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post #1 of 37 Old 06-11-2008, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=110453&d=1210878855
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

90






Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 1997
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 98 Minutes
Genre: Sci-Fi/Comedy

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: MPEG-4 (AVC)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English/French/Portuguese Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Spanish & Thai Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles:English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese(Traditional & Simplified), Korean, Thai, Arabic, Bahasa, Dutch
Starring: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Rip Torn, Vincent D’Onofrio, Linda Fiorentino
Directed by: Barry Sonnenfeld
Music by: Danny Elfman
Written by: Ed Solomon based upon the Comic by Lowell Cunningham
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 17, 2008







"Jay & Kay look great in Blu"



Film Synopsis:


Men in Black follows the exploits of agents Kay (Jones) and Jay (Smith), members of a top-secret organization established to monitor alien activity on Earth. The two MiB find themselves in the middleof the deadly plot by an intergalactic terrorist (Vincent D'Onofrio) who has arrived on Earth to assassinate two ambassadors from opposing galaxies. K and J face a simple imperative: track down the interloper or the Earth will be destroyed.



My Take:

Men in Black is a favorite of mine. For me it is one of those that I like to re-visit from time to time. I have looked forward to its release in high definition and am pleased that the day has come. Clever writing, creative visual design/special effects and the great casting all combine to make this film work. Vincent D’Onofrio is priceless as the easily irritated and vicious invading bug. I find Linda Fiorentino to be very attractive (even more so in high definition!) and enjoyed her role in MiB. Smith and Jones play perfectly off of one another. I think that Will Smith has strong on screen appeal. He has some truly wonderful moments in this film. “In New York is just be raining black people,” “you need to ease up out my face before something bad happens to you”. Tommy Lee Jones is an actor that excels at playing a crusty, trustworthy, and extremely believable character. I can’t think of a film of his where I didn’t appreciate his performance. His straight forward and deliberate “just the facts” old school style worked perfectly in tandem with Will Smith’s wise cracking and street smart approach. I won’t go into a long dissection of the story because at this point I think that most who are reading this have seen it. I would like to offer up a few of my favorite moments from MIB:



  • Beatrice and Edgar/Bug “sugar”

  • Jay explaining why he shot the little girl in the simulator

  • Jay and Kay interviewing Beatrice

  • Jay and Kay’s exchange regarding Dr. Weaver and her being “flashy thingied”

  • Jay and Dr. Weaver exchange as Edgar/Bug hides under the gurney

  • Edgar/Bug car jacking the cabbie and taking the time to throw out the beaded seat cushion and air freshner

  • Kay and Frank the Pug (of course)

  • Jay and the Bug “I’m sorry was that your Auntie? (crunch)”


These are just to name a few. I think that Men in Black is a wonderfully entertaining film that has earned its place among fans as a classic.





Parental Guide:

The rating is for language and Sci-Fi violence. There is nothing in this film that is visually graphic in nature.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 88



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699



Video: 92


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

Men in Black comes to High Definition Blu-ray Disc featuring 1080p AVC encoded video with an average bitrate of 24 mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel audio with an average bitrate of 1.8 mbps.

Being a fan of MiB I had high hopes for this Blu-ray Disc release and I am happy to report that Sony did not disappoint. This is a reference quality video presentation that looks excellent. Detail is abundant from nearly every perspective. Subtle but visible nuance in the texture of skin and clothing worn by the cast was rendered with clear articulation and realism. Long distant and panning shots exhibited similar attributes. An example of this is in chapter 8 there is a wide angle shot as Jay and Kay pull up in front of Beatrice’s farm house. There is a breeze blowing the grass that is growing on the hill behind the house and the surrounding background. The individual blades of grass blowing in the wind near the house can be seen as they move back and forth. As you look upward near the top of the hill where the blades of grass appear smaller I was able to clearly discern them moving in the wind as well. Blacks were noise free with good extension and dynamic range. Detail in dark areas and low light was excellent. This gave these sequences plenty of dimensionality so that objects in backgrounds had visible structure. I thought that colors appeared quite natural without over saturation or posterization. Contrast and Brightness levels achieved a nice balance which preserved detail within white and black elements on screen. Skin tones were a little on the white side. They looked fine on the cast members with lighter complexions but elevated Will Smith’s medium complexion a bit. This didn’t had an adverse effect but I thought I would mention it. I saw only one shot that I thought looked grain heavy. It was just after Kay meets Jay regarding his decision to become a MiB agent. Jay is looking out over the river at the World Trade Center on the other side. The sky in the background looked grainy. Other than that grain was visible here and there but never intrusive.

