Ice age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=156462&d=1256755895
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

91






Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox - 2009
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 94 minutes
Genre: Animated/Family/Comedy

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French/Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Portuguese
Starring: Ray Romano, Queen Latifah, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Simon Pegg, Josh Peck
Directed by: Carlos Saldanha
Music by: John Powell
Written by: Michael Berg, Peter Ackerman, Mike Reis, Yoni Brenner
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: October 27, 2009







"Always listen to Buck"



Film Synopsis:

In the coolest Ice Age adventure yet, Manny and the herd discover a lost world of ferociously funny dinosaurs, including a cranky T. rex who's got a score to settle with Sid! Meanwhile, Scrat goes nuts over the beautiful Scratte, but is she trying to win his heart - or steal his acorn?



My Take:

attachment.php?attachmentid=156464&d=1256756899

I freely admit that I am a fan of animated films and have been a fan of the Ice age series since first seeing the original. I didn't catch Ice age: Dawn of the dinosaurs during its theatrical run but figured that like its predecessors it would be lots of fun. Manny, Ellie, Sid, Diego and the gang are back for another round of adventure. Manny and Ellie are expecting a baby, Diego is having trouble accepting the changing group dynamic, Sid (being Sid) feels left out and wants to be a parent too and Scrat discovers that perhaps there are other things to fall in love with besides a nut. Sid accidentally discovers three large eggs hidden in an underground cavern and figuring them abandoned takes them. Against the advice of everyone he cares for them until they hatch. Inside are three baby T.Rex's who see Sid as their mommy and (being Sid) he is ready and willing to assume the role. After they playfully wreak havoc on Manny and Ellie's proposed playground/nursery and accidentally terrorize the local animal children the group is besieged by their (real) rampaging mother who has come searching for them. When Sid refuses to turn them over their mother takes them and Sid by force, back to her home which is located in a lush jungle world filled with dinosaurs. Manny, Ellie, Diego, Eddie and Crash head out to find and save him. What they discover is a hidden land they could never have imagined, a local named Buck, who agrees to act as their guide, and a menace even more imposing than mother T.Rex. Will they find Sid? What about Ellie's impending birth? Who or what has Scrat so distracted? The answers to all your questions can be found in this fun and cute family animated film that makes for another entertaining installment in the Ice age series.

Conceptually speaking the three films don't vary greatly from a thematic standpoint but I don't find that to be a shortcoming. These are wonderful characters, voiced by actors that have become both familiar with and good at portraying them. Each installment has added new elements/characters that have augmented the continuing storyline. Sid remains my favorite and provides the comic relief that keeps even the seemingly intense moments light. John Leguizamo simply does a terrific job in the role. Newcomer Simon Pegg gives Buck just the right amount of sarcasm, zeal and wit without over doing it. Regulars Leary, Latifah, and Romano are fine as are cameo voiceovers provided by Bill Hader, Kristin Wiig, Josh Peck, and Sean William Scott. I must admit that while I liked Scrat's subtly interjected mini moments in the other films it was more and a bit much here. Scrat fans will probably get a kick out of it and his more extensive features found in the bonus supplements. Ice age: Dawn of the dinosaurs like it predecessors, keeps things simple and builds upon the already established connection we have with its characters. I enjoyed it and appreciated its superbly crafted audio/video quality which enhanced it all the more.




Parental Guide:

The rating is for mild crude humor and peril. I don't see any reason that wouldn't be appropriate for young viewers.






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: 88



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699



Video: 94


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


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699
attachment.php?attachmentid=156465&d=1256756899

Ice age: Dawn of the dinosaurs comes to Blu-ray Disc from Fox 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 4.3 mbps.

This is a pristine and reference quality high definition presentation from Fox. The video quality is 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 superb. Colors are richly saturated, vibrant and beautifully rendered. Going from the cooler color scheme of the cold/snowy world to the lush, warm and gradationally satisfying dinosaur inhabited lost world is notably contrasted and visually stimulating. 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.

The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack makes for a great home theater experience. This is a fairly active sound design that truly benefits from the higher resolution that lossless audio offers. Dynamics are top notch as the elements contained within the soundtrack have definitive energy and potent impact. This played hand in hand with its superlative clarity and high level sonic detail. John Powell's music score plays an integral role in this presentation and the entire surround platform is used to present the instrumental performance. Dialogue is crystalline with appreciable tonal inflection and non sibilant vocal character. The auditory is rich in clarity and detail which allows the subtle environmental sounds in the recording to easily be heard. The mix creates a stable and immersive surround sound experience that achieves excellent balance so that all of the elements present in the recording can be realized. Low frequency detail is authoritative, tight and on occasion prodigious as it frequently engages the room with palpable low level bass response that is sure to get your attention. This isn't an aggressive surround sound mix but it is an articulate one that will have no trouble pleasing discerning audiophiles that enjoy showing off the capabilities of their home theater systems.



