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post #1 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

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

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

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )
89





Studio and Year: Lionsgate - 2011
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 95 minutes
Genre: Horror

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio
Subtitles: English SDH, English, Spanish
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Kristen Connolly, Anna Hutchison, Fran Krantz, Jesse Williams, Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford
Directed by: Drew Goddard
Music by: David Julyan
Written by: Joss Whedon & Drew Goddard
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date:







"You think you know the story…"


Film Synopsis:

A rambunctious group of five college friends steal away for a weekend of debauchery in an isolated country cabin, only to be attacked by horrific supernatural creatures in a night of endless terror and bloodshed. Sound familiar? Just wait. As the teens begin to exhibit standard horror movie behavior, a group of technicians in a control room are scrutinizing, and sometimes even controlling, every move the terrified kids make. With their efforts continually thwarted by the all-powerful eye in the sky, do they have any chance of escape?


My Take:

The Cabin In The Woods begins as a conventional teen/scream horror movie then transforms into a genre-bending experience that cleverly mixes frights with pop-culture wit as the terrorized teens are revealed to be watched by a group of technicians that follow their every move and are controlling the disturbing events from behind the scenes. Seeing that Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard co-wrote the script I figured this film would break from genre convention but I wasn’t sure what the outcome would be.

The introduction is about what you would expect as we see a group of teens heading for a weekend in a secluded cabin owned by one of their relatives. Things progress quickly after the group discovers a variety of odd and distinctly different items in the basement. When they read from an old diary that belonged to a young girl that once lived in the cabin events escalate to creepy and murderously bloody proportions. Watching their every move are what appear to be two “handlers” whose job it is to get them to the cabin and to get them to interact with the items/relics in the basement. The “handlers” work at a fully staffed facility and it is clear that what they are doing isn’t designed for entertainment (although it is evident they enjoy their jobs). The question is what are they doing…and why?

Not quite what I was expecting The cabin in the woods turned out to be more and ultimately lots of fun. Conceptually clever the script is a multi-genre blend built upon horror elements that draws from many of its clichés and turns them inside out. I found it to be witty, creepy, and over the top as its reanimated context serves as a titillating homage that should strike a chord with horror fans. There is plenty of gore and a great cache of nightmarish creatures that compliment the narrative’s conventional and unconventional aspects. It’s clear early on that the watchers have lured the kids to the cabin but its how they do their jobs, and to what end that proves so entertaining. In most teen scream flicks the characters are pretty unsympathetic in that you can’t help but feel that they ignored all the signs of trouble and aimlessly wandered into their situation. Here they are clearly victims of a ruse and are just trying to get the hell out of Dodge. On the flip side are seemingly ordinary people working a nine to five (so to speak) that are about as different a job as you can get.

I found the characters on both sides to be appropriately drawn within the thematic spirit of the film. The action is fun, the levity is timely and the frights are engaging while keeping the camp factor to a minimum. The cabin in the woods isn’t hair raising or cinematically stirring but it is exactly what it is intended to be, a great way to spend an hour and a half when you’re in the mood for something a little different.


Parental Guide:

The rating is for strong bloody horror violence and gore, language, drug use and some sexuality/nudity.



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.**


Audio: 92

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


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

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

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

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

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



Video: 86

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


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

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

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


The cabin in the woods comes to Blu-ray Disc from Lionsgate featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 29 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 5 Mbps.

This isn’t a particularly bright film but based on the subject matter it manages to strike a usable balance between the use of dark and light elements. Filtering is used to render its varying visual aesthetics as dictated by the filmmakers. Certain scenes are bathed in monochromatic sepia or blue while others appear to use natural lighting and deeper color emphasis. This seems to mate well thematically and I found the visual contrast interesting. In most regards both light and dark sequences have above average depth with appreciable shadow delineation. White levels are tamped down and blacks are gradational but slightly elevated. Dynamic range is only mildly affected as brighter elements tend to have punchy highlights with visible detail. Resolution occasionally fluctuates but in most instances detail is clearly resolvable with discerning visual perspective that results in pleasing, multi-dimensional high definition video quality.

