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

Film:


Extras:


Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

95






Studio and Year: Warner - 2010
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 97 minutes
Genre: Animation/Family

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, English/French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Helen Mirren, Geoffrey Rush, Jim Sturgess, Hugo Weaving, Joel Edgerton, Sam Neill, Anthony LaPaglia, Emily Barclay, Ryan Kwanten
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Music by: David Hircshfelder
Written by: John Orloff & Emil Stern based on the novels Guardians of the Ga'Hoole by Kathryn Lasky
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: December 14, 2010







"On his way to finding a legendhe will become one"



Film Synopsis:


Director Zack Snyder (300, Watchmen) makes his animation debut with this fantasy adventure based on the beloved books. Young owl Soren marvels at tales of the Guardians of Ga'Hoole, mythic winged warriors who battled to save all owl kind from the evil Pure Ones. When he and brother Kludd fall into the talons of the Pure Ones, it's up to Soren to make a daring escape with the help of other brave owls and seek out the Great Tree, home of the Guardians.





My Take:


Legend of the Guardians: The owls of Ga'Hoole is based on the first three volumes (The Capture, The Journey, and The Rescue) of the series Guardians of Ga'Hoole by Kathryn Lasky. I knew nothing of the book series going into this review but after seeing it prior knowledge isn't a prerequisite. The fantasy/adventure based story revolves around Soren, a young adventurous barn owl who loves hearing stories from his father about the exploits of the legendary Guardians of Ga'Hoole, a mythic alliance of owls that are sworn to protect the owl kingdom. When Soren and his older brother Kludd are stolen away from their home by the minions of Metalbeak, an evil owl bent on settling an old score by building an army of Pure Ones to wage war against the mythical Guardians of Ga'Hoole, the two brothers find themselves divided. Kludd is the older of the two and sibling rivalry has left him resentful and jealous of Soren. After learning the seriousness of their captor's intent Soren plans to escape in the hopes of finding and warning the Guardians. Meanwhile Kludd revels in the new found attention he receives as a Pure One and falls in with them. Presented with an opportunity Soren manages to escape along with Gylfie, another young owlet captured by the Pure Ones. They set out on their dangerous quest which will require the help of several new found friends and an as yet unfulfilled prophecy. For Soren finding the Guardians is a dream come true, little does he know that it will ultimately be them who will need him the most.

This is an enjoyable fairytale that is sure to strike a chord with younger audiences although I think there is enough to keep parents interested as well. It plays out very much like most stories of its kind and features good, evil, and the underlying purpose of the actions that guide the hero. There is plenty of action, a little thematic drama/suspense and a bevy of furry characters to help move things along. The depiction of the Cain/Able type relationship between Soren and Kludd is similar to those we have seen in other films and plays an integral role in the course of events that transpire. While the story's premise remains consistent the plot's focus becomes diluted with smaller subplots and the introduction of too many lesser characters to make it thoroughly satisfying. In spite of that I felt that the uplifting nature of the story and the continuity of its core elements endured. The outcome is an entertaining and charming animated family film that has something to offer audiences of all ages.



Parental Guide:


The rating is for some sequences of scary action.





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: 90


  • Dynamics:

  • Low frequency extension:

  • Surround Sound presentation:

  • Clarity/Detail:

  • Dialogue Reproduction:





Video: 100


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

  • Resolution/Clarity:

  • Black level/Shadow detail:

  • Color reproduction:

  • Fleshtones:

  • Compression:

Legend of the Guardians: The owls of Ga'Hoole comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Home video featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 21 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.7 Mbps.

This is a reference quality high definition video presentation that among the best that I have seen. Images are painted with incredible three dimensional perspective that imparts a near infinite sense of depth. Intricate details such as the separation of individual strands of hair or the flowing of feathers as they blow in the breeze are incredibly lifelike. I was able to fully appreciate the attention to detail that went into the visual design of the individual characters. Colors are rich and beautifully crafted as the deep shades of sepia are splashed with golden accents and invigorated by eye catching primaries that look succulent in high definition. Contrast and brightness are spot on and strike a wonderful balance that highlights the multi-layered grays and gradational whites within the images onscreen. Low level sequences have superb depth of field and resolvable shadow delineation. Blacks are deep without compromise to fidelity and exhibit excellent dynamic range. This high definition encoding delivers image quality that offers visually arresting depth along with a luminous and sparkling clarity that result in a flawless presentation that simply looks stunning.

The 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack presented here is an impressive one that utilizes the entire system to create a theater like experience. This is an engaging and dynamically energized surround mix that features high level sonic detail, superb directional correlation, seamless integration, and rhythmically charged bass extension. Dialogue is definitive and appreciably lucid through the center channel as it reaches far into the room. It's located just slightly in front of the left/right speakers within the acoustic space it occupies in the soundfield. I never had any trouble distinguishing even the slightest changes in the pitch or tonal inflection of voices. This is a complex sound design that is loaded with various sound effects, spatial cues, music, and dialogue. Each was clearly represented with enriching clarity, detail and appropriate sound field placement.



Bonus Features:

  • (HD) True Guardians of the earth - 15 minute documentary hosted by Digger and Rico Rodriguez

  • (HD) Maximum kid mode - Explore the world of Ga'Hoole - In movie experience

  • (HD) Legend of the Guardians: armor up with Soren and Eglantine - Interactive costume designer

  • (HD) Match the owl treats - Interactive matching game

  • (HD) Legend of the Guardians: Rise of the Guardians - 2 minute alternate scene

  • (HD) Looney Tunes Fur of flying - Short animated feature (3 minutes)

  • (HD) Artwork galleries (4 segments)

  • (HD) To the sky music video by Owl City - 3 minutes

  • BD-Live enabled

  • Bonus DVD/Digital Copy



Final Thoughts:


Legend of the Guardians: The owls of Ga'Hoole is based on the first three volumes (The Capture, The Journey, and The Rescue) of the series Guardians of Ga'Hoole by Kathryn Lasky. I had a few quibbles with the screenplay but still found this to be an entertaining and charming animated family film that has something to offer audiences of all ages. Its debut on Blu-ray Disc from Warner Home Video delivers mesmerizing high definition video quality that ranks among the best animated imagery that I have seen on the format. Superb lossless surround sound and an apropos set of bonus features round out a wonderful package that has found a home in my Blu-ray collection.















Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:



JVC DLA-RS50 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector

Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100 16x9 Screen

Anthem AVM50v THX Ultra 2 Preamp/Video Processor

Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier

Oppo BDP-83 Universal disc/Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)

Samsung BD-C7900 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 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, VizionWare, Audioquest, Better Cables, Best Deal Cables - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling

Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package
 

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Another excellent 3D presentation here, although slightly dark as is expected. But very effective for the flying sequences.
 

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Was debating if i should see this one or not and after seeing a few trailers i didn't really quite grab my attention. But reading this review i think i'll definitely be collecting this.


Cheers
 

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Great review M. Potts, as always.

This is my nephew Christmas present. I hope he will enjoy it and I hope to see it on my system.
 

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I picked this up from Amazon earlier in the week - both the movie and the 3D experience is very enjoyable. As one person pointed out, the flying scenes are fantastic. The quality of the CGI is superb as well. I found myself taken aback by the quality of the owls and how well each of their feathers were rendered.
 

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Nice review, sounds like a winner. I saw the trailer for this at the theater. The video and intensity were on a whole separate level compared to all the other kid movie trailers. This is in my five year olds stocking but I wonder if it will be too intense?
 

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Discussion Starter #8

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoCaboNow /forum/post/19691010


Nice review, sounds like a winner. I saw the trailer for this at the theater. The video and intensity were on a whole separate level compared to all the other kid movie trailers. This is in my five year olds stocking but I wonder if it will be too intense?

Greetings,


I think it will be okay.



Regards,
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by javanpohl /forum/post/19691449


Never before have I watched a movie at home that made me so wish for a tv larger than my 50" Panny. This simply begs to be watched on a large screen. Can't wait until I can have a dedicated home theater.

Greetings,


Hopefully the wait won't be a long one.



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This one looks great in 3D from start to finish. More for kids than adults, but the visuals will keep you interested.
 

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I didn´t catch this one in the theaters and was going to pass on the bd... But given the outstanding review given by Ralph I will probably give it a spin....
 

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Thanks again Ralph.


What the guy ^^ said.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzalc3 /forum/post/19694921


I didn´t catch this one in the theaters and was going to pass on the bd... But given the outstanding review given by Ralph I will probably give it a spin....

Christian,


This is one of the best looking Blu-rays I've seen. Really, it's that good.


Great review Ralph, although I thought the audio was one of the better sounding discs of 2010, but given your advanced age your hearing must be starting to go
(Only kidding of course...just having a little fun
)
 

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Discussion Starter #16

Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzalc3 /forum/post/19694921


I didn´t catch this one in the theaters and was going to pass on the bd... But given the outstanding review given by Ralph I will probably give it a spin....

Greetings,


Be sure to post your impressions Chris.



Regards,
 

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Discussion Starter #17

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn /forum/post/19695054


Christian,


This is one of the best looking Blu-rays I've seen. Really, it's that good.


Great review Ralph, although I thought the audio was one of the better sounding discs of 2010, but given your advanced age your hearing must be starting to go
(Only kidding of course...just having a little fun
)

Greetings,


Eh?




Regards,
 

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Thanks David and Ralph! I will probably buy it here while I am on holidays on my home country...Happy holidays!


Please send my regards to your Family, David!
 

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I didn't think I would like this movie, but the picture and sound drew me in, and although the end was as I figured, I really enjoyed the movie. It looked and sounded so good, the 3D aspect didn't even come to mind. Kinda like Coraline, the theater 3D was an enjoyable novelty, but at home it wasn't necessary.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzalc3 /forum/post/19696517


Thanks David and Ralph! I will probably buy it here while I am on holidays on my home country...Happy holidays!


Please send my regards to your Family, David!

Chris,


Same to you and your family. I need to add you to my Christmas list. Check your email today!


Best,
 
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