-

Jump to content



Sign up for a free account!

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and you won't get the popup ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.

Photo
Blu-ray Reviews

Maverick Blu-Ray Review



  • You cannot start a new topic
  • Please log in to reply
2 replies to this topic

#1 of 3 Michael Osadciw

Michael Osadciw

    Screenwriter

  • 1,325 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 24 2003

Posted June 13 2011 - 02:17 PM

http://static.hometh...um.com/imgrepo/



MAVERICK


Release Date: AVAILABLE NOW
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Packaging/Materials: single disc keepcase
Year: 1994
Rating: PG
Running Time: 126 minutes
MSRP: $14.99 each



THE FEATURE

SPECIAL FEATURES

Video

1080p 2.4:1

SD

Audio

DTS-HDMA 2.0 English

Dolby Digital 2.0 French & Spanish

2.0

Subtitles

English SDH, French, Spanish

N/A



The Feature: 3/5


Director Richard Donner (The Goonies, Lethal Weapon, and uncredited for Superman II – unless you pick up the Richard Donner version!) recreates the 1950’s Bret Maverick character in this 1994 film.  With Mel Gibson as lead and Jodi Foster and James Garner as supporting cast, the film takes the audience on a comedic blast in the past; well, just without the blast!


Bret Maverick is king con; he’s a gambler and a quick sharp shooter who’d rather con someone out of their money than fight them.  He’s a master at avoiding violence in a time when violence run rampant and the local sheriff is merely a public figure.  He’s out to collect a few extra thousand dollars to pay off a few old debts, but mainly to enter a poker game where the winner takes all $500 000!  But Maverick isn’t a man who works alone if he needs to.  Annabelle Bransford (Foster) is a scam artist in for the taking, and Marshal Zane Cooper (Garner) is interested in keeping his cushy job and keeping the peace.  As always, settings sights on a $500 000 reward isn’t easy and Maverick will need to deal with a hangman’s noose and the horse he sits on that seals his fate, the snake in the bag, outlaws, and ingrates!


Video Quality: 3/5


Not bad.  Not great.  But not bad.  I viewed this title on a freshly calibrated Samsung UN55D8000 LED television I had in my home theater.  The television has several notable improvements over last year’s LED products, one in that it can show a fully saturated red to HDTV Rec. 709 spec.  Previous models, as well as models from other competitors, tend to show red under saturated resulting in pale skin tones when grayscale is set correctly.  Knowing that I had just set the television’s grayscale with the Minolta CS-1000A to nearly a dEu’v’ of 1 or less (phenomenal grayscale tracking) and all other colours were almost right on, I started my review of Maverick in good confidence.


Knowing what early HD transfers tend to look like, this was the first conclusion that I came to when the film started.  Analyzing the opening scene, I just sensed “older” on the screen.  I am one who absolutely does not expect films to look razor sharp like other HD content because I know that some film stock look different from others and native video.  This film to video conversion does have some ringing around edges.  From a 1.5 screen height distance, I can notice it in land-sky transitions and other contrasting edges.  Whether that lingering enhancement was a past attempt to add some enhancement to source standard-def DVD releases or just the limitations of older film-to-video transfers, it looks like this image had been slightly softened to reduce this effect.


Knowing how this Samsung monitor displays images, the overall appearance of Maverick appears less saturated and warm overall.  This could be the artistic intent of creating that old warm western appearance with dominating browns and various shades of orange.  The blue sky does not draw any attention and neither do other colours – and that’s probably how it should be.  After all, this isn’t Planet Earth.  Resolution is good but I have a gut feeling that more could have been delivered.  While I don’t believe this release is an honest attempt in delivering the finest possible image to the Blu-ray format, it’s a catalogue release no doubt, to deliver an improved option over DVD.


Audio Quality: 3/5


The theatrical mix was not discrete 5.1 but rather Dolby Stereo.  Likewise, this Blu-ray disc soundtrack contains the soundtrack as DTS-HDMA 2.0 and the need for surround decoders to apply matrix surround decoding to get the surround information out of it.  When decoding is applied, the soundtrack has a moderate sound spread in the front soundstage with some ambient and music effect in the surrounds, which are monophonic unless the matrix decoding one uses employs some sort of semi-discrete surround ability.  There is no dedicated LFE channel, so if all of your channels are set up as LARGE then those speakers will be the main handlers of bass.  Like the video, the sound mix is good but not great in terms of entertainment value, but I think the audio suits this comedy well without being consistently loud.  The range of dynamics is generally good and pleasing in an era when movies, like music, is becoming excessively loud.

