A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas 3D (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 02-01-2012, 11:56 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=235471&d=1327700032
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109942&d=1210373647

Audio/3D Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

90






Studio and Year: Warner - 2011
MPAA Rating: R/Unrated
Feature running time: 90/96 minutes
Genre: Comedy

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC/MVC
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, English/French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: John Cho, Kal Penn, Neil Patrick Harris, Tom Lennon, Danny Trejo, Patton Oswalt, Elias Koteas
Directed by: Todd Strauss-Schulson
Music by: William Ross
Written by: Jon Hurwitz & Hayden Schlossberg
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: February 7, 2012







"Christmas comes prematurely"



Film Synopsis:

Following years of growing apart, Harold Lee (Cho) and Kumar Patel (Penn) have replaced each other with new friends and are preparing for their respective Yuletide celebrations. But when a mysterious package mistakenly arrive at Kumar's door on Christmas Eve, his attempts to redirect it to Harold's house ends with the high grade contents - and Harold's father-in-law's prize Christmas tree - going up in smoke. With his in-laws out of the house for the day, Harold decides to cover his tracks, rather than come clean. Reluctantly embarking on another ill-advised journey with Kumar, through New York City, their search for the perfect replacement tree takes them through party heaven - and almost blows Christmas Eve sky high



My Take:

To this day I have not seen the original Harold and Kumar film. I did review Guantanamo Bay and found it only mildly amusing. I guess I just don't get the appeal of Harold and Kumar because I had the same lukewarm reaction to A very Harold and Kumar Christmas. Yes, there are certainly times where I found myself snickering at the over the top absurdity however after a while the rehashed comedy and overused politically incorrect references become tiresome. I will admit that as far as stoner/buddy flicks go there is something that makes Harold and Kumar stand out. The holiday theme interwoven with the illicitness of it all worked in a hit and miss sort of way and the Rank and Bass claymation sequence was priceless. In the end the moments that Harold and Kumar fans will find sidesplitting were predominantly wasted on me. I suspect that if you enjoyed the previous Harold and Kumar films this one has plenty of the same and will appeal to you. This Extra Dope Edition contains both the theatrical version and an extended cut which adds six minutes to the original's runtime. This 2 disc 3D set contains the 3D Blu-ray film on disc 1 while the 2D Blu-ray (both cuts)/DVD are contained on disc 2 which is a flipper disc.




Parental Guide:

The films contains strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, pervasive language, drug use and some violence.





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: 84



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

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

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

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

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


3D Presentation: 96


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


  • Depth (Onscreen): attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Dimension (Beyond the screen): attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Realism: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

A very Harold and Kumar Christmas comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Home Video featuring 1080p MVC encoded video and DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.7 Mbps.

This film was natively shot in 3D and the results are impressive. Detail is well preserved as the image retains its high level of clarity as objects within the frame are delineated and sharp. Depth is excellent as evidenced by the notable separation of objects or people layered in the foreground/background which serves to visually draw you in by creating a more discerning sense of virtual space occupied by things of various sizes and shapes. There are a plethora of sequences that provide a gimmicky and fun reach out and touch sense of dimension. A very Harold and Kumar Christmas makes definitive use of the 3D platform and emphasizes effects that are designed to elicit audience reaction via objects coming out of the screen etc. It made the experience of the film a bit more fun. Contrast is slightly boosted and colors are deeply saturated but not unnatural. The blend creates the visually dynamic effect the filmmakers were obviously striving for. Blacks are stable and rich and depth/dimension in darker sequences is quite good. I didn't notice any overtly distracting signs of ghosting/crosstalk. This is among the more entertaining 3D presentations I have seen and is tailor made for fans of the format.

*It should noted that the extended version of the film is 2D ONLY.

The lossless audio presentation is quite good and renders the film's source elements with excellent clarity and punchy dynamics. The surrounds are active at times and are used to good effect for panning sound effects and reproducing music related ambience. The mix isn't very aggressive but does create an enjoyable surround sound experience that perfectly matched the tone of the film. Dialogue and front channel audio is delivered with discernible tonal variation and crystal clear sonics.

*It should be noted that the extended version of the film offers only a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 448 kbps audio track.



2D Video Quality:



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=109946&d=1210373699

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

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

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

A very Harold and Kumar Christmas comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Home Video featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 22 Mbps.

The video presentation featured punchy, vibrant and over saturated colors that were on the warm side and visually pleasing. Grain was present in fine layers that didn't negatively affect fidelity. Visible detail was abundant which made it easy to notice subtle texture and definition in surfaces, clothing and physical features. Depending on the camera's perspective sometimes the image softened some but I suspect that this was related to the photography rather than the encoding. Blacks and contrast were respectable so that both dark and bright scenes had good dynamic range and depth. Flesh tones were naturally rendered so that the various complexions and skin types came across without appearing artificial.




Bonus Features:


  • Disc 1:


  • 3D Blu-ray - A very Harold and Kumar Christmas

  • Disc 2 BD50 flipper disc:


  • A very Harold and Kumar Christmas Blu-ray (side A)
  • (HD) Through the haze with Tom Lennon (6 segments totaling 8 minutes

    1. I'm doing a puff piece over here
    2. I hate drugs
    3. F#*@ you Charles Dickens
    4. I just brainstorming here
    5. The marshmallow man
    6. 19th greatest story ever told

  • (HD) Bringing Harold and Kumar claymation to life - 3 minute featurette

  • (HD) Deleted scenes - 3 minutes

  • DVD version of A very Harold and Kumar Christmas (side B)

  • BD-Live
attachment.php?attachmentid=235472&d=1327700032

Final Thoughts:

There is no denying that the Harold and Kumar films have amassed a loyal following and have attained a place of prominence in the stoner/buddy genre. For me the rehashed comedy and overused politically incorrect references become tiresome. I didn't dislike A very Harold and Kumar Christmas. There are moments of clever writing and worthwhile situational laughs however I find its crass, surface level humor to be old hat. Fans are sure to be pleased with its high definition rendering in both 2D and 3D flavors as it looks great and makes for an entertaining viewing experience for those that like lots of screen popping effects. The bonus supplements are nothing to get excited about although the brief segment on the making of the claymation sequence isn't bad. I can't in good conscience recommend A very Harold and Kumar Christmas to laymen however those familiar with its style will appreciate it. The fact that is presents very well is an added bonus especially to those with 3D capable systems.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 17 Old 02-01-2012, 12:35 PM
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Sorry you had to sit through that, I appreciate your dedication.

