The Nightmare Before Christmas (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 12:20 PM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=116028&d=1216991189
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

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

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

91






Studio and Year: Disney - 1993
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 76 Minutes
Genre: Family - Animated

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.66:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD, English/French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Danny Elfman, Chris Sarandon, Katherine O'Hara, William Hickey, Glenn Shadix, Paul Reubens
Directed by:Henry Selick
Music by: Danny Elfman
Written by: Tim Burton
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: August 26, 2008







"Hautingly imaginative and fun



Film Synopsis:

Now digitally restored and remastered with state-of-the-art technology, The Nightmare Before Christmas: Collector s Edition is deeper, darker and more brilliant than ever as Tim Burton originally envisioned. Can Christmas be saved? Bored with the same old scare-and-scream routine, Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, longs to spread the joy of Christmas. But his merry mission puts Santa in jeopardy and creates a nightmare for good little boys and girls everywhere!





My Take:

I had never seen this film prior to receiving it for review. When it came out my daughter was a baby and my son wasn't born yet. It seemed like a kids movie and I really had no interest/reason in seeing it at the time. It is told using stop motion animation that took three years and required 100 artists to complete. It really looks quite good. If you have ever seen how stop motion animation is done you can appreciate the amount of work that goes into it. It spins a rather bizarre yet interesting tale about Halloween and Christmas that could only have come from the imagination of Tim Burton. I found its musical aspects entertaining and thought that the story was conceptually original. I was surprised to see that Danny Elfman voiced Jack Skellington during the singing segments of his dialogue. Elfman is so talented and I love his music. While I found the film entertaining I am not so sure what younger viewers might feel about it. There are some elements and characters that could be disturbing to them. Especially when holidays like Halloween and Christmas are the subject. I think that kids that are a little older won't have any trouble seeing the worth in these characters and the satire in the story.





Parental Guide:

The rating is for some scary images. There is nothing contained here that would be unsuitable for most viewers age 6 or 7 and above.




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: 92



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

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

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



Video: 90


(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=109948&d=1210373699

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

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

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

The nightmare before Christmas comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 29 mbps and lossless 7.1 channel Dolby TrueHD audio that has an average bitrate of 4.9 mbps.

From a technical perspective this is a solid audio/video presentation. The video offers a relatively high bitrate encoding that boasts deep, dynamic and noise free blacks that provide a surreal dimension to the world of Halloween Town. The oranges, reds, yellow and blues looked amazing against the deep black backgrounds. Images had plenty of pop thanks to excellent contrast and well saturated colors. The sequences in Christmas town were awash with vivid colors that leapt off of the screen. The various gray and sepia tones used in Halloween Town were wonderfully divergent with good visible gradations. Detail was rendered with aplomb as images were crisp, sharp and three dimensionally accentuated. Resolution was good enough that I was able to clearly make out small particles of dirt on the mirror as Jack tries on his Santa (or Sandy Claws) suit in chapter 11. Grain was present and appeared to be well preserved. I saw no signs of excessive artificial sharpening or extraneous video noise.

The 7.1 channel Dolby TrueDH audio was in a word, awesome. Clearly the star of the show is Danny Elfman's stunning music score. Lossless audio's higher resolution brought out the superbly crafted and sometimes delicate nature of the soundtrack. Subtle nuance in both the sound effects and music was readily apparent. Excellent dynamic range and crystal clarity enabled the texture of the instrumentation to shine through. This is an aggressive surround mix that never lets up. Sounds and instruments are carefully placed within the sound field at just the right audible level so that they arrive at the listening position with accurate timing and precision based upon the onscreen cues. As a result panning effects felt well integrated with a seamless quality that made them more realistic. There was an incredibly enriching and solid feel to the bass that is hard to describe. This was not the deepest bass that I have experienced but it had a palpable presence that felt powerful, jarring and potently room filling when engaged. The voices of the characters were reproduced with good tonal delineation and crystal clarity even during busy sequences. This was truly one of the most enjoyable audio demonstrations I have had in my theater room.



