Terrors of Tasmania (2004)

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Released 3-Feb-2005

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Documentary Main Menu Audio
Featurette-Interview With David Parer And Elizabeth Parer-Cook
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 50:39 (Case: 57)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By None Given
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring None Given
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $29.95 Music None Given


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Thanks to the cartoon character, the most famous thing to come out of Tasmania globally is probably the Tasmanian Devil, although Errol Flynn might argue otherwise. This documentary sets out to explain in more detail what Tasmanian Devils are really like and whether they are the crazy vicious things they are made out to be. This documentary was made by Australians David Parer & Elizabeth Parer-Cook, who have made many well known and award-winning documentaries such as one I reviewed earlier, Wolves of the Sea. Terrors of Tasmania is a co-production between the ABC and National Geographic Television and was made in 2004. The show is narrated by Eric Bana in a very blokey and slightly monotonal way.

    It focuses on a wild female, Manganinni, how she chooses a mate, mating rituals (which are all a bit rough and aggressive), birth and rearing of her pups. Some captive Tasmanian Devils are used to provide more detail about the mate choosing process. Also covered are the various threats to their existence in the wild such as a dangerous virus which is killing them, human interaction, feeding habits and their relationship to other carnivores such as quolls.

    This is a high quality documentary which includes some wonderful photography, especially the detail of the inside of wild Devil's burrows. It does get a PG rating for adult themes, which is probably deserved considering some of the gynaecological and slightly distasteful details about various bodily fluids and how one goes about checking for them. Recommended but not for the young ones.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is very good, bordering on excellent.

    The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is the original aspect ratio.

    The picture was very clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise. Shadow detail was excellent.

    The colour was wonderful, rich and solid throughout.

    I noticed one spot at 20:58 and some very minor aliasing at 34:55 on some wires. Nothing to complain about really.

    There are no subtitles.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The audio quality is very good.

    This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 224 Kb/s.

    The narration was clear and easy to understand.

    The music by Ricky Edwards is very good and sounds excellent in this transfer.

    The surround speakers and subwoofer were not used.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Menu

    The menu included music but was otherwise very simple.

Interview - David Parer & Elizabeth Parer-Cook (26:29)

   This is actually a complete episode of George Negus Tonight, an ABC show, which features a long interview with the couple who made this film. They discuss how they got into filmmaking, how they met, their careers and environmental views. Interesting and a worthwhile inclusion.

R4 vs R1

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

    This disc is only available in Region 4 but is coded for all regions.

Summary

    A quality documentary about Tasmanian Devils focusing on their reproductive habits.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is very good.

    The disc has an interview with the creators as its only extra.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Saturday, February 25, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersBose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)

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