A movie like this lives or dies (no pun intended) by its soundtrack and this DTS-HD 7.1 channel is lots of fun. This is a captivating surround sound mix that features an immersive array of well placed sound effects that pray upon your aural senses. Near field sounds are accurately placed within the sound field which gives them multi-dimensional perspective that places you right in the middle of the action. The entire room is illuminated with an array of sounds that are both directional and ambient in nature. I appreciated the attention to detail that went into creating the surround mix as it effectively replicates the environments, off camera cues and onscreen pans featured in the film. Bass is rich, authoritative, and room energizing as it accentuates the audio’s dynamic range with palpable impact. Dialogue intelligibility is never a problem even during the film’s active moments. This is a great surround sound experience that certainly made this film more enjoyable.


Bonus Features:

  • It’s not what you think: The cabin in the woods Bonusview Mode – Interactive PiP feature where cast/crew interject their thoughts/experiences making the film.

  • Audio commentary with writer/director Drew Goddard & writer/producer Joss Whedon

  • (HD) We are not who we are: The making of The cabin in the woods – 28 minute featurette

  • (HD) The secret secret stash:
    1. Marty’s stash – 8 minutes
    2. My name is Joss and I’ll be your guide – 5 minutes
  • (HD) An army of nightmares: makeup & animatronic effects – 12 minute featurette

  • (HD) Primal terror: Visual effects – 12 minute featurette

  • (HD) Wonder-Con Q&A – 27 minutes

  • (HD) Theatrical trailer

  • Digital Copy

  • Ultraviolet Digital Copy




Final Thoughts:

The Cabin In The Woods begins as a conventional teen/scream horror movie then transforms into a genre-bending experience that cleverly mixes frights with pop-culture. I found it to be witty, entertainingly creepy, and over the top as its reanimated context serves as a titillating homage that should strike a chord with horror fans. It makes its way to Blu-ray from Lionsgate featuring solid high definition video, involving 7.1 channel lossless sound quality and a gratifying assortment of bonus supplements. I had a ball with this one and highly recommend it for genre fans that might appreciate something a little different.





attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






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post #2 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 11:15 AM
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Thanks for the review Ralph. This sounds like fun!

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post #3 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 12:01 PM
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I can't believe this movie tanked at the box office. It's an absolute gem. I can only guess it was the early Summer release date instead of an October release.

Cabin in the Woods takes the deepest rutted genre tropes and -- just when you're settled into a ride on the same ol' same ol' -- it whips you off the beaten path and onto Space Mountain.

After you see this movie (AFTER) do a google image search on "Cabin in the Woods Whiteboard." It's hysterical how you can pretty much fit every horror movie ever made into one of the categories on the whiteboard. It also helps you map out all of the direct and veiled movie allusions that just flew by you at 90 miles an hour.

(My favorite: "Kevin")

Just keep talkin'. I'll let you know when you're right.
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post #4 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 01:20 PM
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Thanks for the review Ralph, i've been curious to see this one for a while now. Would you suggest a buy or a rent?

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post #5 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 01:24 PM
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I have wanted to see this one ever since it hit the theaters. A blind buy based on many, many firendes opinions...and of course, yours, Ralph!
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post #6 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daman S View Post

Thanks for the review Ralph, i've been curious to see this one for a while now. Would you suggest a buy or a rent?

I'm the guy who never buys movies because I rarely watch a movie more than once.

When I finished my dedicated home theater there were two movies I wanted to buy: Scott Pilgrim Vs the World and Cabin in the Woods.

Reason(s): Both are delightful movies that few people saw in the theater. Ergo, when you want to show off the theater and watch a flick with company, there's a low liklihood that your company has seen either of those movies and a high liklihood that your guests will enjoy the show.

(I know, you were asking Ralph. My $0.02)

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post #7 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 02:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daman S View Post

Thanks for the review Ralph, i've been curious to see this one for a while now. Would you suggest a buy or a rent?

