|Category||Fantasy||Theatrical Trailer(s)||Yes, 1 - 1.66:1, non-16x9, Dolby Digital 2.0|
|Year Released||1968||Commentary Tracks||Yes, 1 - John Coates (Production Supervisor) and Heinz Edelman (Designer/Art Director)|
(not 89 minutes as shown on packaging)
Featurette - The Mod Odyssey (7 mins)
Isolated Musical Score
Main Menu Animation and Music
Original Pencil Drawings
Warner Home Video
|Starring||Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (a.k.a The Beatles)|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||No||MPEG||None|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.66:1||Dolby Digital||5.1|
|16x9 Enhancement||No||Soundtrack Languages||English (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384 Kb/s)
English (Dolby Digital 2.0, 192 Kb/s)
German (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384 Kb/s)
Italian (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384 Kb/s)
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||1.66:1||
English for the Hearing Impaired
German for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Broadly speaking it is the story of The Beatles saving Pepperland from the attack of The Blue Meanies. Beyond that, you take a wild guess at what was trying to be communicated here. No matter how many times I watch it, I am still unable to make much sense of it. Clearly of piece of art heavily based on the period which spawned it, perhaps the use of LSD (popular at the time) would aid understanding (not that I would recommend that to anyone of course).
Instead of trying to understand it, I just try and enjoy it - and if you listen there are some terrible jokes and puns to laugh at. I also just enjoy the music of arguably the greatest band to ever commit a song to vinyl.
The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.66:1, but is not 16x9 enhanced.
Being predominantly animation, general concepts of clarity and definition pretty much go out of the window. However, there is nothing of serious concern in the presentation here as far as clarity and definition is concerned, and I doubt that this has ever looked as good before.
This is an absolute riot of colour which has generally come up very vividly, with only some minor concerns about oversaturation of colour and colour bleed - both of which are more than likely inherent in the original print.
There did not appear to be any MPEG artefacts or video artefacts during the film. Film artefacts were generally not a problem at all, especially given the age of the original print, and were only quite prevalent during the live action part of the film at the end. They did not distract from the film.
This is a RSDL format disc, with the layer change coming very early at 24:42. Whilst the change is quite noticeable, it is not at all disruptive to the film at all, despite the fade to grey which I do not recall from the original film. Its positioning seems oddly chosen and I have to question why the film was not mastered solely on one layer of the disc, with the extras on the other, given that it is not an especially long film.
There are six soundtracks on the DVD: three Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtracks in English (the default), German and Italian together with an English Dolby Digital 2.0 (mono) soundtrack, an English audio commentary soundtrack in Dolby Digital 2.0 and an isolated music soundtrack in Dolby Digital 5.1. I listened to the English 5.1 soundtrack, the English audio commentary soundtrack and sampled the isolated music score.
The dialogue was clear and easy to understand throughout.
Audio sync is a little irrelevant in this sort of animation.
The score basically comprises songs by The Beatles, predominantly from their "Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band" album, with some incidental music put together by George Martin. At the end of the day, this is what the film is all about and comes up very well indeed, subject to the proviso of the remastering being too bass heavy.
The remastered soundtrack is very well balanced and has some nice detail out of the rear channels.
Unfortunately, the remastered soundtrack is far too bass heavy and detracts from the enjoyment of the film in my view. I found the film to be far more palatable by switching the amp to prologic mode - still nice detail in the soundtrack but with the bass pretty much cut out of the music.
Of interest regarding the sound is the fact that the credits state that the film is a six channel DTS remastering. Does this suggest that a future re-release with a DTS encoded soundtrack will be in the offing?
The overall video quality is very good.
The overall audio quality is reasonable.
The extras are good especially considering the age of the film.
© Ian Morris
26th September 1999
|DVD||Pioneer DV-515; S-video output|
|Display||Sony Trinitron Wega 84cm|
|Audio Decoder||Built in|
|Speakers||Energy Speakers: centre EXLC; left and right EXLR; and subwoofer ES-12XL|