DoBlu’s November Blu-ray Review Round-Up

Think you missed something in November? Let this easy to use, organized list be your guide to the entirety of DoBlu’s reviews last month. The list is sorted from the newest to the oldest, and separated by catalog titles and new releases. Clips are taken from the movie, video, and audio review sections, in that order. If we’ve learned anything from this, it is that there were a lot of 3/5 movies released last month.

New Releases

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Angels & Demons: “… believing any of this to be possible requires a string of actions so complex prior to their execution, it is absurd.”

“Sony delivers a strong if sometimes rough AVC encode for this sequel.”

“A DTS-HD mix has a few chances to work, including a shoot-out that offers nicely directional bullet hits.”

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Bruno: “… the MPAA forced around 10 minutes of the film to be cut, although it is hard to imagine after a dancing, swinging, and talking penis appears on screen what could be deemed too offensive.”

“It is immediately apparent Bruno was shot digitally… (the) AVC encode from Universal, is rough but accurate.”

“This (DTS-HD track) is front-loaded with zero notable separation in any channel.”

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Funny People: “… Simmons (Adam Sandler) does not need his comedy to remain satisfied. The audience does.”

“Universal, what happened here? … the grain structure is butchered, undoubtedly due to some excessive DNR”

“Universal’s DTS-HD mix sits in the front channels as expected given the dialogue driven nature of the film.”

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Four Christmases: “Many of these were probably solid, amusing ideas on paper, but in practice, needed some leeway for rewrites.”

“Warner delivers a surprisingly poor VC-1 encode for Four Christmases.”

“The sole audio highlight is that otherwise awful jump-a-round sequence, where kids begin popping balloons, which hit the sub with a surprising amount of force.”

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Star Trek: “However, one specific potential subtitle pops-up numerous times during this otherwise fantastic sci-fi piece: Star Trek: Revenge of the Lens Flares.”

“Looking deeper, small chips in this film’s visual prowess begin to show.”

“From the start, this track begins assaulting the viewer with powerful low-end jolts from explosions.”

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The Ugly Truth: “The Ugly Truth may have the guts to push buttons and discuss off-color topics, but it certainly will not avoid becoming a giant cliché.”

“Ugly Truth seems to be another film where natural looking cinematography is butchered by a digital intermediate decision.”

“Ugly Truth has a few moments to showcase its DTS-HD mix”

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Up: “Up is that rare film that in many circles could be considered perfect.”

“Up is yet another reference quality transfer from the studio…”

“A thunderstorm marks the first demo sequence, the floating house entering a patch of dark clouds tossing thunder and rain in each channel.”

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Aliens in the Attic: “… Aliens in the Attic loves video games, or at least as much as those corporate sponsors from Nintendo and Microsoft were willing to pay for the plugs.”

“A bright contrast accentuates the saturated, strong color and accurate flesh tones.”

“The front soundstage is rather expansive, offering some decent effects split into the stereo channels.”

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The Taking of Pelham 123: “Pelham 123 is directed by Tony Scott, and comes with all of his usual and annoying camera tricks, from nauseating spins, heavily saturated colors, jump cuts, and more.”

“Tony Scott’s usual array of saturated colors are (mostly) beneficial to the disc.”

“The subway system is lively, with echoes and a constant stream of trains moving through the speakers.”

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G.I. Joe: Rise of the Cobra: “It is unintentionally funny that a basic conversation needs a piece of Alan Silvestri’s score behind it, none of which includes the original theme song.”

“Contrast has been spiked to include crushing blacks that blend characters with backgrounds…”

“This is not movie trying to increase its already bloated video/audio experience by falsely rocking subwoofers.”

Catalog

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Logan’s Run: “What is most interesting about Logan’s Run is what the audience doesn’t know.”

“Warner delivers a wonderfully clean VC-1 encode for Logan’s Run hi-def debut.”

“This TrueHD mix loves positional dialogue to spread the front channels, creating a spacious environment for this Blu-ray premiere.”

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Galaxy Quest: “A truly hardened, experienced, and involved geek however will tell you “Never give up, and never surrender.”

“For its Blu-ray debut, Paramount delivers a fine AVC encode.”

“The rock monster assault is spectacular, as each step from the creature loads the subwoofer with crisp, clean bass.”

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The Third Man: “Harry Lime is a mysterious, brooding character, cloaked in darkness until his spectacular reveal, which in story terms is a happy accident.”

“Black levels are remarkable, flawlessly capturing the shadows the film relies on for its effect.”

“Stunningly crisp, all high notes are captured with minimal distortion.”

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Forrest Gump: “For being a simple man, Forrest is surprisingly complex as a character”

“Paramount’s third release in their “Sapphire” series thankfully leans more towards Braveheart than Gladiator.”

“If by chance you have never seen Forrest Gump, be prepared for a massive volume spike in Vietnam.”

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Godzilla (1998): “The unimaginable amounts of money were not spent promoting this monster, but hiding the sheer idiocy of it.”

“The master used here looks dated, and not in the sense that the movie is a little over a decade old.”

“A long standing demo disc on DVD, this DTS-HD mix has a lot to live up to, and it mostly delivers.”

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Child’s Play: “It is completely absurd, and Child’s Play weights the film down in realities to lessen the ridiculous concept.”

“Chucky’s burned form is impressive, with each dangling piece of melted plastic visible, if not clearly defined.”

“Bass is almost non-existent, that explosion coming through muffled and distorted.”

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The Invasion: “… despite a lukewarm reception, somewhat understandable due to the countless remakes of this concept, there is a great movie.”

“Warner duplicates the HD DVD transfer of The Invasion to Blu-ray, with a relatively clean VC-1 encode.”

“The opening offers a bombastic space shuttle crash, with debris and flames filling the sound field as the subwoofer picks up the roar of re-entry.”

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Maximum Risk: “… Roger Ebert’s Little Movie Book specifically states to call out the inevitable fruit stand being knocked over in any car chase sequence. Maximum Risk provides that cliché in the opening five minutes.”

“A general softness dominates the transfer, blotting out the fine details.”

“One of the early action scenes inside a burning building has debris clearly falling in front of the viewer, yet the audio pushes sound effects through each channel with no directionality.”

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Scary Movie: “Scary Movie aims so pathetically low.”

“One of the earliest examples of how not to transfer a film to Blu-ray, Scary Movie is a DNR-riddled mess.”

“The subwoofer is given little to work with, although a few thuds when people are hit by cars are marginally sharp.”

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Waterworld: “Intelligence is not a strong point of this future civilization.”

“This AVC encode is rough and over processed.”

“Waterworld delivers early action utilizing the surrounds effectively and the front soundstage equally.”

Specials

DoBlu on the Seen in HD Podcast: “Ever wonder about what goes into the process of reviewing Blu-ray?”