Bonus Features:


  • Filmmaker's commentary

  • (HD) Ice age storybook maker - Interactive, age definable feature with three selectable levels ranging from ages 1-5 (Bronze age), 6-11 (Stone age), and 12 + (Ice age)

  • (HD) Evolution expedition - Documentary on Ice age mammals - 18 minutes

  • (HD) Buck: from easel to weasel - 7 minute feature

  • (HD) Unearthing the lost world - 8 minute production featurette

  • 2 Unfinished deleted scenes

  • (HD) Walk the dinosaur - music video

  • (HD) Scrat shorts:

    1. Gone nutty - Scrat's missing adventure - 4 minutes
    2. No time for nuts - 7 minutes

  • Scrat featurettes:

    1. The saber-toothed squirrel: Natures nutty buddy - 1 minute B/W
    2. Scrat from head to toe - A how to draw Scrat tutorial - 8 minutes

  • Fox Movie Channel specials:

    1. Fox Movie Channel presents: Making a scene (Ice age 2) - 9 minutes
    2. Fox Movie Channel presents: In character with John Leguizamo - 3 minutes
    3. Fox Movie Channel presents: In character with Ray Romano - 3 minutes
    4. Fox Movie Channel presents: In character with Queen Latifah - 3 minutes
    5. Fox Movie Channel presents: Making a scene - 9 minutes

  • (HD) Trailer for The Pink Panther 2

  • BD-Live enabled Live Lookup - An interactive feature powered by IMDB that requires a BD-Live connection and allows fans the option of viewing details on the cast and crew and to explore production facts which are tied into scenes in the movie.

  • Bonus Copy DVD version of Ice age: Dawn of the dinosaurs

  • Digital Copy Bonus Disc - Contains a standard definition version of the film that can be downloaded from a compatible PC to a portable media device
attachment.php?attachmentid=156466&d=1256756899


Final Thoughts:

Ice age: Dawn of the dinosaurs is another fun, faithful and family friendly installment in the Ice age series. It features the same lovable characters, along with a few new ones, in an entertaining, light and typically heartwarming story that the whole family can enjoy. Its presentation on Blu-ray Disc doesn't disappoint and features reference quality video and room shaking lossless surround sound. The bonus supplements include Blu-ray Disc exclusives, including Fox's Live Lookup IMDB powered interactive feature, background on the production, cast/crew interviews, and a host of Scrat only features that should appeal to those who enjoy his nutty persistence. If you enjoyed the other Ice age films adding this to your collection is a no-brainer. At a minimum it is worthy of a rental on movie night. Enjoy!









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:


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post #2 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 12:38 PM
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Nice review Ralph.. I just received it yesterday from Amazon.. Can't wait to see it..

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post #3 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 02:07 PM
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Nice review, Ralph. When I saw your audio score, I questioned it at first for being too low, but your comments pretty much echo my exact thoughts on it. Wonderful soundtrack. Thanks for the write up.

Stephen.

Chances are very good that I was drinking when I posted the above.

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post #4 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 02:44 PM
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Not my thing but am sure my niece would love this. Collect.

Cheers
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post #5 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 04:27 PM
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The DVD Scrat Pack Two Pack version of the title has material featuring Scrat. Anyone know if all of the features on that 2nd disc available on the BluRay?
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post #6 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 07:23 PM
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Nice review! This will be the Saturday night family movie.

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post #7 of 17 Old 10-28-2009, 09:14 PM
 
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I got my copy in today from netflix... Nice review!
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post #8 of 17 Old 10-29-2009, 12:33 AM
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Just rented it yesterday. Got a good kick out of it.
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post #9 of 17 Old 10-29-2009, 12:38 AM
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Thank you Ralph looking forward to seeing that this weekend.

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post #10 of 17 Old 10-29-2009, 06:18 PM
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This will be my next buy this week. Thanks for a great review

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post #11 of 17 Old 10-30-2009, 09:33 AM
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Watched this last night and agree with your review, the 7.1 audio was cool and its visually stunning.
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post #12 of 17 Old 10-30-2009, 08:08 PM
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I did see the film while on its theatrical run and quite enjoyed it. Saw the combo pack at the local BB and thought that it was OK at $25.99. Then saw the Blu version for only $2.00 more and it includes all the features of the combo pack (Scrat features) AND has a DVD copy of the film. Well worth it, so I picked up the Blu. I find the Scrat character absolutely hilarious, going back to the first film.
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post #13 of 17 Old 11-01-2009, 04:37 AM
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It would be better if this film was in 3-D experience as in the Dolby theater or a bonus animation short film in Monsters VS Aliens.Nice review,BTW.
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post #14 of 17 Old 11-01-2009, 04:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by butsu View Post

It would be better if this film was in 3-D experience as in the Dolby theater or a bonus animation short film in Monsters VS Aliens.Nice review,BTW.

Have to disagree butsu, Im not big on the 3D

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post #15 of 17 Old 11-01-2009, 08:26 PM
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I just saw this movie and really enjoy it..

In terms of the picture quality, most of the presentation look very detailed..However, some scenes, especially the long shots, sometimes black levels are not that pristine and fleshtones lacking some pop, that make the picture not that 3D and kind of soft...
Probably is not the BD itself but rather how the movie was made...

In terms of the sound, I agree with the review...

Chris. My DVD UHD Blu Ray and Blu Ray collection jvc dla-rs2000, ST 130 (144") cinemascope screen, Carada Masquerade CIH masking system, B&W 803D2s mains, B&W HTM2D2 center channel, B&W 805D2 surrounds, B&W CCMM682s in-ceiling speakers (4), B&W DB1 subwoofer, Anthem AVM 60 processor, Parasound Halo A51+(2xA21)+(2xA23) amps, Panasonic UB820 player, Roku Ultra, vertex, and Harmony Elite remote.
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post #16 of 17 Old 11-02-2009, 01:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Greetings,

Thanks for sharing your impressions Chris.


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post #17 of 17 Old 11-02-2009, 09:52 PM
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Great review, thanks. This is going on the Christmas list for the kids.

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