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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Midnight in Paris [Blu-ray]

 

(Woody Allen, 2011)

 

   

      

   

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Gravier Productions

Video: Sony Pictures

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:34:16.651

Disc Size: 24,116,588,712 bytes

Feature Size: 22,097,080,320 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.91 Mbps

Chapters: 16

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: December 20th, 2011

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 2373 kbps 3.0 / 48 kHz / 2373 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 3.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio French 1943 kbps 3.0 / 48 kHz / 1943 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 3.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), English, French, Spanish, none

 

Extras:

• Midnight in Cannes (4:57 in 1080P)

• Cast and Crew Gallery

Theatrical Trailer (2:04 in 1080P)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: This is a romantic comedy set in Paris about a family that goes there because of business, and two young people who are engaged to be married in the fall have experiences there that change their lives. It's about a young man's great love for a city, Paris, and the illusion people have that a life different from theirs would be much better.

 

 

The Film:

Here's a sentence I never thought I'd write again: Woody Allen has made a wonderful new picture, "Midnight in Paris," and it's his best, most enjoyable work in years.

If you're surprised to be reading that, think how I feel writing it. I've been a tough sell on the past dozen or so Allen films, very much including the well-acted but finally wearying "Vicky Cristina Barcelona." It seemed that everything he touched in recent years was tainted by misanthropy and sourness. Until now.

Excerpt from Kenneth Turan at the L.A. Times located HERE

 

The definitive poem in English on the subject of cultural nostalgia may be a short verse by Robert Browning called “Memorabilia.” It begins with a gasp of astonishment — “Ah, did you once see Shelley plain?” — and ends with a shrug: “Well I forget the rest.” Isn’t that always how it goes? The past seems so much more vivid, more substantial, than the present, and then it evaporates with the cold touch of reality. The good old days are so alluring because we were not around, however much we wish we were.

Midnight in Paris,” Woody Allen’s charming new film, imagines what would happen if that wish came true. It is marvelously romantic, even though — or precisely because — it acknowledges the disappointment that shadows every genuine expression of romanticism. The film has the inspired silliness of some of Mr. Allen’s classic comic sketches (most obviously, “A Twenties Memory,” in which the narrator’s nose is repeatedly broken by Ernest Hemingway), spiked with the rueful fatalism that has characterized so much of his later work.

Excerpt from A. O. Scott at the NY Times located HERE

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

Midnight in Paris arrives on Blu-ray from Sony in a single-layered but very bright transfer. There is a bit of a golden hue at times but the colors standout very nicely adding even more impressive beauty to the 'City of Lights'.  There is no overly noticeable noise and although detail is modest the overall presentation certainly doesn't suffer.  The bitrate is middling and the image quality isn't about to be considered 'demo' but it still supports the film without nagging flaws. This Blu-ray has a consistent look with solid contrast and I doubt it has any dramatic differences, visually, from the theatrical appearance. It gave me a great viewing with some surprisingly stunning cinematography in the opening.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

We get a DTS-HD Master 3.0 channel at 2373 kbps and things are kept pretty basic but clear with minor depth notable in the score which offers some pleasing original music by Stephane Wrembel that embodies the Woody-tone. There is also a French-language DUB and subtitle options. My Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked although it is available in region 'B'.

 

Extras :

Many Woody Allen films-to-digital are bare-bones but this has the brief Midnight in Cannes - a press conference style gathering with Woody surrounded by the cast - running just under 5-minutes, plus a Cast and Crew Gallery and a theatrical trailer - all in 1080P.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Wonderful film from Woody Allen. It's not so much that he is capable of churning out a film-a-year (for 40-years) but that they are consistently so good - some close to masterpiece status. This is considered quite a triumph being the director/writer's largest Box-office hit... of all time! Midnight in Paris seems perfect and a must-have on Blu-ray to appreciate the liveliness of the transfer. Strongly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

December 12th, 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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