Bonus Features:



There is a plethora of bonus content that delves deep into the world of Tim Burton as well as The nightmare before Christmas. These are on the Collector's Edition SD DVD release as well. Only two are offered in high definition which is a bummer. Disney has included a Digital Copy bonus Disc which allows an SD version of the film to be downloaded to a portable playback device from a PC or MAC. Enjoy !




  • Blu-ray Disc Exclusive: A special Blu-ray Disc introduction by Tim Burton

  • (HD) Jack's Haunted Mansion Halloween Tour - offered in 5.1 Dolby Digital surround

  • (HD) Tim Burtons original The Nightmare before Christmas poem narrated by Christopher Lee

  • All new audio commentary featuring Tim Burton, Danny Elfman, & Director Henry Selick

  • Frankenweenie: 1984 short film with new introduction by Tim Burton

  • Vincent: Tim Burton short film

  • Deleted storyboards and animated sequences

  • The making of The nightmare before Christmas: original featurette

  • The world of The nightmare before Christmas: Hallow Town, Christmas Town, The real world

  • Original Theatrical and Teaser trailers and posters

  • SD Digital Copy Bonus Disc

  • D-Box Motion Code enabled




Final Thoughts:



Fans of this film have to be elated that it has finally come to high definition Blu-ray Disc. Disney has gone the extra mile to digitally restore and re-master this cult classic. The results are magnificent and are truly in keeping with the forward thinking that is associated with today's high resolution audio/video. I can't say that this is a film for everyone but I recommend that you give it a spin and decide for yourself. I can guarantee that you wont be disappointed with the incredible audio experience that accompanies it.







attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 12:39 PM
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Hey ralph, do you know if this looks more or less 3D than "Corpse Bride"? Just out of curiosity.

A reference audio score? Awesome, if one movie deserves that treatment it's this one. Nice to see that Disney wasn't blowing smoke with all of those 7.1 Channels of sound commercials. It's kind of weird that they used TrueHD for this one and put MA on Hannah(and Caspian when that comes out, according to the press release). As long as it sounds great I really don't care what it is.

Definitely picking this one up on Tues.

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post #3 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 01:10 PM
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Thanks for the review Ralph! I can't wait til Tuesday.
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post #4 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 01:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Greetings

Quote:
Hey ralph, do you know if this looks more or less 3D than "Corpse Bride"? Just out of curiosity.

sr, I couldn't say as I have never seen Corpse Bride.


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post #5 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 02:36 PM
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Great review Ralph.

This is the first 7.1 True-HD disc if I am not mistaken?

It's not my favourite movie in the world but should be worth a rental based on the quality of the presentation.

Cheers
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post #6 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 03:38 PM
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Excellent.

I was looking for a good movie to show off to my family, who've got teenagers who're fans of the movie. I believe this will be the perfect example of why Blu-ray is so different. Thank you for the excellent review, Ralph! Now if only they'd do Beauty and the Beast......
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post #7 of 34 Old 08-23-2008, 07:54 PM
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Man I can't wait for this Tuesday. This is one of my all time faves. Thanks for the review.
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post #8 of 34 Old 08-24-2008, 09:50 AM
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Great review as always Ralph, I've seen this various times in the theater at home on VHS, and later on sd-dvd....Maybe because I have kids this movies been so prevalent in my life..lol the funniest thing is I must have several copies of this in my collection, specially because my live in GF is the biggest Tim Burton fan with action figures of this film!!!
I guess I must like this movies allot, I've pre-ordered it as well....Can't wait to see it in HD..

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post #9 of 34 Old 08-24-2008, 12:13 PM
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Thanks for the review - it's what brought me to this forum. My family can't wait for the Blu-ray release and my boys absolutely love this movie.

As a side note: Seeing this movie in the theater was the "first date" for my wife and I.
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post #10 of 34 Old 08-24-2008, 12:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ykiki View Post

Thanks for the review - it's what brought me to this forum. My family can't wait for the Blu-ray release and my boys absolutely love this movie.

