Friday, February 25, 2011

Megamind Blu-ray Review

Release Date: Feb. 25th, 2011
Disc Size: 39.4 GB
Film Size: 27.1 GB
Film Rating: PG
Region: A
The Video
Megamind’ debuts on Blu-ray with a 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 video presentation. Animation in general looks fantastic on Blu-ray. DreamWorks has done a stellar job with their previous animated Blu-ray releases and I went in with the highest of expectations.

The presentation is very good, the high-def clarity is terrific and the upgrade from DVD is obvious. Unfortunately there are some issues throughout the film which are certainly noticeable. There is some very obvious aliasing that appear on certain characters and buildings during different sequences throughout the film.

Generally I am very forgiving of a few issues in a presentation, but I have to wonder how this issue made it all the way to final product. Yes, the issue could be FAR worse, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t somewhat disappointed.

On the bright side, colors are strong and blacks are inky throughout. The comparison with the included DVD is nice to see, but that was certainly expected. I am upset about the issues, but I also hope DreamWorks fixes the issue with time.

We have seen far worse issues on Blu-ray, but it is still unfortunate to see an issue from such a large studio. Ultimately I do not know what specifically caused the issues, but I do think something went wrong when preparing the film for high-def release.

Overall I thought the majority of the presentation was fantastic, many scenes are demo quality as well. There are issues and I can’t excuse the issues, but a quick comparison to the included DVD made me so grateful for a high-def release at all. Perhaps it is settling for less, but hopefully the studio can find a fix for the issue and perhaps begin a replacement program. Ultimately it could be many reasons for the issue and I cannot speak for the studio. 7.5/10

The Audio
DreamWorks has included an English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD track as the lossless option. Also included are French, Spanish and Portuguese 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks and an English Audio description track. Optional subtitles include English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese.

While the video presentation was disappointing, the audio mix is close to perfection. Like with most animated material especially, the film features superb clarity. Everything is basically recorded in-studio and without a flaw.

The surround use moments are also quite excellent, particularly during action sequences in the film which you will find throughout. Now, the mix isn’t among the very best mixes on Blu-ray simply due to the material not lending itself as strongly, but I think the mix worked with the material nicely and impresses throughout. 9.5/10

The Extras

Disc One (Blu-ray Disc):

Brilliant Blu-ray Exclusives (HD)
  • The Animators’ Corner
  • Trivia Track
  • Comic Creator
  • Behind The Mind
Mega Features (HD)
  • Meet the Cast of Megamind
  • Deleted Scene
  • Inside Megamind’s Lair
  • AnimatorMan
  • You Can Draw Megamind
  • Mega Rap
  • The Reign of Megamind – Video Comic Book
  • Spot the Difference
  • Filmmakers’ Commentary
  • World of DreamWorks Animation
  • Previews
Megamind: The Button of Doom (15:52) (HD)
A bonus short film is included and is actually more entertaining than I expected, the runtime is also quite satisfying compared to previous short films from DreamWorks.

Disc Two (DVD):

DVD copy of the film

The extras included on this release are quite surprising, there is plenty to see and many features are included with younger audiences in mind. The Button of Doom short is very enjoyable and the extras for older audiences are also welcome. This is a very impressive amount of extras for an initial release of an animated film. 9/10

The Movie
Megamind’ is the latest film from DreamWorks Animation, which has become quite the respectable studio in the past few years. We have had some truly great films, such as ‘Kung Fu Panda’ and most notably ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ which is the closest to Pixar quality the studio has come.

I have to admit the previews for ‘Megamind’ did turn me off, it looked overly silly and while that can be said about most films, it didn’t look like it would live up to ‘How to Train Your Dragon.’ After seeing the film, I have to say I enjoyed it, but it does not stand out.
The superhero storyline felt very unoriginal, but works well. The characters are unique, likable and the voice talent includes Will Ferrell, Tina Fey and Brad Pitt (All who do a fine job). Unfortunately the film comes at a time when okay just isn’t good enough with all the amazing animated films to release in recent years.

‘Megamind’ has heart and audiences of all ages will enjoy it, it will especially be a hit with younger audiences which was likely the intended target to begin with. The film isn’t boring and features plenty of humor and gags that will have kids wearing out the Blu-ray or DVD.

Ultimately I think it is a very funny film, but one that fails to deliver when it comes to being unique or just standing out in general. We will probably see a sequel or two in years to come, but unlike Pixar films or ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ I will ultimately forget all about it. 7/10

The Blu-news Summary
Megamind’ is a silly film which younger audiences will likely embrace. The video and audio presentations are good; however the issues in the video presentation are disappointing. The extras included are terrific and by far the most impressive aspect. Overall this Blu-ray release is ‘Recommended’ to fans of the film.

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