3D Blu-ray Review THE HTF 3D ADDICT: The Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ronald Epstein, Mar 2, 2011.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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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.






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    The Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D



    Studio: Image

    Product Release: March 1, 2011

    Ratio: 1.78:1

    Audio: English, French, Spanish DTS-HD MA 5.1

    Running Time: 45Minutes

    Rating: NR


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    ON A SCALE 0-5

    Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 5

    3D Separation: 5

    3D In Yo' Face Factor: 3



    Another winner from Imax!


    The next wave could be the worst wave or the

    best ride of your life.


    It has been a long two months without anything new to 

    watch in 3D.  I suppose you could call the latest batch

    of Image releases the very first "wave" of the 3D titles

    for the new year.  I was very excited to have the opportunity

    to sit down, put on my glasses, and immerse myself in

    a new 3D release.  


    Going into this review I was a little apprehensive about 

    what I would experience.  After all, the initial 3D releases

    I reviewed from IMAGE were pretty much hit and miss --

    either being very good, or amongst the worst 3D I have

    seen to date.   In this case, The Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D

    hits the mark in ranking within the very best of the Image

    offerings.


    As someone who is as totally unfamiliar with surfing, I

    was delighted to find it to be the perfect subject matter 

    for an immersive 3D experience.  The Ultimate Wave Tahiti

    joins 10-time ASP world surfing champion Kelly Slater 

    and Tahitian surfing legend Raimana Van Bastolaer as

    they seek to ride the ultimate waves of Tahiti's famed

    Teahupo'o.  


    For those that think this is just another surfing documentary,

    think again.  The Ultimate Wave Tahiti takes us on a 

    wondrous journey across the island's volcanic paradise and

    beneath the depths of the ocean where you'll explore the 

    stunning, fragile beauty of the reef's habitat.  


    If you have ever wondered what makes the perfect wave,

    you'll come to learn that it's a combination of wind, tides

    and distant storms.  You'll also discover that these "demonic

    waves" are the heaviest in the world, giving its riders a

    rush of facing death and surviving.  No doubt, these 

    dangerous waves of Teahupo'o continue to claim lives

    yearly.


    Beautifully photographed and expertly staged for 3D,

    I found The Ultimate Wave Tahiti to be a highly enjoyable

    watch.   The Imax cameras ride the waves alongside the

    surfers from above and below the water surface, giving

    the viewer the ultimate POV experience against the 

    beautiful backdrop of Tahiti with its lush, green volcanic

    peaks all brought out in amazing 1080p clarity.


    The footage taken below the ocean surface is very

    tranquil and beautiful.  The cameras capture various

    life within the coral reef including fish, sting ray, sharks

    and whales.  These images are breathtaking, rivaling

    those presented in Warner's Deep Sea and Under The

    Sea 3D presentations.  


    The overall 3D quality is top-notch.  There is a 

    tremendous sense of separation.  Clarity is at its

    fullest here with images that remain consistently

    stunning throughout -- including footage shot

    underwater.   Colors are vivid and true to form.   


    Is there "In Yo' Face" moments to be had here?

    You bet! Surfboards, body parts and coral reef

    are just some of the things that poke out from

    the screen.  And, because this documentary

    was specifically staged for 3D you'll find footage

    cleverly filmed behind branches and flowers that

    provide an amazing sense of depth foreground

    to back. 


    Saw only seconds of ghosting in what would be

    a scene where it would be expected.  In this case,

    a campfire dance by night were small traces of

    double imaging could be found in tree branches 

    above.  If you blinked, you missed it.  


    The film's soundtrack may not be the punchiest

    I have ever heard but truly, it's an immersive

    experience all its own.  There's defined audio

    separation across all the channels and the 

    surrounds add ample support to water activity (from

    above and below) that make you feel as if you

    are in the middle of all the action.  



    CONCLUSION


    As you can plainly see, I have nothing but raves

    for The Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D.   It ranks as one

    of the better IMAX 3D documentaries available.   

    Additionally, it's now available for under $15 which,

    in my opinion, falls into the acceptable range of what 

    a 45 minute 3D documentary should be priced at.


    Certainly your decision on whether to purchase will

    depend on your interest on the subject, but I was

    rather surprised how much I enjoyed this IMAX 

    feature knowing nothing of the subject matter. 




    Equipment


    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

     
     
  2. Phoebus

    Phoebus Stunt Coordinator

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    Saw this last night.


    Is it a scientific documentary? erm.. Is it an underwater life documentary? erm.. Is it a true surfing documentary? erm.. not sure.. Is it a travelogue? erm..


    What it is is some happy combination of things, with confident 3D throughout. The science angle is more about waves than surfboards, and this science is cut down to the point where you want to seek more information out for yourself rather than feeling bludgeoned with too much edutainment.


    Since it switches documentary style regularly, you are often just swept along by the piece and it rarely seems to lag, unlike many a preachy IMAX doc. oh, we're underwater! oh we're in a helicopter.. oh now we're learning about volcanoes.. etc. not sure how I'd feel about this in an IMAX cinema, but at home it seems to work well, though I'd have preferred a few less tribal mask CGI outlines whilst pussy-footing round the notion of Tahiti's many (pagan!) sea gods. The native dancing seems a bit out of place - without context it seems like the local native hotel entertainment rather than anything of a truly ceremonial hue.


    Kelly Slater is very easy on the eye and ear throughout, the surfing world's equivalent of a sports' superstar, though previously unknown to me in the UK.

    So, although a bit of a mash up of all sorts of documentary styles, this comes out as a fresh and original sort of IMAX entertainment and worth seeing on home equipment. The more original these 3D documenaries get the more they have to offer, IMHO.


    Some 3D trailers in the extras, too.


    viewed:

    PS3 3D bluray

    Optoma 720p HD projector

    Optoma 3D-XL conversion box
     

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