Greetings,

Daman, that may depend on your taste and affinity for films like this. If based upon what you've read this is up your alley then it's easily worth a buy. smile.gif


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post #8 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 02:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cshawnmcdonald View Post

(I know, you were asking Ralph. My $0.02)

Greetings,

The more input the better I'm sure... wink.gif


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post #9 of 61 Old 09-11-2012, 11:57 PM
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It's obvious they were not taking this serious but it just goes a tad too far, past campy, for me (especially at about 3/4 of the way in and right to the end).

I enjoy a good solid horror flick but the intentional cheese here just comes across as silly without ever actually being scary.

I get that is kind of the point here but it just left me bored and wondering why I watched it (even though I checked my brain at the door).

Just my opinion, wink.gif
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post #10 of 61 Old 09-12-2012, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cshawnmcdonald View Post

I'm the guy who never buys movies because I rarely watch a movie more than once.
When I finished my dedicated home theater there were two movies I wanted to buy: Scott Pilgrim Vs the World and Cabin in the Woods.
Reason(s): Both are delightful movies that few people saw in the theater. Ergo, when you want to show off the theater and watch a flick with company, there's a low liklihood that your company has seen either of those movies and a high liklihood that your guests will enjoy the show.
(I know, you were asking Ralph. My $0.02)
Thanks a lot Shawn, appreciate that! I will probably buy it then if I can get a decent price on it smile.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,
Daman, that may depend on your taste and affinity for films like this. If based upon what you've read this is up your alley then it's easily worth a buy. smile.gif
Regards,
Thanks Ralph, I do love horror movies when done right and this one seems to have an extra twist to it(plus I've liked whatever Joss Whedon has done till date). Buy it is smile.gif

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post #11 of 61 Old 09-12-2012, 08:55 AM
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Looks like fun, thanks Ralph--have this one on Amazon Pre-order.

Bob

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post #12 of 61 Old 09-12-2012, 09:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaGamePimp View Post

It's obvious they were not taking this serious but it just goes a tad too far, past campy, for me (especially at about 3/4 of the way in and right to the end).
I enjoy a good solid horror flick but the intentional cheese here just comes across as silly without ever actually being scary.
I get that is kind of the point here but it just left me bored and wondering why I watched it (even though I checked my brain at the door).
Just my opinion, wink.gif
Jason

Greetings,

Jason, thanks for posting your thoughts. I can see where this film could leave that impression. I guess it just depends on ones perspective..wink.gif


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post #13 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 09:57 AM
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We don't always agree, but you were spot on with this one, Ralph ..

Loved it .. and some impressive LFE to boot ..

The scenes from the "storage area" and subsequent bloodbath were particularly well done ..

I don't buy many BD's anymore, but dropped this one into the Amazon cart ..

If I had a beef, it would be the really dark scenes shut my iris down to the point of almost no detail .. oh well ..

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post #14 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 12:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

We don't always agree, but you were spot on with this one, Ralph ..
Loved it .. and some impressive LFE to boot ..
The scenes from the "storage area" and subsequent bloodbath were particularly well done ..
I don't buy many BD's anymore, but dropped this one into the Amazon cart ..
If I had a beef, it would be the really dark scenes shut my iris down to the point of almost no detail .. oh well ..

Greetings,

Glad to hear you enjoyed this one mgkdragn.. wink.gif

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post #15 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 07:53 PM
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Kind of surprised that no one else has mentioned this or maybe no one else noticed but I just watched my copy of this with great expectations, rented it from NF just like I do with all movies I watch, and the damn thing is in DD 5.1!?!! Where's the DTS-HD 7.1?!?!

They pulled a Hunger Games on us!!! Seriously what the hell gives this? This is an outrage and deplorable and the fact of the matter is, whomever is responsible for this out and out ripping people off!

I rent Blu Rays yes for the outstanding PQ they offer, but ALSO for the HD sound as well!!! Providing only half of what I pay for is ripping me off!

