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Discussion Starter · #1 ·


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

Film:


Extras:


Audio/3D Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

89






Studio and Year: Disney - 1994
MPAA Rating: G
Feature running time: 88 minutes
Genre: Family/Animation

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


Audio Format(s): DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish 5.1 (Disney Enhanced) Home Theater Mix
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: James Earl Jones, Matthew Broderick, Nathan Lane, Rowan Atkinson, Madge Sinclair, Jeremy Irons, Moira Kelly, Jonathon Taylor Thomas, Whoopi Goldberg, Cheech Marin, Ernie Sabella, Robert Gullaume
Directed by: Roger Allers & Rob Minkoff
Music by: Hans Zimmer
Written by: Irene Mecchi, Jonathon Roberts, Linda Woolverton
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: October 4, 2011







"Life's greatest adventure is finding your place in the Circle of Life"



Film Synopsis:


Experience the power and majesty that is The Lion King! With its unforgettable story, Academy Award-winning music, breathtaking animation and beloved characters, you'll be inspired by the tale of Simba, the feisty lion cub who "just can't wait to be king," and his journey to claim his place in the "Circle Of Life."

My Take:


An unforgettable story, breathtaking animation, beloved characters and award-winning music sets the stage for The Lion King, a Disney classic that follows the adventures of Simba, the feisty lion cub who just can't wait to be king. But his envious Uncle Scar has plans for his own ascent to the throne, and hatches a dastardly plot that forces Simba's exile from the kingdom. Alone, heartbroken and riddled with guilt, Simba soon joins the escapades and carefree lifestyle of a hilarious meerkat named Timon and his warmhearted warthog pal, Pumbaa, whose mantra is Hakuna Matata, (it means no worries). Simba turns his back on his responsibilities but is shown that he must fulfill his destiny and returns to the Pride Lands to claim his place in the Circle of Life.

Let me start off by saying that The Lion King will forever have special meaning for me. It is the very first film I took my daughter to see in the theater. She was two years old and it was just the two of us. I watched as she sat quietly, mesmerized, not only by the experience but the film itself. We loved the music, the characters, the humor and the uplifting messages of courage, loyalty and hope. Of course we bought it when it came to home video and over the years it became a staple in our home as both of my kids would perform the songs, reenact their favorite scenes and laugh at the same moments. I will admit that I never missed an opportunity to watch it with them and also fell in love with the story and characters. The film inspired an immensely popular, Tony Award-winning Broadway musical (which we took the kids to see back in 2004), that is currently featured on stages worldwide. I haven't seen The Lion King in years and looked forward to experiencing it on Blu-ray. It arrived the other day and my wife and I sat down and watched it. It was like revisiting an old friend. Right from the opening all of the memories came rushing back as we found ourselves immersed in feelings of nostalgia inspired by the music and wonderfully drawn characters. My kids are now 19 and 17, one is away at college and the other is a high school senior. My daughter will be home for a visit in a few weeks and we all plan to sit down and watch The Lion King. It is a timeless tale and wonderful family film that can be enjoyed by all.

Walt Disney was truly a pioneer whose vision has brought us some of the most beloved characters (both animated and living) in American cinema. The Lion King has become a part of our entertainment culture and like many of Disney's animated classics has touched and will continue to touch generations of viewers. This Diamond Edition home video release is another example of their long standing dedication to offering quality home video releases. They have shown a fervent commitment to the Blu-ray format and have consistently offered technically impressive offerings that include format friendly supplements. The Lion King will be available in a 4 Disc Blu-ray Combo pack (reviewed here) which includes the new 3D version, 2 Disc Blu-ray Combo pack, and 8 Disc Trilogy pack which includes 3D, and The Lion King 1 ½ & The Lion King II Simba's Pride on Blu-ray. I am thrilled that this masterpiece has finally arrived in high definition. I can assure you that the wait was well worth it.



Parental Guide:


This film is appropriate for all ages.





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: 92


  • Dynamics:

  • Low frequency extension:

  • Surround Sound presentation:

  • Clarity/Detail:

  • Dialogue Reproduction:




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:

The Lion King 3D comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney featuring 1080p MVC encoded video and DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 5.5 Mbps.

This is a pleasing 3D presentation that features few examples of overtly gimmicky effects but enhances the enjoyment of this classic film. There are a few instances of reach out and touch moments. One occurs when adult Simba's essence floats on the wind (and out into the room) and finds Rafiky. Another is during the chase sequence as Simba tries to keep up with Rafiky as he leads him through the foliage to the water reflection (Rafiky stops him and his hand extends outward from the screen). Detail is well preserved as the image retains its high level of clarity as objects within the frame are delineated and sharp. Depth is appreciable as evidenced by the notable separation of objects and characters layered in the foreground/background which serves to visually draw you in by creating a more discerning sense of virtual space occupied by things of various sizes and shapes. Fidelity appears intact as the film's gorgeous colors, rich contrast and stable blacks are beautifully rendered and natural. Comparing this to the 2D version in terms of the rendering of detail, color reproduction and contrast I found them to be very similar. I didn't notice any distracting signs of ghosting/crosstalk or 3D related anomalies. I thought it looked terrific.

The 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack makes for a great home theater experience. This is a fairly active sound design that truly benefits from the higher resolution that lossless audio offers. Dynamics are top notch as the elements contained within the soundtrack have definitive energy and potent impact. This played hand in hand with its superlative clarity and high level sonic detail. Hans Zimmer's memorable music score plays an integral role in this presentation and the entire surround platform is used to present the instrumental performance. Dialogue is crystalline with appreciable tonal inflection and non sibilant vocal character. The auditory is rich in clarity and detail which allows the subtle environmental sounds in the recording to easily be heard. The mix creates a stable and immersive surround sound experience that achieves excellent balance so that all of the elements present in the recording can be realized. Low frequency detail is authoritative, tight and on occasion prodigious as it frequently engages the room with palpable low level bass response that is sure to get your attention. This isn't an aggressive surround sound mix but it is an articulate one that will have no trouble pleasing discerning audiophiles that enjoy showing off the capabilities of their home theater systems.



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:

Lion King comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 26 Mbps.

With digital animation taking center stage over the last decade or so it is refreshing to come back to Disney's hand drawn animation. Animation can sometimes be difficult to thoroughly judge when evaluating its video quality. There are aspects shared by both high definition and standard definition in terms of the absence of defining texture and lesser dimensional perspective. Objects in backgrounds are two dimensional which isn't a problem but images can appear to have less depth. I have noticed that with good high definition animated video this is still the case but rendering is notably improved. Such is the case here. This is a pristine and reference quality high definition presentation from Disney. The video quality is visually arresting in its depiction of the film's animated subjects. Detail and definition is impeccably rendered as images have a luminous and sparkling clarity that is appreciably dimensional. The attention to detail in the construction of the animated characters physical features as well as objects within each frame is excellent. Colors are richly saturated, vibrant and beautifully rendered. Going from the golden hued accents and greenery of the Pride Lands to the lush, warm and gradationally enriched jungle is notably contrasted and visually stimulating. Primaries are particularly vivid and exhibit visibly delineated stages that bring out subtle degrees of separation. Contrast is spot on as blacks are rich with deep highlights, whites and grays exhibit multi-layered depth and refined detail that give them excellent dimension. Having owned this film on VHS and DVD I can tell you that it has simply never looked better than this on home video. Kudos to Disney!




Bonus Features:


  • Disc 1:

  • 3D Blu-ray version of The Lion King


  • Disc 2:

  • 2D Blu-ray version of The Lion King (plus bonus supplements)

  • Audio commentary with producer Don Hahn and co-directors Rob Minkoff and Roger Allers

  • (HD) Disney's Second Screen App - Transforms the at-home movie watching experience by empowering viewers with the ability to engage with film content on multiple media platforms and bring them to life in their own hands at the touch of a button. By simply downloading the Second Screen App onto an internet-connected computer or iPad and synching it to the movie, consumers will instantly be able to dive deeper into the film by engaging with fun interactive elements like games, storyboards, concept art, animation tests and more.

  • (HD) Bloopers & outtakes - 3 minutes

  • (HD) Backstage Disney: Diamond Edition:

    1. Pride of The Lion King - 38 minute documentary
    2. The Lion King: A memoir - Don Hahn - 19 minute retrospective
    3. Deleted/Alternate scenes with introduction by co-directors Roger Allers & Rob Minkoff
  • (HD) Music and more:

    1. Sing-Along-Mode - In movie fun
    2. The morning report: Extended scene
  • (HD) Interactive Art Gallery (4 segments)

  • Disney's Virtual Vault ( via BD-Live) - Over 100 minutes of previously released content included deleted scenes, storyboard comparisons, featurettes, early concepts and more


  • Disc 3:

  • Bonus DVD of The Lion King


  • Disc 4:

  • Digital Copy of The Lion King





Final Thoughts:


The Lion King is a beloved Disney animated feature and personal favorite that brings back fond memories of watching it with my children when they were little. I am happy to report that its highly anticipated release in high definition is a superb one that features reference quality audio/video that makes for an enriching experience in either standard or 3D Blu-ray formats. This four disc offering contains a host of rewarding bonus features including exclusive and interactive features that present fans with a great way to enhance the high definition experience. This set is a must have and gets my highest recommendation. Enjoy!















Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:



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

JVC PK-AG1 3D Glasses

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 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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"Can't wait!" - Bart Scott
 

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I might have to get this one. Thanks!
 

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Wonder if the release date will get pushed back a week since it's still burning up the theaters. Amazon still listing the 4th.
 

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I love this movie, probably more than I care to admit to my wife and daughter. I can see myself watching this one alone many times after our initial family viewing.
 

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Ralph...thanks for all the great reviews. What am I supposed to do? I already plucked down my cash for an RS-20 a couple years ago. No 3D in my home theater for awhile.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by javanpohl /forum/post/21016013


Considering a good portion of your review mentions pop-out effects, why is dimensionality rated so low? (I'm assuming dimension or "beyond the screen" refers to pop-out.) Is it because they were "gimmicky?"


Greetings,


Actually the review states that there are few instances of beyond the screen effects but there are several moments worth mentioning which is why I referenced them. Otherwise things don't venture beyond the screen's borders.


Regards,
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by dave1216 /forum/post/21016222


Ralph...thanks for all the great reviews. What am I supposed to do? I already plucked down my cash for an RS-20 a couple years ago. No 3D in my home theater for awhile.

Greetings,


Pick up the 2D version and enjoy your RS20 Dave!



Regards,
 

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Ralph,


Good & insightful review, thanks!


I was hoping you'd touch on some of the discrepancies between this release and previous ones, which are mentioned in some of the threads here.


I caught this release in the theater, so I'm fairly certain the color palette changes are intentional, but what about things like missing shadows, clouds being removed, etc? Are these changes present in both 2d & 3d versions? Disney always does separate transfers for 2d & 3d; how do the two versions compare to each other in detail & clarity?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts /forum/post/21016237


Greetings,


Pick up the 2D version and enjoy your RS20 Dave!



Regards,

Or future proof (as much as you can for now since there will always be improvements like 4K) and just spend $5 more for the 3D version.
This way when you do upgrade to 3D you will already have some software.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebard /forum/post/21016718


Ralph,


Good & insightful review, thanks!


I was hoping you'd touch on some of the discrepancies between this release and previous ones, which are mentioned in some of the threads here.


I caught this release in the theater, so I'm fairly certain the color palette changes are intentional, but what about things like missing shadows, clouds being removed, etc? Are these changes present in both 2d & 3d versions? Disney always does separate transfers for 2d & 3d; how do the two versions compare to each other in detail & clarity?

Greetings,


Here are some comments taken from my review:

Quote:
Comparing this to the 2D version in terms of the rendering of detail, color reproduction and contrast I found them to be very similar.

Quite frankly I didn't compare this version to the DVD to check for missing shadows and clouds. I just don't have the time. I see no evidence of fidelity reducing tampering etc.


Regards,
 

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Great movie overall and good for family watching.


Just waiting for Amazon to start shipping this.


Great review as always Ralph.


Cheers
 

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Thanks! This is a day 1 purchase for me. I'm actually getting 2 copies just because...


Lion King came out when I was a kid and I have very fond memories of it.
 

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I will pick this up for sure, but am disappointed that Disney has has chosen to use their second app feature. I do have a computer with 2 screens, but the syncing of the movie playback and the 2nd screen app material can be problematic [it was for the previous movie that they released with this feature]. I also think this is a way for them to keep the disc count down or keep some material from being permanently released to the masses in some form. The other issue is what if the site for the app/material is done away with? Still prefer Cine Explore over this method!
 

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It would be nice if you could add to your review, that disney screwed up the transfer by "forgetting" the clouds after the "remember who you are scene". Maybe if enough people are made aware, Disney considers correcting it:


Link to Discussion


It can't be intentional, since it ruins the whole scene...


Thanks!
 

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I need a whole separate projector for 3D because their ARs are 1.78! Optoma HD3300 or Epson her eI come!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Siran /forum/post/21019582


It would be nice if you could add to your review, that disney screwed up the transfer by "forgetting" the clouds after the "remember who you are scene". Maybe if enough people are made aware, Disney considers correcting it:


Link to Discussion


It can't be intentional, since it ruins the whole scene...


Thanks!

Greetings,


I couldn't say one way or the other whether the retreating clouds situation is intentional or not. I compared the new release to my Platinum Edition DVD. I have read your comments and don't share your opinion regarding how this "ruins the entire scene" and makes the release a "deal breaker". I like that scene as well and feel that its essence is fully intact.


I would not hold my breath waiting for a "corrected" release. Honestly, let's move on and enjoy The Lion King.



Regards,
 
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