The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: DreamWorks - 2010
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 96 Minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 7.1, French/Spanish/Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Starring: Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, David Cross, Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill
Directed by: Tom McGrath
Music by: Hans Zimmer & Lorne Balfe
Written by: Alan Schoolcraft & Brent Simons
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: February 25, 2011
"Giving bad a good name"
Packed with high-flying action and non-stop laughs, MEGAMIND puts a whole new hilarious twist on the superhero movie. Super villain Megamind's (Will Farrell) dreams have come true when he conquers the city's protector Metro Man (Brad Pitt) gaining control of Metro City. But when a new villain (Jonah Hill) is created and chaos runs rampant, the world's biggest "mind" and his comic sidekick Minion (David Cross) might actually save the day.
This is a cute little animated superhero tale that borrows a bit from Superman lore. Megamind and Metro Man both come from distant worlds and arrive on earth simultaneously when they are just babies. Metro Man lives a privileged life growing up to become the vaunted hero of Metro City while Megamind is raised by inmates in the Metro City prison and consistently falls in Metro man's shadow. Deeming himself Metro Man's arch enemy Megamind has made a career of challenging Metro Man by threatening/attacking Metro City. Unfortunately for Megamind Metro Man proves to be his nemesis time and again, that is until the day he comes up with the ultimate weapon. His vision of conquering Metro Man comes to fruition but the outcome isn't at all what he expected. What good is a super villain without a superhero to trade punches with? Desperate, Megamind, with the assistance of his lifelong minion, Minion devises a plan to create a super powered hero to become his new foe. When the plan goes terribly awry Megamind finds himself in the enviable position of going from villain to hero as he soon becomes Metro City's only hope against a seemingly impenetrable new enemy.
I thoroughly enjoyed Megamind. I liked its perilous/comedic action, witty/blundering interplay and clichéd but apropos romantic diversion. The infusion of popular music was spot on as was the portrayal of the duality of Megamind's character. I will concede that it's not conceptually original or as emotively effecting as some of the more popular animated films I have reviewed of late (including DreamWorks How to train your dragon) however there is no denying that it's well rounded family entertainment that both children and adults can relate to. The cast does a marvelous job and imparts an endearing and likeable quality that perfectly suits their respective characters. Kudos to DreamWorks.
The rating is for action and some 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)
- 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:
Megamind comes to Blu-ray Disc from DreamWorks featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 28 Mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel sound that has an average bitrate of 3 Mbps.
This is a beautiful albeit slightly disappointing high definition presentation from Dreamworks. The video quality can be visually arresting in its depiction of the film's animated subjects. Detail and definition is impeccably rendered as images have a luminous and sparkling clarity that is appreciably dimensional. Fine degrees of subtle delineation and texture are clearly discernible. The attention to detail in the construction of the animated characters physical features as well as objects within each frame is excellent. Colors are richly saturated, vibrant and eye catching. Primaries are particularly vivid and exhibit visibly delineated stages that bring out subtle degrees of separation. Contrast is spot on as blacks are rich with deep highlights, whites and grays exhibit multi-layered depth and refined detail that give them excellent dimension. Unfortunately the image suffers from an inordinate amount of aliasing. It appears primarily on the surfaces of buildings but can occasionally be seen on objects in backgrounds and in the finely textured hair of the characters. I also tried this disc on my living room system which consists of a Toshiba Blu-ray player fed via HDMI at 1080p/24 through an Onkyo receiver to a Sharp 1080p LCD. The issue was present and a bit more pronounced than on my reference system so results may vary depending on your setup and perception/sensitivity. Allowing a disc to go out the door with video artifacts like this is inexcusable however I don't feel that it entirely negates this video presentation which otherwise looks terrific.
The lossless 7.1 Dolby TrueHD soundtrack is an engaging one that utilizes the entire system to create a theater like experience. Sound staging is excellent as both the front and rear channels are seamlessly integrated so that sound effects seem to traverse the room. Surround activity is frequent and immersive as both directional and spatial information mixed to the rear channels weaves an enveloping pattern of sound. Dynamics are energetic and forceful which lends weight to the plethora of impact felt moments featured in the soundtrack. This is a fairly aggressive mix that makes regular use of the subwoofer to accentuate its extended dynamic range. Low frequency detail is authoritative, tight and on occasion prodigious as it frequently engages the room with tactile low level bass that is sure to get your attention. Dialogue is rendered with aplomb and sonic details are refined and clearly articulated regardless of their position within the sound field. This is a sophisticated surround mix that made for a fun, involving and demonstration level home theater experience.
- (HD) Megamind: The button of Doom - 15 minute animated short featuring the original voice cast
- (HD) Exclusive Blu-ray Features:
- The Animators corner - PiP Bonus view feature
- Trivia Track - Interactive pop-up trivia
- Comic creator - Interactive feature
- Behind the mind - Photo Gallery
- (HD) Meet the cast of Megamind - 9 minute featurette
- (HD) Deleted scene - 1 minute segment
- (HD) Inside Megamind's Lair - 7 minute featurette
- (HD) AnimatorMan - 2 minute feature
- (HD) You can draw Megamind - 13 minute instructional feature
- (HD) Mega Rap - 1 minute video consisting of scenes from the film
- (HD) The reign of Megamind - Interactive video comic book
- (HD) Spot the difference - Interactive game
- Filmmaker's commentary - Featuring director Tom McGrath and the creative minds behind the film
- Previews for 'Kung Fu Panda 2,' 'Rango,' and the 'Megamind' video game
- (HD) DreamWorks animation video jukebox - Featuring Shrek, Madagascar, How to train your dragon, and Kung Fu Panda
- Bonus DVD of Megamind
Megamind is a well conceived and executed animated film that borrows a bit from Superman lore. It isn't conceptually original but I thoroughly enjoyed its perilous/comedic action, witty/blundering interplay and cleverly integrated popular music soundtrack. The cast imparts an endearing and likeable quality that perfectly suits their respective characters. The result is another winner from DreamWorks that makes for well rounded family entertainment. It comes to Blu-ray from Paramount Home Entertainment featuring reference quality 7.1 channel Dolby TrueHD sound, an abundance of fan friendly bonus supplements and strong high definition video quality despite the presence of some obvious jaggies/aliasing. Megamind is definitely worth checking out and while I feel this is a solid overall Blu-ray offering from Paramount/DreamWorks I have to recommend a rental prior to purchase especially for those who hold video quality at a premium.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS50 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100 16x9 Screen
Anthem AVM50v THX Ultra 2 Preamp/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Samsung BD-C7900 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Furman SPR-20i Stable Power Regulator
Wireworld, VizionWare, Audioquest, Better Cables, Best Deal Cables - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package