I had hoped and thought what happened with Hunger Games was just a fluke, but here it is a mere 2 weeks or so after having suffered that Hunger Games debacle, and they're pulling it again with this movie now!

This is seriously inexcusable. Not sure what to do about this or what can be done if anything?

Am I the only one here who cares about this sort of thing?

How come no one else seems the slightest bit upset about this?

I actually rented the Hunger Games from NF, BB and also RB just to try and get a version that had a damn HD soundtrack on it and none of em did! And to make matters worse, the movie sucked!

BTW sorry for the rant, but this is just ridiculous. I just got ripped off again. Is this how things are going to be from here on out? frown.gif

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post #16 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 08:01 PM
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WOW...... Just for the hell of it I went to NF just to read up on The Cabin In The Woods, and it says it right there on the main page for the movie... "Language and sound
English: Dolby Digital 5.1"

I guess it's at least nice of em to display that little bit of info for us all. But we're all being ripped off. NF has done alot of stupid things as we all know the last year or so. The whole pay plan stunt and that whole, having 2 sites, 1 for streaming, the other for renting DVD's and now this. This has got to stop because there's just no way I'm gonna spend 20 bucks just to watch a movie with HD sound. And if I did do that well then there's not much point really in having an account with NF, at least not for the 5 out at a time movies account that I have. Might as well drop that down to 2 out at a time, since I'm gonna be having to start buying my movies from here on out.

Better yet, since I can't get my blu ray's from NF with HD sound on em, I can get the same thing just streamed via amazon or from my cable provider. More or less the same PQ and the same AQ as what NF gives you. This is seriously just about the most ludicrous thing ever.

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post #17 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 08:07 PM
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Looks like a good one, Ralph, so my copy is on the way!

Thanks for the review! cool.gif

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post #18 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 08:17 PM
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I hate to bring this up, but I just checked my que at NF, I added Snow White and the Huntsman to my que based off of Ralph's excellent review, and decided that even though it sounds like the movie itself might not be all that great, at least it appears to have EXCELLENT PQ AND AQ according to Ralph. But I just looked it up on NF, and it appears as though it will not have the expected DTS-HD 7.1 soundtrack! It says the same thing as The Cabin in the Woods... "Language and sound
English: Dolby Digital 5.1"

Sooooo.... all the big budget movies that you would want to watch the most on a nice HT system, appear to only be coming out with a flat and dead sounding non HD soundtrack. Thankfully The Avengers will be in DTS-HD 7.1. Unless they change that here soon.

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post #19 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 08:20 PM
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Not sure what to do here. I've been a loyal NF subscriber for going the last 10 years or so. But if this is the new norm, than there's no way I'm gonna settle for non HD soundtracks with my blu rays from them. I just can't imagine cancelling my NF subscription. Or the hassle I'm going to have to go through just to be able to watch new blu rays with HD soundtracks on em. Sorry about the topic derail but I'm unable to start a new thread on this. I think people need to know about this is all.

I mean what am I going to have to do. Anytime I add a movie to me que, I'm going to have to check to see if the blu ray has an HD soundtrack. And then if it doesn't, do what? Buy the damn thing and then watch it and then once I'm done, sell it on ebay??? mad.gif

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post #20 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 08:48 PM
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After doing some googling on this, it appears as though Lionsgate is the mastermind behind all this. Some sort of silly way to get you to try and buy their movies as opposed to renting them. Hopefully more studios will not follow suit.

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post #21 of 61 Old 09-19-2012, 10:02 PM
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Just rented the Blu-ray from Redbox. Was not happy about the 5.1 DD and no special features. This will no doubt be the norm soon enough. The movie was a blast and I will be buying it. Still, I'm already into it for $1.60! Lol!
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post #22 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 06:12 AM
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The outrage over DD vs DTS-HD is really the fault of the studio .. NF / RB has nothing to do with it .. the lack of growth in the BD market is causing studios to look at every option to try and beef up sales .. be glad the films are available on BD as a cheap rental ..

