Category Archives: High Definition

Latest Blu-Ray and HD News

BLU-ray Review: James Bond Collection

James Bond Blu-ray DVD Collection

I’m not a fan of triple dips, but MGM and Fox Home Video have done an amazing job on the newly released James Bond Blu-ray set. I was generally skeptical about this dip because I already own three different versions of all the Bond films. But these Blu-ray versions are the definitive set. The picture transfer/upgrade is beautiful. I put on Dr. No and it was an eye-opening experience. The colors were deep, reach and sharp. There is so much more depth now it’s hard to believe this film is over 30 years old. It looks like it was shot on HD last week. The blacks are black which make the colors pop on my Vizio HDTV set. The hours and hours of extra features (in Standard Def) are the same ones from the Ultimate Collection from a few years ago with some neat little Blu-ray additions like a 42 Minute HD Feature called Inside Dr. No and a 18 minute feature on Terrance Young, the director of Dr. No.

The one area where they dropped the ball is on the Menu navigation system. It reminds me of the early days of DVD where the one thing you could always count on was Fox Home Video totally screwing up the menu. This is one of the ugliest and most unfriendly systems I’ve seen in awhile. It took me a few minutes to figure out how to play the movie and access the special features.  The Pop Up/Menu button doesn’t work once you select a feature. If you select a feature to watch, while viewing the film, it kicks you out and doesn’t return to the point you left off.  Each film are on a 50 GB Dual Layer disk, is in Widescreen 1.66:1 (No letter boxing!) and Lossless Audio. The movie sounds amazing on my Sony Crossbar.  I sampled a few of the other titles in this collection and it’s safe to say all six of these releases and must own.  The Six disk set includes Dr. No, From Russia With Love, Thunderball, For Your Eyes Only, Die Another Day and Live and Let Die. I’m not going to bother reviewing the movies or giving you the TPS, come on it’s Bond! You’ve all see these a million times. My only, minor complaint with this set, beyond the menu system is the lack of Profile 1.1 or BD-Live support. Yeah BD-Live sucks, but I would still like to see them implemented as standard features in all Blu-ray releases.  After watching a slew of lackluster Blu-ray releases (I’m looking at you Iron-Man!) this release restores my faith.

Movie Grade (All 6 Films, except Thunderball) – A

Features – A

Picture – A

Audio – A

Final Overall – A

EM Review by
Michelle Alexandria
Originally Posted 10.21.08

BLU-ray Releases – The Incredible Hulk

The Incredible Hulk is out on DVD and Blu-ray this week in a super dooper 3 disk special edition and it includes digital copy. I actually kind of liked this version. I thought it was a solid, no brainer, popcorn flick with a horrible last act. I’m actually going to be speaking with the SFX honcho from this sometime in the next few days. Here are a couple of clips from the extras.

Making of the Opening Chase Scene.

Becoming the Abomination

HIGH DEFINITION: Bond goes Blu next Week

James Bond on Blu-ray

I’m such a freaking sucker for Bond that I’ve purchased almost all of MGM’s triple dip set of Bond films – I have three versions of all 21 movies. There was the regular non-restored collection, then the ultimate restored collection, then the super dooper ooper special edition collection and like a moron get suckered in, I refuse to buy into the hype on this new Blu-ray set, but this one looks so tasty…. But no, I’m going to turn away this time.  But wait, for a change MGM is going to send me a set for review, so I don’t have to shell out my own dollars. But still…. This set is packed to the gills with features – all of the ones from the S.D.O.S.E. set from two years ago and some Blu-ray exclusives.  The initial set includes Dr. No, From Russia With Love, Thunderball, Live and Let Die, For Your Eyes Only and Die Another Day. Not bad at all (except the unwatchable Thunderball).  I wish MGM would release these things in chronological order though. I understand their need to do a sampling of all the Bonds – but where’s poor Timothy Dalton? As an added bonus you get a free ticket to the new Bond flick. This set hits the street next week for $89.98. Which isn’t bad, that’s less than $20 a flick and considering the individual retail price is $35 dollars, it’s obvious you get the set.  But really, what Bond fan doesn’t already own one of the previous sets? You can read the full press release after the break.

Continue reading HIGH DEFINITION: Bond goes Blu next Week

HIGH DEFINITION: Netflix Blu-ray Charge Official

Netflix

Normally something like this bit of news really annoys me, but I can understand Netflix wanting to increase fees for people wanting Blu-ray disks. I called this way back in January when the HD-DVD group threw in the towel. I ranted about how consumers will louse, about how Sony wouldn’t lower the price on their players or discs. How the lack of competition would drive prices up, that paying $40 for freaking Super Bad on Blu-ray is disgusting. My rant was widely picked up on the interwebs and I was soundly lambasted in the AV Forums and other popular boards. But everything I said turned out to be true and now it’s infected my Netflix.  But I’m not outraged because they are only charging $1 extra month. If was more than $5 I would have vented my spleen. I got the official notice yesterday.

BLU-Ray NEWS: The Great Ray Harryhausen Gets His Blu-ray Due!

Ray_Harryhausen_Gift_Set_BD_box_art

The legendary Ray Harryhausen is finally getting his due this week when Sony releases the Ray Harryhausen collection on Blu-ray. This collection includes the Sci-Fi classics – "It Came From Beneath the Sea," "Earth vs. The Flying Saucers," "20 Million Miles to Earth: 50th Anniversary Edition," and "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad".  This should give any self respecting some good geek gasms and it’s all in beautifully restored HD.  Each disk is chock full of features and includes audio commentaries from Ray himself.  Check out the full press release, features and some clippage after the break. 

