THE HTF ADDICT: Monster House in 3D

Ronald Epstein

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Ronald Epstein
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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.

 

 

 

 

Monster House in 3D

 

 

 

Studio: Sony Pictures

Product Release: September 14, 2010

Ratio: 2.40:1

Audio: English, French, Portugese 5.1 DTS-HD MA, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital

Running Time: 91 Minutes

Rating: PG

 

3dsmall.jpg

ON A SCALE 0-5

Overall 3D Presentation Rating: 5

3D Separation: 5

3D In Yo' Face Factor: 0

 

 

 

I have been very impressed with what I have seen from Sony 3D

animation thus far.  Following with my review of Cloudy with a 

chance of Meatballs and Open Season, I am now find myself

back in familiar territory praising yet another Sony 3D title.

 

...but I need to ask, who did the filmmakers imagine they were making

Monster House for?  I don't think any young child would be able to sit

through this film.  This has got to be one of the scariest animated titles

I have ever seen -- especially with the 5.1 sound turned way up high.

 

So, let me give you the basics of the story.  A young pre-teen boy 

named DJ (Mitchel Musso) lives across the street from a creepy

old house inhabited by a creepier old  Mr. Nebbercracker (Steve

Buscemi) who isn't overly fond of kids or their toys ending up on 

his lawn.  A mishap involving DJ and his friend Chowder (Sam

Lerner) sends the old man into cardiac arrest.  DJ thinks he is a

murder.

 

Soon afterwards the house comes alive, seemingly possessed,

eating everything and everyone that comes into its path.  The boys

set out to find out what is at the heart of it all by setting forward a

plan to destroy the house before it destroys them.

 

Directed by Gil Kenan and with Executive Producers Robert

Zemeckis and Steven Spielberg, the film uses the same digital

capture process as The Polar Express. The result is very life-like

animation right down to facial expressions.  It's this kind of

animated realism that slaps on another layer of hair-raising

tingles. 

 

This another perfect 3D experience for the new format.  Image

quality is pristine and deeply detailed.  There is a considerable

amount of depth here between bodies and background.  Because

the filmmakers designed this film for 3D viewing there is great use

of shots taken from above trees, behind branches, and down 

through holes.  It really gives the viewer an outstanding sense 

of realism.  This film falls ever-so-slightly behind the other two

Sony titles mentioned at the top of the review simply because 

it feels like the older film it is.  I think the technology got a bit

better since its release.


The only major ghosting problems I saw happens in the final battle at

the end of the film.  There is so much animated action happening at

once that you begin to see double imaging in places.  It's kept to a minimum.

 

I fail to understand why there are no "In Yo' Face" moments.

There is certainly a lot of opportunity here to throw stuff at the

audience -- especially being a kids title -- but all the 3D stays

from within the confines of the screen. 

 

What one must really do when watching this film is to turn the

audio up high.  The DTS-HD MA audio pounds away throughout

the film serving up an immense amount of sonic detail with

thunderous bass.  To top it all off, there are so many directional

effects that add eerie realism to the 3D.  You'll hear every creak

of the house while the flames of the furnace will seemingly

engulf you.  If you really want to scare the kids, put the emphasis

on the audio.

  

Included are 3D trailers for Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs and Open Season.

 

 

CONCLUSION

 

Sony wins again on the 3D front with a highly satisfying

release.  While I didn't think the film was as entertaining as Open

Season or Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs,  I do think that its

animation and first-rate 3D delivery make it a title worthy of purchase

consideration.

 

 

Equipment

 

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

 

Yumbo

Effects Supervisor
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Sep 13, 1999
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Chris Caine
Will this also work/play in 2D?


We're getting/launching 3D in Fiji with a Panasonic 65" Viera 20.

Player is BD300.


PS3 not working!
 

Yumbo

Effects Supervisor
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Chris Caine
Bula Ron, Are you able to try that theory? Is it a separate disc or one of those MVC dictated dual dimension discs? Menu option or auto-detecting? Sorry for all the plebe Qs. I'm concerned about the FIFA World Cup South Africa disc which you haven't tested yet. It says 3D only. It is one of the Sony releases, so I assume all their discs perform the same. Hopefull, it does the 2D as well. Thanks again
 

peterjanni

Grip
Joined
Nov 19, 2010
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Peter Janni
The 2d version of the movie is accessed through the menu system. When you hit "Play movie", you'll enter a sub-menu where you're given your choice of the 2d or 3d version. Works the same way with Cloudy with a chance of meatballs. And I assume Open Season. I don't own Open Season so I can't say for sure, but, its another sony release, so it should.
 

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