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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

World War Z [Blu-ray]


(Marc Forster, 2013)





Also available in a 3D Blu-ray version:




Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Plan B Entertainment

Video: Paramount



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

Runtime: 2:03:03.667 (Unrated Extended Edition)

Disc Size: 44,791,574,651 bytes

Feature Size: 36,527,235,072 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.73 Mbps

Chapters: 17

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: September 17th, 2013



Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 4991 kbps 7.1 / 48 kHz / 4991 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio French 640 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 640 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 640 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 640 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio Portuguese 640 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 640 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio English 640 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 640 kbps / DN -4dB



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



• Origins (8:21)

• Looking to Science (7:29)

• WWZ Production - 4 chapters (36:18)

DVD and Digital Copy





Description: Brad Pitt stars as an ex-United Nations employee racing around the globe in a bid to halt a worldwide zombie pandemic in Marc Forster's sprawling adaptation of Max Brooks' bestselling novel of the same name. Retired U.N. investigator Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) and his family are sitting in what appears to be a typical Philadelphia traffic jam when helicopters began to circle ominously overhead, and an explosion throws the city into panic. In the blink of an eye, the streets are consumed by chaos. When Gerry learns that the catalyst for the turmoil is a highly contagious virus that transforms those who contract it into rampaging maniacs, and that legions of the infected are growing on all continents, he agrees to join his former colleagues in discovering the source of the rampant plague so that his wife and two daughters will be guaranteed safety aboard a UN fleet in the Atlantic Ocean. Upon tracing a crucial e-mail to a U.S. military base in South Korea, Gerry learns that the infection has spread more rapidly than anyone realizes. Although a subsequent trip to Jerusalem, where the government has constructed a massive wall to keep the public safe, initially offers hope that the growing horde can be kept at bay, an unexpected breach sends Gerry back into the sky in search of patient zero. Just when Gerry thinks he's traced the origins of the virus, however, the unthinkable happens. Subsequently stranded in Cardiff with a fearless Israeli soldier, Gerry quickly makes his way to a World Health Organization outpost where the few remaining scientists have hit a dead end in their search for a cure. But the struggle is far from over, and after recalling an unusual scene witnessed in Jerusalem, Gerry prepares to make a leap of faith that could prevent the downfall of humanity.



The Film:

Screenwriting team Matthew Michael Carnahan, Damon Lindelof, and Drew Goddard craft a well-balanced narrative where every character, and situation, add dramatic tension in the film. In one end, there is the global impact on politics, health institutions, and government - elements which help expose the magnitude of humanity’s likely doom. At the other end, there is the compassion, bravery and sense of survival that brings people together at the brink of the edge.

Foster enhances the story’s emotional arc with a superior and attention-grabbing direction in ‘World War Z’. He not only focuses on Lane’s story, and what motivates him, but everyone around him – from the navy officer to the pathologists that are trying to find answers. He also brings a thrilling aspect to the zombie genre making them a fearsome and voracious bunch. These are not the slow-droning type that movie going audiences are used to.

Excerpt from the Examiner located HERE

Is this the ultimate zombie movie?? No. But it’s a terrifying nail biter that’ll have you gripping your seat about 5 minutes in and for the rest of the ride. Though Brad Pitt is the only major star (with Matthew Fox making a brief appearance), this one has summer blockbuster written all over it.

Brad Pitt is retired U.N. field hotshot (in this film the U.N. actually DOES some good) who’s now happy as a lark being a stay-at-home dad to his two adorable daughters, doting on his equally stunning wife. Their charmed life comes to a crashing (literally) end when the whole world is upended by a stunningly fast moving zombie virus. People turn seconds after being bitten. Unlike the George Romero zombies of old school days, these CGI’ers are more of the Danny Boyle “28 Days Later” school- horrifyingly fast and fierce.

Excerpt from Q1043 located HERE

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

World War Z looks very impressive on Blu-ray from Paramount.  The camera is so kinetic that you don't see many tight crisp shots. Colors are passive but the grand effects are spaced within minutes of each other. Contrast exhibits healthy, rich black levels but there may be a shade of teal-leaning with mucho earthy browns thrown in. There are some dark sequences but no noise is visible on the dual-layered 1080P transfer with a high bitrate. CGI Effects don't have any transparency - perhaps, again, because of the movie camera. This Blu-ray seems a flawless representation although depth is not at the forefront of the visuals - I assume this is authentic. It looks very pleasing in-motion and I expect fans will appreciate the HD transfer.

NOTE This is the 'unrated, extended' version at over 2-hours.


















Audio :

We get a real barn-burner audio track - a DTS-HD Master 7.1 at a massive 4991 kbps. Seperations are as plentiful as the visual effects and cause head turning to the back of the room (what that the film?) a few times. Excellent depth and range - although the windows didn't literally rattle I'm sure with a crank of the volume they could have. There are Dolby foreign language DUBs and a simple(r) 5.1 English track as options. There are subtitles on the region FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.


Extras :

Some featurettes as supplements on the Blu-ray edition. 'Origins' runs about 8-minutes and examines the idea/book to evolution of the film project. 'Looking to Science' is 7.5-minutes on the scientific realties behind such a thing as a global pandemic/virus. The most substantial extra is the 4 chapter, 36-minute, piece on various production aspects of World War Z by isolating details on specific scenes like 'The Outbreak' and 'Behind the Wall'. This package contains a DVD and code for Digital Copy although 3D versions are available.



Yeah, okay - Brad Pitt vs. the Zombies. What started as the low-budget zombie sub-genre has blossomed to a million blockbuster with a scruffy and invincible Pitt as a, frequent, lone survivor in battles with the creepy. Smelled a little like a cocktail mix of ‘Contagion’, ‘Children of Men’, 'I Am Legend' and maybe even ‘Shaun of the Dead’ only include a super-hunk battling the 'Undead' on an impossibly large, over-produced, scale. Seems as though the Zombie apocalypse genre appeal is surprisingly resilient.... and yes, it had a couple of impressively visual scenes. A darn impressive Blu-ray presentation - anyway you cut it. A definite re-watch or two for sure. Recommended! 

Gary Tooze

September 9th, 2013




Also available in a 3D Blu-ray version:




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 5000 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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