The Dawn of Blu-Ray – Part 2

4 min read
13

By Philip Dunkley

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Following up from last week’s first 3 Blu-Ray Reviews, I promised to do another 3 this week and hopefully release 3 weekly. The interest was good, so we will carry on for another few weeks and see how this goes. I did get a few suggestions from last week’s story, and one of them specifically was to compare the Standard DVD version with the Blu-Ray version. Unfortunately this is not really possible due to time constraints and the amount of reviews we do on the gaming side, but I can pretty much guarantee you fine people that unless otherwise stated, the Blu-Ray movies look a lot better than the DVD versions, but only in Hi-Def, so at least 720p is recommended to get the full effect, and I would definitely suggest a full 1080p panel, as this looks amazing.

Right, down to the next 3 reviews.

Vacancy

Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Luke Wilson, Frank Whaley, Ethan Embry

Vacancy Vacancy is your typical hack and slash kind of thriller with a story that has been told quite a few times but has a nicely thought out alternative approach. A couple get stranded after their car breaks down in the middle of nowhere, and end up staying the night at creepy motel until they can get the car fixed. As they start to settle down for the night, strange events start occurring around them, and when they decide to put in a movie that’s lying in the room, they find that it’s a sick murder, but what’s worse is that it’s filmed in the very room they are staying in, and so are the rest of the films.

Not a bad story, but not the most in-depth either. From a hi def point of view, Blu ray captures the dark tone of the film, and brings through the grimy situation that these two have found themselves in. The audio is great, and it will cause some hair raising moments with a well put together soundtrack that flows nicely through a decent system.

From an extra’s point of view, it’s kind of boring from this point, with a “Making Of” featurette, some deleted scenes and access to the extended versions of the “Snuff” movies shown in the film.

Overall: 70%

Daddy Day Camp

Starring: Cuba Gooding Jr, Lochlyn Munro, Richard Gant, Tamala Jones

Daddy Day Camp I don’t really want to go to into this movie purely because of two things. One, Daddy Day Care, the first movie, had Eddie Murphy in it. Secondly, the first was a decent movie in a funny kiddie kind of way.

This movie however is far from the original, it’s a complete mess from start to finish, the story is so weak it’s unbelievable, and the acting is just as bad. It’s not funny, heart wrenching, entertaining or remotely interesting whatsoever.

From a Hi-Def point of view, the picture is very sharp and the audio is good, but that’s what you expect from the format. From an extra’s point of view, it has a trivia game and a quick featurette.

Overall: 10% (I had to give it something because it at least played)

Are We Done Yet

Starring: Ice Cube, Nia Long, John C. Mcginley

Are we done yet? I was not a fan of the first movie, Are we there yet?, but I was rather surprised by this movie. It basically continues after the events of the first, and Nick and Suzanne are now married and are living together in Nick’s small apartment. They decide they need more space and move out to the country with the kids to a house that seems too good to be true, from a Real Estate Agent, who has a variety of other professions. When the house starts falling apart, Nick decides to fix it himself, and then realises he needs to call the contractor in, who was also the Real Estate Agent. A surprising performance from John C. Mcginley (the crazy doctor from Scrubs) made this movie quite bearable and rather funny in parts. It’s a good family movie that points out why it’s good to communicate with each other.

It looks great on Blu-Ray and the audio is not too bad either. From an Extra’s point of view, very little here, with a blooper reel and quiz, and a few small featurettes.

Overall: 65% (It’s Average, but decent for a family)

There we go, until next week. Thanks to Ster Kinekor for providing the Blu-Ray Movies.

All Blu-Ray Movies are reviewed on the following:

Sony Bravia 40” LCD 1080P Capable Panel, Playstation 3, Yamaha RSV-1700 Receiver, Mission M34i Speakers.

Last Updated: April 9, 2008

Gavin Mannion

I for one welcome our future robotic overlords

  • James Francis

    I’m not sold on high-def DVD. Standard DVD can be produced for far cheaper, so I can get a much wider variety of movies and special editions. Also, this means I’d have to buy a Blu-Ray player. As there are not nearly enough third-party players that suport the format, you end up paying a fine mint for a limited machine. As far as I know, Blu-Ray isn’t region-free, so there is no incentive to buy it since I’d be limited on imports. Finally, I have a large collection of movies in DVD format. Why should I switch for a better res when I have a collection that is very universal?

