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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Attack the Block [Blu-ray]

 

(Joe Cornish, 2011)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Sony

Video: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:28:10.285

Disc Size: 39,852,391,347 bytes

Feature Size: 23,081,127,936 bytes

Video Bitrate: 25.12 Mbps

Chapters: 16

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: October 25th, 2011

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.40:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 3931 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3931 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio French 3089 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3089 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), English, French, none

 

Extras:
3 Commentary Tracks ('Junior', 'Senior', + 'Exec. Producer')

• Behind The Block (1:01:24 - in 1080P)
Creature Feature (20:10 in 1080P)
Meet the Gang (4:08 in 1080P)
Unfilmed Action (5:00 in 1080P)

• That's A Rap (2:24 in 1080P)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: From the producers of Shaun of the Dead, Attack the Block is a fast, funny, frightening action adventure movie that pits a teen street gang against an invasion of savage alien monsters. It turns a London housing project into a sci-fi battleground, the low-income apartment complex into a fortress under siege. And it turns a crazy mix of tough street kids into a team of kick ass heroes. It’s inner city versus outer space and it’s going to explode.

***

A fast, funny, frightening action adventure movie that pits a teen gang against an invasion of savage alien monsters.... It turns a London housing estate into a sci-fi playground. A tower block into a fortress under siege. And teenage street kids into heroes. It's inner city versus outer space.

 

 

The Film:

Attack the Block's monsters from outer space are a hulking hybrid of gorilla and wolf, with long, pointy, iridescent teeth and a high, piercing shriek.

Horror, humor and racial tension are blended in a startling way.

A crew of young gangsters is thrust into the position of saving the world — or at least the block — from extraterrestrials.

Excerpt from USA Today located HERE

All of which elevates ‘Attack the Block’ from fun creature-feature throwback to this year’s unmissable British movie, and Cornish from just another geek-turned-filmmaker to a major talent: if he can strike a similar balance between sympathy, insight and crowd-pleasing thrills in future projects, his status is assured.

Attack the Block’ isn’t perfect – the aliens are a tad unremarkable and the final blowout never hits the frenzied peak it might have – but it’s hard to imagine British audiences having more fun in a cinema this year.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE

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

Attack the Block looks decent on Blu-ray from Sony. I had concerns that some of the faces were exported with a waxy appearance but have concluded that this is more a result of the film production than any digital manipulation. This is dual-layered with a decent bitrate. Detail is acceptable but not a hallmark. Contrast in the darker sequences (and there are a lot) remains adept with no intrusive noise. Colors seem true and tight. I wouldn't say the image is dynamically impressive but it is serviceable and provides a consistent, worthwhile, presentation. By modern standards this may not be stellar but elevates well above SD. I suspect that the image is at the mercy of its production roots and I find no fault with the Blu-ray transfer. It's clean with a shade of depth in the 2.40:1 aspect ratio.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Sony provide an excellent track in the form of a DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 3931 kbps. There are some punchy separations and seething depth.  There is an original score by Steven Price that compliments the film well - supporting the aggressive moments with intensity. It also has nice balance without eclipsing the visuals. Really very well done. There are optional subtitles (required for much if the slang dialogue) and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked although there is a UK, region 'B', edition available.

 

Extras :

Attack the Block excels in the supplements department as well with three Commentary Tracks divided into the categories of 'Junior' with director Joe Cornish plus stars Simon Howard, John Boyega, Alex Esmail, Franz Drameh and Leon Jones. There is a "Senior" commentary with Cornish again plus Nick Frost, Jodie Whittaker and Luke Treadaway. The "Executive Producer" option has only Cornish and exec. producer Edgar Wright. I sampled about 45 minutes of each and they were all good with fun and recollections of details. After that the hour-long Behind The Block which covered casting and production details in the evolution of the filmmaking process. Creature Feature runs 20-minutes and discusses the effects regarding the film's 'monsters' - after that are three short featurettes, basically, on the cast. Pretty stacked with a lot for fans to indulge in.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Attack the Block is surprising, bordering shocking, harsh, adventurous, takes much of itself very seriously and other parts with silly regard - and lastly is... totally entertaining. It's like a kid's adventure - starring kids - but only for adults. I applaud the unusual realization. This was a good 'watch' on Blu-ray and should provide many a worthwhile night in the Home Theater. 

Gary Tooze

October 18th, 2011

 

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.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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