The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Universal - 1982
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 115 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French DTS 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Henry Thomas, Drew Barrymoore, Dee Wallace, Peter Coyote, C. Thomas Howell, Robert MacNaughton
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Music by: John Williams
Written by: Melissa Mathison
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: October 9, 2012
When an imaginative boy meets a lost alien, it is the beginning of one of cinema’s most endearing friendships, as Elliot (Henry Thomas) helps the marvelous creature he calls E.T. find his way back home before government agents can capture him.
Director Steven Spielberg's heartwarming masterpiece is one of the brightest stars in motion picture history. Filled with unparalleled magic and imagination, E.T. follows the moving story of a lost little alien who befriends 10-year-old, Elliot. In1982, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial became the biggest blockbuster of the year, ranking #1 over 16 different weekends. Even today, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial remains the fourth most successful movie of all-time1 in the United States. Nominated for nine Academy Awards® including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Writing and Best Screenplay, the film took home four statuettes for Best Visual Effects, Best Sound Effects Editing, Best Sound and Best Music for John Williams’ memorable score.
E.T. is indeed a classic film that is beloved by fans the world over. I was 18 when it hit theaters and can recall the fervor that surrounded it. It seemed like everyone was not only talking about E.T. back then but went to the theater multiple times to see it. The effects were state of the art and watching the bond that formed between he and Elliott and how it played out through to the end was not only stirring but captured the imagination of all who saw it. It is so much more than “science fiction”. It’s a heartwarming and inspirational story of friendship, courage and belief with a timeless appeal that has no generational boundaries.
Watching it today it feels very much the same. The special effects have lost some of their luster but the work that brought E.T. himself to life holds up quite nicely while the drama, sense of adventure and imaginative spirit remain tangible. I love the performances by the ensemble cast, especially Henry Thomas who in my opinion is the reason the film works so well. E.T remains one of Steven Spielberg’s definitive achievements. I am thrilled that it has finally come to Blu-ray and happy to report that it has received the tender loving care it is due. Read on to see what I mean.
The rating is for thematic elements.
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:
E.T. The extra terrestrial comes to Blu-ray from Universal Studios Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 31 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 4.6 Mbps.
Accordingly to Universal E.T. has undergone a digital re-mastering and the results are very impressive. The film’s 1.85:1 framed high definition video presentation on Blu-ray looks terrific on my 100 inch screen. Colors are tonally balanced with lustrous primaries, clean rendering and delineated secondary hues that all look terrific. Fleshtones are appreciably lifelike with discernible texture and natural depiction. The level of visible detail in facial features, hair and clothing during close-ups is noteworthy. Wide angle shots vary in terms of visual depth but most reveal subtle degrees of refinement and fidelity is never in question. Resolution is excellent as the blend of interior shots and sets featured in the film offer clarity, detail and dimension that belie the film’s age. Of course this also made some of the special effects more transparent but that’s fine. Blacks are noise free, stable and fairly deep. Contrast and brightness are balanced well which enlivens bright scenes and colors while maintaining an appreciable level of visibility and dimension during darker segments. Grain is present and appears undisturbed. Universal Studios is to be commended on this excellent and faithful high definition presentation that is sure to please even discerning fans.
The 7.1 DTS-HD MA audio mix does a terrific job rendering the film’s soundtrack. Dialogue has discernible intonation, with distinctive clarity and above average room penetration. This is a more or less front oriented presentation that makes good use of the entire system to deliver a seamlessly integrated audio experience that is highlighted by solid impact, defining clarity, and John Williams' memorable music score. Dynamic range is quite good and doesn’t seem limited by the dated elements present in the recording. Sounds and effects have copious expression that extend well into the room. Surround activity isn’t constant but when applied can be engaging as discernible spatial ambience and discrete sounds fill the listening area. The LFE channel is similarly used to add weight that extends low bass frequencies. The soundtrack runs the gamut and contains a variety of sounds/effects. Everything from the envelopment of sounds in the forest to directional effects moving around the soundstage, imaging and presence are spot on. I think that this audio presentation is very well done and sounds terrific.
- (HD) Deleted scenes - 3 minutes
- (HD)* NEW Steven Spielberg & E.T. - Watch an all-new interview with Steven Spielberg, as he reflects back on the film and discusses his experience working with the actors, as well as his overall and current perspective on E.T. – 12 minutes
- * NEW The E.T. Journals – Two part documentary with day to day behind the scenes footage from the set – 52 minutes
- A look back - A special insider’s look into the making of E.T. featuring interviews with Steven Spielberg, the cast, and others intimately involved with the film.
- The evolution and creation of E.T. – 50 minute documentary
- The E.T. Reunion – 18 minutes
- The music of E.T.: A discussion with John Williams – 10 minutes
- The 20th anniversary premiere – John Williams conducts the score of E.T. live at the Shrine Auditorium (along with a behind the scenes look) – 17 minutes
- Designs, photographs and marketing
- Original Theatrical trailer
- Special Olympics TV Spot
- My Scenes bookmark feature
- D-Box Motion Code enabled
- pocket BLU
- Bonus DVD
- Digital Copy
- Ultraviolet Digital Copy
E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is a timeless and evocative film that holds a special place not just for those who love it but in American Cinema. I have been a fan for 30 years and have awaited its arrival on Blu-ray since the formats inception. I am happy to report that the wait was well worth it as it looks gorgeous in this digitally re-stored high definition video presentation. The re-mixed 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio sound compliments the video and beautifully reproduces John Williams’ memorable music score. The supplemental package is a good one that includes an excellent mix of previously released material along with two new features that are well worth exploring. E.T. is a wonderful film experience and this Blu-ray offering from Universal Studios Home Entertainment makes it all the better and is a must own. Enjoy!
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Onkyo PR-SC5508 THX Ultra 2 Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
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