S E A R C H D V D B e a v e r
(500) Days of Summer [Blu-ray]
(Marc Webb, 2009)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: 20th Century Fox
Video: Fox Searchlight
Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 45,411,501,922 bytes
Feature Size: 30,580,740,096 bytes
Video Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: December 22nd, 2009
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 3405 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3405 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio English 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio French 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Portuguese 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 224 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 224 kbps
English (SDH), English, Chinese (traditional and simplified), French, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai, none
• Audio commentary with director Marc Webb, the writers Scott
Neustadter + Michael H. Weber and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Description: Tom believes, even in this cynical modern world, in the notion of a transforming, cosmically destined, lightning-strikes-once kind of love. Summer doesn't. Not at all. But that doesn't stop Tom from going after her, again and again, like a modern Don Quijote, with all his might and courage. Suddenly, Tom is in love not just with a lovely, witty, intelligent woman -- but with the very idea of Summer, the very idea of a love that still has the power to shock the heart and stop the world. The fuse is lit on Day 1 when Tom, a would-be architect turned sappy greeting card writer, encounters Summer, his boss's breezy, beautiful new secretary, fresh off the plane from Michigan. Though seemingly out of his league, Tom soon discovers he shares plenty in common with Summer. By Day 31, things are moving ahead, albeit "casually." By Day 32, Tom is irreparably smitten, living in a giddy, fantastical world of Summer on his mind. By Day 185, things are in serious limbo -- but not without hope. And as the story winds backwards and forwards through Tom and Summer's on-again, off- again, sometimes blissful, often tumultuous dalliance -- all of which adds up to a kaleidoscopic portrait of why, and how, we still struggle so laughably, cringingly hard to make sense of love and to hopefully make it real.
We never remember in chronological order, especially when we’re going
back over a failed romance. We start near the end, and then hop around
between the times that were good and the times that left pain. People
always say “start at the beginning,” but we didn’t know at the time it
was the beginning. "500 Days of Summer" is a movie that works
500 days of Summer appears on Blu-ray from Fox in a 1080P, AVC encoded, 2.35:1 transfer. The image is slightly thick and not notably detailed. There is textured grain visible, but much more so in the 1:33 shots of flashbacks or black + white mock-ups of vintage classics (mini Godard and Bergman homage). This is dual-layered and while doesn't explode with 1080P glory - I do get the impression we are viewing a faithful representation of the theatrical. Being the bittersweet humanistic comedy that it is - the visuals don't take as high a priority as in other genres. Colors seem intentionally flatter (heavy use of blue) to add to the film's intended 1950-ish look and feel (although the film is NOT set in that era) - and it is darker overall. Skin tones seem more yellow/orange that one might expect. This Blu-ray appears as an authentic representation although it won't knock your socks off with the pristine beauty of the image quality. It is fairly tame visually but this Blu-ray supports the film well enough - producing a consistent viewing standard with good contrast. It's middle of the road not - neither being lackluster or brilliant. It certainly works for the film though.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
The DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 3405 kbps is never really pushed to the max with this mostly dialogue driven film. It comes more into play for the film's music - a light breezy score by Mychael Danna + Rob Simonsen and a ton of tracks from Simon & Garfunkel Hall to Oats to The Clash. It sounds flawless. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked disc.
Extras are extensive with many being exclusive to the Blu-ray (so NOT on the simultaneously released SD-DVD). The audio commentary with director Marc Webb, the writers Scott Neustadter + Michael H. Weber and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt is a fun affair with some laughs and pauses before the next humorous note is struck. Webb gives some production information and the writers give some input claiming about 75% of the film was based on things that really happened. It's fun to see them pause and talk about Zooey Deschanel - or, at least her bright visage. The grouping argue about interpretations of small issues in the film and discuss relationships frankly. It's a decent listen. There are 15-minutes of 9 deleted and extended scenes with optional audio commentary. There are 7 minutes of inconsequential audition tapes with Geoffrey Arend and Matthew Gray Gubler. There is more than an hour's worth of other tidbits including 2 Storyboards sequences with optional commentary, Making of... entitled Not a Love Story: Making (500) Days of Summer, Summer at Sundance footage and six conversations with Zooey and Joseph last 12-minutes. What was kind of cool - and I wished was longer were the 'Filmmaking Specials'. The Webb's Bank Dance short film and the amusing Mean's Cinemash: Sid and Nancy piece were very cool expanding on scenes from the film. Both could have been much longer but I imagine some real work went into producing these. There is a music video and you get a Digital Copy disc for use with your portable devices.
December 11th, 2009
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
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