The audio presentation was on par with the video and was a real treat. I would not describe this as an aggressive sound mix but rather an instinctive one. What I mean is that this mix relies on the dynamics and natural power inherent in the elements contained in the recording rather than enhancing them to make it sound “better”. The result is well balanced surround sound that had superb dynamic response and sound field imaging. Danny Elfman’s score sounded superb in every regard. Dialogue was tonally diverse and well articulated throughout. Bass response was not as deep as I have experienced in my room but it was tight and powerful enough to be felt when appropriate. Check out the crash landing of the spaceship in the finale. Front to rear and rear to front soundstage pans were seamless in most instances so that they matched perfectly with what was occurring onscreen.

I was impressed by the technical aspects of this presentation and commend Sony on a job well done.



Bonus Features:



The special features accompanying MiB on Blu-ray combine some of the features from the DVD release along with some new ones as well as BD-Live content. There are five extended/deleted scenes which don’t offer much value to the film as released. The Metamorphosis documentary is a 23 minute piece which looks at MiB from concept to production. It features discussions on the original comic, storyboards, behind the scenes video, and interviews with the director, and cast. The original 6 minute DVD featurette is included and is more of a quick overview that offers little insightful information. For those who may be interested there are several pieces that look at the technical aspects of MiB. To be honest I found them to be dry and a little boring. I liked the Will Smith music video, Alien subtitle track (you enable it), and the photo galleries.

I played the Trivia game and scored a 52 (got 1 wrong!). The game is actually pretty intuitive and you score not only based upon correct answers but how quickly you respond. There are single player and multi-player options. Multi-player requires connection to the internet and BD-live. I tried yesterday and this morning to connect to BD-live with no luck. The press kit that I received stated that it would be enabled effective one week before the release date. Each time I tried I got a download error so I don’t think that it has been activated yet (sorry). The Ask Frank the Pug feature is also interactive and allows you to ask Frank questions based upon 5 categories. The categories are Health, Money, Career, Romance, and Everything Else. His responses are random and based upon the same premise as the Magic 8 Ball. I didn’t find it to be entertaining. As a whole I found the bonus supplements to be good and I like the idea of being able to access additional features via BD-Live. I am not sure how much use the multi-player game option will get but its nice to know its available.




Blu-ray Disc Live Features:

  • Intergalactic Pursuit: The MIB Multi-player Trivia Game



  • Ask Frank the Pug! Interactive Game

  • Enhanced Telestrator Interactive Commentary with Director Barry Sonnenfeld

  • Alien subtitle track

  • Technical Commentary

  • Extended and alternate scenes

  • Metamorphosis of Men in Black

  • Original Featurette

  • Scene Editing Workshop

  • Visual Effects Scene Deconstructions with Commentary

  • Character Animation Studies

  • Storyboard Comparisons

  • Galleries

  • Music Video featuring Will Smith

  • Original Theatrical and Teaser Trailers
attachment.php?attachmentid=112771&d=1213204909



Final Thoughts:



Men in Black is a film that many have waited patiently for on Blu-ray disc. I am pleased to report that it looks and sounds great in high definition. It features some new bonus supplements that takes advantage of Blu-ray’s BD-Live feature as well porting over some original content from the DVD release. This is a great package that is sure to please fans. It has found a place in my collection and has been added to my list of Recommended Blu-ray Discs.







attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 37 Old 06-11-2008, 10:55 AM
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Thanks, Ralph. I was looking forward to reading what you had to say.

