New to Blu: March 2 – 8

Mr. Robot: The Complete First Season shines on Blu-ray. The 1080p transfer presents with excellent full-frame clarity, allowing the viewer to soak in all kinds of varied backgrounds …

“Black levels and flesh tones aren’t problematic. Mild background banding and noise are present but never much of a serious issue. This is a quality all-around transfer from Universal.”

“One thing you’ll notice about Mr. Robot is the way the show brilliantly uses foreground and background simultaneously. These layers are expertly detailed even if just a bit more focus is given to the foreground.

“Backgrounds are varied, from interiors like abandoned arcades to exteriors like Times Square and downtown Manhattan. All of these settings are teeming with endless details that are all presented with clarity.”

“The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio tracks here are a big part of the show’s feel, especially the strong sense of dread and tension that permeates some of the best scenes.

Watching the entire season of Fear the Walking Dead on Blu-ray in a binge, as this critic did, feels like watching a fully realised, eight-hour long feature film, one that has both closure to leave the viewer satisfied and yet has enough open ends to keep us on edge for the impending second round.

“While the dialogue is clear and easily understood, the music is the show’s main source of power, as the intense instrumentals are enhanced by the side and rear speakers, as well as the strong bass that helps deliver the audio punch.”

Fear the Walking Dead: The Complete First Season‘s 1080p transfer isn’t problematic. It’s just bland.

“The 1.78:1-framed image leaves behind the grit and grain of the companion show and instead presents a fairly flat, nondescript sort of HD image that produces adequate detailing and colour.”

“The picture consistently offers nice depth and colour reproduction has a nice, natural feel to it. There aren’t any problems with compression artifacts to note save for a couple of darker spots where some minor bits block up, nor are there any issues with heavy edge enhancement to complain about.

“Things shape up quite well here, really, and the series looks very good with texture, detail and depth that really helps to take advantage of the HD format.”

“This release comes with a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix and sounds excellent from start to finish. Sound effects pack a punch and come from every speaker perfectly with great directionality.”

The Last Witch Hunter is clean and detailed just like you’d expected a recently filmed blockbuster to be. It’s actually got some beautifully conceived CGI sequences … where the visual presentation really shines through.”

“Flesh tones are naturally rendered with warm accents that give them lifelike tonality. Blacks are inky and noise free with discernibly deep gradations that enhance the films many dark sequences.

“The deep shadows, multi-staged grays, and inky blacks looked terrific on my large screen.”

The Last Witch Hunter features a similarly impressive DTS:X audio track (DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 core). There are a number of outstanding effects, including some great panning moments when various special effects sequences overtake the narrative.”

The Night Before comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 25 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 2.3 Mbps.

“This is an excellent high definition presentation.”

“Colours don’t often have an opportunity to stretch and pop, but the movie’ foundational colors, such as Christmas sweaters, offer satisfying balance. Accents are impressive, too.”

“The 5.1 English DTS-HD MA track is just about as impressive as the video is.

“Even though this is a comedy there is a LOT going on with the track. In the middle of the big city you can hear everything going on around you.”

Also new are LEGO DC: Justice League – Cosmic ClashElvis Costello – Detour Live At Liverpool Philharmonic HallMichael Jackson – Off the Wall and Sun Ra – A Joyful Noise.

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