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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Moby Dick [Blu-ray]


(Mike Barker, 2010)



Review by Gary Tooze



Broadcast: Gate Filmproduktion

Video: Vivendi



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

Runtime: 3:04:11.455

Disc Size: 46,245,018,960 bytes

Feature Size: 45,750,448,128 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.31 Mbps

Chapters: 16

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: October 4th, 2011



Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: VC-1 Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 4074 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 4074 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)



English (SDH), none



• None





Description: Ishmael sees his dream of a whaling voyage come true when he joins the crew of the Pequod, a sailing vessel leaving port in Nantucket. Unbeknownst to Ishmael and the mates, the Pequod s monomaniacal Captain Ahab is taking them all on a mad and personal mission to slay the great whale Moby Dick, an obsession that will open their eyes to the wonder and spectacle of man, of beast, and the inescapable nature of both.



The Mini-series:  

Led by a “persuasive and compelling” (New York Times) performance from Academy AwardŽ winner William Hurt (Children Of A Lesser God), the miniseries features powerful dramatic performances by a cast of celebrated actors including Golden GlobeŽ winner Donald Sutherland (Citizen X), Academy AwardŽ nominee Ethan Hawke (Daybreakers), Gillian Anderson (“The X-Files”), Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes) and Billy Boyd (The Lord Of The Rings).

A psychological thriller of one man’s decent into madness, the story begins when inexperienced sailor Ishmael (Charlie Cox, Stardust) joins the crew of the whaling ship Pequod helmed by the mysterious and tortured Captain Ahab (Hurt). Though the journey at first appears to be a routine whaling quest, the crew soon is unwittingly forced to join Ahab in his singular purpose – to hunt and kill the enigmatic white whale, which nearly killed him years before. As they sail across the desolate ocean, Ahab’s obsession to seek the deadly whale they call Moby Dick, no matter the cost, soon proves fatal. Never straying from his quest to hunt and kill the monstrous whale, the crew realizes that their captain is so blinded by vengeance that he may soon lead them all to an ultimate peril.

Excerpt from the Press Release located HERE


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

Moby Dick was a 2010 mini-series running in 2 x 1.5 hour parts. Vivendi have slapped this onto Blu-ray and while probably an accurate representation of the original television broadcast production appearance - still looks modest. The lengthy feature is housed on, and almost filling, a dual-layered Blu-ray disc with no extras. It's greatest value may be in being accessible without changing to a second disc to view the entire 3 hours uninterrupted. There is some infrequently supportive detail - no real depth and contrast is at the unremarkable end. This 1.78:1 VC-1 transferred Blu-ray has no demonstrative flaws but also nothing dynamic to extol. It is representative of the feature's effects which are okay - but lack any quality that can impress.

















Audio :

It's a decent track with a DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 4074 kbps. There are some more impressive separations but depth is not overly abundant. I also wouldn't credit it as being particularly crisp but it serviced the mini-series adequately - if not as dynamically as some might expect. There are optional English subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.



Extras :

None. It's a 3-hour experience if you don't break midway and while supplements could have spoke to the book, cast and production - it might have been less-appreciated.



Like quite a few lads - I attempted Herman Melville's classic book "Moby Dick" - and like many - failed to finish. It seems every decade or so - someone re-attempts this 'whale-tale' without too much success. It seems like a fairly advanced production but casting didn't seem as appropriate (although I like Hurt, Hawke and Marsan) or we are always comparing to Huston and Peck's version. Personally, I just didn't find too many positives here to recommend this Blu-ray. I don't feel cheated by the 3-hours invested but I am decidedly indifferent. This is, probably, only for serious fans of the classic literature - as another alternate curiosity. 

Gary Tooze

October 6th, 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
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Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

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Gary W. Tooze






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