It is pre-ordered and now comes the hard part, patience in getting it. I was informed today it is on backorder from my resource. I got a good price so I will not cancel.
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post #3 of 37 Old 06-11-2008, 02:52 PM
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Nice review, I've been looking forward to this one. Hate the cover art, but I'm sure we'll get some spectacular custom designs.

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post #4 of 37 Old 06-11-2008, 07:29 PM
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Admire your patience Ralph. Can't wait for amazon to ship the Blu. Danny Elfman's score on MIB rocks.

Blu-ray : 340
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post #5 of 37 Old 06-11-2008, 07:36 PM
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Did the extensive CGI work blend well in 1080p resolution? I've noticed on some older movies with CGI that Blu-ray can really make the CGI stand out of place.
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post #6 of 37 Old 06-12-2008, 01:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

Did the extensive CGI work blend well in 1080p resolution? I've noticed on some older movies with CGI that Blu-ray can really make the CGI stand out of place.

Greetings,

No more so than it did on the Superbit DVD.


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post #7 of 37 Old 06-12-2008, 04:56 PM
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I may pick this up and retire my original DTS Collector's Series DVD.

"The powerful will be ripped from their decadent nests. And cast out into the cold world that we know and endure. Courts will be convened. Spoils will be enjoyed!"

 

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post #8 of 37 Old 06-14-2008, 11:13 AM
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Anyone know what we are losing from the Collector's Edition?
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post #9 of 37 Old 06-16-2008, 03:25 PM
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Glad to hear about this being a quality release, and also glad to see you like the movie itself... not that it really matters (I read online reviews for the technical aspects mostly), but it still stinks when an all-time personal favorite movie gets blasted on a review site (like www.highdefdigest.com did with this movie.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsearles View Post

Glad to hear about this being a quality release, and also glad to see you like the movie itself... not that it really matters (I read online reviews for the technical aspects mostly), but it still stinks when an all-time personal favorite movie gets blasted on a review site (like www.highdefdigest.com did with this movie.

I've become more and more disenchanted with Peter's reviews as of late. His review of this movie is so far off the mark, that he now has zero credibility in my eyes and I will no longer visit his website.

The BD is reference quality as far as I'm concerned. I even think Ralph's score is too low. I'd give the PQ at least a 95.
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post #11 of 37 Old 06-16-2008, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by townofturley View Post


The BD is reference quality as far as I'm concerned. I even think Ralph's score is too low. I'd give the PQ at least a 95.

I agree with Ralph's assessment of the BD. It looks very good for an 11 year old movie.

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post #12 of 37 Old 06-20-2008, 06:57 AM
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4.25 would be my PQ score utilizing my Panny BD30 on a Panny plasma display. I'd say 4.0 for AQ. All in all it is a very good BD and ranks right up there with the best "bang for buck"!
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post #13 of 37 Old 06-21-2008, 08:49 AM
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Thanks for the review Ralph. I will be adding MIB to my must have list.

One of the few. DCM Time Window Seven owners.
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post #14 of 37 Old 06-21-2008, 10:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Thanks for the review Ralph. I will be adding MIB to my must have list.

Greetings,

Sounds good Tracy. Enjoy...


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post #15 of 37 Old 06-23-2008, 09:34 AM
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Watched this last night, as noted it's a very good disc. Only downside is it's 1.85:1 AR, would have been much better as a scope film.
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Watched this last night, as noted it's a very good disc. Only downside is it's 1.85:1 AR, would have been much better as a scope film.

Why? I thought it's ratio was perfect for the kind of film that it is.
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Why? I thought it's ratio was perfect for the kind of film that it is.

When you have a CIH setup, you want all movies in scope!
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post #18 of 37 Old 06-26-2008, 10:13 AM
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This is one of the best Blu-ray discs I have viewed to date. It is definitely good demo material. The audio was also excellent. The only downside is the extra load time required by the Java menus; I really think the fancier menus do not justify the longer wait.
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When you have a CIH setup, you want all movies in scope!

