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3D Blu-ray Review THE HTF 3D ADDICT: Disney's A Christmas Carol

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ronald Epstein, Nov 22, 2010.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder

    Jul 3, 1997
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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.





    Disney's A Christmas Carol



    Studio: Walt Disney

    Product Release: November 16, 2010

    Ratio: 2.40:1

    Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French & Spanish Dolby 5.1

    Running Time: 96 Minutes

    Rating: PG



    ON A SCALE 0-5

    Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 5

    3D Separation: 5

    3D In Yo' Face Factor: 3



    The first thing I thought last year when Disney's A

    Christmas Carol hit the screen was "Do we really need

    yet another retelling of this story?"    

    It's easy to give Robert Zemeckis a break on selecting

    this material for his capture performance animation.  What 

    he has created a is a very faithful retelling of the story that

    takes place in a very lifelike animated world that is greatly 

    enhanced by 3D technology.  

    I sit and wonder who Zemeckis was making this film for.

    Under the Disney banner, you would think that this would

    be a "family-friendly" film.  However, this retelling is very

    dark with very disturbing imagery and dialogue that comes

    directly out of the book.  For me this was the downfall of

    the film.  I could sit here and appreciate the fact that the

    director didn't pander to young audiences but at the same

    time I found that the film comes off as being somewhat

    dull with very little emotion.  It's a wonderfully animated

    film but I get the feeling that I'll be sticking with the more

    uplifting classic versions for years to come.

    Disney has struck gold with their first 3D digital release.

    When you combine such wonderfully detailed animation

    with 3D technology that really conveys a sense of depth

    you have the perfect disc to demo to your family and friends.

    There are wonderful 3D moments to savor here such as

    the falling snow that often comes within inches of your

    face.  The most bizarre sequence in the film is when 

    Scrooge shrinks in size.  I really disliked the fact that 

    the filmmakers went in this direction but I can see why....

    it provides some of the best 3D moments in the film due 

    to its varying height perspectives.

    Alas, the transfer is not perfect.  There is ghosting here,

    and I think I have figured it all out.  For me, I find ghosting

    in any dark scene that is lit by ambient light.  Pretty much

    every 3D transfer I have seen suffers from this problem.

    Some worse than others.  

    In the first 10 minutes as various characters assemble

    in Scrooge's darkened shop lit only by candlelight, you can

    see varying amounts of ghosting.  Take a look at the dance

    sequence of Christmas Past at the 41 minute mark where

    the camera pulls into Scrooge and Belle.  Belle's facial 

    features are clearly doubled.  The home of Bob Cratchit,

    also very dark, provides ghosting problems.  Look when

    Tiny Tim raises his cup and exclaims, "God Bless us all!"

    You can see that the cup looks doubled.   When the Ghost

    of Christmas Future brings Scrooge back to the Cratchit

    home and we watch a heartbroken Bob climbing the stairs

    you can see ghosting.  Fortunately, these ghosting issues

    are far more minimal than what I saw on The Polar Express.

    I wouldn't say that there is much "In You' Face" moments

    here, but the animation does make good use of having 

    objects protrude the screen without seeming like its going

    for the gimmick.  Objects like snow, flame embers and

    pointing fingers seemingly drift out of the display screen.

    Presented in DTS-HD 5.1, I found the audio to be very

    immersive featuring the score of Alan Silvestri combined

    with a swirling amount of effect noises that cross every

    channel such as the laughter of ghosts, the "whooshing"

    of wind or the clapping of thunder.  There is an incredible

    amount of bass to be heard here.  Turn the audio up as

    Marley approaches from outside Scrooge's bed chamber.  

    I advise the same for when the Ghost of Christmas

    Present opens the floor of Scrooge's living room and

    begins shifting the house in different directions. You can

    really feel the floors shake.

    The film comes packaged in a wonderful lenticular slipcase.




    You know, I should never have gone with a

    number rating system.  There is already arguments as

    to why I would give a top-rating of "5" to a 3D transfer

    that has ghosting problems.

    The reason is because this format is still in its infancy

    and either the hardware or the studios can't get all the

    kinks out that cause problems like ghosting.  So, sometimes

    I have to put something that can't be easily be solved to

    the side and look at the bigger picture.

    I am ranking Disney's A Christmas Carol as one of the

    best 3D transfers that is currently available despite its

    minor flaws.  It may not be nearly the best telling of the

    Dickens classic, but it certainly will be something that 

    you'll put in your Blu-ray player time and time again when

    showing off your new system to family and friends.





    LG 60PX950 THX Certified 3D display

    LG BX580 3D Blu-ray Player

    Denon 3808CI Receiver

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

    SV Sound Subwoofer

  2. Hank

    Hank Guest

    I watched this over the weekend and it was great. Some of the best 3D I've seen so far. I haven't been to this forum for a while, glad to see some 3D reviews!

    My 3D set-up

    Panasonic TCP-50VT25 3D Plasma
    Panasonic BDT-300 BD player
    Oppo BDP-93 BD player
    Denon AVR-3808CI receiver
    Paradigm Reference Esprit Bipolar Towers,
    Paradigm Reference CC-450 center
    Klipsch Reference RS-52 Bipolar Surrounds
    Paradigm DSP-3400 sub
  3. Yumbo

    Yumbo Cinematographer

    Sep 13, 1999
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    I finally watched it, after convincing the wife to join me.

    Q. Do we calibrate in 2D to watch in 3D - the brightness factor?
  4. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder

    Jul 3, 1997
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    Interested to see if you found the same ghosting
    issues in the specific scenes I mentioned above.
  5. RolandL

    RolandL Producer

    Dec 11, 2001
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    We have 3D Plasma, LED and DLP where I work. The best (least or no ghosting/crosstalk) 3D I have seen is with DLP (no ghosting), Plasma (very little ghosting), LED (most ghosting).
  6. Hank

    Hank Guest


    Yes. I did notice some ghosting early on, especially in the darker scenes. Overall, I was very pleased with the presentation. This is one of the best 3D presentations I have seen.
  7. John Maher_289910

    John Maher_289910 Supporting Actor

    Nov 7, 2013
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    I know this review is a few years old, but I just watched this on LG's AG6400 passive 3D TV, and there is zero ghosting during the entire film. It looks fantastic. In fact, other than a bit of haloing during DIAL M FOR MURDER, I have seen no ghosting in any of the 15 films I've watched, thus far.

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