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post #1 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 09:03 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=214861&d=1308073362
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

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

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

86






Studio and Year: Universal - 2011
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 106 minutes
Genre: Thriller/Fantasy/Romance

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: VC-1
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French DTS 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Anthony Mackie, John Slattery, Michael Kelly, Terence Stamp
Written & Directed by: George Nolfi based on the short story “The Adjustment Team” by Philip K. Dick
Music by: Thomas Newman
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 21, 2011







"Fight for your fate"



Film Synopsis:

On the brink of winning a U.S. Senate seat, charismatic politician David Norris (Matt Damon) meets Elise Sellas (Emily Blunt), a woman unlike any he’s ever known. As he realizes he’s falling madly in love with the beautiful, contemporary ballet dancer, strangers conspire to keep the two apart. David learns he is up against the men of the Adjustment Bureau, who will do everything in their considerable power to prevent the pair from spending the rest of their lives together. In the face of overwhelming odds, he must decide whether to accept his predetermined path and let her go…or defy Fate and risk everything to be with the woman he loves.



My Take:

Do we control our destiny, or do unseen forces manipulate us? This is an interesting question (if you believe in that sort of thing) and the foundation upon which The Adjustment Bureau relies to drive its multi-genre plot. The synopsis above provides enough to wet the appetite without giving away too much so I will forego any further description. This isn’t a whodunit filled with plot twists but I purposely went in with only the limited viewpoint seen in the trailer which I believe made for a more enjoyable experience. Loosely based on the short story “The Adjustment Team” by Philip K. Dick the premise is conceptually interesting, from a coffee table discussion type perspective. Thematically speaking it teeters on the theological but doesn’t overtly go there. Reading between the lines isn’t difficult but its implementation is integrated without expository overtones. More importantly what I enjoyed most about the film is its elements of romance, fantasy driven science fiction, and interpretive depiction of freedom of choice. I tend to be a bit of a romantic and the idea of intertwining a sci-fi thriller with a love story sucked me right in.

Emily Blunt is a personal favorite and she and Matt Damon shared excellent chemistry in furtherance of these well drawn characters. Anthony Mackie, John Slattery and Terence Stamp are equally engaging as the fedora wearing mystery men of The Adjustment Bureau. The love against all odds aspect waters down the proceedings a bit but the film’s focus doesn’t suffer greatly as a result. Some may find the ending to be a little too warm and fuzzy but I didn’t mind it at all. Shot on location in New York City the film’s backdrop serves an integral character in the story which in my opinion adds to its appeal. The Adjustment Bureau isn’t a perfect film but it’s a gratifying one that I look forward to seeing again.



Parental Guide:

The rating is for brief strong language, some sexuality and a violent image.






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: 86



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692



Video: 86


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


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

The Adjustment Bureau comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios HE featuring 1080p VC-1 encoded video that has an average bitrate of 24 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate 3.5 Mbps.

In looking at this video presentation as a whole I found it to be good but not among the top tier new release titles I have seen on Blu-ray. This isn’t a very bright film even during scenes shot in the daylight. Blacks are dynamic and deep but slightly crushed. Shadow detail isn’t definitive however depth of field during low level segments is appreciable. Color balance is good as both primary and secondary are cleanly rendered with a pleasing level of saturation and depth. Skin tones have warm, delineated highlights and lifelike variety. Resolution and clarity is estimable although definition can be a bit inconsistent which results in some shots appearing comparatively less dimensional. This appears innate and affects both wide and mid level photography. Luckily it isn’t prevalent as more often than not images appear well resolved with discernible definition and fair rendering of fine detail. I didn’t see any overt signs video or compression related artifacts.

The lossless DTS-HD Master Audio presentation sounds great. This sci-fi thriller doesn’t call for an aggressive surround mix but it should be capable of delivering the goods when necessary, and it does. The audio has an open perspective with appreciable dimension, good channel separation and crisp, descriptive dialogue that is always intelligible. The surround mix offers good front to rear balance, open atmospherics and tightly correlated panning sequences that create a fairly enveloping sound field. The result is a stable listening environment where the blend of music, sound effects, and subtle nuance contained in the soundtrack is aurally equitable. Dynamics range is quite good which helps empower active moments while lending solidity and palpable presence to low frequencies.



Bonus Features:


  • Feature commentary with writer/director George Nolfi

  • (HD) 6 deleted scenes

  • (HD) The labyrinth of doors: Interactive map of New York – Select a door and be taken to that area of NY City via a Google Maps powered viewpoint. Relative to each there are options for viewing behind the scenes content or clips from the film.

  • (HD) Leaping through New York – 7 minute production featurette

  • (HD) Destined to be – 5 minute featurette

  • (HD) Becoming Elise – 7 minute featurette

  • My scenes bookmark feature

  • D-Box Motion Code enabled

  • pocket BLU app

  • BD-Live

  • Digital Copy




Final Thoughts:

Loosely based on Philip K. Dick’s short story “ The Adjustment Team” The Adjustment Bureau is an entertaining romantic sci-fi thriller that features a decent story that is supported by a solid cast headed by co-stars Matt Damon and Emily Blunt. It comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring excellent high definition audio/video quality and above average supplemental extras that provide a brief behind the scenes look at the production. I wouldn’t say this qualifies as a blind buy but it’s well worth a rental on movie night.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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Reference Review System:


JVC DLA-RS50 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
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post #2 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 09:11 AM
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Thought this was a great all around movie. The ro-sci definitely delivered (at least to me) and wasn't a disappointment. Felt almost kind of like the new version of the movie Jumper.

Like what Ralph said great cast of characters. Definitely a collect for me.

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post #3 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 10:08 AM
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Ooh can't wait to see this one, as I love these type of formula that for me worked so well like in Gatica. Ro-Sci big sucker right here

Thanks for the review Ralph.

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post #4 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 10:16 AM
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Date.. release purchase for me... I was kinda on the fence on this but King P pushed me over yet again .

Thanks King P !!
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post #5 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 10:20 AM
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I will have to give credit to whomever created the trailer. I saw this in the theater and was expecting a totally different movie. I may have to watch it again and give it a fair shake. I didn't care for the underlying message it sent though.
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post #6 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 11:10 AM
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I don't remember this looking particularly good in theaters (on a visual level), so I don't think I'm going to blame Universal much for this one.

I saw it in theaters, and it was decent for a once-over. Not sure that I'll get it, even though June 21st is my birthday.
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post #7 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 12:31 PM
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I saw this movie recently on a United airlines flight and the audio and video were lousy. I'll have to rent the movie when it is available on Netflix and then decide if it is worth buying.

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post #8 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 01:00 PM
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Glad to see this review--thanks Ralph. This is a movie I really want to see but I think I will rent it first before I decide if I want to add it to my library.

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post #9 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 01:43 PM
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I really enjoyed the acting in this movie, but I was bothered by the lack of character building and plot holes. I had many unanswered questions when the credits began rolling. It's a fun movie overall, but it just doesn't live up to many of the other sci-fi films in its class.

I would suggest giving it a rent first to see if it's worth buying.
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post #10 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal68 View Post

I saw this movie recently on a United airlines flight and the audio and video were lousy. I'll have to rent the movie when it is available on Netflix and then decide if it is worth buying.

Are you serious....??? UMMM airlines are not into hometheater,unless they have B&W speakers and a big SVS Sub planted under each seat... I can't believe you said this.
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post #11 of 42 Old 06-16-2011, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EAGLEFAN67 View Post

Are you serious....??? UMMM airlines are not into hometheater,unless they have B&W speakers and a big SVS Sub planted under each seat... I can't believe you said this.


Some people aye Hey could be some rock star, or some online lucrative network CEO with their private jumbo air line




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post #12 of 42 Old 06-17-2011, 10:31 AM
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Thanks for the review, Ralph. This sounds interesting and I do like Matt Damon.
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post #13 of 42 Old 06-18-2011, 08:39 PM
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Thanks for the review, Ralph. This sounds interesting and I do like Matt Damon.

Same! Should be receiving my copy this week.

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post #14 of 42 Old 06-21-2011, 07:03 PM
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I agree entirely with Ralph's take on The Adjustment Bureau. It is a hugely entertaining film that just works. Some critics disliked the ending, finding that it was a cop out. I couldn't disagree more. I thought the ending worked as just about everything else did in the movie. Like Ralph, I thought both the audio and video were quite good but certainly not demonstration quality.

Matt Damon and Emily Blunt were wonderful together. The chemistry between the two was a wonder and was highlighted by their scintillating dialog. I give very high marks to The Adjustment Bureau's director screenwriter, George Nolfi, for his wonderful screenplay.

