The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox - 2009
MPAA Rating: NR
Feature running time: 54 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.33:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Cantonese, Mandarin, Danish, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian
Starring: Seth MacFarlane, Seth Green, Mila Kunis, Alex Borstein, Mike Henry, Patrick Warburton,
Directed by: Dominic Polcina
Written by: Kirker Butler
Region Code: A
Blu-ray Disc release Date: December 22, 2009
"Never before seen"
The story of The Empire Strikes Back is retold. Darth Vader (Stewie) is hunting the rebel Luke Skywalker (Chris) and his troops relentlessly across the galaxy. On the ice planet Hoth, Luke has a vision of his late mentor Obi-Wan Kenobi (Herbert), telling him to go to the Dagobah system to learn the ways of the Force under Jedi Master Yoda (Carl). Meanwhile Princess Leia (Lois) finds herself taking a shine to the scruffy pilot Han Solo (Peter) and, against all odds, the two soon fall in love. But an encounter with Han's old friend Lando Calrissian (Mort) lands them in the clutches of the Empire. Envisioning this, Luke chooses to forgo his Jedi training to save his friends. It all comes to a head in a climactic confrontation with Darth Vader himself.
Family guy isn't a show for everyone and its humor may even be an acquired taste but once you get it you're in. I am not a faithful watcher of the show but have seen my share of it. The humor can be overtly insensitive, coarse, and lacking in political correctness. Of course these elements and its over the top nature are what make it funny. If that isn't your cup of tea than look elsewhere. Family guy: something, something, something, Dark Side is their second Star Wars parody and specifically pokes fun at The Empire strikes back. It features the Griffin family and their cohorts portraying characters from the film and the results come off in typical Family guy fashion. I enjoyed how closely this script mirrored the original (in theme) but of course the liberties taken occasionally exceeded the limits of appropriateness which elevated it from feeling funny to feeling crude. Regardless it played out well enough and contained lots of references that fans of the original film will get a kick out of. Seth MacFarlane's vocal characterizations amaze me. The fact that he is able to sound so completely different when he is Stewie versus Peter is impressive. The remainder of the cast are perfectly suited to their respective characters which is truly where the show excels. Being familiar with the original Star Wars films isn't a prerequisite in order to enjoy this Family Guy spoof but it would make it a bit more meaningful. Either way fans are guaranteed to get a few laughs out of Something, something, something, Dark Side, I know I did.
This contains graphic language, thematic material and innuendo that would be inappropriate for young viewers. Parents should consider this to be R rated.
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)
- Low frequency extension:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
Family Guy: Something, something, something, Dark Side comes to Blu-ray Disc from Fox featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 28 mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.9 mbps.
Animation can sometimes be difficult to thoroughly judge when evaluating its video quality. There are aspects shared by both high definition and standard definition versions in terms of the absence of defining texture and lesser dimensional perspective. Objects in backgrounds are two dimensional which isn't a problem but images can appear to have less depth. I have noticed that with good high definition animated video this is still the case but rendering is notably improved. Such was the case here. Images had excellent visual depth with deep, rich, color fidelity and bold defining contrast. The video had tack like sharpness with crisp edges and no obvious signs of edge enhancement. Blacks were stable, with respectable depth that looked appreciable when onscreen with mixed content.
The high resolution DTS-HD MA soundtrack was well articulated with excellent headroom and crystal clear rendering across the board. This was a well balanced presentation that featured high level detail in a resplendent blend of dialogue, sound effects, bass and music. The results delivered a dynamically satisfying, relatively enveloping surround sound mix that delivered punchy bass, and enough vintage sounds/effects to make the Star Wars experience fun.
- Commentary by Executive producers Seth MacFarlane, Mark Hentemann, David Goodman, writer Kirker Butler, director Dominic Polcina, and actor Seth Green
- Family Guy Fact-ups: Popup factoids that appear during the feature
- (HD) The dark side of poster art - 9 minute featurette
- Animatic scene-to-scene with director commentary
- (HD) Family guy: Something, something, something Dark Side table read: featuring acts 1&2 - 49 minutes
- (HD) Family guy: Episode VI - We have a bad feeling about this sneak peek table read - 2 minutes
- Digital Copy Bonus Disc
Family guy: Something, something, something, Dark Side is an absurd, raucous, over the top and typically Family Guy fun parody that spoofs on Star Wars The Empire strikes back. While Family guy may not be for everyone there is no denying its ability to elicit laughs from those than can appreciate its rather coarse brand of humor. Being a fan of both Family guy and Star Wars I got a kick out of this and appreciated the scripts attention to the original's thematic elements. I thought it looked terrific in high definition from Fox Blu-ray and look forward to the next installment.
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JVC DLA-RS20 1080p High Definition Front Projector (Calibrated by Jeff Meier)
Carada Precision Brilliant White 96" Screen
Anthem AVM50v THX Ultra 2 Preamp/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-83 Universal disc/Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
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Oppo 970HD universal disc DVD Player (480i HDMI)
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