DVD & Blu-ray Reviews

Pacific Rim, Blu-ray 3D+2D+DVD+UV Digital Copy (2013)

If you liked Transformers and Iron Man you'll love this action movie.

Published on October 20, 2013

Pacific Rim, Blu-ray 3D+2D+DVD+UV Digital Copy (2013)

Pacific Rim, Blu-ray 3D+2D+DVD+UV Digital Copy (2013)

Starring: Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Max Martini, Ron Perlman
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Studio: Warner Brothers Home Entertainment – 3 discs [10/15/13]
Video: 1.85:1 for 16:9 1080p color
Audio: English 7.1, 5.1 DTS-HD MA; French, Spanish, Portuguese DD 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Special Features: (2D Blu-ray): Director’s audio commentary; Focus Points (13 mini-featurettes); “The Director’s Notebook” featurette; “The Digital Artistry of Pacific Rim” featurette; “The Shatterdome” featurette; “Drift Space” featurette; Four deleted scenes; Blooper reel; “The Seventh Son” preview trailer; Standard DVD copy; UltraViolet digital copy
Length: 131 minutes
Movie Rating: ****
3D Rating: ****½    2D Rating: *****
Audio Rating: *****   D-BOX Rating: ****1/2

In Pacific Rim, monstrous creatures known as Kaiju start rising from the sea, and begin a war against humanity.  The Kaiju, over a period of several years, take millions of human lives and consume much of humanity’s resources. To combat the giant Kaiju, the nations of the world pool their intellectual and financial capital to develop a special type of weaponry.  The weapons, called Jaegers, are massive robots which are operated simultaneously by two pilots whose minds are locked in a neural bridge.  The Jaegers were highly effective for awhile but the relentless Kaiju have become increasingly more powerful.  Now on the brink of annihilation, the forces defending mankind turn to two unlikely heroes – emotionally-scarred former pilot Raleigh (Charlie Hunnam) and untested rookie Mako (Rinko Kikuchi).  Raleigh and Mako team up to operate a legendary but near obsolete Jaeger from the past. Together, with the aid of a couple of quirky scientists, they stand as mankind’s last hope.  Pacific Rim is a great summer blockbuster, science-fiction, action movie.  It is a visual and audio treat for the eyes and ears.  The 3D version is the preferred viewing choice as it more effectively immerses viewers into the action.  Those who enjoyed films like Transformers and Iron Man should give this film a look while fans of Pacific Rim shouldn’t hesitate to add this feature-laden combo pack to their collections.  Recommended.

The overall high-definition video quality of the 2D Blu-ray presentation is excellent.  Images are crisp with exquisite detail.  Black levels are uniformly rich and dark throughout the movie.  Colors are bold and vibrant with fully-saturated hues.  Picture defect mastering is commendable with no major flaws or compression artifacts.  The 3D video is of the post-conversion variety but nevertheless looks fantastic.  Colors and black levels are on par with the excellent 2D version.  Separation, dimensionality and depth of the 3D image are superb.  There are a handful of pop-out effects that appear to extend beyond the screen (such as snowflakes, sparks, swords, etc.), but the 3D focuses more on the inward-looking effect than outward-extending.

The overall audio quality is also excellent with the English DTS HD-MA 7.1 track.  The soundtrack is big, bold and makes generous use of all of the discrete channels.  Fortunately, dialogue is clear and intelligible during all on-screen action.  The surround channels are aggressively utilized for the sound effects and music score, plus include several split rear effects and directional pans.  The low frequency effects channel is deep and powerful.

Pacific Rim is compatible with the D-BOX Motion Code™ System, meaning that if you have the necessary D-BOX equipment, your movie viewing experience will be enhanced by adding both motion and vibration to your chosen seating.  This is the type of movie that is tailor-made for D-BOX.  Motion and vibration effects are consistently present throughout the film.  As you might imagine in a film where massive robots battle giant sea creatures, there is a lot of moving and shaking going on.  It’s difficult to choose a favorite scene among the many that have stand-out D-BOX moments, but the one that makes for the best demo-worthy material is the epic confrontation at the end.  It features sensational impacts from the two robot-three monster battle with a couple of potent explosions thrown-in for good measure.  The D-BOX Motion Code encoding works exceedingly well for this movie, and when combined with the 3D video, makes Pacific Rim a 4D experience not to be missed.

—Calvin Harding Jr.

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