30 Days of Night (Blu-ray) (2007)

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Released 9-Apr-2008

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Horror Audio Commentary-Robert Tapert, Josh Hartnett, Melissa George
Featurette-Making Of
Gallery-Comic to Film comparison
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2007
Running Time 113:05 (Case: 108)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By David Slade
Studio
Distributor
Icon Entertainment Starring Josh Hartnett
Melissa George
Danny Huston
Ben Foster
Mark Boone Junior
Mark Rendall
Amber Sainsbury
Manu Bennett
Case Amaray Variant
RPI ? Music Brian Reitzell


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English DTS HD High Resolution Audio 5.1 EX (4608Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.40:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 2.40:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Barrow, Alaska: A small (fictional) town in northern Alaska whose primary reason for existing is to maintain the flow of the oil pipeline. Barrow is so far north that for 30 days each year at the height of winter the sun doesn't rise enough to reach the town, plunging it into the titular 30 days of night. Three quarters of the town's sub-600 population leave for the month, leaving a skeleton crew to run the pipeline and maintain the town.

    A handful of strange goings-on preceded the exodus this particular year. All the mobile phones in the town were stolen and set ablaze. The town's sled dogs were murdered. The lone helicopter left in town was trashed. On the night after the exodus, a violent stranger (Ben Foster) is arrested in the town diner. Though he is quickly dismissed when he begins babbling about the evil that is coming, it isn't long before his ravings come true. Cut off from the outside world, the town is descended up by a gang of psychotic, bloodthirsty vampires (led by veteran character actor Danny Huston).

    Led by Sheriff Eben Oleson (Josh Hartnett) and his estranged wife Stella (Melissa George), a small group of townsfolk who survived the initial slaughter struggle to survive through the month until the sun rises.

    Josh Hartnett has certainly cast a name for himself as one of the leading B-list action stars in the last few years and his solid turn in 30 Days of Night further cements his place. As strong a lead as Hartnett is, it's the vampires that will really sell the movie. The movie opts for a primal, animalistic kind of vampire rather than the suave, urbane vampire that populates most Hollywood fodder. These creatures have more in common with the classic, grotesque Nosferatu than the vampire Lestat, which makes for a ferocious movie.

    30 Days of Night is an effortlessly stylish action/horror film. Relative newcomer director David Slade (Hard Candy) and veteran B-picture genre producers Robert Tapert and Sam Raimi have struck a winning partnership adapting this cult graphic novel.

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Transfer Quality

Video

Disclaimer: Please note that this disc has a video resolution of 1080p. It has been reviewed on a display device with a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL). More information can be found here.

    The film is presented in its original theatrical 2.40:1 aspect ratio in 1080p.

    The video transfer is stunning. The image is crystal clear and razor sharp. There is no sign of grain or low level noise.

    Unsurprisingly for a movie called 30 Days of Night, the film features a significant number of dark and shadowy scenes. What is surprising is just how good they look. The depth of colour and level of detail, particularly in these dark scenes, is spectacular. The film employs a stylish colour scheme that exemplifies the capability of the Blu-ray format. Shades of crimson splashed against the stark white of the Alaskan snow and spectacular burnt-orange fires.

    There is no sign of compression artefacts at any point in the film, which will amaze any viewer who has seen films featuring heavy snowfalls on DVD (there is no surer way to attract compression artefacts on DVD than feature hundreds of small fast moving objects in an image). Nor is there any sign of film artefacts.

    English subtitles are available. 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

    English Dolby Digital 5.1 (640 Kbps) and DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit) audio track is present for the film. Both sound excellent, though the DTS-HD track is noticeably clearer than the basic Dolby Digital track.

    The dialogue is presented at a good level in the mix and is both clear and easy to understand. There don't appear to be any issues with audio/visual sync.

    Brian Reitzell provides a moody score for the movie, heavy on the bass and thick on atmosphere.

    The surround mix is spectacular, certainly one of the most impressive on Blu-ray to date. It is a very aggressive mix that creates an engrossing atmosphere and builds considerable tension at key points of the film. The LFE track is intermittently subtle and thunderous and will give any subwoofer a solid workout.

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

Extras

    A decent number of high quality extras are provided.

Main Menu Audio & Animation

    A traditional main menu is provided, with appropriate animation and audio, however the only way to return to the main menu during playback is by selecting the "Main Menu" option in a pop-up menu (as opposed to using the "Top Menu" key on the remote).

Audio Commentary with Melissa George, Josh Hartnett and Robert Tapert

    A reasonably chatty and moderately interesting commentary with the film's two leads and its producer, who sounds to have been very hands-on with the film.

Making Of Featurettes (50:19)

    An excellent series of production featurettes is provided. They can be played individually or all together using a "play all" function, which runs fairly seamlessly thanks to the consistent production style of the featurettes. The specific featurettes are accurately titled: Pre-production, The Vampire, Building Barrow, The Cast, The Look, Blood Guts & Nasty @#$%, Night Shoot, Stunts.

Image Gallery

    A 30 frame comic to film comparison. High definition individual frames of the movie are presented side by side next to the equivalent frame of the graphic novel the film is based on.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region A edition of 30 Days of Night includes additional French, Spanish, Portuguese and Thai audio tracks and a handful of trailers for other films, but misses out on the basic English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track found on the Region B release. The Region A edition features a Dolby TrueHD track in place of the DTS-HD track on the Region B edition. Region A is a winner if you require one of those foreign languages, otherwise this is a draw.

    30 Days of Night is also available in various configurations on DVD in Region 4, including a 2 Disc special edition that includes a 36 page comic (but misses out on the storyboard comparison found on this Blu-ray).

Summary

    A ferocious action/horror film, brimming with style.

    The audio and video presentation is stunning, demo quality material. A good number of high quality extras are provided.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Thursday, May 22, 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 VSX2016AVS. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX2016AVS
Speakers150W DTX front speakers, 100W centre and 4 surround/rear speakers, 12 inch PSB Image 6i powered sub

Other Reviews NONE
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