High School Musical 3: Senior Year: Extended Edition (Blu-ray) (2008)

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Released 21-Apr-2009

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Musical Main Menu Audio & Animation
Easter Egg
Featurette
Featurette-Making Of
Interviews-Cast & Crew
Outtakes
Deleted Scenes
DVD Plus-DVD copy of the film
Karaoke
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 2008
Running Time 117:00
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Programme
Region Coding 4 Directed By Kenny Ortega
Studio
Distributor

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Zac Efron
Vanessa Hudgens
Ashley Tisdale
Lucas Grabeel
Corbin Bleu
Monique Coleman
Bart Johnson
Case Jewel
RPI ? Music David Lawrence


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 EX (6912Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
Norwegian dts 5.1 (1536Kb/s)
Danish dts 5.1 (1536Kb/s)
Danish Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
Not 16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Italian
Spanish
Danish
Dutch
Norwegian
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes
Action In or After Credits Yes

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

Plot Synopsis

††††It is the final year for the gang at East High and everyone is roped into helping out with the annual school musical. Much to the chagrin of it-girl Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale), down-to-earth Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) is cast in the lead and will be romancing her real-life boyfriend Troy (Zac Efron) in the play. All is not going to go smoothly, however, as Gabriella has been offered a chance of a lifetime to start university early - on the other side of the country - at the same time that the show is due to go on. Meanwhile, Troy wrestles between his childhood desire to take up a basketball scholarship at the local university, alongside his best friend Chad (Corbin Bleu), with a new desire to go to the Julliard acting school.

††††High School Musical was a sleeper hit the likes of which the Disney Channel had never seen before. As well as smashing ratings records when it screened on the Disney Chanel, both in its first run and its repeat screenings. It went on to make more in DVD sales alone than most studio pictures make in their theatrical and home runs. Its sequel repeated the formula and the success. This third movie in the series took to the big screen, repeating the franchise's success in a different market despite having the same modest production values and budget as its earlier incarnations. The franchise is, without a doubt, a cultural phenomenon, but are the movies any good? Going solely from this entry, the answer is both yes and no. Yes it is quite passable entertainment, and is inoffensive in every way (which will no doubt please most parents), but as for why HSM is a such a phenomenon? I don't get it and probably never will.

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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 movie is presented in its original 1.85:1 aspect ratio in 1080p.

††††The video looks good, but is hampered by cinematography that is clearly of a TV-standard rather than a theatrical standard. The image is crystal clear and quite sharp. Very mild grain is visible in a handful of scenes. In fact, the video clear almost to the point the video looks unnatural.

††††The colour is garishly bright, which suits the material in its own way. There is a good level of detail in shadows, although there is not a scene in the film that is dimly or unevenly lit so as to really display much in the way of shadows.

††††There are no unpleasant video artefacts or film artefacts noticeable in the transfer.

††††The film features English subtitles for the hard of hearing and "Sing-along" subtitles (for parents who wish they were hard of hearing). Both appear to be quite accurate and well-timed.

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

Audio

††††The disc features a plethora of audio options; English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, English, Norwegian and Danish Dolby Digital 5.1 (640Kbps) tracks and Spanish, Italian and Danish DTS 5.1 (1.5Mbps) tracks. The English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 is the primary focus of this review. The English Dolby Digital track is also of a particularly high standard, but is a noticeable step down in clarity from the DTS HD (at least for this fussy listener!)

††††The audio is crystal clear and will satisfy most listeners. The mix is quite aggressive and lacks the dynamic range that somebody looking for a disc to demo their fancy new system is likely to desire (there simply aren't any quiet bits for that sort of thing - although quiet bits would be rather out of place in this sort of flick.)

††††The film features numerous catchy, saccharine drenched songs that are guaranteed to have kids singing along, as well as an equally cheesy score. The music is very well presented and makes great use of the surround speakers and subwoofer. The environmental audio makes less impressive use of the surrounds, however.

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

Extras

Disc One - Blu-ray Edition of the Film

Main Menu Audio & Animation

††††The disc features extensive animated menus. The bulk of the extras are presented via an interactive high-school yearbook that typically presents one special feature and one easter egg per page. Most of the easter eggs consist of short clips of on-set footage featuring various cast members and play within a window in the yearbook graphic.

††††Each of these extras is presented in 1080p with stereo audio.

Deleted Scenes (7:13)

††††Eight insubstantial deleted scenes, preceded by a very short introduction from the director Kenny Ortega. Pretty much every one of these "scenes" really consists of a few lines of additional dialogue to scenes that are in the film and none of them add anything interesting to the story.

Blooper Reel (2:46)

††††A rather droll blooper reel. Pure filler and more often amusing because it is not funny.

Cast Goodbyes featurette (5:40)

††††The key cast members discuss how great HSM was, how they'll miss their characters SO much, and where their characters are likely to be in a few years time. Strangely enough, none of them suggest jail. Times have changed since I was in high school.

Itís All in the Dress featurette (2:31)

††††A rather short featurette on the costumes prepared for the film's dreamy prom scene. The girls will get a kick out of this one.

New Class Profiles featurette (13:18)

††††A featurette raving about the three new characters in High School Musical 3. Cynics will see this as nipping Jar-Jar Binks syndrome in the bud (and they're right). More filler.

Night of Nights featurette (7:27)

††††Another prom featurette, this time it is more about selling kids on how exciting prom is, as well as a look at how it was staged for the film. One of the better featurettes on the disc.

Senior Awards featurette (2:15)

††††Each of the cast members are given a joke award to suit their on-set personality. Shameless PR, but worth a look for tween fans.

Musical Numbers

††††Each of the songs in the film can be played in isolation, like a music video, with optional sing-along subtitles. An impressive 18 numbers are featured. Parents, you have been warned!

Disc Two - DVD Edition of the Film

††††The second disc in this set is a copy of the single-disc DVD version of the film, which is an excellent addition for parents looking to keep the kids busy on the spare TV or in the car. This disc features many of the same extras that are found on the Blu-ray disc, obviously in SD rather than HD. Specifically, it features:

R4 vs R1

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

††††The US Region A edition of High School Musical 3 features a third disc containing a digital copy of the film, but that Blu-ray misses most of the non-English tracks on the Region B release (it only features Spanish and English). Ultimately, the toss up is between a possibly unnecessary digital copy or extra language tracks arguably making this slight win for Region A.

Summary

††††A decent tween flick, bloated with all the cheesy musical glitz a parent can stand and then some. I will never understand how this came to be the phenomenon it is, but it is certainly passable entertainment.

††††A good number of extras are featured, targeted at the tween audience more than anyone else. The audio and video are solid, but certainly not reference material.

††††This set also includes the DVD edition of the film, which is an invaluable babysitter.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Friday, July 10, 2009
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

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