Meatballs (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 3 Old 06-07-2012, 01:03 PM - 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=109940&d=1210373637

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

Studio and Year: Lionsgate - 1979
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 91 minutes
Genre: Comedy

Disc Format: BD-25
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio
Subtitles: English SDH, English, Spanish
Starring: Bill Murray, Matt Craven, Harvey Atkin, Kate Lynch, Russ Banham, Chris Makepeace, Kristine DeBell
Directed by: Ivan Reitman
Music by: Elmer Bernstein
Written by: Len Blum, Dan Goldberg, Harold Ramis, Janis Allen
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 12, 2012

"Are you ready for the summer?"

Film Synopsis: Tripper (Murray) is about to have a summer he will never forget. As head counselor at Camp North Star, an off-the-wall summer getaway, Tripper guides his loveable campers and spirited staff members on a quest for fun in the sun. But when the season begins with a runaway camper, an accidental blackout and Tripper's amorous attack on a female counselor, everyone knows that the tales by the fireside will only get more outrageous as the summer goes on.

My Take: I love Meatballs. It isn’t great cinema but it is light, fun and for me harkens back to my early teen years when I used to love watching it run over and over on cable TV. Meatballs marked Bill Murray’s film debut and teamed him with director Ivan Reitman who knew exactly how much rope to give him. The film has that late 70’s early 80’s comedic flair coupled along with the type of teenage “inappropriateness” that then seemed edgy but by today’s standards barely qualifies as a light touch. I watched it with wife and kids, who are 18 and 20. I was surprised at how much the kids enjoyed it. I mean they weren’t rolling on the floor laughing but they enjoyed the right moments and got a kick out of Murray’s boyish charm, interplay among the characters and the film’s light thematic tone. I guess that says a little something about the sort of timeless appeal of Meatballs. I had a great time with it and am glad that is has found its way to Blu-ray.

Parental Guide:

The rating is thematic material, and brief language.

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: 70

  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373647

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373647

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373647

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

Video: 78

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

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

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

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

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

Meatballs comes to Blu-ray Disc from Lionsgate featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 27 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 2.1 Mbps.

This is a solid looking high def presentation that doesn’t quite compare to the best catalog releases I have seen from Sony on Blu-ray but for a 25 year old film it looks very good indeed. It boasts clean, well depicted colors that offer a good mix of secondary hues that mate well with the source material. The tonal variety and depth of the colors in the period clothing and exterior sequences shot in the wooded areas and around the lake is discerning. Resolution is definable with varying degrees of fine rendering that appear scene dependent. Sharpness wavers, which results in some scenes offering lucid clarity while others are noticeably lacking well defined edges and finely rendered detail. Long range camera pans are a bit of a mixed bag but overall I found them to have fair dimensional perspective. White levels are stable which gives a fair amount of pop to colors and bright exterior sequences. Blacks are just average but appear punchy enough during scenes contain mixed light/dark elements. Grain is present with moderate texture and uneven rendering that that occasionally results in heavier emphasis.

The lossless stereo track clearly renders dialogue, music and atmospherics via a front loaded presentation. There is no low frequency detail mixed to the subwoofer but there really is no call for it. The dated elements in the recording never sounded thin or dynamically starved and sounded just fine.

Bonus Features:

  • Audio commentary with director Ivan Reitman and writer/producer Daniel Goldberg

Final Thoughts:

Meatballs probably doesn’t fall into the category of a classic comedy but depending on who you ask it holds a special place of prominence among its fans. I haven’t seen it in years but for me it hasn’t lost its luster and is still among my favorite Bill Murray films. It makes its high definition debut on Blu-ray Disc from Lionsgate featuring complimentary high definition video and crystal clear lossless sound. I am pleased that Meatballs has found its way onto Blu-ray and into my video library. If you’re a fan this is worth picking up.


Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

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post #2 of 3 Old 06-07-2012, 06:48 PM
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post #3 of 3 Old 06-10-2012, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Lee Weber View Post

"Rudy the Rabbit."
I love Meatballs! smile.gif
Thanks Ralph.

totally agree!
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