Movie: Picture: Sound: Extras:
Paul Walker (formerly of The Fast and the Furious) is righteous, but poor. His girlfriend Jessica Alba (formerly of TV's 'Dark Angel') loves him unconditionally ... until she suspects he might be less righteous than she thought.
Our happy couple, with their blow-in and quite despicable friend, Scott Caan, and his dispensable girlfriend, Ashley Scott, happen by complete fluke upon two treasures at once: a semi-mythical gold-carrying sailing ship and a recently downed cocaine smuggling airplane. So trouble awaits.
No doubt about it, as a story this is a definite B or C grader, but it does hold mild interest. It is still a worthwhile investment on Blu-ray because the photography is just about as good as it gets. Those sections shot in our accustomed atmosphere were sharp to the point of perfection, and the high MPEG2 bitrate (typically around 30Mbps) brought those to the screen without any discernible artefacts or softening.
It was like having a super high resolution tropical poster on the wall, except that it moved.
What was technically impressive, though, was the extensive underwater photography. This lost nothing on the surface scenes when it came to sharpness and detail. Certainly things became rather murky in 'distant' underwater shots (even in the tropics, water reduces visibility), but most of the action was filmed up close. This disc is a great demo disc for state-of-the-art submerged cinematography.
As to the sound, this disc overcomes the transition problems associated with these new formats. You can get the audio in two ways: via a standard S/PDIF connection in the form of Dolby Digital 5.1 at the highest possible bit rate, or as uncompressed multichannel PCM (48kHz sampling) if you use a HDMI connection. This avoids the need for support for the new formats, while still delivering exceptional audio quality.
The following video bitrate graph was generated by BDInfo 0.5.2: