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post #1 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 09:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Godzilla 3D (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review



Godzilla, this summer’s big ticket blockbuster has finally landed on Blu-ray. Check out our review of one of the best sounding Blu-ray releases available on the format.




The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )

Film:

Extras:

Audio/3D Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )

92



Details:

Studio and Year: Warner - 2014
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 123 minutes
Genre: Action/Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC/MVC
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Bryan Cranston, Ken Watanabe, Sally Hawkins, Elizabeth Olsen, Juliette Binoche, David Strathairn
Directed by: Gareth Edwards
Music by: Alexandre Desplat
Written by: Max Borenstein
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: September 16, 2014


"The world ends, Godzilla begins…."


My Take:

In this gritty, realistic sci-fi action epic, Godzilla returns to its roots as one of the world's most recognized monsters. Directed by Gareth Edwards and featuring an all-star international cast, this spectacular adventure pits Godzilla against malevolent creatures that, bolstered by humanity's scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence.

Growing up I used to love watching the Japanese monster/disaster movies. I was never much of a King Kong fan and always rooted for Godzilla. He has become an iconic figure which has spawned numerous films over the years. The 1998 Roland Emmerich film left many fans with a bad taste in their mouths but I personally don’t mind its Americanized spin that features plenty of special effects, disaster laden destruction, and a corny yet fairly entertaining script. When I read the announcement for Godzilla and then saw the trailer I was intrigued and high hopes that it would invigorate the character and genre.

I am ashamed to admit that I never got to see it in the theater. My son went to see it and wasn’t blown away. I expressed interest but couldn’t enlist anyone else in the family to venture out so I opted to wait and see it on Blu-ray in the familiar environment of my home theater. I have read many complaints regarding the film’s screenplay. Specifically, overplayed melodrama, the lack of character development, and the prolonged absence of Godzilla himself. Considering the fact that the intent here is to sort of reboot Godzilla I expected something a bit different. While I would agree that the primary characters were on the thin side I think that they worked within the narrative construct which in and of itself is fairly shallow.

The script establishes a foundational base that revolves around two primary plots. The first involves Joe Brody, the supervisor of a Japanese nuclear plant who suffers a devastating loss after an unusual seismic event causes a catastrophe. Years later his every waking thought is given to finding answers to the mystery surrounding the event that he perceives as a government cover up. The second involves two scientists that are investigating unusual discoveries surrounding giant non-earthlike larva that they feel may or may not hold a connection to a prehistoric predator that they have studied but never seen. The last piece of the storyline integrates the plots as the revelation of both comes together in a conflagration on an epic scale.

I honestly didn’t mind the fact that Godzilla doesn’t make his up close and personal appearance right away. I mean, this isn’t intended to be another Tokyo stomping monster flick. Here he is depicted in a different light which I liked. With the M.U.T.O factor there is decent enough build up while you wait for the big guy and when he shows it’s pretty awesome. I do agree that the melodrama associated with the subplot involving Ford Brody (Joe’s son) and his wife and son is pretty lame but otherwise I felt that balance between the supporting drama and city leveling action was fine. The star of the show is most definitely the outstanding production elements which are so much fun to watch. I loved the design of Godzilla and thought that his backstory and representation as an alpha predator was spot on.

While Godzilla may not be as slickly executed as some may have hoped there is no denying that it’s the epitome of a summer blockbuster and pays appropriate tribute to one of the most iconic figures in monster movie lore. I watched it with my wife and we had a blast…


Parental Guide:

The rating is for intense sequences of destruction, mayhem and creature violence.


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: 100
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics:
  • Low frequency effects:
  • Surround Sound presentation:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Dialogue Reproduction:
  • Low frequency extension * (non-rated element):



3D Presentation: 84
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Depth (Onscreen):
  • Dimension (Beyond the screen):
  • Realism:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:



Godzilla 3D comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment featuring 1080p MVC encoded video and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 5.3 Mbps.

This film wasn’t shot natively in 3D but was converted in post- production. The film was largely shot against green screens and the reproduction of the digital effects and wide angle background elements translates positively here. Depth is appreciable as evidenced by separation of objects and/or people layered in the foreground/background which creates a visual sense of virtual space. High definition dimensionality and apparent resolution is rarely questionable in close ups and brightly lit exterior sequences but it varies some in the limited lighting. Comparing white/black levels, color and skin tone reproduction to the 2D presentation I found them to essentially be identical. There is a distinct lack of 3D effects that transcend the boundaries of the screen which makes for a somewhat less involving experience especially during the action based segments. I will say that I didn’t find that this detracted from my enjoyment of the overall presentation which like the 2D version looks terrific on Blu-ray. I didn’t notice any distracting instances of crosstalk or other video related anomalies. The end result is a satisfying but unremarkable 3D video presentation.

The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack is reference quality and among the best home theater experiences I have ever had. I had high expectations for this soundtrack and this lossless audio presentation didn’t disappoint. I was treated to an impeccably detailed, powerfully dynamic, and demonstrative surround sound experience. Multi-layered sound effects are appropriately placed within the soundfield so that their purpose was definable yet never overstated. The mix makes effective and aggressive use of the surround channels to define the soundstage and reproduce the spatial and discrete sounds of this demanding soundtrack. The front and rear sound fields are integrated with precision which enables a seamless blend during panning sequences as the listening position becomes submerged in an engaging variety of effects that place you in the heart of the action. One of the best examples of this occurs in chapter 8 beginning at the 1:16:30 mark on the train trestle. As the soldiers stand out in the open the M.U.T.O. rises out of the dark and rotates around their position. The blend of room traversing effects and supporting low frequency detail create an incredibly effective aural display that left me tipping my cap to the sound mixer.

I love clean powerful bass and this track delivers it in spades. Low frequency effects can be substantial and occasionally reach seismic levels and lower depths that will test the limits of lesser subwoofers. The extended dynamic range of the recording coupled with the film’s bombast results in authoritative low frequency transients that are deep, powerful and perfect for those that revel in noteworthy bass extension. Dialogue is supremely articulated with excellent focus, clarity and descriptive intonation. I found the surround mixes ability to render fine detail, and subtle nuance to be excellent. As viewers I think we sometimes miss some of the intricacies that go into the design of soundtracks such as this. Not so in this case as even seemingly inconspicuous minutia within the recording is detectable. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute with this terrific soundtrack.


2D Video Quality:


Video: 94
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity:
  • Black Level/Shadow Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:
  • Fleshtones:
  • Compression:


Godzilla comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 24 Mbps.

This film has an intentionally dark and singular chromatic visual style that doesn’t lend itself to vibrant colors and vivid high gloss video quality. There are instances where brighter elements are utilized and the boldly applied contrast allows them to pop visually. Otherwise onscreen images predominantly lean toward darker color schemes, and grittier textures that provide the look that the filmmakers use to drive the story’s components. This is done to good effect. Shadow delineation is good overall and revealing of visible details within dark backgrounds and low lighting. Stable contrast and deep blacks allow scenes containing mixed content to appear gradationally satisfying with crisp whites and dynamic highlights. Resolution is discerning as images are characterized by intricate and definitively rendered detail that gives the video appreciable dimension and delineated texture. This is the case in all but a few instances where definition softens and doesn’t retain the same level of lucidity.



Bonus Features:
  • Disc 1: 3D Blu-ray – Godzilla
  • Disc 2: 2D Blu-ray – Godzilla (plus bonus content listed below)
  • (HD) MONARCH: Declassified - Discover explosive new evidence not contained in the film that unravels the massive cover-up to keep Godzilla’s existence a secret (three segments):
    1. Operation: Lucky Dragon
    2. MONARCH: The M.U.T.O. File
    3. The Godzilla Revelation
  • (HD)The Legendary Godzilla - Go behind the scenes with filmmakers and cast for an even deeper look at the larger than life monsters in the film (4 segments):
    1. Godzilla: Force of Nature – 19 minutes
    2. A Whole New Level Of Destruction – 8 minutes featurette
    3. Into The Void: The H.A.L.O. Jump – 5 minute featurette
    4. Ancient Enemy: The M.U.T.O.s – 6 minute featurette
  • Bonus DVD
  • Ultraviolet Digital HD Copy



Final Thoughts:

Godzilla gives a fun, fanciful and entertaining facelift to one of B cinema's most recognizable icons. What it may lack in storytelling is more than made up for with top notch production values that elevate the overall experience. Speaking of which it roars onto Blu-ray in this 3D Blu-ray Combo Pack that features reference quality high definition video, amazing DTS-HD Master Audio surround sound and a fair 3D rendering that won’t elevate the pulse rate of 3D zealots. Also included is a decent supplemental package that is worth exploring if you enjoyed the film. As a genre fan and Home Theater enthusiast I am thrilled to add Godzilla to my Blu-ray collection. If you’re looking for the next best home theater sound demonstration Blu-ray look no further…




Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews



Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS4910 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6 Meter from Spectracal)
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System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
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Last edited by Ralph Potts; 09-05-2014 at 11:30 AM.
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post #2 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:05 AM
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Another good review. I was one of those people that were really disappointed with the film. It was not b.c a lack of Godzilla, but b.c a lack of character development. There was only one character in the film that you feel that connection with (no spoilers) and everyone else was just there. I would have even been ok with a "prequel" leading up to Godzilla with a more cohesive plot.

Maybe I will have a different opinion once I watch it at home and lower my expectations. I think a lot of the let down came from how good the previews were. Very few movies get me as excited as this one did prior to seeing it.
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post #3 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:07 AM
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I just watched this and I have to say overall the movie was just too dark visually. I'm okay with a few dark scenes but most of the movie was very dark. I also wasn't crazy about the ending. I guess the director created it that way for a sequel. Some of the things that went on in the movie were just too unrealistic, IMO. Many times the main characters were in harms way but Godzilla wouldn't touch them. Come ON!!. It's obvious most of the movie was designed as a 3D thriller for shock value but IMO some of these remakes shouldn't happen and should leave the movie where it originated from...in the past.
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post #4 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HLdan View Post
I just watched this and I have to say overall the movie was just too dark visually. I'm okay with a few dark scenes but most of the movie was very dark. I also wasn't crazy about the ending. I guess the director created it that way for a sequel. Some of the things that went on in the movie were just too unrealistic, IMO. Many times the main characters were in harms way but Godzilla wouldn't touch them. Come ON!!. It's obvious most of the movie was designed as a 3D thriller for shock value but IMO some of these remakes shouldn't happen and should leave the movie where it originated from...in the past.
the railroad scene was just awful. Funny to say unrealistic when I love movies like pacific rim.
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post #5 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:11 AM
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Thanks again Ralph, wow, quite the write up on the audio side.........good to know, I will be waiting for this one, as I just re-calibrated my sound system last weekend due to new furniture placement.

Can't wait!!!

Paul
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post #6 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:12 AM
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I grew up with all the Godzilla movies and while I was never quite a real fan, I again say I grew up watching them. This incarnation looks like good fun and while I am stuck in 2D world (due to my vision), the review just makes this look like the fun it is supposed to be and certainly not just eye candy but a feast for ears. Ralph, I look forward to watching this movie when it hits Netflix and only hope they keep the full audio rather than just DTS.
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post #7 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:12 AM
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the railroad scene was just awful. Funny to say unrealistic when I love movies like pacific rim.
Agreed. 100%
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post #8 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:21 AM
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I enjoyed it for what it was. To me, the portrayal of Godzilla is what he was later on in some of the older movies. We all should know that the Godzilla movies were Japan's way of trying to visually depict how they felt with the two nuclear bombs that were dropped. At first, if I remember he was something that was a destroyer of the city. Then later on, he became a protector of the city, which what I felt he was in this film. I would have liked to have seen more of him but the other creatures were a nice surprise. I could live with the characters even if they were a bit thin. I think it did well enough for them to try and start another series in which I would expect more Godzilla in Godzilla. But this is a buy for me.
P.S As always Ralph, great review. I can't wait to hear and feel this on my system.

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post #9 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:23 AM
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Thanks for the review, it looks like a fun movie that is far better than the 1998 movie. It would have been nice in Atmos, but I did not hold my breath. Looking forward to see what D-Box did with this one too.
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post #10 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HLdan View Post
Some of the things that went on in the movie were just too unrealistic, IMO. Many times the main characters were in harms way but Godzilla wouldn't touch them. Come ON!!.
1.) You are watching a movie about a 300 foot tall ancient animal that eats radiation and other big monsters.

2.) Godzilla did not care about humans, we where not his focus. I don't think Godzilla was capable of associating us with any kind of threat. This being the main reason it ignored us. Other monsters can cause us problems, Godzilla is not that monster as the old statement goes, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, that's Godzilla.
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post #11 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:42 AM
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I did see this one in theaters, first movie in about 5yrs, and I have to say I was much more impressed watching the BD at home, haha. I can't do 3D, and the only atmos theater was playing in 3D, so I didn't get the best the theater had to offer.


anyway, good movie, weird spin on Godzilla that I think takes some time to get used to.


my other thoughts:
Spoiler!



in the end, this was clearly a movie made by a huge Godzilla fan. kind of like how everybody loved the terminator, and we ended up with T2...

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post #12 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:52 AM
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...If I have to buy this again in two months to get it in Atmos, I'm going to be terribly upset.

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post #13 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 10:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DocOrange88 View Post
1.) You are watching a movie about a 300 foot tall ancient animal that eats radiation and other big monsters.

2.) Godzilla did not care about humans, we where not his focus. I don't think Godzilla was capable of associating us with any kind of threat. This being the main reason it ignored us. Other monsters can cause us problems, Godzilla is not that monster as the old statement goes, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, that's Godzilla.
Well I wasn't expecting him to eat people, but as I was mentioning the main characters were put in harms way and they managed to escape death. Godzilla ripped up the city and many people were either hurt or killed in the process. I understand as the movie goes the main characters have to remain alive but they were too close to the edge multiple times to have escaped it. The father getting killed (sorry for the spoiler but since we're discussing it.. made sense but the rest of the movie just didn't, IMO.
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post #14 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 11:24 AM
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My son went to see it and wasn’t blown away. I expressed interest but couldn’t enlist anyone in the family to venture out

You mean you couldn't enlist anyone else in your family since obviously your son didn't want to see it again.


Nice to hear the audio is great but it is a bummer it couldn't be encoded in Dolby Atmos. I saw it in Atmos and it was indeed very, very impressive.


My issue with the film is: "monsters start to fight...let's see what people miles away are doing!"

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post #15 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
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You mean you couldn't enlist anyone else in your family since obviously your son didn't want to see it again.


Nice to hear the audio is great but it is a bummer it couldn't be encoded in Dolby Atmos. I saw it in Atmos and it was indeed very, very impressive.


My issue with the film is: "monsters start to fight...let's see what people miles away are doing!"
Greetings,

Exactly, although my son would have gone again had my wife and daughter been up for it..


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post #16 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 11:39 AM
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I thought the sound mix in Godzilla was exceptional, and well worth a score of 100 from Ralph. But the movie itself... I'm afraid that Godzilla 2000 was more appealing to me.

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post #17 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 12:12 PM
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For those of you who like Godzilla, he will return on June 8, 2018 in Godzilla 2, also by the same director.
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post #18 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 12:45 PM
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It's no surprise that the 3D in this movie isn't great. The DP actively hates 3D and the movie was converted despite his objections. Absolutely nothing in this film was shot with 3D in mind.
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post #19 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 12:50 PM
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Does anyone know if it keeps more of the frame for the larger IMAX shots? There are many shots that where full Digital IMAX frame.
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post #20 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Does anyone know if it keeps more of the frame for the larger IMAX shots? There are many shots that where full Digital IMAX frame.

Greetings,

The film maintains the 2.40:1 aspect throughout...


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post #21 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 01:14 PM
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The LFE in this film left me with Goosebumps throughout the film. Truly amazing experience for my new onkyo setup.

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post #22 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 01:27 PM
 
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Size does matter. ...Subwoofer/Bass. ...And all. ...The more the merrier.
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post #23 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 01:51 PM
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so no Atmos mix like some people were hoping.... or does it not matter

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post #24 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 02:43 PM
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so no Atmos mix like some people were hoping.... or does it not matter
Daniel, you can have a great experience with basic 5.1 - BUT - adding Atmos will kick it up even more. It's something the home theater enthusiast wants.

Per Doug Darrow, Dolby's senior VP, cinema, "by using Dolby Atmos to place movie sounds anywhere in a movie theater, Gareth Edwards and his team can recreate the world of Godzilla right in the auditorium, making audiences feel as if they, too, are in the middle of the onscreen action".

Last edited by Orbitron; 09-05-2014 at 05:49 PM.
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post #25 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 04:35 PM
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I was pretty disappointed with this reboot but it's difficult to express the reasons why it fell short, without giving away too many spoilers amd ruining it for those who haven't seen it. However, I can say the first act of the film and it's outcome is the downfall of the whole thing. Not to mention, how Godzilla is portrayed. Though visually stunning, and audibly bass heavy, I was somewhat disappointed with the soundtrack overall. It didn't seem to have great dynamic range, though the bass will knock the paint off the walls with a proper setup. In short, worth watching once, but not owning


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post #26 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 04:48 PM
 
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so no Atmos mix like some people were hoping.... or does it not matter
It'll work with the new Dolby Surround "Upmixer". ...To what degree, that I don't know yet.
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post #27 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 04:55 PM
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The PQ and the AQ are the reasons I will buy this movie, not it's content which was really disappointing. The IMax 3D was also lame for what it cost. Before I close the door completely on it's content I'll check it out in 2D, here at The Applehead, now I know what to expect.

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post #28 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 04:55 PM
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Does anyone know if it keeps more of the frame for the larger IMAX shots? There are many shots that where full Digital IMAX frame.
The film was shot anamorphic 2.39, this is the first I've heard about extra headroom on IMAX scenes.

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post #29 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 05:51 PM
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Sound was very good indeed but fell short of the very best IMO , but nonetheless the best part of the entire feature . Character were almost as bad as the Emmerich film's. Binoche had a right idea there.......

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post #30 of 360 Old 09-05-2014, 08:27 PM
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For those of you who like Godzilla, he will return on June 8, 2018 in Godzilla 2, also by the same director.

The previews were phenomenal. The movie was okay. Looking more forward to Jurassic World and Skull Island much more than G2.


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