Blu-ray Review HTF BLU-RAY REVIEW: Good Night, and Good Luck

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Michael Osadciw, Sep 2, 2006.

  1. Michael Osadciw

    Michael Osadciw Screenwriter

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    Blu-ray Disc REVIEW



    [​IMG]

    GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK

    Studio: Warner Bros.
    Film Year: 2005
    Film Length: 93 minutes
    Genre: Drama/Historical

    Aspect Ratio:
    1.85:1 Theatrical Ratio

    Film Resolution: 1080/24p
    Special features: 480/30i/p
    Video Codec: MPEG-2
    Colour/B&W: B&W

    Audio:
    English [​IMG] [​IMG] 5.1 Surround

    Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
    Film Rating: [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]




    Release Date: AVAILABLE NOW


    Film Rating: [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] / [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Starring: Jeff Daniels (Sig Mickelson), David Strathairn (Edward. R. Morrow), Patricia Clarkson (Shirley Wershba), Robert Downey Jr. (Joe Wershba), George Clooney (Fred Friendly)

    Written by: George Clooney & Grant Heslov
    Directed by: George Clooney



    We will not walk in fear of one another.


    Good Night, and Good Luck was the first Blu-ray title I viewed from Warner Bros. All I can do is highly recommend this film to all film lovers out there. The story telling is engaging and the performances by the actors are top rate. This is an amazing feat for George Clooney’s first major picture as director. The film has received six Academy Award nominations including Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Director (Clooney), Best Leading Performance (Strathairn), Best Cinematography (Elswit).

    This is also one of the first titles to be available on both High Definition disc formats. The HD-DVD review, by HTF Reviewer Herb Kane can be found here. Herb praised the film both technically and artistically I will express similar thoughts with this Blu-ray release. Below you will find Herb Kane’s review of the film and following it are my comments on the performance of this Blu-ray disc.

    HTF DVD Reviewer Herb Kane writes: Good Night, and Good Luck, is a dramatized, publicized account of the struggle between respected CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow (played by David Strathairn) and Sen. Joseph McCarthy, which unfolds during the 1950s. In a stylized fashion with bookend scenes taking place at an October 1958 "Salute to Edward R. Murrow," the majority of the film occurs between October 1953 and April 1954. During that time period, Murrow focused many of his TV show "See It Now" episodes to discrediting McCarthy's persecution of men believed by the powerful Senator to be “un-American”. However the demagogue bit off more than he could chew by targeting Murrow. Putting much of his reputation (and those who surrounded him) on the line, he was able to disprove the allegations, and the Senate elected to investigate McCarthy, which eventually resulted in the end of the “witch-hunts”. The title, Good Night, and Good Luck, echoes Murrow's weekly sign-off.


    [​IMG]VIDEO QUALITY 9.5/10
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I’ve decided to rank the video quality of these discs on a 1-10 scale. A Blu-Ray score of 5 will mean that it is similar to the best-looking DVD I can think of and the remaining 5-10 will be based on the extended resolution of Blu-Ray disc. I think this is the best way to rank these titles for now so I hope this will help you to determine what a reference HD disc is. As more BDs become available and authoring improves (as was in the early DVD days) the earliest titles I’ve ranked as “10” may not appear as “reference quality” anymore. Please note that I’m currently viewing this on a 1280x720 projector and I’m not even able to see half of the 1920x1080 information on this disc. In the simplest terms, instead of seeing 6x the resolution of DVD I’m only seeing 2.6x the improvement. Our display devices have a long way to go before we can see all of the picture information contained on these discs. This disc was reviewed on the Samsung BD-P1000 on a 35-foot Monster M1000HDMI to a calibrated PT-AE700 (6500K/5400K-B&W). The screen is a D110" (8-foot wide) Da-Lite Cinema Contour (w.Pro-Trim finish) and Da-Mat fabric.

    I have to agree with Herb Kane’s picture quality description in his HD-DVD review of Good Night, and Good Luck. Even though I haven’t seen the HD-DVD, his description could easily be copied over for this Blu-ray disc. I was so impressed by this BD that I want to recommend it to every Blu-ray owner out there. The black and white photography is superb; care has been taken to deliver every close up, ever camera angle as a form of art. Cinematographer Robert Elswit must have taken great pride while looking through the lens. The result is a fabulous film in HD.