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post #23 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yadfgp View Post

I hate to bring this up, but I just checked my que at NF, I added Snow White and the Huntsman to my que based off of Ralph's excellent review, and decided that even though it sounds like the movie itself might not be all that great, at least it appears to have EXCELLENT PQ AND AQ according to Ralph. But I just looked it up on NF, and it appears as though it will not have the expected DTS-HD 7.1 soundtrack! It says the same thing as The Cabin in the Woods... "Language and sound
English: Dolby Digital 5.1"
Sooooo.... all the big budget movies that you would want to watch the most on a nice HT system, appear to only be coming out with a flat and dead sounding non HD soundtrack. Thankfully The Avengers will be in DTS-HD 7.1. Unless they change that here soon.

And sorry to be the turd in the punchbowl here, but I'd be willing to bet a months worth of paychecks that no on here could reliably discern the 5.1 dolby digital from the 5.1 lossless track, level-matched. A 7.1 to 5.1 though would be a different story...for the few titles around in 7.1 anyway (yes, they are very few and far between vs 5.1 titles). That sucks.

That's not to say I agree with them omitting it, but per usual, perception dictates reality and if the studios think it will push more people towards purchase, they'll do it.

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post #24 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by mastermaybe View Post

Sorry to be the turd in the punchbowl here, but I'd be willing to bet a months worth of paychecks that no on here could discern the dolby digital from the lossless track, level-matched.
That's not to say I agree with them omitting it, but per usual, perception dictates reality and if the studios think it will push more people towards purchase, they'll do it.
James

That is a good point and I agree .. however, many on other threads dealing with the same issue will argue it out forever .. that's why I did not mention it in my post .. wink.gif

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post #25 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 12:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mastermaybe View Post

And sorry to be the turd in the punchbowl here, but I'd be willing to bet a months worth of paychecks that no on here could reliably discern the 5.1 dolby digital from the 5.1 lossless track, level-matched. A 7.1 to 5.1 though would be a different story...for the few titles around in 7.1 anyway (yes, they are very few and far between vs 5.1 titles). That sucks.
That's not to say I agree with them omitting it, but per usual, perception dictates reality and if the studios think it will push more people towards purchase, they'll do it.
James

So you can sympathize with my frustration and aggravation. As being 1 who has enjoyed having a 7.1 setup for the last 10 years or so it does suck when a studio decides to omit the 7.1 soundtrack. As far as that whole other subject you mention I've derailed this thread enough as is. As Willie had said let's not totally take this thread into a whole different thread and totally derail it James.

I highly doubt that lion gates decision in this matter will boost sales...! LOL frown.gif

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post #26 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 01:57 PM
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Dude. Dude. DUDE!

*fingersnap*

Over here, brother. That's right. Over here. Look at me. Good. Now we're just going to press the Mute button on your remote and skip to the scene in the movie where Anna Hutchinson does the tramp dance.

Okay, now we're looking, now we're loooooooking... and she's kissing the woooooolf... and she's daaaaaancing...


There. See? All better.

Five point one? Seven point one? No, no, no. Not nearly as important as 36Cx2-shirt.

Just keep talkin'. I'll let you know when you're right.
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post #27 of 61 Old 09-20-2012, 05:17 PM
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lol....good point
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post #28 of 61 Old 09-21-2012, 12:55 PM
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I was going to pass but after that review I'm definitely checking it out. Thank you Ralph.
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post #29 of 61 Old 09-21-2012, 01:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I was going to pass but after that review I'm definitely checking it out. Thank you Ralph.

Greetings,

You're very welcome.. smile.gif


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post #30 of 61 Old 09-21-2012, 07:40 PM
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Totally over the top but once a while I love farce like this one - a twist with the traditional formulaic horror flix.

The scene with the "dumb" blonde and the wolf head was priceless. It's definitely not scary. Hemsworth did a decent job here.

Worth a rental.
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