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BLU-RAY NEWS: The Fall on Blu-ray Sept 9

Presented by David Fincher and Spike Jonze, and from acclaimed Director Tarsem comes THE FALL, starring Golden Globe® nominee Lee Pace.  On Blu-ray Disc™ and DVD September 9th! Filmed over a period of 4 years in 18 different countries, Tarsem’s The Fall is an unforgettable movie experience. In 1920s Los Angeles, Alexandria (Catinca Untaru), a 5-year-old girl hospitalized from a fall, strikes up an unlikely friendship with Roy (Lee Pace, TV’s “Pushing Daisies”), a Hollywood stuntman shattered by a near-fatal movie set accident and his lover’s betrayal.

The_Fall_BD_boxart

To pass the time, he tells Alexandria the epic story of Governor Odious and the 5 remarkable heroes determined to defeat him – a dazzling world of magic and myth. Only when the line between reality and fantasy begins to dissolve does Alexandria realize how much is truly at stake. Presented by David Fincher (FIGHT CLUB) and Spike Jonze (ADAPTATION), THE FALL is an awe-inspiring, cinematic tour de force. Check out the clippage.

Continue reading BLU-RAY NEWS: The Fall on Blu-ray Sept 9

BLU-RAY NEWS: Firefly comes to Blu-ray this fall.

I love Joss Whedon and I loved the Serenity movie. But for some reason, I could never get into the Firefly TV Series. The pilot episode puts me to sleep every time I’ve tried to watch it. Maybe if I watch it Hi-Def, that’ll make the difference. Fox Home Video is bringing the complete series to Blu-ray this fall. Set 500 years into the future, in the wake of a universal civil war, “Firefly” centers on the crew of Serenity, a small transport spaceship that does not have a planet to call home.  Captain Malcom “Mal” Reynolds, a defeated soldier who opposed the unification of the planets by the totalitarian governed Alliance, will undertake any job – legal or not – to stay afloat and keep his crew fed. 

Continue reading BLU-RAY NEWS: Firefly comes to Blu-ray this fall.

BLU-RAY NEWS: Austin Powers is Bluuuuvy Baby

All three Austin Powers films are coming to Blu-ray in a beautiful looking collector’s edition package.  Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery Name: Austin Danger Powers. Sex: Yes, please! Combine the swinging ’60s, spy movies, talented Mike Myers in dual roles and one hilariously well- placed champagne bottle and you get Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery. Say “Yeah, baby!” for laughs as Flower Power-era superspy Austin (Myers) is thawed from a 30-year cryogenic freeze to stop the world-dominating scheme of bald baddie Dr. Evil (also Myers). Elizabeth Hurley, shagadelic style and Austin’s randy attempts to find ’60s-style free love in a very different, uptight time add to the groovy fun of this mad, mod, Myers world.  

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BLU-RAY NEWS: Daredevil Director’s Cut comes to Blu

Daredevil Director's Cut on Blu-ray

I never understood the vitriolic hatred fanboys had for the Daredevil movie and the irrational loathing of Ben "Mumbles" Affleck. Yes, they took a lot of liberties with the material. Colin Farrell and Jennifer Gardner were terrible. But then I never liked Colin or Jennifer. But I thought the film maintained the basic tone of the books, Ben was almost perfect casting for DD, he fit the part and the story was a good one. Again, except for the whole blind man fighting a female Ninja in broad daylight in a Playground, no less.  The funny thing about the Disc cover is they are hyping Iron Man director Jon Favreau.  This release is feature packed, but I’m really starting to get annoyed that these companies are still ignoring the Picture in Picture spec and the BD Live stuff. It’s one of the reasons I liked the HD-DVD format that was a uniformity of features. And a release like this should have some cool BD-Live and PnP. Check out the full press release below.

Continue reading BLU-RAY NEWS: Daredevil Director’s Cut comes to Blu

BLU-RAY NEWS: The Mist and 1408 Hits Sept 16

1408 BDMist BD

Two cool horror films and one of Sheldon’s favorite movies (1408) is coming to Blu-Ray, September 16th. Here’s the official press release.

THE MIST: Reuniting the king of horror with Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter and director Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile), THE MIST is a "scary as hell" (Maxim) film adaptation of Stephen King’s tale of terror from The Weinstein Company and Genius Products.  The fully loaded two-disc set will contain the theatrical version of the film, a black and white version and a slew of bonus materials including commentary by Writer/Director Frank Darabont, deleted scenes with optional commentary, A Conversation With Stephen King And Frank Darabont, the making of THE MIST, A Look At the Creature FX, The Horror Of It All: The Visual FX Of The Mist, Drew Struzan: An Appreciation Of An Artist, webisodes, introduction to the black and white version and a trailer gallery.  The discs are presented in English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD and English 5.1 Dolby Digital with English CC and Spanish subtitles.

1408: Garnering $72 million at the box-office, John Cusack (Identity, Runaway Jury) and Samuel L. Jackson (Snakes on a Plane, Star Wars films) star in the paranormal thriller 1408 from Dimension Films and Genius Products.  Special features include commentary by Director Mikael Hafstrom and Writers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, two alternate endings, deleted scenes with optional commentary, The Secrets of 1408 and webisodes with John Cusack on 1408 and inside room 1408, in addition to the theatrical trailer. The disc is presented in English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD and English 5.1 Dolby Digital with English CC and Spanish subtitles.