New to Blu: March 18-24
Such is the appeal of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part One that other distributors aren’t offering noteworthy new releases on Blu-ray to challenge it.
Last week its US release went straight to #1 on the Blu-ray and combined Blu-ray/DVD sales charts.
According to Variety, “Mockingjay generated 53% of its total unit sales from Blu-ray Disc, a higher percentage than any of the other new releases.”
Here, it’s one of only four newcomers on Blu-ray for the week starting March 18, the others being the obscurities Back in the Day, Mockingbird and Miracles: Out of Nowhere.
US reviewers acclaimed Mockingjay’s tech specs but at least one British critic thought otherwise.
Here’s a sampling of the US raves:
“With stellar video, amazing audio and a packed-to-the-rim package of special features, the latest Hunger Games instalment comes highly recommended.”
“The video is a luscious high def transfer in 1080p at a 2.40:1 aspect ratio. Colours are gorgeous. Detail is tight and black levels (and there are loads) are spot on.”
“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 offers a commanding Dolby Atmos (core Dolby TrueHD 7.1) track that provides near constant immersion not necessarily limited to the somewhat abbreviated action elements this film indulges in.”
But Britain’s The Digital Fix argued otherwise, calling the transfer “somewhat variable.
“Blacks can look fine in one scene then incredibly milky in another, and the shadows also take on a red tinge in some shots. The contrast is similarly uneven …
“Colour also shifts between locales, with the natural-looking skin tones above ground giving way to sallow, sodium-lit faces when underground.
“The image isn’t blisteringly sharp owing to the old anamorphic glass (a favourite of DP Jo Willems) and the constant use of smoke to diffuse the unforgiving acuity of the digital capture.”
But a longstanding Australian review site thought the transfer “consistent with the original cinema presentation …
“Although this is a brilliant looking film, it is fairly drab throughout.”