Menu Animation & Audio
|Year Of Production||2007|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Ads Then Menu|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||Sergei Bodrov|
Deng Ba Te Er
Sai Xing Ga
Ba Yin Qi Qi Ge
Ba De Rong Gui
Sun Ben Hon
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||No Audio Data available for this title|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English (Burned In)||Smoking||No|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
The story follows the life of Temudgen (who became Genghis Khan) son of a tribal leader in 12th century Mongolia. The story starts with him heading of on a journey with his father in order to visit a different tribe to seek a wife. He is only 10 years old but must by tradition choose a wife. His father wants him to choose a wife from a tribe they have been warring with to bring their tribes together. Along the way, they visit a tribe with whom his father is more friendly. It is here that the young Temudgen meets Borte who will become his wife and greatest ally in his life. This causes more enmity with the tribe his father was trying to make peace with, resulting in his father being poisoned. When his father dies, his own tribe turns against Temudgen and his mother with one of his father's men, Targutai, usurping the leadership. Temudgen is sent into exile as he is not old enough to be killed under Mongolian tradition. Targutai becomes his sworn enemy and he continues to dog his existence during his youth continuously tracking him down and capturing him. During these years of running he meets Jumukha, another boy of his own age, who rescues him, becomes his greatest friend and eventually his most dangerous enemy. He also reunites with his child bride Borte. Over the subsequent years, his fortunes wax and wane but eventually he becomes the great warlord of legend.
This film is quite enjoyable to watch without rising to the heights of the best historical epics. The acting is quite good even from the amateurs such as the woman who plays Borte, the cinematography is excellent, the battle scenes are well choreographed (if somewhat bloody) and the film has an excellent atmosphere assisted by the music. The biggest issue with this film is that the plot sometimes moves quite slowly and you are left wishing that it covered the rest of his life, ending as it does at his ascension to power. Strangely, this is exactly where the documentary left off the story too. Some sections of the plot are also left to be somewhat 'mystical' rather than properly explained.
The director of the film is Russian director, Sergei Bodrov. The crew involves a number of Russians and many Chinese and Mongolians. It won a number of the Russian equivalent to Oscars, the Nikas and was also nominated for Best Foreign Language film at the Oscars.
I would recommend this film to fans of foreign cinema and historical epics.
The video quality is very good but has been cropped from its original 2.35:1 ratio.
The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is somewhat narrower than its original 2.35:1. It is 16x9 enhanced. Whilst watching the film there were certainly scenes which felt somewhat cramped and would have benefited from the original ratio. I will remove one star from the overall rating.
The picture is very sharp and clear. There is some irregular mild grain throughout and some occasional mild macro-blocking in backgrounds. Shadow detail is very good.
The colour was excellent showing the epic beauty of the Mongolian landscapes very well.
The only artefact other than those mentioned above is some very minor aliasing.
There are burned-in subtitles in English which are clear and easy to read in SBS yellow. Some line of dialogue seemed much longer than the subtitles but they generally flowed well, so I don't think much of import was missed.
There was no layer change during the movie.
The audio quality is excellent.
This DVD contains two audio options, an English Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448Kb/s and an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 192 Kb/s. This soundtrack was very immersive and featured excellent music and sound design. The music by Thomas Kantelinan had a Chinese classical style mostly.
Dialogue seemed clear and easy to understand but since it was all in Mongolian this did not help me much.
The surround speakers were used regularly for music and sound effects adding greatly to the immersive quality of the soundtrack.
The sub was also well sued for music, battle scenes and storms.
|Surround Channel Use|
One quality extra is always better than lots of crappy ones.
The menu included motion and music from the film.
An honest, open and interesting making of featurette. Most of the major cast and crew are interviewed in various languages and there is an overdub is Russian which is then translated by English burned-in subtitles. Despite this the subjects discussed and interesting including onset tensions, brawls, the actual story of Genghis Khan, casting and a variety of technical topics. Much better than most making of featurettes on Hollywood productions.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 edition of this film is in the correct aspect ratio of 2.35:1 but does not include the featurette. It will depend on your personal choice however the correct aspect ratio makes the Region 1 the choice for me. This film is also available on Blu-ray in the US.
The video quality is very good.
The audio quality is excellent.
One quality extra is included..
|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) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer|