Men in Black & Men in Black II (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-26-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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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 )


Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 1997/2002
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 98/88 minutes
Genre: Sci-Fi/Comedy

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

Audio Format(s): (MiB) English/French/Portuguese Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Spanish & Thai Dolby Digital 5.1, (MiB II) English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, French, Spanish, Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: (MiB) English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese(Traditional & Simplified), Korean, Thai, Arabic, Bahasa, Dutch (MiB II) English SDH, English, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Starring: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Rip Torn, Vincent D'Onofrio, Linda Fiorentino, Lara Flynn Boyle, Johnny Knoxville, Rosario Dawson, Tony Shaloub
Directed by: Barry Sonnenfeld
Music by: Danny Elfman
Written by: (MiB) Ed Solomon, (MiB II) Robert Gordon & Barry Fanaro based upon the Comic by Lowell Cunningham
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: May 1, 2012

"J and K look great in Blu"

Film Synopsis:

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

Men in Black II: Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith are back in black as the scum-fighting super-agents Kay and Jay - regulators of all things alien on planet earth. Their latest mission: to save the world from a total intergalactic disaster! When a renegade Kylothian monster disguised as a lingerie model threatens the survival of the human race, the boys of the MIB get the call to step up and get busy. With their headquarters under siege and time running out, Agents Kay and Jay enlist the help of Frank the Pug anda posse of hard-living worms to help them kick some seriously sexy alien butt!

My Take:


I reviewed Men in Black when it was originally released on Blu-ray back in 2008. I have included comments from that review here along with my thoughts on Men in Black II.

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

  • Beatrice and Edgar/Bug sugar

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

  • Jay and Kay interviewing Beatrice

  • Jay and Kay's exchange regarding Dr. Weaver and her being flashy thingied

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

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

  • Kay and Frank the Pug (of course)

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

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

Men in Black: Film Rating: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

Men in Black II unfortunately eschews much of the witty dialogue and wonderfully infused banter of its predecessor in favor of overused slapstick, an unaffecting villain and repetitive action. The result is a middling sequel that fails to capture the freshness and charm of the original. Having said that I would like to point out that Men in Black II isn't all bad especially if you enjoy its thematic appeal and core cast. I have owned it on Blu-ray (Superbit) since its release but will admit that it hasn't seen the light of day in quite some time. I didn't mind this revisit and found that watching MiB II on Blu-ray gave it a nice shot in the arm.

Men in Black II:Film Rating: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373692

Parental Guide:

The rating is for language and Sci-Fi violence. There is nothing in this film that is graphic in nature and the language is soft at best.

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: 90

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

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

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

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

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

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=109947&d=1210373699

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

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

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

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

Men in Black II comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video with an average bitrate of 23 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 2.4 Mbps.

In comparing these high definition renderings I found that predominantly speaking they offered similar sound and image quality. It should be noted that this re-release of Men in Black is identical to the 2008 Blu-ray release. My comments with respect to the audio/video will pertain to both. Being a fan and having owned both films on Superbit DVD I had high hopes for their high definition presentations on Blu-ray Disc and am happy to report that the results met my expectations. Detail is abundant as the video retains a revealing level of clarity and definition. Subtle but visible nuance in the texture of skin and clothing worn by the cast is rendered with distinction. Long distant and panning shots exhibit similar attributes. Blacks are noise free with good extension and dynamic range. Detail in dark areas and low light is excellent. This provides appreciable dimension so that objects in backgrounds has visible structure and depth. Colors appear quite natural with a pleasing level of saturation. Contrast and Brightness levels achieved a nice balance which preserves detail within white and black elements on screen. Skin tones are a little on the pallid side but complexions retained enough variety and texture to remain lifelike in depiction. Grain is present in even layers that impart a filmic texture without

The lossless Dolby True HD and DTS-HD MA soundtracks have excellent dynamic range, detail rich clarity and makes ample use of the entire surround platform to drive the film's elements. Danny Elfman's music score, coupled along with well integrated discrete and ambient sound effects, plays an intricate role in these active surround mixes. The detection of subtle background sounds, off camera cues and spatial dimension within the room's acoustic environment is noteworthy. The low frequency effects channel is busy as the subwoofer works in tandem with the rest of the system to convey the palpably rich bass and dynamic impact associated with the action based sequences. Dialogue is firmly planted in the center channel and clearly renders voices and effects with appropriate distinction and balance within the front soundstage. I enjoyed each of these audio/video presentations both of which offer a definitive improvement over their standard definition counterparts.

