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.
A VERY HAROLD & KUMAR
Studio: Warner Bros.
Product Release: February 7, 2012
Audio: 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio. French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital
Running Time: 96 Minutes
ON A SCALE 0-5
Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 5
3D Separation: 5
3D In Yo' Face Factor: 5
"It makes Avatar look Avatarded"
Okay, here I go....
For the record, up until today I have never seen a Harold
& Kumar movie -- nor had I ever had the wish to do so.
And, since I'm being totally honest with all of you, when
this screener arrived at my front door it would have been
impossible not to hear my loud sigh of disgust knowing
that I would have to subject myself to reviewing this film.
As I shamefully slipped this Blu-ray disc into my player,
I couldn't help but think I was about to take one for the team.
Some 90 minutes later, I find myself the happiest viewer
on Earth. I'm not quite sure what just happened, but having
just watched A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, I feel
as if I have had one of the most outrageously fun, enjoyable
3D experiences ever! One should never, ever judge a Blu-ray
by its cover nor hate Harold and Kumar just because they like
dining at White Castle.
I hope you will excuse the fact that I have no prior knowledge of
the adventures of Harold & Kumar prior to this third installment
of the film series as I attempt to describe where the story picks up.
It seems that some years have gone by since Harold (John Cho)
and Kumar (Kal Penn) have seen each other. While Kumar remains
the stoner that I would assume he has always been, Harold has
gotten his life together and settled down in a very expensive part
of the suburbs alongside his gorgeous Latino wife (Paula Garcés).
Things turn from bad to worse when Kumar is accidentally sent
a package addressed to Harold. Upon delivering that package
to Harold's home, he manages to burn down a sacred Christmas
tree belonging to Harold’s father-in-law (Danny Trejo). With only
hours before Christmas the duo springs into action to find a
replacement for the burnt fir as they become entangled with
Ukranian mobsters, experience a Claymation hallucination, and
find themselves in the middle of a Rockettes musical number
headed up by Neil Patrick Harris -- who I have gained an immense
amount of respect for after watching his performance here.
Folks, let me tell you, I still cannot believe how much I enjoyed
watching this film. A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas sinks
to the lowest bowels of humor and rises up as one of the raunchiest,
funniest and most graphically crude R-rated films I ever have had
the pleasure of watching.
And, really, if you don't plan to watch this film in 3D, you are going
to miss the ride. The filmmakers don't hesitate for a moment in
letting the audience know that this is a 3D film. They don't just
throw everything they can at the audience --- the slow it down and
splatter it up to the point that there is no mistake that you have just
been slapped in the face with an effect. Be prepared to be assaulted
with eggs, splattered with blood, blitzed with traffic barrels, and
overcome by smoke and dancing embers emitted from a giant joint.
The CG effect work in this film has shifted into hyperdrive for the
sake of keeping its audience completely immersed in the 3D experience.
Even when the action slows down a bit, I still found myself very
much entertained by falling flakes of snow or thrown confetti that
came within inches of my face. Of course, there is one show-stopper
moment here that I will not ruin. Let's just say it takes place during
the Claymation sequence and it will have everyone in the room
howling hysterically with disbelief.
If there is any criticism that I could give to the film would be the
fact that I wish there was a little more perception of depth.
Fortunately, this is just a personal preference for me that may
not matter to most of you. I prefer my 3D films to have that pop-up
book look. You notice that very effect during the film's various
flashback sequences, but outside of those moments, I felt that
depth levels were not as deep as I would have personally wished.
Be it as it may, I will not let my personal preferences get in the
way of giving this Blu-ray disc presentation a perfect score.
You will be very happy to know that crosstalk/ghosting is at
absolute minimal here. This is important for the many effects that
project themselves outward to be convincing. I only noticed
a single instance of double-imaging when the Ukranian mob boss
points a gun after the contents of a closet are revealed.
None of the highly-pleasing 3D visuals I described above would
be possible if not for the film's immaculate transfer. Image quality is
superbly detailed, blacks are excellent, colors are vividly beautiful
and skin tones look naturalistic. Since the entire film has a Christmas
theme to it, I was delighted to see how well all the colors of the season
have been perfectly translated through this transfer.
The 5.1 DTS-HD soundtrack creates an immersive soundfield that's
completely engrossing for the viewer. The fronts provide a dynamically
rich sonic experience -- particularly in the film's musical sequences that
are supported with robust low-end LFE support. The rears do a terrific
job of ensuring that thrown effects buzz across the viewer's head before
crashing or exploding behind them. It's such a delight to have a film
that immerses the viewer equally in sound as it does in visuals. Yet
another reason why I found this to be the perfect three-dimensional
A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas arrives as a 2-disc Blu-Ray
3D + Blu-ray + DVD + Ultraviolet Digital Copy set housed in lenticular
packaging. While the package is being promoted as the extended
"Extra Dope Edition," the extended cut only exists on the 2D Blu-ray
disc. The Blu-ray 3D, DVD and Digital Copy versions only contain the
theatrical cut. The 3D Blu-ray contains a 2D trailer for the animated
Justice League Doom. Sadly, the Blu-ray contains a promo for
Warner 3D Blu-ray, filled with what would amount to great demo
material if only it had produced it in 3D rather than making it a standard
2D promotion for those who still haven't bought into the format.
The 2D Blu-ray contains the extended cut as well as two featurettes:
Through the Haze With Tom Lennon, and Bringing Harold & Kumar
Claymation to Life. Deleted Scenes are also included.
I introduce no embellishment when I say that A Very Harold &
Kumar 3D Christmas is the 3D film that you have been waiting
for. When all other filmmakers are making 3D films that play it
too safe, this is the kind of movie that isn't afraid to let it all hang
out -- and trust me, it does.
Of course, it would be very irresponsible of me not to note that
this is one of the raunchiest R-rated films ever made. You
certainly don't want your kids watching this no matter how cute
you may think these characters are. What this film best serves
its purpose for is being the perfect party staple for your most
uninhibited of friends. Go ahead and invite them over, have a couple
beers, smoke a bone (if that's your thing), and sit back back and
have the time of your life.
If ever there was a reason to invest in 3D, this Blu-ray is it.
Images are for illustrative purpose only not representative of the picture quality of this disc.
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
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