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H D - S E N S E I

A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Homeland - Season Four  [3 Blu-rays]

 

(Lesli Linka Glatter, Keith Gordon, Michael Offer, Charlotte Sieling, Carl Franklin, Alex Graves, Seith Mann, Daniel Attias, Clark Johnson, 2014)

 

     

  

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Teakwood Lane Productions

Video: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 12 episodes (av. 0:52:29.980 per episode)

Disc 1 Size: 45,521,154,122 bytes

Average Episode Size: 11,762,749,440 bytes

Video Bitrate: 23.49 Mbps

Case: Standard Thick Blu-ray case inside cardboard slipcase

Release date: June 15th, 2015

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 3644 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3644 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 /
48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DUB:

DTS Audio French 768 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), French, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, none

 

Extras:

1.5 minute recaps for each episode (except the first)

Disc 3

• Homeland Profiles - "Peter Quinn - The Assassin" (6:03)

 

Episode Sample Bitrate:

 

 

Description: Crack CIA agent CARRIE MATHISON plays by her own rules when it comes to protecting the U.S. from terrorist attacks. Her uncanny intuition, dogged determination, and gift for persuasion helped her identify Nicholas Brody as a terrorist and convert him to an ally. She also headed the operation to capture and kill al-Qaeda mastermind Abu Nazir, and turned the man responsible for the CIA bombing, Majid Javadi, into an invaluable U.S. asset. Along the way, she fell in love with Brody and became pregnant with his child, which made his arrest and execution that much more traumatic for her. Now with a baby to raise and a fast-tracked career as an overseas station chief, Carrie is forced to make difficult choices about the direction she wants her life to take. Meanwhile, SAUL BERENSON, Carrie's long-time, no-nonsense mentor, has been forced into retirement. Will he be able to stay in the intelligence game and keep tabs on his protégé while working for a private security firm in New York?

 

Season 4

The Drone Queen
S4, Ep1
5 Oct. 2014
Carrie makes a crucial decision after learning pressing intelligence; Saul struggles to adjust to his new role in the private sector.

Trylon and Perisphere
S4, Ep2
5 Oct. 2014
Carrie returns home to the states for an inquiry; Quinn spins out of control; a disgraced former case officer discloses information of great interest.

Shalwar Kameez
S4, Ep3
12 Oct. 2014
Carrie ventures a delicate alliance with the Pakistan's secretive Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI.) Fara fails to recruit a key asset, forcing Carrie to intervene. After the events in Islamabad, Quinn zeroes in on a potential lead.

Iron in the Fire
S4, Ep4
19 Oct. 2014
Carrie gets a tip from Redmond regarding Quinn's lead. Saul calls in a favor with an old friend in the Pakistani military. Fara uncovers a deep-rooted conspiracy.

About a Boy
S4, Ep5
26 Oct. 2014
Carrie works a frightened asset. Quinn and Fara stake out a new suspect.

From A to B and Back Again
S4, Ep6
2 Nov. 2014
Carrie puts her operation in motion, staging an attack on herself and Ayaan to make him flee to his uncle in the North. But where is Saul?

Redux
S4, Ep7
9 Nov. 2014
Lockhart arrives. Carrie's investigation gets complicated.

Halfway to a Donut
S4, Ep8
16 Nov. 2014
Carrie organizes a last-ditch operation. Lockhart and Martha stall the ISI.

There's Something Else Going On
S4, Ep9
23 Nov. 2014
Carrie improvises to salvage her mission. The CIA closes in on a leak.

13 Hours in Islamabad
S4, Ep10
7 Dec. 2014
The security breach at the Embassy has far reaching consequences.

Krieg Nicht Lieb
S4, Ep11
14 Dec. 2014
Carrie puts her life on the line to get her team out of Pakistan.

Long Time Coming
S4, Ep12
21 Dec. 2014
Back in the States, Carrie and Saul investigate what she saw in Islamabad.

Excerpt from IMDb located HERE

 

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

Fox's Blu-ray package of the highly lauded series Homeland is as clean and crisp as you might imagine from a new HD-broadcast series. The 12 X 52-minute episodes are housed on three Blu-rays, 4 - per disc.  The original aspect ratio of 1.78 is maintained. This is transferred on dual-layered discs with reasonable bitrates for the feature content per Blu-ray. There are plenty of diverse scenes in Homeland and the 1080P always tends to look very impressive. Detail is strong - notable in the many close-ups and I noted no noise in the darker scenes. It is, predictably,  flawless.

 

NOTE: Not even listed in North America at the writing of this review, we suspect this will be the same transfer as, eventually, released worldwide with only some subtitle option differences. I ordered my copy from Amazon UK.

 

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

 

 

Non-English dialogue subtitle sample

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Fox use a very robust DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track at a whopping 3644 kbps. The series has plenty of action and explosions and gunfire export immense depth while some crowd subtleties make there way to the rear speakers. The unique score is by Sean Callery known for 24 (2001), Bones (2005) and Medium (2005). It's memorable horn riffs are crisp and carry resonance in the lossless. There is a French language DUB (lossy) and subtitle options supporting that the three discs are region FREE - playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.

 

Extras :

As well as the recaps (in all but the first episode) we get, on the last BD, a Homeland Profile - "Peter Quinn - The Assassin with the actor portraying him, Rupert Friend, giving input on his character. It only runs about 6-minutes.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Although I didn't review the first two seasons of Homeland I consistently tell friends and family that it is probably the best TV I have ever seen. Season Three couldn't maintain that lofty standard but it was, nonetheless, impressive. Season Four starts where three left off but finishes as impacting as the first 2 seasons. Claire Danes adds her own brand of intangible realism, Mandy Patinkin, Rupert Friend, Laila Robins, Damian Lewis (without giving away spoilers - you WILL see him in season 4!) and others define this as exceptional TV. It doesn't get much more riveting and exciting that the last 1/2 of season 4. Like House of Cards it is so addictive - you don't pace through the episodes - you rifle through them staying up far later than you planned. Our highest recommendation!    

Gary Tooze

July 4th, 2015

     

  

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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Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

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Gary W. Tooze

 

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