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

Film:


Extras:


Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

87






Studio and Year: Disney - 2008
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 99 Minutes
Genre: Comedy

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Adam Sandler, Keri Russell, Guy Pearce, Russell Brand, Richard Griffiths, Courtney Cox, Jonathan Pryce, Lucy Lawless
Directed by: Adam Shankman
Music by: Rupert Gregson-Williams
Written by: Matt Lopez & Tim Herlihy
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: April 7, 2009







"Believe in happy endings"



Film Synopsis:


As a handyman at the hotel his father used to own, Skeeter Bronson (Adam Sandler) spends his days changing light bulbs and competing with the hotel's smarmy manager (Guy Pearce) for the attention of the new owner's beautiful, hard-partying daughter, Violet (Theresa Palmer). When his sister Wendy (Courteney Cox) asks Skeeter to babysit her kids for a week while she's out of town, Skeeter entertains his niece and nephew with elaborate, original bedtime stories that transport them to exotic locales, including ancient Greece, the Wild West and outer space. When he tries to help his family by telling one outlandish tale after another, it's the kids' unexpected contributions that turn all of their lives upside down.




My Take:


Bedtime stories has a kid friendly premise about a frustrated hotel maintenance man who longs to fulfill a promise made years ago that would make him hotel manager. The hotel was once owned by Marty Bronson (Jonathan Pryce) but he wasn't the best businessman and had to sell to Barry Nottingham (Richard Griffiths) to keep from going under. Marty always saw the hotel as a place for his son and daughter to grow up in and eventually run one day. Barry promised Marty that when his son Skeeter (Adam Sandler) was old enough he would run the hotel. Years later the hotel has grown into a palatial, money making concern and Skeeter does work there but only as the maintenance man. Skeeter is at odds with the current hotel manager Kendall (Guy Pearce) who sucks up to Nottingham every chance he gets. When Nottignham announces that the current hotel will be closed in favor of a larger more upscale one to be built nearby Skeeter sees the opportunity to try and fulfill his dream of running it. The problem is that Kendall is dating Nottingham's daughter Violet and seems to be a shoe in for the new post. His sister Wendy is now a divorced elementary school principal that has two young children. She and Skeeter have fallen out of touch in the last few years but she calls him to help watch her children when she needs to leave town for a week. Her friend Jill (Keri Russell) will watch the children during the day and Skeeter will watch them in the evenings.

Skeeter begins to sit for his niece and nephew Bobbi and Patrick. One night he tells them a bedtime story of his own creation. The kids don't care for his version and add their own spin on it, one of which involved it raining gumballs. The next day, while driving to work, it rains gumballs on Skeeter. He soon finds that aspects of the stories he tells the kids come true but only the portions that they add to it. He begins to tell the kids stories and tries to shape them in a way that will allow him to become rich and/or get the hotel manager's job at the hotel. Things don't go quite as planned when Skeeter's tales, which are taken from ancient Greece, the wild west, and futuristic outer space, have unexpected/unexplained consequences.

This film had a good idea that starts out well but collapses into silly set pieces, a half baked and contrived romantic spin and ultimately a story that ended up feeling like an incomplete thought (clichéd ending and all). I must admit that there were some good moments and the two kids made it more palatable as they were simply adorable. The casting was good but couldn't overcome the shallow story and bland script. I do think that young viewers will get a kick out of Bugsy the bug eyed guinea pig and the fun story sequences that transport the cast back and forward in time. I enjoy fantasy themed movies and while this was light hearted and cute it had an uneven story that left me wanting.




Parental Guide:


The rating is for mild 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)


Audio: 84


  • Dynamics:

  • Low frequency extension:

  • Surround Sound presentation:

  • Clarity/Detail:

  • Dialogue Reproduction:





Video: 90


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

  • Resolution/Clarity:

  • Black level/Shadow detail:

  • Color reproduction:

  • Fleshtones:

  • Compression:

Bedtime Stories comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 23 mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.4 mbps.

