The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 2011
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 116 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English/French/Portuguese DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Starring: Aaron Eckhart, Michelle Rodriguez, Ramon Rodriguez, Ne-Yo, Bridget Moynihan, Michael Pena
Directed by: Jonathon Liebesman
Music by: Brian Tyler
Written by: Chris Bertolini
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 14, 2011
"It’s not war. It’s survival"
Marine staff sergeant (Aaron Eckhart) and his platoon take on an enemy unlike any they’ve ever encountered when hostile alien invaders attack the planet in this epic sci-fi action film.
Witness the end of civilization unfold as hostile alien invaders attack the planet. As people everywhere watch the world’s great cities fall, Los Angeles becomes the last stand for mankind in a battle no one expected. Now it's up to a Marine staff sergeant (Aaron Eckhart) and his platoon to draw a line in the sand against an unknown and powerful enemy bent on exterminating human kind.
I didn’t hear positive things from the few people I know who saw this in the theater but I went in with an open mind just the same. I will avoid going into a more in depth breakdown of the plot because Battle: Los Angeles is a clichéd alien invasion war film that brings nothing original to the table. I liked it nevertheless and enjoyed its high production value, tightly focused script, and involving action which drew me in. I found the characters likeable, easy to root for and thought that the primary members of the cast gave solid performances. Let’s face it this isn’t supposed to be gripping, five star entertainment. As an action film junkie I think it strikes the right chords and makes for a rewarding popcorn flick. ‘Nuff said.
The rating is for language, sustained and intense sequences of war violence and destruction.
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:
Battle: Los Angeles comes to Blu-ray disc from Sony Pictures HE featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 22 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 2.6 Mbps.
This is a high quality video presentation from Sony that looks superb. Images are visually arresting and have a rich dynamic quality that highlights its near flawless rendering of detail. The video has a three dimensional and razor sharp clarity that never left me wanting. The visual design features a limited color scheme that is aesthetically mated to the subject matter. The majority of the film boasts shades of gray, sepia, white and black. These colors are not vivid in tonality but rendering is clean and gradationally satisfying. Contrast is bold with inky blacks that have a near infinite level of depth without compromise to delineation. Shadowy areas exhibit excellent depth of field and visible gradational stages. Flesh tones are not overtly complex in tone but appear diverse in subtle structure and complexional makeup. This is a fairly sophisticated visual design that uses real imagery mixed with CGI. The end result is a superlative video presentation that conveys the spirit of the film.
The 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack presented here is an impressive one that utilizes the entire system to create a theater like experience. This is an engaging and dynamically energized surround mix that features high level sonic detail, superb directional correlation, seamless integration, and rhythmically charged bass extension that bass fanatics are sure to appreciate. Dialogue is definitive and appreciably lucid through the center channel as it reaches far into the room. It’s located just slightly in front of the left/right speakers within the acoustic space it occupies in the soundfield. I never had any trouble distinguishing even the slightest changes in the pitch or tonal inflection of voices. This is an active sound design that is loaded with various sound effects, spatial cues, music, and dialogue. Each is clearly represented with enriching clarity, detail and appropriate sound field placement.
This is a reference quality audio/video presentation that elevated the enjoyment of this action film. Those who like playing their systems at reference levels will appreciate its transient low frequency peaks, extended dynamic range and high level clarity. Its superlative high definition video is demonstration worthy and features deep blacks and exquisite rendering that looks terrific on my large screen. Kudos to Sony on a job well done.
- Command Control – Interactive in film experience (via a picture-in-picture viewer) that features storyboard comparison and battle points within the context of the film.
- (HD) Behind the battle featurette – 6 minutes
- (HD) Directing the battle featurette – 6 minutes
- (HD) Aliens in L.A. featurette – 18 minutes
- (HD) Preparing for battle featurette – 5 minutes
- (HD) Boot camp featurette – 10 minutes
- (HD) Creating L.A. in LA featurette – 5 minutes
- (HD) The freeway battle featurette – 5 minutes
- (HD) Previews – Priest, Insidious, The Green Hornet, Never back down2: Beat down, Das Boot
- Movie IQ
- BD-Live enabled
- Bonus DVD of Battle: Los Angeles
Battle: Los Angeles is a clichéd alien invasion war film that brings nothing original to the genre table. Regardless, I enjoyed its high production value, tightly focused script, and involving action which drew me in. Its reference level high definition video and pulse pounding DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack enhances the experience even farther. Add to that a fairly comprehensive behind the scenes look at the production and you have a well rounded Blu-ray offering that is typical of Sony and makes for excellent popcorn entertainment when the mood strikes.
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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