As a side note: Seeing this movie in the theater was the "first date" for my wife and I.

Greetings,

ykiki, thanks for sharing and welcome to AVS..


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post #11 of 34 Old 08-25-2008, 08:21 AM
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I would love to hear a comparison between Nightmare and Corpse Bride as well!

Ralph, do you think you could watch Corpse Bride and let us ALL know? Corpse Bride is always a top tier BD and I think you would enjoy it thoroughly! Thanks!!! I'm sure I'll pick this one up as well...but I know you would enjoy Corpse Bride if you haven't seen it.

1080P at last!!!
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post #12 of 34 Old 08-25-2008, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tg5spd View Post

I would love to hear a comparison between Nightmare and Corpse Bride as well!

Ralph, do you think you could watch Corpse Bride and let us ALL know? Corpse Bride is always a top tier BD and I think you would enjoy it thoroughly! Thanks!!! I'm sure I'll pick this one up as well...but I know you would enjoy Corpse Bride if you haven't seen it.

Greetings,

Right now I am pretty busy with reviewing incoming Blu-ray discs but when I get the chance I would be happy to check it out.


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post #13 of 34 Old 08-25-2008, 09:14 AM
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Corpse bride was the first stop motion film that was shot entirely using a digital camera (Canon EOS-1D Mark II), so transfer is all digital making it look great. I saw the Nightmare before xmas trailer and even though it looked nice, you can tell its film.
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post #14 of 34 Old 08-25-2008, 02:10 PM
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Nice Review Ralph! Tomorrow I will be getting this one from amazon, now I can't wait to see it..
By the way thanks for your advice on the separates... I just bought a Rotel 1075 and pair it with the Denon 3808.... The dynamics are very impressive...Depth and soundstage were also improved considerably...

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post #15 of 34 Old 08-25-2008, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzalc3 View Post

Nice Review Ralph! Tomorrow I will be getting this one from amazon, now I can't wait to see it..
By the way thanks for your advice on the separates... I just bought a Rotel 1075 and pair it with the Denon 3808.... The dynamics are very impressive...Depth and soundstage were also improved considerably...

Greetings,

Glad to help Chris. Congratulations...!


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post #16 of 34 Old 08-26-2008, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowrage View Post

Hey ralph, do you know if this looks more or less 3D than "Corpse Bride"? Just out of curiosity.

A reference audio score? Awesome, if one movie deserves that treatment it's this one. Nice to see that Disney wasn't blowing smoke with all of those 7.1 Channels of sound commercials. It's kind of weird that they used TrueHD for this one and put MA on Hannah(and Caspian when that comes out, according to the press release). As long as it sounds great I really don't care what it is.

Definitely picking this one up on Tues.

I don't want to say it's more or less, but it does look very 3D. I had the opportunity to see this when it was re-released this past Halloween in 3-D in the theaters, but this is easily as enjoyable. No glasses required.

Ralph was spot on, right from the opening song sequence this audio mix put a smile on my face.

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post #17 of 34 Old 08-26-2008, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goatse View Post

Corpse bride was the first stop motion film that was shot entirely using a digital camera (Canon EOS-1D Mark II), so transfer is all digital making it look great. I saw the Nightmare before xmas trailer and even though it looked nice, you can tell its film.

Canon Camera with Nikon Glass.
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post #18 of 34 Old 08-27-2008, 10:29 AM
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Greeting Ralph,

Thank you for another great review!

I have kindly replied on the software thread about the presence of portuguese subs. Could you please check if the dub is included as well.

I'd appreciate it very much .
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post #19 of 34 Old 08-27-2008, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tg5spd View Post

I would love to hear a comparison between Nightmare and Corpse Bride as well!

Ralph, do you think you could watch Corpse Bride and let us ALL know? Corpse Bride is always a top tier BD and I think you would enjoy it thoroughly! Thanks!!! I'm sure I'll pick this one up as well...but I know you would enjoy Corpse Bride if you haven't seen it.

