Menu Animation & Audio
Audio Commentary-Director - Kevin Munroe
|Year Of Production||2007|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (48:41)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Kevin Munroe|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
Sarah Michelle Gellar
James Arnold Taylor
John Di Maggio
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||2.40:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||No|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
My four and a half year old recently came home from pre-school carrying on incessantly about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles which he had never seen but knew his friends were excited about. This excitement has been maintained over quite a long period of time now, so, in addition to his bed now having a TMNT doona cover, I have decided to review this disc. Unfortunately (for him at least) he will not be able to watch this film for a few years yet as I personally don't consider it suitable for a child as young as him. To my mind the tone is a bit too dark, there is a bit too much teenage angst and far too many scary monsters which would keep him up at night. To my mind this film (which earned a local PG rating) is more suitable for the 7-11 age group than pre-schoolers.
TMNT is sort of a remake, sort of a sequel to the older films and TV series from the 80s and 90s. Obviously, the main basis for all the TV and Cinema efforts has been the original comic books. In this film, the relationship between the four turtles has somewhat disintegrated with Leonardo off in the jungle 'finding himself', Donatello having started a tech support company, Michelangelo doing children's parties as Cowabunga Carl and Raphael turning into a vigilante by night and a slob by day. April, their friend, finds Leonardo and coaxes him back to New York to make up with his brothers. At the same time as this is going on an age old baddie, Yaotl, who is immortal is attempting to bring his original generals back to life. It would seem that many thousands of years ago, he opened a portal to another dimension which turned his generals to stone and released 13 monsters into the world. In order to revive his generals he must return the 13 monsters to the other dimension when the portal reopens. Accordingly, he hires the Foot Clan (old enemies of the Turtles) to help capture the monsters. Obviously, the Turtles need to get their teamwork back together and fight these new threats to New York, from the sewers.
Fans of the original shows and movies will most likely get a kick out of this CGI new version of the popular characters. From the perspective of a non-fan, I found this film to be full of enormous plot-holes and quite derivative of many other sci-fi films including The Mummy, The Fifth Element and even bits of The Matrix films and Highlander. From a technical perspective, there is certainly some impressive CGI work here, especially the turtles themselves and scenes such as the rainy battle between Leonardo and Raphael. This did not really extend to the style of the humans as they did not really seem to fit with the turtles and jarred somewhat with the level of detail in other areas. I was lead to believe that one of the best things about the turtles was their snappy one-liners, however, the humour in this film was a bit lacking with much of the intended comedic lines being a bit lame. My other big issue was that the climax of the film is over before it seems to begin with little explanation of what is happening.
One footnote about this production worth noting, is that Academy Award nominated actor, Mako who voices Splinter (The Turtle's rat sensei) died one day after the director announced he would be doing the voice but luckily his voice work had already been completed. Mako appeared in over 100 television and cinema productions including M*A*S*H, Pearl Harbor, Memoirs of a Geisha and his Academy Award nominated role in The Sand Pebbles.
Personally, I find it hard to recommend this film but fans are sure to enjoy it.
The video quality is excellent.
The feature is presented in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio, 16x9 enhanced, which is close to the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1.
The picture was very clear and sharp in most scenes, with just some occasional softness in backgrounds. There was no evidence of low level noise or grain of any description. The shadow detail was excellent.
The colour was excellent with no issues to report.
The only artefact I noticed was some very minor aliasing.
There are subtitles in English for the Hearing Impaired. They are clear, easy to read, positioned with the speaker and are very close to the spoken word.
The layer change occurred at 48:41 and was quite obvious.
The audio quality is excellent.
This DVD contains three audio options (not including commentaries); an English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s, an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 224 Kb/s and an English Audio Descriptive Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo soundtrack encoded at 224 Kb/s. The 5.1 track is very good indeed with lots of presence, surround activity and a throbbing LFE track.
Dialogue was very clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.
The score of this film by Klaus Badelt is supplemented by various rap and rock tracks, some of which include dubious lyrics for the littlies.
The surround speakers were in constant use adding lots of immersive atmosphere, specific surround effects such as trucks coming from behind the viewer and other similar things. In a word, excellent.
The subwoofer is also used throughout for rumbles, roars, thuds and bangs.
|Surround Channel Use|
This is the standard one-disc edition. There is also a two-disc edition available but I do not have details of what else that contains. It seems to only to be available at certain retailers.
The menu includes an intro, sound and motion.
Munroe does quite a decent commentary, despite everything being cool and/or neat. He delves into some trivia, talks about links to the TV series and previous movies and tells anecdotes. He talks fairly constantly and is quite a passionate speaker. Worthwhile for those interested in hearing more about the production of this film.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on;
The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on;
On this basis lets just call it a draw. The standard version in the US contains more extras however I am assuming that this will replicate the local 2 disc version.
The video quality is excellent.
The audio quality is excellent.
This one disc version only contains a commentary track. Other extras are available on a 2-disc version.
|DVD||Pioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output|
|Display||Sony 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 Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Yamaha YST SW90 subwoofer|