Bonus Features:

  • Men in Black:

  • Intergalactic Pursuit: The MIB Multi-player Trivia Game

  • Ask Frank the Pug! Interactive Game

  • Enhanced Telestrator Interactive Commentary with Director Barry Sonnenfeld

  • Alien subtitle track

  • Technical Commentary

  • Extended and alternate scenes

  • Metamorphosis of Men in Black

  • Original Featurette

  • Scene Editing Workshop

  • Visual Effects Scene Deconstructions with Commentary

  • Character Animation Studies

  • Storyboard Comparisons

  • Galleries

  • Music Video featuring Will Smith

  • Original Theatrical and Teaser Trailers

  • Ultraviolet Digital Copy

  • Sneek Peek and Movie Ticket offer for Men in Black 3

Men in Black II:

  • Audio commentary with director Barry Sonnefeld

  • Alternate ending - 2 minutes

  • Blooper reel - 5 minutes

  • Behind the scenes featurettes (5 segments)

  1. MiB II: ADR - 9 minutes
  2. Design in motion: The look of MiB II - 10 minutes
  3. Rick Baker: Alien maker - 10 minutes
  4. Squish, splat, splash: The stellar sounds of MiB II - 8 minutes
  5. Cosmic symphonies: Elfman in space - 12 minutes

  • Creature featurettes (8 segments)

  1. Frank the pug
  2. Scrad/Charlie
  3. the Worms
  4. Serleena
  5. Alien Esoterica
  6. Jeebs
  7. Jarra
  8. Jeff the worm

  • Barry Sonnefeld's intergalactic guide to comedy

  • Animatic sequence - Serleena

  • 5 Multi-angle scene deconstructions

  • Black suits comin' (Nod ya head) Music video by Will Smith - 4 minutes

  • Game demo of the new Men in Black video game

  • Ultraviolet Digital Copy

  • Sneek Peek and Movie Ticket offer for Men in Black 3

Final Thoughts:

Men in Black is a thoroughly entertaining fan favorite that successfully combines sci-fi, action and comedy. Its success resulted in a sequel, Men in Black II, which has its moments but fails to replicate the charm and allure of its predecessor. In preparation for this spring's release of Men in Black 3 Sony is re-releasing MiB and releasing MiB II for the first time on Blu-ray Disc. Each offers top notch high definition audio/video quality along with substantial supplemental offerings that take an entertaining look behind the curtain. If you already own the original Men in Black Blu-ray release the only thing that separates that from this re-release is the inclusion of an Ultraviolet Digital Copy. If you're a fan of Men in Black II this Blu-ray release makes for a worthwhile upgrade over any previous version on home video and includes a demo for the upcoming Activision release of the Men in Black video game. Mediocre film or not Men in Black II on Blu-ray has found a place in my video collection.


Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

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post #2 of 7 Old 04-26-2012, 08:35 AM
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As great as this sounds i think i'll wait for the triology to come out since i'm in no hurry.
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-26-2012, 02:23 PM
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I'll give it a rental shot first.

Thanks Ralph, I value your opinion

Nice Stuff!
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-26-2012, 03:31 PM
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Thanks for the review, my order is in. Frank the pug made this movie for me. And Lara Flynn Boyle walking around for most of the film in her Victoria's Secret outfit was fun too.

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post #5 of 7 Old 04-26-2012, 11:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post

Thanks for the review, my order is in. Frank the pug made this movie for me. And Lara Flynn Boyle walking around for most of the film in her Victoria's Secret outfit was fun too.

And Frank is included in MIB 3!
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-28-2012, 07:20 AM
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I have not seen this movie yet. Is the FX pretty good compare to today's standard?
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-10-2012, 04:59 AM
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I picked up the second one will give it a go tonight. Don't mind it too much.


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