Hairspray (2007)

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Released 11-Jan-2008

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Musical None
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2007
Running Time 111:21 (Case: 116)
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (70:29) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Adam Shankman
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring John Travolta
Michelle Pfeiffer
Christopher Walken
Amanda Bynes
James Marsden
Queen Latifah
Case Amaray-Opaque
RPI ? Music Marc Shaiman


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 EX (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, Action and song "Good Morning Baltimore"

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

Plot Synopsis

    This review is for the single disc edition of Hairspray, we have previously covered the 2-disc Shake and Shimmy edition.

    This 2007 version of Hairspray is a musical based on John Waters' 1988 original non-musical movie of the same name. It is the story of Tracy Turnblad (Nikki Blonsky), an overweight Baltimore teenager living with her parents, Edna (John Travolta) and Wilbur (Christopher Walken), who dreams of dancing on the local TV teen dance show.

    Many will be attracted by the film's huge ensemble cast. Featuring Michelle Pfeiffer, Amanda Bynes, James Marsden, Allison Janney and Queen Latifah, there isn't a bad performance among them.

    I am not going to rave about the movie, as did our reviewer of the 2-disc edition, but I will say that I was pleasantly surprised by Hairspray. I approached the film with some trepidation, largely due to the overwhelming cheeriness of the whole affair, only to get right into the spirit of the movie surprisingly quickly. As cheesy as Hairspray is, it is impossible to deny its effectiveness - even on a grouch like myself.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video transfer for this edition is identical to the 2-disc Shake and Shimmy edition, right down to the authoring of the film's layer transition.

    The feature is presented in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced. The film makes excellent use of the wide ratio.

    The film has a deliberate slight soft focus effect throughout, which is presented perfectly by the transfer. The picture is clear and clean, with no evidence of low level noise or grain. The shadow detail is excellent, particularly in the night street scenes.

    The film makes excellent use of colour, from pastel skin tones (which are aided by the film's soft focus) to overwhelmingly bright and cheery sets and costumes

    There are no noticeable compression artefacts or film artefacts in the video.

     The layer change occurs at 70:29, perfectly placed in the blackout after You're Timeless to Me, and is invisible.

    The movie features English subtitles for the hearing impaired. Based on the portion I sampled, they appear to be accurate and well timed.

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

Audio

    The audio is excellent, although the audio options are not as extensive as the 2-disc edition.

    The film features an English 5.1 Dolby Digital EX (448 Kbps) and an English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192 Kbps) audio track.

    The dialogue and lyrics are clear and easy to understand. There are no sync issues noticeable.

    The music is as cheesy and bouncy as you could imagine, which is perfect for the film. The score is never afraid to get carried away with big instruments and bigger chorus lines - and the film is all the better for it.

    Both the surrounds and subwoofer get a great workout from the film's music, as well as incidental effects.

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

Extras

    This single disc edition is not simply a copy of the first disc in the 2-disc Shake and Shimmy edition, it is a completely bare bones disc that contains the feature and an ad for the film's soundtrack.

    Put simply, any fan of the movie would be mad to opt for this bare bones edition. Even if they never watch the featurettes, the sing-along mode for the feature is bound to get a run! Only casual viewers need apply here.

R4 vs R1

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

    Compared to the equivalent Region 1 bare bones edition, the Region 4 version of this disc misses out on a Spanish subtitles and nothing else.

Summary

    A surprisingly enjoyable musical romp.

    The audio and video are excellent.

    This release is devoid of extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Friday, February 29, 2008
Review Equipment
DVDSony Playstation 3, using HDMI output
Display Samsung 116cm LA46M81BD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).
Audio DecoderPioneer VSX-D512. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX2016AVS
Speakers150W DTX front speakers, and a 100W centre and 2 surrounds, 12 inch PSB Image 6i powered sub

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