Special Features: 1.5/5

All special features are in standard definition.  We get the theatrical trailer, an HBO First Look: A Pictorial History of the Makin’ of the Movie Maverick, and a music video.


Recap


The Feature: 3/5
3-D Video Quality: 3/5
Audio Quality: 3/5
Special Features: 1.5/5


While I have some criticism of the Blu-ray debut of this film, there is no doubt that the Blu-ray disc is a big jump in image quality when compared to the noticeable compression artifacts the DVD has and the reduced resolution, and the soundtrack is delivered in lossless format.  Unfortunately, there are no special features that immediately grab my attention, so this title is exactly what it is – a catalogue release for those who desire to add it to their collection.


Michael Osadciw

11.06.13


Warner Bros. Blu-ray Reviewer
Anchor Bay/Starz Entertainment Blu-ray Reviewer

THX/ISF Professional Video Calibrator
HIGHEST FIDELITY CALIBRATIONS


#2 of 3 GMpasqua

GMpasqua

    Screenwriter

  • 1,423 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 21 2010

Posted June 14 2011 - 02:21 AM



Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Osadciw 

  While I don’t believe this release is an honest attempt in delivering the finest possible image to the Blu-ray format, it’s a catalogue release no doubt, to deliver an improved option over DVD.



Recap

While I have some criticism of the Blu-ray debut of this film, there is no doubt that the Blu-ray disc is a big jump in image quality when compared to the noticeable compression artifacts the DVD has and the reduced resolution, and the soundtrack is delivered in lossless format.  Unfortunately, there are no special features that immediately grab my attention, so this title is exactly what it is – a catalogue release for those who desire to add it to their collection.


Michael Osadciw

11.06.13


Could not agree with you more. Dead on review. WB could have given us a better transfer, what's here is passable, better than the DVD but not in line with their best catalog releases





#3 of 3 Steve Mayhem

Steve Mayhem

    Auditioning

  • 3 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 20 2013
  • Real Name:Steve

Posted April 21 2013 - 02:13 AM

I wholeheartedly agree with Michael's review concerning the less than extraordinary blu-ray presentation quality.

 

Inspired by the recent box set releases of the original Maverick TV show on DVD,  I also grabbed the movie Maverick blu-ray at a deeply discounted price, and gave it a spin last night.

 

I got a kick out of the movie incarnation of Maverick when I first caught it during it's theatrical run, and I'm impressed how well it still holds up as lightweight entertainment.  However, I've always been mystified by one aspect of the production, which I'll get to by way of some background:

 

Released in 1994, the movie clearly targeted baby boomers that could readily recall the era of TV westerns.  Grizzled faces from the past appear in a series of rolling cameos. Paul Brinegar, Denver Pyle, Dub Taylor, Doug McClure, Robert Fuller are familiar to those of us that grew up watching rootin-tootin Westerns on television. Director Donner also assembled a virtual who's who of country music stars for cameo roles as well. In fact, the musicians, along with the cast, produced a promotional music video (which supplements the blu-ray edition). 

 

In a masterstroke of scripting, the producers brought back James Garner in a perfectly logical way.  While her character name was changed for the movie, Jodie Foster, for all intents and purposes, re-creates the recurring Samantha Crawford role from the TV series. (Diane Brewster played the irresistible schemer on TV). 

 

So...with layers of homage to old TV Westerns in general, and the Maverick television series in particular, how the hell could the producers ignore the signature TV theme song?  All you have to do is mention the TV show in a group of aging boomers, and invariably, someone will break into a chorus of the bouncy TV theme.  Setting aside the nostalgia value, it's also an infectious little ditty that defined the character with cleverly constructed lyrics.  In fact, Jodie Foster plays "Annabel", a name lifted from the lyrics.

 

Both the TV show and movie were produced by Warner Brothers.

 

When I watched movie Maverick for the first time, I fully expected the assemblage of musical talent to belt out the theme over the closing credits, but instead they join in unison for a chorus of Amazing Grace, and some serviceable but completely forgettable score music from Randy Newman.

 

My recollection is that Maverick  did pretty well at the box office, particularly for a Western, but I still maintain Warner Brothers missed an opportunity to connect with the movie's most natural audience, by altogether ignoring the memorable TV theme. 


Edited by Steve Mayhem, April 21 2013 - 05:08 PM.






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Blu-ray Reviews

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users