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post #3 of 17 Old 02-01-2012, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hakstone View Post

Sorry you had to sit through that, I appreciate your dedication.

Different people, different opinions. Day one purchase for me. I loved the other 2 films in the series, and have heard nothing but good things about the use of 3D in this one.

Art
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post #4 of 17 Old 02-01-2012, 04:35 PM
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I didn't know they could make a blu-ray/dvd flipper? Wonder if there will be problems like the dual-discs they used to sell for hi-res audio on one side and standard cd on the other.

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post #5 of 17 Old 02-01-2012, 09:56 PM
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The flick Skyline (Best Buy version) was a flipper ...Blu on one side Dvd on the other...It was on sale so I got it cheap.

I have this reserved..but have been debating to get something else...I haven't seen the others...but heard this was funny. So I have until Sunday to decide.

Great review King P !
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post #6 of 17 Old 02-02-2012, 08:56 AM
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Different strokes for different folks.
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post #7 of 17 Old 02-02-2012, 09:02 AM
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Really wish Netflix had 3d rentals for times just like this! Would love to see the 3d on this one, but these films have no repeat value for me otherwise. I enjoyed the first 2...........once Oh well, I will try and borrow it from someone or look for it in the future when 3d rentals are more readily available.

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post #8 of 17 Old 02-02-2012, 09:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Tomaskovic View Post

I didn't know they could make a blu-ray/dvd flipper? Wonder if there will be problems like the dual-discs they used to sell for hi-res audio on one side and standard cd on the other.

Universal and Summit have used flippers on a fair number of occasions. Disappointed that Warner is jumping in too, just when I thought the others were finally dropping them. Flippers completely miss the point of even including a bonus dvd copy, not to mention unnecessarily cheapening the entire product.


Thanks for the review Ralph. I just cancelled my preorder. I never have really been a fan of H&K; but I usually like anything seasonal, be it at Christmas or Halloween especially.

I didn't mind gambling on the movie, but Warner's gotta show they actually put more thought and care into it than this. Coming from Warner, I pretty much expected the extended cut to be limited to 2D, as it has with their previous titles. But, it's a little surprising they returned to lossy for the extended cut too. I'll wait until whichever version hits the bargain bin first.

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post #9 of 17 Old 02-02-2012, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adpayne View Post

Different people, different opinions. Day one purchase for me. I loved the other 2 films in the series, and have heard nothing but good things about the use of 3D in this one.

Art

+1

Saw this at the movies and loved every minute of it. I own the other Blu-rays in this series and I can't wait for this one to come out.
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post #10 of 17 Old 02-02-2012, 06:56 PM
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Freaking loved this movie!!!!

MY NAME IS SUE!!! HOW DO YOU DO!!!

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post #11 of 17 Old 02-03-2012, 05:53 AM
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Ralph, if you ever have a couple of hours to kill, the first movie is, by far, the best. NPH is so funny in it. It's worth a shot, especially if you have sat through the other 2.
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post #12 of 17 Old 02-03-2012, 12:36 PM
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Cant believe anyone is still watching in DVD, hence the flipper? Even VHS too?

It not that expensive for a blu ray player or ven a flat screen TV.
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post #13 of 17 Old 02-03-2012, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore View Post

Universal and Summit have used flippers on a fair number of occasions. Disappointed that Warner is jumping in too, just when I thought the others were finally dropping them. Flippers completely miss the point of even including a bonus dvd copy, not to mention unnecessarily cheapening the entire product.


Thanks for the review Ralph. I just cancelled my preorder. I never have really been a fan of H&K; but I usually like anything seasonal, be it at Christmas or Halloween especially.

I didn't mind gambling on the movie, but Warner's gotta show they actually put more thought and care into it than this. Coming from Warner, I pretty much expected the extended cut to be limited to 2D, as it has with their previous titles. But, it's a little surprising they returned to lossy for the extended cut too. I'll wait until whichever version hits the bargain bin first.

Greetings,

Great to see you posting Chad. Reminds of the good ole days..

Regards,

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post #14 of 17 Old 02-10-2012, 08:53 PM
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I'll just get the straight version when it goes on sale in a few months for $5 at the local Best Buy....

Strong or weak in the end we are all dead
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-13-2012, 03:14 AM
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While the taste in humor is definitely up to individual preference, the 3d version of this movie exhibits the greatest number of pop-out effects of any 3d movie I've seen or owned thus far.


Max
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post #16 of 17 Old 02-26-2012, 01:22 AM
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Put it in for BB 3D Movie Pass. Probably will get it in 3-9 months wait.

Thanks for the review. Won't waste money buying it.
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post #17 of 17 Old 04-01-2012, 08:41 AM
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Loved the original, satisfied with II, and again won over by this installment.

The writers and actors have established a great mix between the absurd and outlandish, while being able to maintain the likability of the main characters.

I did think that Tom Lennon was miscast in his role. He can be a very funny guy, but was only given dumb stuff to do.
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