Watched TNBC last night and WOW! I was blown away...it is my new demo disc hands down.
I prefer this over Corpse Bride on content and artistic vision as well as how it looks, amazing!!! A MUST buy if there ever was one. Audio was incredible as well, especially compared to dvd. WOW, again.

1080P at last!!!
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post #20 of 34 Old 08-27-2008, 11:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBC View Post

Greeting Ralph,

Thank you for another great review!

I have kindly replied on the software thread about the presence of portuguese subs. Could you please check if the dub is included as well.

I'd appreciate it very much .

Greetings,

I don't believe so Alex but I will double check.

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post #21 of 34 Old 08-28-2008, 10:34 AM
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Thanks Ralph, I'll be waiting for your reply.
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post #22 of 34 Old 09-01-2008, 07:05 PM
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What a 7.1 mix... Agree the low, low end was tepid at best... but overall fantastic audio.

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post #23 of 34 Old 09-02-2008, 02:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBC View Post

Greeting Ralph,

Thank you for another great review!

I have kindly replied on the software thread about the presence of portuguese subs. Could you please check if the dub is included as well.

I'd appreciate it very much .


Greetings,

Alex, sooo sorry I didn't get back to you on this ! In case you have not gotten the answer by now there is a Portuguese 2.0 Dolby Digital track included.

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post #24 of 34 Old 09-02-2008, 06:55 AM
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Thanks Ralph, much appreciated
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post #25 of 34 Old 09-03-2008, 06:21 AM
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I'm definitely going to have to get this one. I have the SD-DVD and my daughter (5 now) has almost worn it out. She has been a fan of the movie since she was 3, believe it or not. She saw it on the shelf one day and insisted on watching it. My wife and I were at first hesitant in letting her, but I decided that I would watch it with her and at any point she seemed the least bit scared, I'd turn it off. Well, long story short...she now goes around the house singing "This is Halloween" as well as several other songs.

Oh, and Havok...I took her to see the 3D presentation in STL this past fall as well. What a great conversiion! She absolutely LOVED it (as well as did I) and I was able to snag 6 pair of the glasses after the feature. I was really hoping that the Blu-Ray would have the 3D presentation on it, but alas we'll probably have to wait for another release.

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post #26 of 34 Old 09-11-2008, 06:41 AM
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I just ordered a PS3 from Sony and this is my first BD purchase! I can't wait to see it after all the positive views. Also this is one of my favorite films. Now if Sony would hurry up and restock the PS3's!!!

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post #27 of 34 Old 09-11-2008, 10:00 AM
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Watched it this past weekend with my 10-year-old daughter, largely because of this review. Thank You, Mr. Potts!

It looked fantastic! Lots of little details in the sets and miniatures that I don't recall seeing before, although that's probably a mix of BluRay goodness and faulty memory. Great AQ and PQ, and lots of bonus goodies.
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post #28 of 34 Old 09-21-2008, 09:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by havok2022 View Post

I don't want to say it's more or less, but it does look very 3D. I had the opportunity to see this when it was re-released this past Halloween in 3-D in the theaters, but this is easily as enjoyable. No glasses required.

Ralph was spot on, right from the opening song sequence this audio mix put a smile on my face.

Since they are releasing the Polar Express and the Journey to the Center of the Earth, both in 3D, i wonder if they will release this one in 3D as well!!!

I will definitelly going to get this one before halloween! I still have this one in tape (lol), watched it many times, and simply couldn't give it up when i gave away the rest of my tape collection!!
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post #29 of 34 Old 09-23-2008, 10:17 AM
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Corpse Bride does have that almost 3d effect and clarity that I thought I would see with the br of Nightmare....

maybe the cameras and film stock were better in making corpse?

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post #30 of 34 Old 09-23-2008, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goatse View Post

Corpse bride was the first stop motion film that was shot entirely using a digital camera (Canon EOS-1D Mark II), so transfer is all digital making it look great. I saw the Nightmare before xmas trailer and even though it looked nice, you can tell its film.

This would be the reason why Corpse Bride looks better than Nightmare.

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