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A view on Blu-ray by Brian Montgomery


Superman/Batman: Public Enemies [Blu-ray]


(Sam Liu, 2009)






Review by Brian Montgomery



Warner Home Video



Region: FREE! (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:31:68.322

Disc Size: 20,371,789,502 bytes

Feature Size: 16,676,413,440 bytes

Video Bitrate: 33.5 Mbps

Chapters: 25

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: September 29th, 2009



Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: VC-1 Video




Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB / Dolby Surround



English (SDH), none



• A Test of Two Minds: Superman and Batman (19:01)

• Dinner with DCU and Special Guest Kevin Conroy (55:59)

• Exclusive sneak peek at DC Universe's Justice League Crisis on Two Earths (11:12)

• Behind the scenes of Blackest Night (8:52)

• Bruce Timm presents six bonus cartoons

• Explore four other DC Universe animated movies



The Film:

A desperate solution for a troubled country: Lex Luthor for President with the Justice League in the service of the government. Only Batman and Superman stand against the new regime – and their disloyalty proves to be exactly what Luthor intended. Using their outcast status to instigate a scandal against Superman, Luthor finally tastes a victory in his vendetta against The Man of Steel. From Executive Producer Bruce Timm and voiced by the cast from both hit Batman and Superman animated TV series including Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly and Clancy Brown, this DC Universe Original Animated Movie of Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness’s popular graphic novel seethes with political intrigue and action-packed battles between heroes all believing they’re on the right side of the law.

Excerpt of review from The World's Finest located HERE


Image:   NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Predictably, the image quality on this disc is very strong. Like the other films in the generally outstanding line of direct to video animated films in the DC universe, the animation here differs from the others. While I think that so far, this is my least favorite of the animation styles (oddly shaped physiques with abnormally narrow waists and more muscles than the human body could ever possibly have), it's by no means bad, but just not as good as it could have been. The 1080p/VC-1 transfer looks absolutely gorgeous at times, with the strong colors like the red and the blue of Superman's outfit, looking exceptionally strong. Although I have seen another reviewer complain of pixalization and artifacts, I saw none on my two viewings. In fact its very difficult to find any fault with the transfer, expect perhaps that the film's clarity makes it easier to notice a few scattered instances of an animator's error. However, such mistakes are few and far between, and shouldn't take away from the viewing experience.
















Audio & Music:

The disc also sports a Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track that sounds about as good as a non-HD audio mix can. The dialogue is always crisp and clear, and that's something that you want when dealing with the sort of banter that typically goes on between Batman and Superman. The audio mix overall seemed to suffer from no background noises (hisses, pops, cracks, etc.) and showed no evidence of being artificially altered. The musical score was decent enough and should sound so on most players. I suppose that while I enjoyed the audio enough, a TrueHD audio track would have been most appreciated, as the copious battle sequences would likely have really shined with one.



I have to admit to getting in to the extras here every bit as much as the feature itself. First off, we're treated to a dinner conversation between the creative team behind the film and Batman voice actor Kevin Conroy. After following Conroy's work from the initial "Batman: The Animated Series", through the "Justice League" cartoon, and his various appearances in these animated features, its satisfying to finally be able to put a face to the voice. The topics of conversation range from the film at hand, the initial Batman animated series, and future projects. Overall, its a wonderful supplement. Next, there's a short on the history shared between Batman and Superman called "A Test of Two Minds". For those of us who don't know all of the ins and outs of their relationship (I must admit that in my youth I was exclusively a Marvel reader), it makes for an oftentimes amusing viewing. Also included is a look at the next direct to video release, "A Crisis on Two Earths", detailing the Justice League's encounter with alternate evil versions of themselves. I know only a little of the history that this is based on, but what I saw really whet my appetite. Oddly enough, there's also a behind the scenes look at an ongoing comic only event called "Blackest Night" in which evil Black Lanterns are created by a malevolent force using the corpses of deceased DC Superheroes. Given its inclusion here, I have to wonder if its a teaser for an upcoming animated film. Next, there are total of six bonus cartoons included here, drawn from the mid-90's Superman cartoon and "Justice League Unlimited". Since I already own all of these on DVD and have watched them several times, I didn't feel compelled to rewatch them now, but to someone unfamiliar with the episodes, they should prove to be a real treat. Lastly. the additional "explorations" mentioned on the box are nothing more than the trailers for the four previously released DC animated films in this series.



Bottom line:

While it may have tended to a bit more action and shied away from the characterization that I had hoped for, the film is still worth owning, and I doubt that you could have a better experience with it than in Blu-ray. I have to really applaud the creative team behind this release (Bruce Timm, et al.), as they now continue a perfect streak started the mid 1990's. Recommended.

Brian Montgomery

January 19th, 2010








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