Chimpanzee (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 3 Old 08-12-2012, 12:32 PM - Thread Starter
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The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

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

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

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

Studio and Year: Disney - 2012
MPAA Rating: G
Feature running time: 78 minutes
Genre: Documentary

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio (Original theatrical mix), Standard DTS Home Theater mix, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Narrated by: Tim Allen
Directed by: Alastair Fothergill & Mark Linfield
Music by: Nicholas Hooper
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: August 21, 2012

"For Oscar, every day is an adventure"

Film Synopsis:

From Disneynature, the studio that brought you “Earth,” “Oceans,” and “African Cats,” comes “Chimpanzee” — a remarkable story of individual triumph and family bonds. Journey deep into the African forest and meet Oscar, an adorable young chimp with an entertaining approach to life. The world is a playground for little Oscar and his fellow young chimps who love creating mayhem. His playful curiosity and zest for discovery showcase the intelligence and ingenuity of some of the most extraordinary personalities in the animal kingdom. Stunning hi-definition images bring you up close and personal as Oscar and his family navigate the complex territory of the forest. It’s an inspiring and life-changing adventure that overflows with courage and charm. And it will capture your heart.

My Take:

I generally find nature based documentaries to be fascinating and like to see exotic places and animals that reside in their natural habitats within those locations. Disneynature’s Chimpanzee is a charming film that follows a group of chimpanzees in the rain forests of West Africa. It focuses specifically on a newborn chimp named “Oscar” and presents viewers with an amazing snapshot of the lives of these amazing animals in the wild. Watching them interact amidst the daily routine is enlightening as they forage for food (which in and of itself could be a separate feature), protect their territory and strengthen familial and community bonds. Little Oscar’s story has special meaning as the filmmaker’s discover that evidently established patterns of behavior within the Chimpanzee hierarchy aren’t written in stone. The fantastic footage captured by the filmmakers of both the chimps and the surrounding landscapes is simply stunning. I am not so sure that Tim Allen was the best choice to narrate but turning down the audio altogether probably wouldn’t make the film any less entertaining. Watching the documentary pieces on the making of the film is a clear indication of the dedication and self-sacrifice necessary to bring Chimpanzee to fruition. It is clearly a labor of love for all involved. I watched it with my family and we all found it to be elucidating, heartwarming and beautifully captured. Here is some information from Disney concerning their chimpanzee conservation program:

To celebrate the in-home debut of “Chimpanzee,” Disneynature is proud to continue the “See ‘Chimpanzee,’ Save Chimpanzees” conservation program initiated with the film’s theatrical release. For every purchase of the movie through August 27, 2012, Disneynature will make a donation through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) to conserve chimpanzee habitat, educate the next generation, and provide care for orphaned chimpanzees.

The conservation program tied to the theatrical release will help protect 129,236 acres (202 square miles) of wild chimpanzee habitat through infrastructure investments in the expanded Tchimpounga Nature Reserve in the Republic of Congo (Congo); educate 60,000 schoolchildren about chimpanzee conservation; and provide food and medicine for nearly all of the orphaned chimpanzees at JGI’s Tchimpounga chimpanzee sanctuary for at least the next year.

Parental Guide:

This film should be fine for general audiences.

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.**

Audio: 84

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

  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

Video: 100

(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=109948&d=1210373699

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

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

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

Chimpanzee comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 34 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 4 Mbps.

This is a reference quality high definition presentation that boasts brilliant color, superlative depth, and an abundance of high level detail. The nature defined color palette is alluring as the deep, vivid, greens and resplendent earth toned hues leap from the 1.78:1 framed video. Contrast balance is spot on and blacks are delineated, deep, and rich. Resolution is impeccable as the vastness and scope of the recorded elements offers lucid, three dimensional acuity that is extraordinary. These beautifully captured images of our planet can be captivating as the richness of color, transparently rendered detail, and near infinite sense of depth and dimension are assuredly conveyed in high definition. I can only imagine how it must have looked on the big screen

The lossless DTS-HD MA soundtrack delivers the elements contained within this documentary film with aplomb. Tim Allen’s running narration is clearly rendered with crisp articulation and smooth intonation. The front three channels are integration nicely and combine high level detail/clarity with pinpoint imaging. Nicholas Hooper’s music score has appreciable top end air and smoothly rendered instrumentation as its primary elements are delivered through the front speakers with enveloping rear channel ambience used to broaden the soundstage. The surrounds are effectively used to reproduce the various sounds of the forest, near field panning effects and low level atmospherics. This isn’t an aggressive surround mix but this audio presentation mates perfectly with the source and sounds great.

Bonus Features:

  • (HD) On location: The making of Chimpanzee
    1. Piece of the puzzle – 9 minutes
    2. The heart of the chimpanzee – 6 minutes
    3. Don’t blame the tool – 4 minutes
    4. Forest bees – 7 minutes
    5. Scar’s army – 5 minutes
    6. Camp invaders – 3 minutes
    7. 30 years in the making – 2 minutes
  • (HD) See Chimpanzee, Save Chimpanzees – 3 minute promo

  • (HD) “Rise” music video by McClain Sisters

  • (HD) Behind the scenes of “Rise”

  • (HD) Disney’s Conversation legacy – 1 minute promo

  • (HD) Disney’s Friends for change promo

  • Bonus DVD - Chimpanzees

Final Thoughts:

Disneynature's Chimpanzee is a visually stimulating documentary that presents viewers with an intimate and heartwarming look at these fascinating animals living in their natural habitat and much of what that entails. As you might expect from Disney Blu-ray it looks stunning in high definition and features crystal clear lossless sound and a worthwhile making of documentary that offers enlightening insights into the trials and tribulations associated with such an undertaking. Chimpanzee isn’t a perfect film but it is worth seeing and can be enjoyed by the whole family. Depending on your level of interest in the subject matter this may or may not be worthy of a blind buy. I would recommend a rental first.


Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS55 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
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)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro 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, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package

Ralph C. Potts
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post #2 of 3 Old 08-12-2012, 02:33 PM
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Awesome! Glad to hear this got such high marks. biggrin.gif
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post #3 of 3 Old 08-13-2012, 08:00 AM
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Enjoyed this one!
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