9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5 star film, 2 star sound,
This review is from: Dumbo Special Edition Combi Pack (Blu-ray + DVD) (Blu-ray)
My wife and I were both really looking forward to watching this. It is one of her favorite movies. The movie itself is short, coming in at about 64 minutes, but in that time, it packs an emotional punch. You see as Dumbo gets delivered late, and then as he gets picked on because of his monster ears ("he is SO cute"says my wife as she looks on in wonder, and I have to agree).
We see his protective mom go on a rampage to protect him and then get isolated, the moment where he visits her in the klink is heart-wrenching. I won't spoil the end for you, but I reckon you know it anyway and I don't write spoiler reviews, so here goes the blu ray...
The film is old and looks it. Though it is beautifully restored, you can only do so much with such an old cartoon. I guess it has never looked better though. Four stars for video quality. It is nowhere near reference in my opinion, but they did the best they could with what they had. Still a treat to watch Dumbo looking so clean and with such wonderful colors. I guess the blu ray does it justice here.
Here is where Disney really could have overcome the weaknesses of the inherent film quality. Unfortunately, they came up well short on this film. Known for their reference soundtracks, they really dropped the ball on this one.
I know it was filmed in mono, but for Disney to call this track 7.1 is simply a farce. There is absolutely NO .1, nope, nada, no LFE sounds coming through the subwoofer. Throughout the movie, there are hardly any surrounds used for atmospherics, or ambience, a couple seconds of rain, and just a couple of thunder blasts in the rear channels. It seemed sloppily added at the last minute just to be able to call it surround sound. No panning. Nothing.
Now, I KNOW it was filmed in Mono, but why would Disney try to upsell this as a 7.1 track? I could live with it if it only had mono or a good 2.0, but Disney has falsely labeled this product as something that it is not. If I had known before hand how pathetic this DTS-HD MA 7.1 track was, I would not have bought the blu ray, period. Surround sound freaks beware.
For those of you without surround sound systems, the sound is probably great, for those of us with them, don't waste your money here.
Two stars here for sound is absolutely generous.
Region Disc: B,C
English DTS HD 7.1 (NOT)
Latin Spanish/Italian Dutch DTS 5.1
Hindi DD 5.1
Catalan Spanish DD 2.0 (this is probably the truest track on the disc...)
English for the hearing impaired/Italian/Spanish/Dutch
A great film, emotional, funny, and it is rare for a cartoon to evoke such emotion, truly a great roller-coaster ride.
Disney has made Dumbo pretty again with a solid restoration, it has never looked better, the colors are brilliant, the lines clean, they did a great job, limited only by the inherent film. Unfortunately the sound not only fails to deliver, it is a farce. This blu ray is unfairly labeled and as such I rate the sound as very poor. you get a 3.0 soundtrack at best with this film. And honestly, I MAY have been ok with that had it been so labeled. The extras on the discs are very entertaining and if not for the extras I would have given this less stars I think. I hope people don't take this as a knock on the film, but more a knock on the studio behind it falsely upselling their product.
Recommendation: Rent it. I regret purchasing this disc because of the sound alone.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 31 Mar 2010 15:00:05 BDT
Last edited by the author on 31 Mar 2010 15:02:06 BDT
Lee Lucas says:
A very good and informative review there Split Pea nice one. I myself am a sound freak, and certainly will not be purchasing this one. I know from my own experience with Snow White just what kind of a poor job Disney have done with the sound here, and it's very much more of there false advertising regarding there so called 7.1 HD surround sound format. It is a complete farce and a complete waste of time them putting it on an HD soundtrack, and it would have been better with as you say, either a mono or 2.0 soundtrack. I see this as a ploy to entice people to purchase such rubbish, and total dishonesty from Disney in the first place. This is far from the level of standards I expect from a Blu Ray, and quite frankly very poor standards from Disney.
Thanks again for your honest review, it's worth more to me than the Disney's productions of Dumbo, Snow White and Pinocchio that's for sure, because Disney have been far from honest with advertising any one of these productions. And if this is the sort of crap we are getting here from them, you can guarantee the same kind of rubbish will be applied to Fantasia when that comes to Blu Ray. And I for one will not subscribe to this kind of crap.
In reply to an earlier post on 31 Mar 2010 16:25:30 BDT
Split-Pea Soup says:
Thanks Lee, I also won't be purchasing anymore of these older Disney films on blu ray. My wife won't let me sell this one on ebay either :)
I reckon the kids will like it at some point...
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