    The film has excellent contrast as every shade of grey looks accurate from darkest to brightest. The black levels never looked crushed and the white levels never seemed to clip. The detail is breathtaking in every sense and makes you appreciate black and white photography more so than ever. There is a minor amount of film grain but for the most part the image is pristine. No compression artefacts were evident. For the duration of the film, I preferred to view it in the warmer colour temperature setting of 5400K.

    I have only a few minor complaints: firstly the aspect ratio has been altered from its theatrical ratio of 1.85:1 to HD’s 1.78:1. This won’t be a big deal for most people, but for me it’s all about integrity. Also, there seems to be some noticeable edge enhancement; when a person in the foreground is contrasted distinctly with the background, you can see along the side of the suit an extra thin white line that clearly shouldn’t be there. It’s not in every shot, but it appeared frequently when the conditions were right. This was the only Blu-ray Warner Bros. title I noticed had this.


    [​IMG]DOLBY DIGITAL AUDIO EXPERIENCE: 5/10 [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    For the sake of consistency with the video, I’m going to rate uncompressed PCM (and eventually the lossless audio compression formats when available), as well as lossy codecs from Dolby Digital and DTS on a scale from 1-10. This rating is based on “satisfaction” – the highest score delivering the greatest amount of satisfaction and the lowest delivering the least. When defining satisfaction, I mean both the resolution of the audio as well as the sound design for the film. I’m listening for the best experience possible. Audio is reviewed using the Samsung BD-P1000’s decoding & DACs, a Marantz SR5400 for preamp/pass-through, 2 Anthem MCA-30 amps each on Transparent PowerLink Super, Dunlavy SC-IV (front), Dunlavy SC-I (center), Focus Audio FC-50 (surrounds), Mirage BPS-400 subwoofer (LFE), 4 Paradigm PW-2200 subwoofers on 2 Mirage LFX-3 crossovers (one sub for each main channel for audio
     
  2. Larry Sutliff

    Larry Sutliff Cinematographer

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    This is easily the best BD transfer I've seen. Absolutely gorgeous. And a very fine film.
     
  3. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Michael,
    As you stated earlier in your review, it was nominated this year for those awards.[​IMG]

    I elected to buy the HD DVD instead of the Blu-ray disc.




    Crawdaddy
     
  4. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    It's great to see a BD with high PQ!
    It's good for HD disc.
     
  5. Michael Osadciw

    Michael Osadciw Screenwriter

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    Robert - ooops! ha ha ha! how did I manage to do that!!??

    Mike
     
  6. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
    Reviewer

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    Michael,

    I wouldn't be too concerned about a 1.85 production finding its way to DVD in 1.78 for a number of reasons.

    I doubt that anyone can tell the difference. There are just a few scanning lines going uncroppped. It makes absolutely no difference in the final image, with the exception of the loss of a bit of black at the top and bottom of screen.

    Theatrically, one has no idea how it is being presented. Probably closer to 2:1 in many plexes, as it makes things easier for the theater.

    RAH
     
  7. Michael Osadciw

    Michael Osadciw Screenwriter

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    Hi Robert

    Yes, I know you are right in that it won't make a difference in the image and few will notice the difference. Since I didn't see any black area at the top and bottom of my screen I knew it was translated to 1.78:1. I just had to report the finding [​IMG]

    Mike
     
  8. Michael TLV

    Michael TLV THX Video Instructor/Calibrator

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    Greetings

    Just a nit pick here Mike.

    It isn't D5400 ... there is no D5400. The D point on the Black Body Curve represents one point ... not multiple color temp points. It just happens to correspond to around 6500k therefore the D6500 reference.

    5400 is more representative of the E point on the BB curve which is about 5430 ish. The B/W standard.

    Regards
     
  9. Michael Osadciw

    Michael Osadciw Screenwriter

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    Thanks Michael for the clarification. I sometimes get my terminology backwards.
     

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