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PLEASE NOTE: Michael D's is currently in READ ONLY MODE. Anything submitted will simply not be written to the database.
Lots of stuff is still broken, but at least reviews can now be looked up and read.
Earthflight (Blu-ray) (2011)

Earthflight (Blu-ray) (2011)

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Released 5-Apr-2012

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Documentary Main Menu Audio
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 2011
Running Time 357:00
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By None Given

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring None Given
Case Standard Blu-ray
RPI ? Music None Given

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Linear PCM 48/16 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080i
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     I recently reviewed another documentary series from the BBC Natural History Unit which was shown locally on Channel Nine, Great Barrier Reef. Like that show, this one Earthflight, was shown locally in an altered format with the original voiceover being replaced by a local Channel 9 celebrity. In the case of this series the original commentator, David Tennant of Doctor Who fame was replaced by Charles Woolley. I did not catch any of this one on television so cannot comment on the comparison, however, I am certainly glad that this Blu-ray release retains the original commentator.

     This 2011 production was made over three years and features some of the most amazing footage I have seen of birds, better than anything even on previous BBC productions. They have used a variety of cameras and filming techniques to give the viewer as much as possible the sensation that they are actually flying, hunting and diving into water with the birds. In fact, the sixth episode of this six episode series focuses on how the series was filmed, which is fascinating. Each of the preceding episodes covers a region of the world and its bird life, their travels and survival techniques. Fly with a snow goose, hunt with an eagle and dive into the water with ficamera rids. The camera work and photography is truly amazing and needs to be seen to be believed. You would almost think it was impossible to film things such as is included in this series.

     Another magnificent wildlife series from the BBC, which will be enjoyed by the whole family.

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Transfer Quality


    The video quality is excellent despite only being 1080i.

     The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is the original aspect ratio. It is 1080i encoded using AVC. According to the case some of the footage used was originally from standard definition sources, however, this is not obvious during the show.

     The picture was very clear and sharp throughout. The clarity was affected by some mild blur during pans, driven by the interlaced presentation. The colour was excellent, bursting off the screen with amazing vividness.

    There were no noticeable artefacts.

There are subtitles available in English which are clear and easy to read.

     There are no obvious layer changes during playback.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The audio quality is very good.

     This disc contains an English soundtrack in LPCM 2.0. Although front focused, the soundtrack was rich and full incorporating the sounds of nature and the surf well.

     Dialogue was clear and easy to hear and understand, although Tennant's accent caused some minor issues.

     The music by the Stephen Faux & Will Gregory is great, suiting the series well.

     The surround speakers were not used.

     The subwoofer supported the surf sounds.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use



     The menu included music.

Picture Gallery (3:52)

     Stills set to music.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This set is available in the same format in the UK.


     A magnificently shot BBC series which follows birds all over the world.

    The video quality is excellent. The audio quality is very good.

     One minor extra.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Monday, May 21, 2012
Review Equipment
DVDSONY BDP-S760 Blu-ray, using HDMI output
DisplaySharp LC52LE820X Quattron 52" Full HD LED-LCD TV . Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt into BD player. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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