The Adjustment Bureau came as a pleasant surprise. The reviews I read had convinced me that the ending really was a cop out but I found it to be hugely satisfying. 9 Stars out of 10, at least. Highly recommended!
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post #15 of 42 Old 06-21-2011, 07:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwsat View Post

I agree entirely with Ralph's take on The Adjustment Bureau. It is a hugely entertaining film that just works. Some critics disliked the ending, finding that it was a cop out. I couldn't disagree more. I thought the ending worked as just about everything else did in the movie. Like Ralph, I thought both the audio and video were quite good but certainly not demonstration quality.

Matt Damon and Emily Blunt were wonderful together. The chemistry between the two was a wonder and was highlighted by their scintillating dialog. I give very high marks to The Adjustment Bureau's director screenwriter, George Nolfi, for his wonderful screenplay.

The Adjustment Bureau came as a pleasant surprise. The reviews I read had convinced me that the ending really was a cop out but I found it to be hugely satisfying. 9 Stars out of 10, at least. Highly recommended!

Reading that review makes me look forward to watching my copy this week. Thanks gwsat.

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post #16 of 42 Old 06-21-2011, 08:20 PM
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Reading that review makes me look forward to watching my copy this week. Thanks gwsat.

After I posted earlier I went back and watched The Adjustment Bureau again, this time with George Nolfi's commentary, which was both interesting and informative. There can be no definitive answer to whether our lives are governed by our own will or are predestined, but the look at the issue provided by the film was intriguing as well as entertaining.
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post #17 of 42 Old 06-21-2011, 10:22 PM
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I have a video question that pertains to the film. In some of the dark scenes I noticed the blacks sort of "flicker" from a true black to a slightly brighter, grayish black and back again. It happened very rapidly and didn't seem to have any consistencies (other than when I would rewind it, it would happen in the same places) about it. Is it just my set or settings on my tv? Is there a term for this? Hope someone knows what I'm talkin about, it's pretty distracting. Feedback would be greatly appreciated. I have noticed it on other movies as well but I noticed it more in the black bars on top and bottom. This film was full screen but still noticed it. Thanks.
Oh, I did enjoy the movie quite a bit!
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post #18 of 42 Old 06-22-2011, 12:28 AM
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I have to say that this is one of my favorite releases of the year so far. I have to put it in my top 5. It may be just me, but I really got caught up in the story of this movie. Adjustment Bureau really grabbed my attention. It was sort of slow in some parts, but I was so caught up in the story. I have to give this a 4.5/5. I understand that I may be the only person to give the film this high of a score.
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1. Idiotic release of the year
2. Crushed blacks and overly dark.

No offense, Ralph... but we agree far more than not. I agree with the technical aspects but the "love must conquer all theme' was trite and just painful to watch in this Matrix-esque rip-off. I just felt 'stupidder' after watching it.

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post #20 of 42 Old 06-22-2011, 08:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Matt View Post

I have to say that this is one of my favorite releases of the year so far. I have to put it in my top 5. It may be just me, but I really got caught up in the story of this movie. Adjustment Bureau really grabbed my attention. It was sort of slow in some parts, but I was so caught up in the story. I have to give this a 4.5/5. I understand that I may be the only person to give the film this high of a score.

Good to hear DJ Matt lots of positive reviews surrounds this movie can't wait to watch tomorrow night.

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post #21 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 12:38 AM
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2. Crushed blacks and overly dark.

I didn't notice too many crushed blacks. Could have just been my display though which does a good job at displaying darker scenes.
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post #22 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 02:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

1. Idiotic release of the year
2. Crushed blacks and overly dark.

No offense, Ralph... but we agree far more than not. I agree with the technical aspects but the "love must conquer all theme' was trite and just painful to watch in this Matrix-esque rip-off. I just felt 'stupidder' after watching it.

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No offense taken Jeff.


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post #23 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by DJ Matt View Post

I didn't notice too many crushed blacks. Could have just been my display though which does a good job at displaying darker scenes.

So does mine. But Ralph noted the crushed blacks as well. Crush blacks are unusual these days so I was surprised to see them. They seemed most noticeable in the first 1/2 hour of the film. So bad I wondered if my settings were messed up.

