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The Departed, Aviator & Goodfellas 3 pac on Blu Ray
on February 8, 2013
I don't provide opinions on the movies, the acting or give summaries of each film. That has been done many times elsewhere so I just provide information regarding the transfer of each of these film's from Standard Definition to this current Blu Ray trifecta. In actuality, all 3 movies are quite good and Goodfellas is one of those films that can arguably be deemed a classic of its genre. So lets take a good look at each film's transfer to Blue Ray individually.
'The Departed' is a film that I did not have on Standard Def but have seen before. The transfer to Blu Ray exhibited no artificial grain or aliasing that I could see. The color resolution tends to be a touch muted matching the ambiance of the streets that Scorsese relates to. While I am sure there is a slight improvement over the Standard Def version's video, I doubt that it is very much. The average bit rate is pretty low showing the increased compression akin to a Standard Def version. While the Audio is PCM lossless, there is almost no use whatsoever of the surround system with no steering for discreet channels of foley fx. In fact, once there was clear panning between the front and rear audio stages, it occurred after the first 2 hours of the film, almost at the end and actually surprised me.
'The Aviator' had some very warm color grading in the transfer to blu ray and some slight grain. However, there was no artifacting or ghosting of any kind. Once again, the bit rate was in the mid teens to low 20's and I strongly doubt that this film was remastered for blu ray. Instead, the film was probably just reformatted for Blu Ray without any work made to improve the imaging. The Audio was a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 and, if you are used to lossless audio, it really makes a difference. The audio will sound muted/muffled. Yes, you do forget about that as you move more deeply into the film but this is supposed to be BluRay, the top of the heap, and for them to include only a compressed audio option is inexcusable. There is some use, not a whole lot, of the rear channels as well as some appropriate panning between audio stages but your LFE channel will have a nice long rest with no signal to wake it up.
For the classic, 'Goodfellas', I cry with disappointment. The mbps ranges from the low teens to the low twenties and the video transfer shows no real improvement over my Standard Def version. The audio is also also lossy with everything coming through the center channel and nothing in the surrounds or LFE; and again we have paid for a superior product of a superior movie and not received what we paid for. The video transfer appears to be the same as my Standard Def DVD with some grain throughout tho there is no artifacting that I could see. The disc stopped playing at the end of the scene early in the movie between when he comes out of court and then is shown as a grownup Ray Liota. I backed the disc up and played it again, this time not stalling out.
While it is great to get 3 movies on 3 separate discs for such a low price, if you already have them on Standard Def DVDs, do not expect to see a remarkable difference between the two formats if you see any difference at all. This lack of effort and improved quality for the transfer of these films to Blu Ray is the reason I gave this set only 2 stars. As films on their own, Goodfellas would and should get 5 stars and The Departed and Aviator 4 stars each.
All my movie reviews are of this nature and focus only on the quality of the transfer to BluRay so check them and see if they are of help as well.
Hopefully, this review has been of some help to you in determining your purchase, hope I am on the correct path with a review of the transfer quality as opposed to providing plot summaries.