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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

The Conjuring [Blu-ray]

 

(James Wan, 2013)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: New Line Cinema

Video: Warner Bros.

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:51:57.085

Disc Size: 31,076,280,294 bytes

Feature Size: 26,943,909,888 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.74 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case inside cardboard slipcase

Release date: October 23rd, 2013

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 3546 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3546 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DUBs:

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

 

Subtitles:

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

 

Extras:
The Conjuring: Face-to-Face with Terror (6:39)
A Life in Demonology (15:39)
Scaring the '@$*%' Out of You (8:04)
Blu-ray/DVD/UltraViolet Combo Pack (expired 10/22/2015)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

 

Description: In 1970, paranormal investigators and demonologists Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) and Ed (Patrick Wilson) Warren are summoned to the home of Carolyn (Lili Taylor) and Roger (Ron Livingston) Perron. The Perrons and their five daughters have recently moved into a secluded farmhouse, where a supernatural presence has made itself known. Though the manifestations are relatively benign at first, events soon escalate in horrifying fashion, especially after the Warrens discover the house's macabre history.

 

 

The Film:

The dread gathers and surges while the blood scarcely trickles in “The Conjuring,” a fantastically effective haunted-house movie. Set largely in 1971, it purports to tell a story based on “true case files” about a family of seven whose pastoral dream became a nightmare soon after they moved into a Rhode Island farmhouse. One day, Mom, Dad and the girls are settling into their conveniently sprawling, creaking, squeaking two-story house — the rooms quickly become a disorienting maze — and the next, they’re playing hide and creep with a mysterious, increasingly malevolent force.

Excerpt from The NYTimes located HERE

“Based on a true story” (of course), The Conjuring involves real-life supernatural investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, who were involved in the Amityville saga (and were convinced it wasn’t a hoax). Like 1979’s The Amityville Horror and its many sequels, imitators and progenitors, Wan’s film sees a family (the Perrons; cry for them) moving into a new old home in which various historical traumas — child murders, witch trials — are manifesting as spooky phenomena. The Conjuring fills its exhausting run-time with a cauldron of stirred echoes from any number of its similarly-themed predecessors: a period 1970s setting; doors that open and close on their own; things under the bed; a dog that won’t enter the house; crawl spaces; a cellar; a doll; a music box; ghosts; possessions; exorcisms; secrets uncovered. Even the bird-strike set-piece has unfortunately already been seen this year, in the inferior Dark Skies (with which The Conjuring shares composer Joseph Bishara).

Yet rather than feeling stale, these ingredients in Wan’s hands combine into a classic, classical horror: you get the feeling that this must finally be the film Lili Taylor hoped Jan de Bont’s 1999 remake of The Haunting would be. Played absolutely straight, the performances are uniformly effective and affecting, whether from Taylor, Ron Livingston, Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson as the couples on either side of the spectral divide (Wilson is also in both InsidiousesInsidii?), or Mackenzie Foy, Joey King, Hayley McFarland, Shanley Caswell and Kyla Deaver as the Perrons’ five beleaguered daughters. The supporting cast are strong too, down to the doll-bothered girlfriends who open the film with a largely unconnected prologue.

Excerpt from EmpireOnline located HERE

 

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

The Conjuring looks excellent on Blu-ray from Warner. Shot by John R. Leonetti (The Mask, Insidious) with the, efficient, Arri Alexa - outdoor colors are bright and contrast beautifully layered. There is some natural softness. This dual-layered Blu-ray, with supportive bitrate, and the 1080P presentation is flawless. There is depth and crisp detail in close-ups. Overall a very pleasing image quality. Great art direction as well by Geoffrey S. Grimsman in maintaining the early 70's decor, clothes, cars etc.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Warner use a DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track at a strong 3546 kbps (24-bit). Slamming doors, clapping hands and other effects are rich and deep as is the score by Joseph Bishara (Insidious) which adds 'mega' intensity to the viewing. The lossless sounds excellent augmenting the film's, already high, 'scare-factor'. There are lossy foreign-language DUBs and optional subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region FREE playable world-wide.

 

Extras :

Three video extra - The Conjuring: Face-to-Face with Terror runs 6.5 minutes spending some time with the, actual, Perron family and A Life in Demonology focuses on the real-life Lorraine Warren and Ed Warren and is the highlight of the supplements running over 1/4 hour. Very interesting. We also get Scaring the '@$*%' Out of You for 8-minutes and the package has a digital copy code - that is expired at the writing of this review.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
The Conjuring is another solid James Wan horror starring Patrick Wilson (Insidious). It's extremely polished, well-scripted with excellent performances (kudos to Vera Farmiga and Lili Taylor). It's brilliantly paced and spooky as heck. This Blu-ray package is an easy recommendation - even beyond genre fans.
This is a film that you can revisit and still get the chills - best modern horror film in years - and I look forward to seeing, and possibly reviewing, Conjuring 2!

Gary Tooze

October 25th, 2016


 

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
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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