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post #24 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

1. Idiotic release of the year
2. Crushed blacks and overly dark.

No offense, Ralph... but we agree far more than not. I agree with the technical aspects but the "love must conquer all theme' was trite and just painful to watch in this Matrix-esque rip-off. I just felt 'stupidder' after watching it.

I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the story. I loved it but maybe that just proves I'm a romantic doofus. More seriously, Emily Blunt is my favorite young actress and I thought she shined in The Adjustment Bureau. I thought Matt Damon was excellent, too. I particularly enjoyed Blunt and Damon's charming and funny dialog in the scenes they had together. The scene on the bus was a great example.

I didn't notice any crushed blacks but agree the overall picture could have stood some brightening and fell short of what we have come to expect from modern Hollywood action extravaganzas.
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post #25 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwsat View Post

I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the story. I loved it but maybe that just proves I'm a romantic doofus. More seriously, Emily Blunt is my favorite young actress and I thought she shined in The Adjustment Bureau. I thought Matt Damon was excellent, too. I particularly enjoyed Blunt and Damon's charming and funny dialog in the scenes they had together. The scene on the bus was a great example.

I didn't notice any crushed blacks but agree the overall picture could have stood some brightening and fell short of what we have come to expect from modern Hollywood action extravaganzas.

Like many here, I gave an ISF calibrated display (SIM2 Lumis/HOST, 14' wide 1.3 gain perf). As Ralph noted, there were some crushed blacks throughout. The dark cast of this film bothered me. Not sure if it looked like this in the theater (or if this film even made a theatrical release). The picture overall was dim with muted colors. The soundtrack was competent but nothing special. Most romantic, date movie flicks like this (@ 1.85/1.78) are generally brighter but this PQ is an after thought.

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post #26 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

Like many here, I gave an ISF calibrated display (SIM2 Lumis/HOST, 14' wide 1.3 gain perf). As Ralph noted, there were some crushed blacks throughout. The dark cast of this film bothered me. Not sure if it looked like this in the theater (or if this film even made a theatrical release). The picture overall was dim with muted colors. The soundtrack was competent but nothing special. Most romantic, date movie flicks like this (@ 1.85/1.78) are generally brighter but this PQ is an after thought.

Although I don't have an HD projector I do have a 60 inch Pioneer Kuro plasma, which does an outstanding job of accurately rendering colors. Also, my customary viewing position is only about six feet from the display. Still, the crushed blacks in The Adjustment Bureau could have been so subtle, I didn't notice them. Or maybe I noticed them subliminally, which was why I was underwhelmed by the film's PQ. In any event, we agree that its video wasn't great.

The Adjustment Bureau did have a theatrical release. I guess that was inevitable given that its stars are two of the hottest names in Hollywood these days. It made money but wasn't a blockbuster.
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post #27 of 42 Old 06-23-2011, 09:40 PM
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I hope I don't take the discussion too far off base, but wanted to comment further on the crushed blacks. I will have to re-watch sometime and see where this happens if it is indeed in the first half of the film. The picture definitely is dim and muted, but this is the directors intent I'm sure. There were times where I thought to myself that the picture was indeed dim, but I was never overly distracted by it, however, I thought it fit the mood of the film fairly well in many instances. Reading other expert reviews over picture quality they too address the crushed blacks. For me, I would say it was slight and not a greater concern or observation as most viewers it seems.
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post #28 of 42 Old 06-24-2011, 03:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Matt View Post

I hope I don't take the discussion too far off base, but wanted to comment further on the crushed blacks. I will have to re-watch sometime and see where this happens if it is indeed in the first half of the film. The picture definitely is dim and muted, but this is the directors intent I'm sure. There were times where I thought to myself that the picture was indeed dim, but I was never overly distracted by it, however, I thought it fit the mood of the film fairly well in many instances. Reading other expert reviews over picture quality they too address the crushed blacks. For me, I would say it was slight and not a greater concern or observation as most viewers it seems.

Greetings,

Thanks for your additional thoughts Jeff, gwsat and Matt.

In evaluating the video quality I have to report the presence of less definitive black level reproduction. I am in agreement that this isn't cause for concern or overtly distracting.


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post #29 of 42 Old 06-24-2011, 10:32 AM
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I checked my black levels just to be sure it was the source and not my projection system (Digital Video Essentials). All was good. Crushed for sure.

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post #30 of 42 Old 06-24-2011, 10:56 AM
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Thanks Ralph for the review I enjoyed this film alot.

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