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THE HTF 3D ADDICT: Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs



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#1 of 1 Ronald Epstein

Ronald Epstein

    Studio Mogul

  • 39,531 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 03 1997

Posted March 18 2011 - 05:27 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.





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MUMMIES

Secrets of the Pharaohs




Studio: Image

Product Release: April 5, 2011

Ratio: 1.78:1

Audio: English,Spanish and French DTS-HD Master Audio

Running Time: 39 Minutes

Rating: NR


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ON A SCALE 0-5

Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 4

3D Separation: 5

3D In Yo' Face Factor: 1



Oh what a time it was being a King of Egypt some

3,000 years ago.  Not only were you worshipped as

a God and had temples built in your honor along the

Nile, but upon death, your body was perfectly

preserved through the process of mummification.


Secrets of the Pharaohs examines one of the world's

greatest phenomenons - Egypt's Mummies.  Narrated

by Christopher Lee, this 2007 IMAX presentation

combines convincing reenactments of Egypt circa

1267 B.C. along with footage of top scientists and

their studies into forensics that could perhaps lead

to medical breakthroughs for modern day cures.


Viewers of this documentary learn that Egyptian

priests created the first mummies ever known.

The Kings loved life and wanted to live beyond

death.  They believed that dying was a gateway

to the next world where a paradise awaited them.

The mummification process ensured that the spirit

of the body was prepared for the afterlife. However,

for the longest period of time scientists had no

idea to the secret ingredients used for embalming.

Enter Bob Brier, one of the world's foremost

experts on mummies.  He is also one of the first

modern-day scientists who have been able to

actually duplicate the mummification process.


Secrets of the Pharoahs presents a wealth of

history for anyone with a hunger to learn about

these ancient times.  For instance, viewers will

learn about Heinrich Brugsch who cracked the

heiroglyphic code which led him to the discovery

of King Rameses II's tomb in 1881 with the help

of some local tomb raiders.


Of course we get to see footage of lots of mummies

courtesy of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.


Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs lives up to

the benchmark that these IMAX presentations

are known for.  The panoramic Egyptian environment

is so effectively brought out in razor sharp detail

and enhanced with the dimensionality 3D offers

that it becomes a stunning watch.  There is a

great deal of depth perception here though rarely

does anything poke out of the screen except for

the opening and closing titles and a quick shot

of mummy toes.


Ghosting can be a recurring problem here due

to the fact that there is a lot of footage taken

in dark environments such as caves lit by torch

fire, which results in double imaging.  Not a huge

problem by any stretch but worth mentioning.


The accompanying audio soundtrack is rather

potent and immersive.  Dialogue is handled

firmly in the center speaker while music sweeps

across the remaining tracks with clarity and

force.  The rears aptly support effect noises

that include windswept rain and crashes.  There

is also an abundant amount of LFE activity that

supports the film's sound effects and music. In

all, the soundtrack is the perfect companion to

the 3D visuals.


The disc includes a "making of" documentary

which was shot in High Definition.




CONCLUSION



One of the things that I enjoy most about these IMAX

discs is that they give me an incredible amount of insight

into modern and historical research -- taking me to the

farthest corners of the Earth, and sometimes beyond its

outer boundaries.


If you are looking for an eye-popping 3D thrill-ride

experience, then Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs

is not for you.


However, this mildly entertaining documentary will be

enjoyed by anyone intrigued by Egyptian history.  These

viewers will no doubt be fascinated by the film's realistic

re-enactments of that period perfectly captured in 3D.





Equipment


LG 60PX950 THX Certified 3D display

Oppo BDP-93 3D 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

 

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