    Blu-Ray is a white elephant. All that happened is it killed the other white elephant in the room.

  • darthdad

    Yea! I can’t see what all the fuss is about.
    I’m sticking with my VHS.

  • Mmm I agree with some comments James. (Oh, on a 40′ screen the difference between 1080p and 720p is negligable to zero at most normal viewing distances).

    But, there is a big enough difference to warrant the move up if you can. A good DVD transfer can give excellent results on a decent HD TV but a good BR or HD DVD transfer will be even better.
    I tend to agree that both new formats are/were white elephants though, BR will be reasonably short lived, probably much like UMD in the end. If you have a PS3 then it you can play your dvd collection and with the BR capability you can enjoy those too.

    RE: Gamer’s last blog post..The World According to Microsoft Gaming Division

  • Hey James, Haven’t even spoke to you yet, I’m so unprofessional I know. I’ll buy you a beer some time. I agree, blu-ray definitely has it’s bad points, but i kinda get an amazing sense of enjoyment over the standard DVD version. I know you have to buy a player, but the PS3 is more than capable of handling these movies better than most stand alone players, and you should hear the sound that comes out of my system from these soundtracks, compared to DVD, as my Amp handles the HD Audio format. Here’s to hoping they come down in price a bit and make them more affordable for most.

  • Fred

    I say again , if only you could find more video shops that rent blu , i do not want to own the movie , just watch it.

  • Do you guys rent these or buy?
    Im looking to find a dvd shop in jozi that rents blu ray… preferebly close to where i stay in boskruin

    Evilredzombie’s last blog post..PS3 Dual shock Review

  • LazySAGamer

    [re=11046]Evilredzombie[/re]: You stay in Boskruin!!!… I could most probably hit your house with a well aimed throw 😉

    I don’t know anywhere around here that rents them apart from maybe the video store at the Woolies mart…

    We were lucky enough to have these loaned to us.

  • Abe

    I dont get people that complain about having to upgrade due to their DVD collection. BD players can run DVD’s so there is no problem Upgrade to BD and be amazed, the quality really does dump all over DVD!

  • I saw “Over the Hedge” on a 42″ LCD this last weekend and while I’m sure you can argue BD looks better, it looked great just upscaled.

    Given the choice between a R300 BD version or a R150 DVD, the DVD wins I’m afraid.

    doobiwan’s last blog post..’08 exclusives, the other side.

  • Abe

    BD disks are now available in most stores for R200!
    What im saying is upgrade and you can still buy movies on DVD if you want but there will be ome titles that will be way sweeter on BD!

  • Tan365

    heheh… sheesh, i’m just amazed doobiwan managed to rap his mind around it being “BD” … finally! What was that again? an assault on the english language? where’s ur dictionary now Doobi

  • @ James Francis buy a PS3.
    Surely you have to recognise there is going to be a next gen movie format that is HD…
    I agree that its more expensive for the disks, the same was true when DVD came out. Now that blu ray has won the prices will drop. Well it has already… from the R350 price tag I now see them selling for R199. And you can stil play your DVD’s on a BR player….

    @Philip Dunkley what bad points are you refering to on blu ray? ( not a fanboy question… honestly just want to know if there are some)

    @lazy il go check out the one there at wollies mart, the one buy spar and one buy nandos both say … blu what?

    Evilredzombie’s last blog post..PS3 Dual shock Review

  • Tan, AFP, I have more important things to worry about in my life, like rearranging my sock drawer. 😉

    Abe, New BD’s are discounted to R260 at Take2, the R200 ones are the DVD’s you can get for R80. Besides you still need to fork out R5500 for a “BD Player” (PS3 40Gb + BD remote). I’m not saying some people don’t think it’s worth it, obviously they do, there’s just no value in that for me. DVD’s will last me perfectly well until DD settles in. For me that could be as early as next year. 😉

    doobiwan’s last blog post..Evil Genius Conspiracy Theory: Why put a Blu-Ray player in a 360, when you can put a 360 in a Blu-Ray player?

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