This is an excellent video presentation that boasts plenty of high level detail, strong contrast, deeply saturated colors, and three dimensional acuity. Blacks are punchy and stand out when onscreen with mixed content. Visual perspective in low lighting and darkened areas is estimable. The combination gives dark scenes appreciable depth. Images are dynamic, boldly colorful, clearly drawn, eye catching and perfectly suited for the source material. The lossless DTS-HD MA soundtrack has potent dynamic range and detail rich clarity that enables the detection of subtle background sounds within the acoustic environment created by the surround mix. Dialogue is firmly planted in the center channel and clearly renders voices and effects with appropriate distinction and balance within the front soundstage. Low frequency effects aren't intense but the subwoofer is kept busy as it works in tandem with the rest of the system to convey the low level bass and dynamic impact during the story/fantasy based sequences. The music score along with well integrated discrete and ambient sound effects plays an intricate role in this involving and sometimes active surround mix that enhances its level of enjoyment. I found it to be excellent overall and appreciated its attention to detail and lack of ostentatious.



Bonus Features:

  • (HD) Until gravity do us part - 4 minute featurette that looks at the outer space fight sequence

  • (HD) To all the little people - 5 minute behind the scenes feature on the two young stars of Bedtime stories

  • (HD) It's Bugsy - 3 minute featurette on the guinea pigs that played our bug eyed friend/pet Bugsy

  • (HD) Laughter is contagious: Outtakes/Bloopers - 6 minutes

  • (HD) Cutting room floor: 12 Deleted scenes

  • Disney BD-Live enabled

  • DisneyFile Digital Copy - Includes a standard definition version of the film that can be downloaded from a compatible PC to a portable playback device

  • Bonus Disc - DVD version of Bedtime Stories





Final Thoughts:


Bedtime stories is a cute, light hearted comedy that unfortunately falls below the mark set by other fantasy themed Disney films. Its charm will appeal more to young viewers but others will find its uneven story and contrived script to be lacking. On a positive note it looks and sounds wonderful on Blu-ray Disc. As a bonus Disney has included both a standard definition DVD version of the movie, and Digital Copy which allows you load the movie onto a portable media palyer to take it on the go. If the kids want to see it I would recommend you rent it.














Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:



JVC DLA-RS20 1080p High Definition Front Projector

Carada Precision Brilliant White 96" Screen

Oppo 970HD universal disc DVD Player (480i HDMI)

Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)

Panasonic DMP-BD55K Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)

Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)

Marantz DV7001 Universal Disc Player

Denon AVR 5308CI THX Ultra 2 Preamp/Video Processor

B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 seven Channel amplifier

Philips TSU9400 Pro Series Touch Panel 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, VizionWare, Audioquest, Best Deal Cables - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling

Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package
 

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Ralph, I respect your opinion but I would politely disagree with your analysis. I thought this was a great family movie and the best Sandler movie in years. I agree there was a bit of randomness to the set pieces and stories but that's what makes it original...the kids would add some random ending to each story. I think kids will find it delightful. This rather old kid did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rach /forum/post/16181083


Ralph, I respect your opinion but I would politely disagree with your analysis. I thought this was a great family movie and the best Sandler movie in years. I agree there was a bit of randomness to the set pieces and stories but that's what makes it original...the kids would add some random ending to each story. I think kids will find it delightful. This rather old kid did.

Greetings,


Rach, thanks for sharing your impressions. I didn't dislike Bedtime stories and I agree that kids will find it delightful.



Cheers,
 

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From the trailer in BOLT BD,I thought this one worth buying,also I guessed this is a good movie for everyone.
 

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Thought this was a good/decent movie. Not sure if i'll be getting a copy though since it didn't leave me with the "wow" impression.
 

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Ralph, I still haven't watched the movie yet (severe thunderstorms last night), but I finally got this disc to load on the BD35 by prohibiting BDLive internet access in the players setup menu.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore /forum/post/16244801


Ralph, I still haven't watched the movie yet (severe thunderstorms last night), but I finally got this disc to load on the BD35 by prohibiting BDLive internet access in the players setup menu.


Greetings,


That is strange Chad. When I first received Bolt there was a similar issue that Disney resolved on their end which allowed it to finally load. As I told you I didn't experience any problems at all with it loading on the BD-55.


Be sure to let me know what you thought once you watch it.



Cheers,
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore /forum/post/16244801


Ralph, I still haven't watched the movie yet (severe thunderstorms last night), but I finally got this disc to load on the BD35 by prohibiting BDLive internet access in the players setup menu.

I had same problem with my first copy of the movie. I went and exchanged it, will try the new copy and see if it does same thing. My guess is it will. Tried the first copy in 2 of my BD35's and then in my Samsung 1500 and it was fine in the 1500.
 

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Ralph, did the Bolt loading problem affect only select players or all makes and models?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore /forum/post/16249316


Ralph, did the Bolt loading problem affect only select players or all makes and models?

Greetings,


Chad, as far as I know it only affected the Panasonic BD-35/55 players.



Regards,
 

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I wonder why a net problem would have been discriminating of hardware. That seems kinda like an internet site loading on all computers except HP models. Though, since disallowing internet access in the player fixed it, it sounds like Bedtime Stories may suffer a similar bug. I thought the 55 and 35 used the same firmware, but unless you didn't have the latest version (2.8? came out about a week ago) when you reviewed Bedtime Stories, they must be different inside.


I think I'm going to leave my ethernet set to prohibited. I only use BDLive for registering the occasional Sony disc anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore /forum/post/16250347


I wonder why a net problem would have been discriminating of hardware. That seems kinda like an internet site loading on all computers except HP models. Though, since disallowing internet access in the player fixed it, it sounds like Bedtime Stories may suffer a similar bug. I thought the 55 and 35 used the same firmware, but unless you didn't have the latest version (2.8? came out about a week ago) when you reviewed Bedtime Stories, they must be different inside.


I think I'm going to leave my ethernet set to prohibited. I only use BDLive for registering the occasional Sony disc anyway.


Greetings,


Chad, I have the latest FW (which was different when I reviewed it) and I just tied it and it loaded with no problem. I believe that both models use the same FW.



Regards,
 

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For a family movie this is a great film. Definitely for the kids and adults of all ages. One of the funniest Adam Sandlers movie. Definitely collectors item.


Cheers
 

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I have the BD-50 player. It would just spit out the disk with version 1.5.


Went to the Panasonic web site to download version 1.8.


Loaded it and the movie and all the preview played fine.


Strange thing: I downloaded 1.8 BUT now the version on the BD-50 says 1.7?


Someone at Panasonice needs to fix their web site.


This is a great Family movie, excellent all around quality. BD picture and sound were very good. Black detail was very good and the sound was crystal clear
 

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I'll have to try it again without ethernet prohibited. Maybe Disney has fixed the problem on their end since I last inserted the disc.
 

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Chad,


I had a problem with "BOLT" too in the BD55, but it worked just fine in the Oppo BD-83. When I unplugged the Ethernet cable, it would load in the BD55. For "Bedtime Stories," I just played it in the Oppo, not the BD55.


How's life?


Best,
 

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Hi Dave. I tried unplugging the cable as well as removing and even clearing the SD card. Neither worked for Bedtime Stories; though I may have needed to reset the player too. I still haven't checked to see if it might work now without prohibiting BDLive in setup. No biggie; as long as I can get the movie itself to play seamlessly at the full 24p (reference to Panny's previous Paramount/24p bug on the BD30) and with lossless sound (if supported by the disc), I'm happy. Still wish I had the PS3 in the HT as a backup. But I was playing too many videogames online.


By the time I got around to watching Bolt, it had been out long enough for Disney to fix the problem I guess, as that disc loaded fine.


Chad


PS. Dave, as soon as I find your email, I'll send you my new contact info.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore /forum/post/16256760


Hi Dave. I tried unplugging the cable as well as removing and even clearing the SD card. Neither worked for Bedtime Stories; though I may have needed to reset the player too. I still haven't checked to see if it might work now without prohibiting BDLive in setup. No biggie; as long as I can get the movie itself to play seamlessly at the full 24p (reference to Panny's previous Paramount/24p bug on the BD30) and with lossless sound (if supported by the disc), I'm happy. Still wish I had the PS3 in the HT as a backup. But I was playing too many videogames online.


By the time I got around to watching Bolt, it had been out long enough for Disney to fix the problem I guess, as that disc loaded fine.


Chad


PS. Dave, as soon as I find your email, I'll send you my new contact info.

I just sent you an email...if it's changed, leave me a PM.
 
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