cooking Lessons (HD)
Actual how to recipes from Julia Child herself among others, the recipes include:
Poaching Eggs with Julia Child & Jacques Pepin
Making Hollandaise Sauce with Julia Child & Jacques Pepin
Mark Peel prepares Scrambled Eggs
Suzanne Goin prepares Braised Beef Short Ribs
Steven Lewandowski & Drew Nieporent prepare Butter Poached Maine Lobster

Previews (HD)
Theatrical trailers for other Sony Pictures Home Entertainment releases.

There are not so many extras, but the majority of extras are Blu-ary exclusive. The exclusive features are very welcome, giving more and more reason for consumers to go Blu. Yeah it's not necessarily fair for DVD owners, but consider it a new incentive. 8/10.

Blu-news Summary
Julie & Julia, a movie that looks instantly appealing from the original theatrical trailer release. The film tells the story of ordinary Julie Powell and extraordinary Julia Child. What made me absolutely excited about this movie was the amazing cast, which includes both Meryl Streep and Amy Adams.

Both actresses are truly delightful in whatever role they are put in, and Julie & Julia is no different. Amy Adams does a terrfic job as ordinary Julie Powell, a telephone operator by day who aspires for something more. Meryl Streep truly becomes Julia Child, a woman who loves to eat but has no expertise in cooking, later becoming a legend with her cooking.

If you know very little about Julia Child, definitely watch the cooking lessons which features the late Julia Child to truly appreciate what a fantastic job Meryl Streep does. What can be considered a slightly obnoxious voice is not something put in to make the film funny, as it's certainly a distinction of the real Julia Child.

I loved the transition between both characters, Julia Child in writing her cookbook, and Julie Powell who challenges herself to cook an entire year from Julia Child's cookbook. The film is a very happy, very funny and occasionally slightly sad. Like a great meal, Julie & Julia is extremely satisfying. 9/10.

The Blu-ray release is stunning, featuring impressive video and audio presentations. The exclusive extras on this release only make it that much more pleasing. Julie & Julia is 'Highly Recommended' on Blu-ray.

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