Perfect Blue (1997)
Menu Animation & Audio
Scene Selection Animation
Featurette-In The Studio
Audio-Only Track-English Theme Song
|Year Of Production||1997|
|Running Time||81:19 (Case: 80)|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (67:47)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,4||Directed By||Satoshi Kon|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Japanese Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||Unknown||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Perfect Blue is a Japanese animated thriller based around a pop idol who attempts to begin an acting career but is terrorized by an apparent stalker.
Mima Kirigoe is a member of the up-and-coming Japanese pop group Cham but she decides to quit the group and try to begin an acting career. As she starts work on a new television drama series, a number of letters from disillusioned fans begin to arrive. Mima soon discovers an Internet fan site with a diary claiming to be written by her that details numerous aspects of her personal life. As the television series progresses, Mima becomes increasingly paranoid and when members of the show are brutally murdered her fears appear to be well founded. Is this the work of a deranged fan, a random killer or simply a figment of Mima's imagination as her grip on reality continues to slip?
This movie has an excellent script based on an original novel by Yoshikazu Takeuchi. If you are an anime fan and are looking for a film to convince others that Japanese animation can contain more than teenage girls piloting giant robots then you should definitely take a look at this intelligent thriller.
The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is NOT 16x9 enhanced. The packaging incorrectly claims that the transfer is presented at an original aspect ratio of 4:3.
The transfer is quite sharp throughout and is constantly able to reveal the detailed animation. No low level noise was detected during the transfer. Excellent shadow detail is presented throughout and the darkly animated scenes are able to reveal the high levels of detail present.
The colours displayed throughout always appear slightly muted but this is never a problem for the viewer. This colour choice is a little surprising for a film of this age but it appears to have been intentionally made by the film's designers.
A small number of Gibbs artefacts may be seen around some on-screen text displayed at 21:05. This only lasts for a very short period and is not distracting to the viewer.
A relatively large number of aliasing artefacts may be seen throughout the transfer. Some examples of these artefacts may be seen at 12:36, 14:05, 24:10, 24:40, 25:05 and 26:47. The majority of these artefacts are quite minor but due to their frequency they are moderately distracting.
Numerous film artefacts may be seen throughout this transfer. Some examples of these artefacts may be seen at 6:22, 6:49, 7:38, 8:59 and 9:49. Due to their frequency these artefacts are moderately distracting to the viewer.
A small amount of telecine wobble may be seen at 2:28 during the opening credits but this is not distracting.
A number of obvious interlacing artefacts are clearly visible during panned shots. Examples of these artefacts may be seen at 0:30, 0:41 and 3:29. These artefacts are slightly distracting.
Two sets of white English subtitles are provided on this disc. The first stream is the standard set of English subtitles and these are always easy to read. The second stream is used to provide translations for on-screen Japanese text such as newspaper headlines.
The layer change occurs at 67:47 at the start of Chapter 13 and is not disruptive.
The dialogue is clear and easy to understand at all times.
As this is an animated feature there are the expected obvious problems with audio sync for each soundtrack. At no stage during the transfer were any audio dropouts detected.
The music by Masahiro Ikumi contains a number of pop songs as well as instrumental pieces that fit the on-screen action well and help to increase the tension within the film.
The surround channels in both the Japanese and English 5.1 soundtracks are used minimally during the front focused mix and are only noticed during the group performances and crowd scenes.
The subwoofer channel is used minimally to support the music and effects.
|Surround Channel Use|
The animated menu is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1.
This is a clip of the studio recording of the main track by the group Cham. This is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack.
This is a copy of the English theme song from the dub soundtrack. It is presented is a Dolby Digital 2.0 track with a static background image.
This is a collection of images from the movie presented with a series of burned in notes explaining each shot. This is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a musical 2.0 soundtrack. As this does contain some spoilers viewers should not view this extra until after watching the main feature.
This is a promotional item listing some of the VHS titles available from Manga Entertainment in the US. This extra is of no real use to Australian viewers.
This is a selection of nine single page promotions for DVDs available from Manga Entertainment in the US and is of no real use to Australian viewers.
This is a short interview segment with Ruby Marlow, the English voice actress for Mima's character. This is presented as a voice over while showing clips from the film with a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. This extra does contain a number of obvious spoilers.
This is a short interview segment with Wendy Lee, the English voice actress for Rumi's character. This is presented as a voice over while showing clips from the film with a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. This extra does contain a number of obvious spoilers.
This is a short interview segment with Bob Marks, the English voice actor for Mr. Me-Mania's character. This is presented as a voice over while showing clips from the film with a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. This extra does contain a number of obvious spoilers.
This is a short interview segment with Junko Iwao, the Japanese voice actress for Mima's character. This is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack and burned in English subtitles. This extra contains a number of obvious spoilers.
This is a interview segment with first time anime director Satoshi Koh. This is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack and burned in English subtitles. This extra contains a number of obvious spoilers.
This contains a list of three different websites. When selected, the manga.com link provides a short (4:05) promotional item for various Manga Entertainment video titles. The link to PerfectBlue.com provides the trailer (1:38) for the film presented at an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 with an English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. The link to Sputnik7.com provides a short (0:25) promotion for this website presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack.
This is a single page listing of the DVD production credits.
This contains a page with links to the official site as well as a number of screen savers, video clips, images and audio samples. I was unable to get the included flash presentation to work as it wanted to install an old version of Quicktime but the individual items were able to be accessed.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
Both versions of this film appear to be identical and I therefore would have no preference for either version.
Perfect Blue is an excellent intelligent psychological thriller that will appeal to a wide audience. If you are looking for an introduction to Japanese animated features this film is an excellent candidate.
The video transfer is adequate but does display a disappointing number of film and aliasing artefacts.
The audio transfer should appeal to fans of both dubs and subs but viewers should not expect an aggressive surround mix.
The collection of extras is interesting with some behind the scenes footage and interviews but the inclusion of the Manga Entertainment promotional items is of no real use to Australian viewers.
|DVD||Toshiba 1200, using S-Video output|
|Display||Sony KP-E41SN11. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Front left/right: ME75b; Center: DA50ES; rear left/right: DA50ES; subwoofer: NAD 2600 (Bridged)|
|Speakers||Front left/right: VAF DC-X; Center: VAF DC-6; rear left/right: VAF DC-7; subwoofer: Custom NHT-1259|