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3D Blu-ray Reviews

THE HTF 3D ADDICT: Ultimate G's: Zac's Flying Dream



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#1 of 4 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

Ronald Epstein

    Studio Mogul



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Posted March 16 2011 - 05:33 AM




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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.






ULTIMATE G's

Zac's Flying Dream



Studio: Image

Product Release: April 5, 2011

Ratio: 1.78:1

Audio: English, French DTD-HD Master Audio 5.1

Running Time: 37 Minutes

Rating: NR


3dsmall.jpg

ON A SCALE 0-5

Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 3

3D Separation: 4

3D In Yo' Face Factor: 0


Ultimate ZZZzzzz's


Out of all the titles that comprise the recent batch of Image

IMAX releases, I had the highest expectations for Ultimate

G's: Zac's Flying Dream.  I mean, you take one look at the

cover and feel your heart race looking at the cool pictures

of monoplanes racing across the sky.  Then, you look at

the label on the corner and see that Michael Cera is involved

with the project.  How cool this must be!


The first disappointment comes when you find out that 

Ultimate G's is a film originally produced in 2000 for

Imax exhibition.  It features a 12 year-old Michael Cera 

who dominates the first half of this short as a young

boy named Zac whose dreams of flight leads him to

building all sorts of flying machines with the help

of his friend Laura.  Sixteen years later, Zac has become

the pilot he has always dreamed to be, and upon visiting

his long-time childhood friend, Laura, he is challenged to

an aerobatic dual by a hotshot pilot.


What does all this have to do with cool 3D flight?

Absolutely nothing other than grounding this movie 

firmly for most of its length with a badly written,

hokey storyline that throws in a sappy love story 

that is so bad you would think it was written by

George Lucas.


It seemingly takes forever for viewers go get through

the film's opening story of the young Zac (Michael Cera)

and his many attempts to build the perfect flying machine.

It is only 17 minutes later that we get our first taste of

actual flight footage, but that is quickly replaced with a

more tedious storyline concerning two rivals trying to

impress a girl that leads to an aerobic duel high above

the Grand Canyon. 


With a camera placed in the front seat of an Extra 300

monoplane, there is some breathtaking aerial footage 

from above Lake Powell and The Grand Canyon.  The

stunning photography holds up to the standards of what

you would expect from an IMAX presentation.  Unfortunately,

I would estimate that there is about 10-15 minutes of actual

flight footage within this 37 minute feature.  


The transfer is sharp and well detailed.  That's the good

news. The 3D looks....well....okay.  Certainly, the Grand

Canyon sequences with its striking rock formations and

colors benefit most from the added dimensionality as the

overhead shots of Lake Powell.  While there is distinct 

foreground and background separation, most of it has

no benefit to the viewer when most of the film takes place 

indoors --- whether it be in Zac's bedroom, garage workshop 

or a nearby bar.  Most all these scenes lean towards being 

dark, and thus, I found a considerable amount of ghosting 

present.  In fact, I found image doubling was a consistent 

problem on this disc.  Even some of the flight sequences 

that take place in broad daylight exhibit ghosting around 

the edges of the monoplane wings.  There is absolutely 

no "In Yo' Face" 3D to be seen here.  


The best thing that I can say about the overall presentation

is that it sports a full-bodied, triumphant musical soundtrack

with very active surrounds.   The entire film sounds immensely

epic with its sweeping music enhanced by the sound of planes

that roar from the rears across the front.  An overabundance

of effect noise keep the back channels competing for attention.



CONCLUSION



Perhaps most of the blame for the flaws in this IMAX 

presentation is due to the time period it was created.

Back in 2000 (only 11 years ago), 3D was technology

that was limited to IMAX screens and people who went

to see these films cared less about the content of what

they were watching as long as it showed off a certain

amount of intriguing 3D footage.


These days, I think audiences are demanding much 

more than what Ultimate G's Zac's Flying Dream can

offer. Personally I would be quite mad if I had just

plopped down $15 for this Blu-ray and ended up sitting

through the cornfed storytelling with a hint of mildly

satisfying 3D footage.




Equipment


LG 60PX950 THX Certified 3D display

Oppo BDP-93 Blu-ray Player

Denon 3808CI Receiver

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

SV Sound Subwoofer


 

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner

 

 Click Here for the latest/hottest Blu-ray Preorders  Click Here for our complete Blu-ray review archive

 Click Here for our complete 3D Blu-ray review archive Click Here for our complete DVD review archive

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#2 of 4 OFFLINE   PhiloM5

PhiloM5

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  • Join Date: Mar 09 2011

Posted March 17 2011 - 11:41 AM

great thread.., maybe others can recommend some good 3D content.  I know DTV just launched a 3D channel.., or maybe I just found it ! Also.., I just purchased the JVC Procision (sp?) 3D projector and an SI 100" screen...  so am I in for a great ride ?  I really want to know.  All the home theater places my wife and I went to didn't have a 3D projector hooked up.. so we took a leap of faith and went for it.  This will be Active 3D of course. Thanks ! Phil.

#3 of 4 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

Ronald Epstein

    Studio Mogul



  • 43,267 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 03 1997

Posted March 17 2011 - 12:13 PM

Phil,


Welcome aboard and congrats on the purchase of your

JVC projector.  You picked the right technology as we

greatly recommend active shutter 3D technology over

passive.


You can find a lot of great 3D recommendations right here.


First, here is the archive of all the 3D reviews we have done

to date.


If you are looking for what I think are the very best 3D

titles that are currently available, look no further than

this Top 10 List.





 

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner

 

 Click Here for the latest/hottest Blu-ray Preorders  Click Here for our complete Blu-ray review archive

 Click Here for our complete 3D Blu-ray review archive Click Here for our complete DVD review archive

 Click Here for Blu-Ray Preorder Release Schedule  Click Here for forum posting rules and regulations


#4 of 4 OFFLINE   RolandL

RolandL

    Screenwriter



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  • Join Date: Dec 11 2001
  • LocationCromwell, CT

Posted March 17 2011 - 11:50 PM

On Comcast here in Cromwell, CT they added ESPN 3D and Xfinity 3D channels on March 1. Xfinity  3D has the following short films: Wild Ocean Secrets of the Mummies Adventures in Animation Wild Safari 3D: A South SOS Planet African Adventure Ultimate G's: Zac's Flying 3D Sun Chinese Lion Dancing 3D Rhythmic Gymnastics Dinosaurs of the Patagonia Haunted Castle Dinosaurs Alive Siegfried & Roy: The Magic Box Encounter in the Third Dimention Alien Adventure Misadventures in 3D

Roland Lataille
Cinerama web site

 






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