3D Blu-ray Review Cirque du Soleil Journey of Man: THE HTF 3D ADDICT REVIEW

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ronald Epstein, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator

    Jul 3, 1997
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    Ronald Epstein
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    What can I say?  I love 3D!  From the moment I began watching 3D content in my home I quickly discovered that I needed more content.  I suspect that those of you just purchasing your first 3D hardware will acquire the same ferocious appetite.  That's why I became the HTF 3D ADDICT.  I personally love images that pop off the screen and come inches away from your face without becoming overly gimmicky.  However, I certainly appreciate the nature documentaries that offer beautiful depth and separation.  These are not necessarily reviews of the film themselves.  I am not going to concentrate on story or supplements -- you can find the 2D reviews elsewhere on this forum.  My job is to let you know exactly what kind of 3D experience to expect from the titles that are being released.   As I will be receiving a handful of new product from the studios expect to see more title coverage.


    Cirque Du Soleil


    Studio: Sony

    Product Release: June 7th, 2011

    Ratio: 1.78:1

    Audio: DTS-HD MA 5.1

    Running Time: 39 Minutes

    Rating: NR


    ON A SCALE 0-5

    Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 3

    3D Separation: 3

    3D In Yo' Face Factor: 2

    Purely for Cirque fans!

    Over the past years I have come to appreciate the 

    human circus known as Cirque du Soleil.  The troupe

    of performing jugglers, contortionists, acrobatics and gymnasts

    dressed in incredible costumes never fail to elevate the human

    spirit.  Cirque du Soleil is unlike anything experienced before.

    The artists of Cirque du Soleil appear in this wondrous film,

    Journey of Man, originally shot for Imax 3D.  Smoothly narrated

    by Sir Ian McKellen, the film is presented in my liner notes as

    a fantasy that follows the stages of human development from

    birth to maturity, with each stage presented by a Cirque du Soleil

    act such as bungee-diving through giant redwoods, synchronized

    swimming, cube spinning and human balancing.  

    The single biggest problem with Journey of Man is its silly,

    incoherent story which is the reason I couldn't quite describe

    it in my own words.  Where the real focus should have been put

    on the Cirque du Soleil performers, things get bogged down

    with a rather shallow storyline.  Still, most of this can easily

    be forgiven when you consider the visual impact this film offers

    its viewers thanks to its amazing acrobatics and other human feats.

    It's just amazing to watch these acts of human endurance.

    This is a film that shines beautifully in 1080 HD for the fact

    that it was shot on location in beautiful locales.  You'll absolutely

    marvel at the synchronized swimming sequences shot underwater

    in the island of the Bahamas and the bungee-diving sequences lensed

    in Boulder Creek, California.  The transfer offers abundant clarity and

    revealing detail that make these backdrops look magnificent.  Costume

    colors are often vibrant, leaping out at the viewer, and black levels

    are quite good -- especially in the sequence involving the cube spinner.

    To really appreciate how detailed this transfer is, one only need to 

    look at a sequence performed in the middle of a pond with its water

    that looks like shimmering glass.  Just one of many beautiful backdrops

    for the viewer to soak in.

    While originally conceptualized and shot for 3D, I am a bit at odds

    as to whether the process really elevates the film itself.  I think this

    film would have worked equally well in 2D as the process of adding

    depth to the film only slightly enhances the overall visuals. There

    are oh-so-brief moments where heads, arms or shards of a broken

    hat move out towards the viewer.  However, for the most part, most 

    of the visuals remain confined inside the screen.  The process makes

    for an interesting 3D experience but not an outstanding one.  

    The soothing musical soundtrack from Benoît Jutras sounds clear

    and crisp across the front channels with the rears giving support to

    chorals as well as atmospheric effects.  Turn the volume up and 

    you'll find the soundtrack to be a satisfying, encompassing experience.


    Beautifully lensed, Journey of Man makes for a rather intriguing HD

    experience for fans of Cirque du Soleil, though the 3D process doesn't

    necessarily enhance the viewing. For what it's worth, I would have rather

    seen the filmmakers skip the cornball story and just stick with the

    performances instead.  

    Sadly, I am not confident that this title will appeal to those not 

    appreciative of Cirque du Soleil, however with this 40-minute 3D Blu-ray

    reasonably priced at under $14, it may make for a compelling purchase --

    perfect for the entire family.


    LG 60PX950 THX Certified 3D display

    Oppo BDP-93 3D Blu-ray Player

    Denon 3311CI Receiver

    Atlantic Technology H-PAS AT-1 fronts, 4400 center; 4200 rear speakers

    SV Sound Subwoofer


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