I'd rather the ratio of movies be chosen for artistic reasons than the kind of display you have.
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Greetings all,

Today I received my copy of MIB and the case arrived in a sleeve that included $7.50 in e-Movie Cash for the film Hancock.

I wanted to share the information as a way of saying thank you to everyone for all of the very useful information I've discovered at AVS Forum.

If anyone needed another reason to buy the BD here it is.
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post #21 of 37 Old 06-27-2008, 01:43 PM
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Unfortunately, Hancock is getting panned to the Nth degree by critics. I have yet to read a favorable review.

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post #22 of 37 Old 06-27-2008, 02:00 PM
 
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Unfortunately, Hancock is getting panned to the Nth degree by critics. I have yet to read a favorable review.


It looked liked a half baked concept to begin with. I give them credit for trying to be original, but that does not necessarily make it good.
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post #23 of 37 Old 06-27-2008, 02:41 PM
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It sounds like the script was rather weak...the movie clocks in at 1 hour and 20 minutes! Ouch...that's never a good sign for an action movie.

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And now, back to the subject of this thread. Other movies should be discussed in the appropriate thread.

Restraint, people, restraint.
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post #25 of 37 Old 07-07-2008, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

No more so than it did on the Superbit DVD.


Cheers,

Thank You Ralph another hit at our home.

Please, Dumb It Down For Me.
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post #26 of 37 Old 07-07-2008, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank You Ralph another hit at our home.

Greetings,

Glad to hear it...

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post #27 of 37 Old 07-08-2008, 03:30 AM
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Greetings,

Glad to hear it...

Cheers,

Ralph
I did not see it anywhere, Independence Day is one of my long time favorites and up-scaling is great, have you done or do you plan to review it. Right now I can pick one up for 24.95 or even a 3-Disk with I Robot and The Day After and Independence Day for 83.95 or 28.00 a movie. I know your review of Robot was a big thumbs up, I was wondering about other 2.

Please, Dumb It Down For Me.
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post #28 of 37 Old 07-08-2008, 07:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wvasko View Post

Ralph
I did not see it anywhere, Independence Day is one of my long time favorites and up-scaling is great, have you done or do you plan to review it. Right now I can pick one up for 24.95 or even a 3-Disk with I Robot and The Day After and Independence Day for 83.95 or 28.00 a movie. I know your review of Robot was a big thumbs up, I was wondering about other 2.

Greetings,

I reviewed ID4 while I was posting reviews at the HTS. It received a total A/V rating of 83. It is not in the same league as I,Robot. The Day after Tomorrow looks better than ID4 and sounds as good as I,Robot. I would recommend all three especially if you like them. ID4 has never looked better..

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post #29 of 37 Old 07-08-2008, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

I reviewed ID4 while I was posting reviews at the HTS. It received a total A/V rating of 83. It is not in the same league as I,Robot. The Day after Tomorrow looks better than ID4 and sounds as good as I,Robot. I would recommend all three especially if you like them. ID4 has never looked better..

Regards,

Thank you Ralph

Ralph
Absolutely right, I am viewing MIB as writing this and it is fantastic. You may find this hard to believe but I have a Yamaha bar and woofer with optical audio hookup and even the sound is awesome. ID was as you said Ok but not the same as my upscale did a very good job already.

Please, Dumb It Down For Me.
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post #30 of 37 Old 07-23-2008, 05:42 AM
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We watched it last night.

The PQ was "super" excellent. It was amazing, you could easily see all the black detail on that old black Ford, on the dark New York streets. With the player set at 24p, the camera pans and fast action was absolutely butter smooth. When Will was running the streets around all the yellow cabs - "You Were Actually There"

The Sound was great too, particularly when they shot up the first Bug in the openning scene, and the green slim went everywhere.

Films like that really show off the difference of what BluRay is all about. You could actually reach out and peel the Green Slim off the Sheriffs face - lol.
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