|S E A R C H D V D B e a v e r|
H D - S E N S E I
A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze
(Francis Lawrence, 2005)
Review by Gary Tooze
Studio: Warner Brothers
Video: Warner Home Video
Region FREE (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Feature Runtime: 2:00:47
Feature film disc size: 20.7 Gig
One dual-layered Blu-ray
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: October 14th, 2008
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Video codec: VC-1
Commentary with director Francis Lawrence and producer
• Foresight: The Power of Previsualization (13:56)
• Music video - A Perfect Circle
Picture in picture
Product Description: Lucifer's minions are illegally "crossing over" to Earth and taking possession of human bodies in preparation for the arrival of the Devil's son, who will institute chaos in the world. Our only defense: Constantine, played by Keanu Reeves, whose body looks more streamlined than ever. A long time ago, Constantine attempted suicide but escaped the grip of Hell (he was dead for two minutes but revived), and now he owes God a favor or two. The Lord's servant performs exorcisms and sends the crossover devils back to their fiery home. As the apocalypse approaches, Reeves whispers his fears to Rachel Weisz's Los Angeles cop, and she whispers back. The movie is reverently quiet even as all Hell is (literally) breaking loose. There is an extraordinary amount of digital mess and violence-gucky melting flesh and many revelations, transformations, and immersions, as well as satanic rats and large cockroaches. Engineered (you can't really say directed) by Francis Lawrence.
-Excerpt from David Denby of The New Yorker.
Movies involving angels and demons, all-powerful relics and arcane incantations are almost invariably pretty stupid. My own tolerance for apocalyptic balderdash, therefore, depends largely on whether it comes equipped with a sense of humor. Constantine, adapted from the DC comics series Hellblazer, knows perfectly well that it's ridiculous, and that wry self-awareness is its saving grace. Ironically, the film's recurrent stab at broad comic relief — Shia LaBeouf as Keanu's over-eager apprentice — falls utterly flat; the kid seems to have wandered in from a neighboring Nickelodeon special. But it's hard not to be mildly tickled by Constantine's agreeably mordant tone, exemplified by the fact that its hero's greatest nemesis is not the hellspawn he battles but his three-pack-a-day nicotine habit.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were ripped directly from the Blu-ray disc.
TheWarner Blu-ray transfer looks good - but not 'great' in terms of this new format's visual capabilities. It is, expectantly a dark film, and the contrast of the 1080P rendering carries that extremely well. It can look a shade saturated in the darker scenes but is quite consistent and probably reflects an accurate representation of the theatrical. It is not especially sharp at times and may very well be the same as the previous HD edition. It didn't seem to have as much depth as many other Blu-rays we have covered. Digital noise is fairly fine but visible in monochromatic backgrounds. There is not a lot (any) real grain and the image overall is very smooth. Technically, the feature size being a respectable 20.7 Gig on the dual-layered Blu-ray. I don't see evidence of DNR or edge enhancements. It has no flaws but seemed to underachieve a little to me. You may click on the screen grabs to see the full 1080 resolution.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio & Music:
October 17th, 2008
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction. So be
it, but film will always be my first love and I list my
favorites on the old YMdb site now accessible
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze