Okay. Ran this through the system last night (the 2D collectible tin edition) with the DTS-HD MA 7.1 track playing in 5.1...
First: I'd like to echo the comment from another member here who mentioned the film didn't hold the same magic or sense of awe as the first film did -- I totally agree with this, though I don't think it was a bad film because of it; did it feel like we've been here before? Yes. Do the CGI effects honestly look very similar to what Spielberg was dabbling in on his 1990s original...even though we're in 2015? They do. But I like the way the plot touched upon and paid homage to the original what with the references to Hammond, the jeeps they end up finding that belonged to "Jurassic Park" and the end chase sequences in which characters and then the hybrid dinosaur run through what appeared to be the Visitor's Center from the first film. What I didn't like? B.D. Wong as the only actor to reprise a role from the first one (I always thought it would have been so cool if Jeff Goldblum came back as Ian Malcom and was like "Damn it, I TOLD Hammond about this place!!"
) and that he kind of goes "bad guy rogue" by wanting to steal the embryos, Bryce Dallas Howard's annoying running-in-expensive-high-heels character and the two annoying mop-headed muppets that were the lead kids.
But nothing will ever touch Spielberg's original -- and even Michael Crichton's novel it was based on, which I read and which delved into a lot more than the film could -- in terms of sheer magic, wonder, sense of awe and astonishment and scope...I STILL get goosebumps when Sam Neill is turned towards the creatures eating from the trees in that first one and his jaw drops to the floor in amazement as Hammond says, "....welcome to Jurassic Park...."
As for the disc, it looks like I am either going to have to eat proverbial crow or look into getting a better system -- I had mentioned in I think it was the Age of Ultron
thread that if Jurassic World
's audio track doesn't work for me, "I give up"...well, folks, I don't understand it myself, but to be honest this track ALSO didn't blow my skirt up. Don't get me wrong -- sonics were heavier and more aggressive than, of course, Age of Ultron
, but it just didn't really floor me. From the very beginning, I had to crank this Master Audio track up pretty high to make out dialogue comfortably, and by the time the dinosaur attacks came (even the early scenes with the "trained" raptors) I didn't really experience any ground-shaking, wall-busting LFE or incredible surround activity (yes, I AM calibrated). The only time this mix really heated up in MY system was towards the end when the flying dinosaurs take flight and begin attacking the guests at the park and when the hybrid creature stomps around, finally battling the T-Rex at the very end...would you believe it if I told you these sequences DIDN'T resonate with wall-breaking LFE in my room? They STOMPED and had some WALLOP, yes, but nothing like I was really expecting. To be honest, I'd put it in the category of the first film's DVD DTS mix, which I always thought was a bit overrated (unlike the LFE on The Haunting
's DTS-ES mix that can TRULY break some subs in half). To me, Godzilla
's DTS-HD MA track had more bass than this, but it was definitely "sloppier" in delivery, whereas the LFE on the Jurassic World
track seemed smoother and better controlled.
I am truly beginning to wonder if my AVR is "doing something" to these 7.1 tracks when playing them in 5.1 (something that was suggested to me with regard to this particular Onkyo model and its tendency to somehow "dumb down" the sound when 7.1 tracks are played back in standard 5.1), but then I cannot explain why Age of Ultron
sounded crappy on my setup like everyone else's; honestly, Jurassic World
seemed to have that "take the blanket off the audio" effect I have been experiencing with other 7.1-encoded DTS-HD MA mixes...perhaps my AVR needs a firmware update (though I don't think that is what's going on here) or perhaps I just need a gear upgrade (I DEFINITELY need a new sub; but the sub I have DOES dig deep and shake the walls when called upon, such as in rockers like War of the Worlds, U-571, The Incredible Hulk
and even Live Free or Die Hard
)...but I just wasn't knocked out by this title's audio.
The VIDEO, on the other hand, was largely spectacular (the 2D version) with sunlit, outdoor sequences depicting the park and the island glowing in eye-opening clarity, color saturation and sheer depth of field; indeed, some shots were so razor-sharp you could make out nearly every blade on a palm tree, while at other times the depth perception took on a three-dimensional quality that was quite startling. In more than one instance, Bryce Dallas Howard's stunning red hair could be seen with flyaway frizzies that the hair and makeup department didn't fix or left in for effect; either way, the result was hyper-realistic, lending a real you-are-there experience. Some sequences, like on all video transfers, switched to flat at times, rendering skin details a bit crushed as if some DNR was applied, but on the whole there was nothing wrong with the 1080p encode on this oddly-ratioed widescreen transfer (leaving most viewers with the extremely small letterboxing areas on top and bottom of the image).
The PACKAGING I give top ratings to -- for this Limited Edition Tin version -- as it looks pretty awesome sitting on my Blu-ray shelf facing outwards as a "special" title; unpacking it and getting to the discs inside the oddly-shaped cardboard holders was another matter, but it can be forgiven. Nice job here by Universal.