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Kung Fu Panda (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

Kung Fu Panda (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo)
Studio: Dreamworks Animated
List Price: $29.99
Street Price: $11.99
Amazon.com: $16.41
Release Date: Apr 5, 2011
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Running Time: 88 minutes

4.8 Stars (out of 5)

Synopsis

As the legendary Dragon Warrior, Po (Jack Black), the kung fu panda, dutifully guards the Valley of Peace alongside his allies the Furious Five. When a frightful new enemy emerges, Po and company embark on a perilous journey to save China and the art of kung fu.

Starring:

Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Gary Oldman, Seth Rogen, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, David Cross, Lucy Liu, Michelle Yeoh, Dennis Haysbert, Victor Garber, James Hong

Director:

Jennifer Yuh

Blu-ray Release Date:

December 13, 2011

Subtitles:

English, English SDH, French, Spanish

Rating

Overall rating weighted as follows:

Audio 40%, Video 40%, Special Features 20%, Movie - its just our opinion so take it with a grain of salt

Audio 5.0 Stars (out of 5)

Dolby and DTS Demo Discs used as basis for comparison

● Subwoofer – 5.0 Stars

● Dialog – 5.0 Stars

● Surround Effects – 5.0 Stars

● Dynamic Range – 5.0 Stars

English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1

I can’t think of another family film with this much rumbling subwoofer action. At one point my daughter looked at me and asked if I just felt the couch shake. This Dolby True HD mix pops on all cylinders. Every silly line of dialog is easily heard, and is never lost in the mix. The frequency range is wide enough to hear the high pitched ringing of clashing swords and bass filled heavy footsteps. Surround speakers are put to good use making the audio feel spacious while filling the room with sounds of fireworks, rowdy crowds, and fierce kung fu action.

Video 5.0 Stars (out of 5)

Spears & Munsil Benchmark Blu-ray Edition used as basis for comparison

● Color Accuracy - 5.0 Stars

● Shadow detail – 5.0 Stars

● Clarity – 5.0 Stars

● Skin tones – 5.0 Stars

● Compression – 5.0 Stars

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC, Resolution: 1080p, Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1, Original Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

It’s almost unfair to judge the video quality of a computer animated film of this caliber. Hundreds of people are paid to make sure the colors are vivid and the details are stunning, and it shows. Kung Fu Panda 2 looks fantastic on Blu-ray. The individual black and white hairs on Po are easily seen, due to the stunning clarity. Detail on peacock feathers, individual drops of water, and fireworks all shine with clean crispness. Colors are vivid and help bring the beautiful colorful landscapes of China to life. No details are ever lost in the shadows and show no sign of compression issues.

Bonus Features 4.0 Stars (out of 5)

● Kung Fu Panda: Secrets of the Masters (1080p, Dolby TrueHD 7.1, 1.78:1, 23:00): A short animated film featuring Pao.

● Animation Inspiration (1080p): A short feature showing the actual locations that inspired some of the animated scenery.

● The Animators' Corner: A picture-in-picture commentary covering the animation process and behind the scenes of making the film.

● Trivia Track: A pop-up track with extra information about the film.

● Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (1080p, Dolby Digital 5.1, 1.78:1, 23:50): An episode of the Kung Fu Panda television show.

● Kickin' It with the Cast (1080p, 12:42): Interviews with the voice cast of the film.

● Deleted Scenes (1080p, 4:21): Three deleted scenes with director introductions.

● Panda Stories (1080p, 7:44): A video discussing the importance of helping save the endangered Panda.

● Kung Fu Shuffle (1080p): A fun little game.

● Ni Hao (1080p): Teaches how to speak and write a few words in Mandarin.

● Filmmakers' Commentary: Includes commentary for director Jennifer Yuh Nelson; Producer Melissa Cobb; Production Designer Raymond Zibach; and Supervising Animator, Kung Fu Choreographer, and Story Artist Rodolphe Guenoden.

● World of DreamWorks Animation (1080p): Video about other DreamWorks films.

● Previews

● Kung Fu Panda World Online Game Memberships.

Movie - 3.5 Stars (out of 5)

Review

Kung Fu Panda 2 does of great job of entertaining audiences of any age. In the first Kung Fu Panda, Po proved himself to be the true dragon warrior. In this sequel he is challenged with the difficult task of finding inner peace in the face of adversity. This film was refreshing since it didn't rehash the original films story line. It's even is able to show the characters changing and growing without slowing the story down. This made me care about the characters and made the action more effective. There are so many action oriented family films that don't take the time to develop the characters, and results in a movie that feels flat and emotionless. The action in this film is elaborate enough to match the likes of many blockbuster popcorn flicks. Its also funny without being crude, and is able to even throw an interesting twist in the end that sets the stage for Kung Fu Panda 3.

Posted by The HT Guys, January 10, 2012 7:33 AM

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About The HT Guys

The HT Guys, Ara Derderian and Braden Russell, are Engineers who formerly worked for the Advanced Digital Systems Group (ADSG) of Sony Pictures Entertainment. ADSG was the R&D unit of the sound department producing products for movie theaters and movie studios.

Two of the products they worked on include the DCP-1000 and DADR-5000. The DCP is a digital cinema processor used in movie theaters around the world. The DADR-5000 is a disk-based audio dubber used on Hollywood sound stages.

ADSG was awarded a Technical Academy Award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2000 for the development of the DADR-5000. Ara holds three patents for his development work in Digital Cinema and Digital Audio Recording.

Every week they put together a podcast about High Definition TV and Home Theater. Each episode brings news from the A/V world, helpful product reviews and insights and help in demystifying and simplifying HDTV and home theater.