Customer Review

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun movie, technically good transfer, US region ALL version has subs, 3 Jan 2013
This review is from: Stargate: Ultimate Edition (Blu Ray) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Too many one-line reviews here. "Ah like/hate it" and "Best/worst muhvie evah" reviews are notoriously both moronic and unhelpful.

Too many "Bad quality" claims, too. A lot of people complain with a lot of blu-ray versions of slightly dated movies; for example that the movie looks grainy, when in fact it looks about as good as it ever did on celluloid. It is quite easy to find qualified information about transfer/reproduction quality in professional reviews with technical information on picture quality, comparisons with other releases etc. The subjective and unqualified opinions that some people put forth about "good releases" which are measurably bad and "bad releases" which are measurably good are not very helpful if you actually want to know about the quality of a specific release.

It is of course okay if a person does not like the original picture quality. But it's not okay to blame a technically very good reproduction for being the opposite. That is clearly putting the blame in the wrong place.

A few facts are needed, hence this review:

1) Quality

If you are in doubt about the picture/sound quality, look up a technically backed review, for example on blu-ray.com (search for Stargate Anniversary Edition), or on ign.com (search for Stargate Ultimate Edition). At ign.com the review offers comparison pictures with the earlier blu-ray release which will remove any possible doubt that complaints about this release being "bad quality" are completely off the mark. The transfer and picture quality of the "Ultimate Edition" blu-ray is simply close to perfect. To be fair, the established reviewers also remark that there is some grain in dark indoor scenes, but they also explain - with documentation - how this release is a vast technical improvement over previous releases and that the overall quality is very good.

2) Complaints

There is one complaint about the UK release that is very well founded:

The UK version of the blu-ray release omits English subtitles, which is a complete no-brainer. A lot of people who are not hearing imparied will still have use for original language subtitles in order to hear what's being said by people who mumble, when more people talk at the same time, in noisy scenes etc.

This is a serious complaint in my book. Solution: Go for the US "Anniversary Edition" release instead. It is basisically the same release, most importantly it's the same transfer. It's cheap (presently) on Amazon.com, it has the two movie versions, it is region ALL, the differences being that it DOES have English subtitles - and a bit less of extras. So the choice is between more extras (UK) or English subs (US). (For region info, bluray.liesinc.net is very helpful although incomplete since it only has the data that users provide. For content comparisons (also limited to what users contribute) I recommend dvdcompare.net).

3) The movie itself

This will obviously be an opinion, not "facts", but technical quality would be irrelevant if the movie was. So - well, Stargate is certainly not serious science fiction, but very much an Indiana Jones-like adventure sci-fi movie. I like serious sci-fi, but I also like good fun, and I certainly think that Stargate qualifies quite well in the latter department. Most people considering purchase of a copy of Stargate probably know the movie already, and I don't want to tell what it's about if you don't. If you don't know it, be prepared for a real "popcorn movie". I cannot say whether you will like it or not. But if you know and like other Roland Emmerich movies it's a rather safe bet that you will. If you are going to see Stargste for the first time, I would recommend seeing the theatrical version first. It is a bit shorter and I agree with many others that the added scenes in the director's cut version mostly just make the movie longer and clumsier.

Personally, entertainment which I find sufficiently sympathic, fun and good-looking to make me want to see it again and again is among the best I can get, I'll happily give five stars to anything with those qualities. But the five stars are not for intelligence, they are for "VERY good fun".

So: Recommended for the movie, and for quite objectively being a quality release. US version recommended over the UK version if you want English subs.
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