New to Blu: February 22-28

US reviewers didn’t know whether to be startled or delighted by Fright Night’s HD specs, with key critics disagreeing over the video and audio quality.

“There are a number of scenes that look absolutely fantastic on this disc, but the few stinkers, man, they ruin everything … [while] the lossless audio found on Fright Night is … well, not anywhere near as good as I’d expect from a film in this particular genre in this day and age.”

But others disagreed: “Fright Night features a strong 1080p Blu-ray transfer that looks great either in the bright daylight or under the cover of darkness. The image yields exceptional clarity, evident from the beginning of the movie forward.”

“A decidedly excellent 1080p presentation, which is certain to please fans. The image is incredibly crisp and clean, with fine details, such as textures on objects and fabrics, as well as the lines, pores and imperfections in the actors’ skin being readily apparent.”

“This is a dark movie, albeit one which goes easy on the blacks in favour of gradients of primary colours. That design has its appeal in the clean and sharp hi-def transfer.

“Even more impressive is the 7.1 DTS-HD master audio mix, which makes fine use of the soundfield throughout to deliver effective atmosphere and powerful jolts.”

Fright Night is out in both 2D and 3D versions, as is the latest version of The Three Musketeers (which goes on sale here earlier than most of the rest of the world).

Fight Night’s horror rival, Paranormal Activity 3: Extended Cut, was made to look as if it was shot on videotape, “it is not a reference release … there is nothing in this AVC/MPEG-4 1080p transfer that looks outstanding in high definition”.

“We get a variety of film formats from the bluish images seen at night to the over enhanced images shot indoors during the day. Again, this is consistent with the other films in the series so there’s more of the same to expect here.”

The rest of the week’s new Blu-ray titles are limited to a special edition of the Chris Lilley spoof, Angry Boys, and two undistinguished romantic-comedies with superior specs: What’s Your Number? (“the colour palette is vibrant, wide and full of life, always popping on the screen”) and Monte Carlo (“colour is excellently reproduced and shows outstanding saturation levels without ever blooming uncontrollably”).

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