Monster House 3D (Blu-ray 3D)  [Region Free]
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Even for a 12-year old, D.J. Walters has a particularly overactive imagination. He is convinced that his haggard and crabby neighbor Horace Nebbercracker, who terrorizes all the neighborhood kids, is responsible for Mrs. Nebbercracker's mysterious disappearance. Any toy that touches Nebbercracker's property, promptly disappears, swallowed up by the cavernous house in which Horace lives. D.J. has seen it with his own eyes! But no one believes him, not even his best friend, Chowder. What everyone does not know is D.J. is not imagining things. Everything he's seen is absolutely true and it's about to get much worse than anything D.J could have imagined.
If box office performance was ever directly aligned to the quality of a film, then Monster House surely would have romped home with far more money than it eventually seized in cinemas. For this is a gem of an animated film, bursting with animation and with some degree of edge to it, given that it’s not past throwing a few scares into its story. Not nasty ones, just enough to move it away from the cuddly, trying-hard-not-to-offend family features that seem to swamp cinemas with regularity.
On its previous DVD and Blu-ray releases, more and more have discovered just what lies behind Monster House’s cover, and to say too much would be to spoilt it. Instead, let’s just say that this is a real gem, and the kind of film that’s likely to be watched again once it’s been experienced for the first time.
It’s also one of the first films to benefit from a home entertainment 3D retrofit. This adding on of 3D after the event hasn’t been hugely successful with live action films, but in animation, it’s a different story. For Monster House is a digital film, and the re-rendering is far more authentic as a result. The 3D, therefore, is genuinely impressive if you have the equipment to support it, and don’t be surprised to see the disc on demo displays in retailers in the months to come.
The main reason to enjoy the film, though, remains the cracking main feature itself, which deserves to continually expand its audience. It’s the kind of film that Hollywood rarely makes for a younger audience, and it both warrants and deserves support. --Jon Foster
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‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D is a CGI computer generated animated film from executive producers from Robert Zemeckis and Steven Spielberg in which three teenagers discover that their neighbour's house is really a living, breathing, scary monster!
Even for a 12-year old, D.J. Walters has a particularly overactive imagination. He is convinced that his haggard and crabby neighbour Horace Nebbercracker, who terrorizes all the neighbourhood children, is responsible for Mrs. Nebbercracker's mysterious disappearance. Any toy that touches Horace Nebbercracker's property promptly disappears, swallowed up by the cavernous house in which Horace Nebbercracker lives. D.J. Walters has seen it with his own eyes!
But no one believes D.J. Walters, not even his best friend, Chowder. What everyone does not know is D.J. is not imagining things. Everything he's seen is absolutely true and it's about to get much worse than anything D.J. Walters could have imagined. ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D is an animated film that is so much you will want to watch it again and again!
FILM FACT No.1: Awards and Nominations: 2007 Academy Awards®: Nominated: Best Animated Feature Film of the Year for Gil Kenan. 2007 Golden Globes: Nominated: Best Animated Film. 2007 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films: Nominated: Best Animated Film. Nominated: Best Performance by a Younger Actor for Mitchel Musso. Nominated: Best Music for Douglas Pipes. 2007 Annie Awards: Nominated: Best Animated Feature. Nominated: Best Directing in an Animated Feature Production for Gil Kenan. Nominated: Best Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production for Maggie Gyllenhaal [Voice of Zee]. Nominated: Best Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production for Sam Lerner [Voice of Chowder]. Nominated: Best Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production for Spencer Locke [Voice of Jenny]. Nominated: Best Writing in an Animated Feature Production for Dan Harmon, Pamela Pettler and Rob Schrab. 2007 ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards: Win: Top Box Office Films for Douglas Pipes. 2007 Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards: Nominated: Critics Choice Award: Best Animated Feature.
FILM FACT No.2: The 3D animated film was shot using performance capture, in which the actors performed the character movements while linked to sensors. This process was pioneered by Robert Zemeckis with his film ‘The Polar Express,’ also produced by Sony Pictures Imageworks. As with ‘The Polar Express,’ a stereoscopic 3-D version of the film was created and had a limited special release in digital 3-D stereo along with the "flat" version. Since the original source material was "built" in virtual 3-D, it created a very rich stereoscopic environment.
Voice Cast: Ryan Newman, Steve Buscemi, Mitchel Musso, Catherine O'Hara, Fred Willard, Sam Lerner, Woody Schultz, Ian McConnel, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jason Lee, Spencer Locke, Kevin James, Nick Cannon, Jon Heder, Kathleen Turner, Erik Walker, Matthew Fahey, Brittany Curran (uncredited) and Marc Musso (uncredited)
Director: Gil Kenan
Producers: Bennett Schneir, Heather Smith Kelton, Jack Rapke, Jason Clark, Peter M. Tobyansen, Robert Zemeckis, Steve Starkey and Steven Spielberg
Screenplay: Dan Harmon (screenplay/story), Pamela Pettler (screenplay) and Rob Schrab (screenplay/story)
Composer: Douglas Pipes
Cinematography: Xavier Perez Grobet (Director of Photography)
Image Resolution: 1080p
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Audio: English: 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English: 5.1 Audio Descriptive Service, Arabic: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Croatian: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Czech: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Danish: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Finnish: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Greek: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Hebrew: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Hungarian: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Icelandic: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Norwegian: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Polish: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Russian: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Slovene: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Swedish: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Turkish: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound and English: 2.0 Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English, English SDH, Arabic, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Polish, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovene, Swedish, Turkish and Ukrainian
Running Time: 91 minutes
Region: All Regions
Number of discs: 1
Studio: Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Company / Image Movers / Amblin Entertainment
Andrew’s 3D Blu-ray Review: ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D  is one of the best animated films of the past couple of years and the most enjoyable family entertainment of recent times, and ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ 3D is the work of some very highly talented recent film-school graduates like Robert Zemeckis and his mentor, Steven Spielberg, as their executive producer. Made in the CGI computer generate manner like Robert Zemeckis's ‘The Polar Express’ which I did not like one bit, and it centres on a couple of lads in a middle-class suburb who suspect that dirty deeds are going on in the dilapidated gothic house across the street. It is occupied by the menacing, snagged-toothed Mr. Horace Nebbercracker (voiced by Steve Buscemi), who confiscates anything, like basketballs, tricycles and kites and he finds on his lawn.
The premise is simple enough, although some wrinkles are introduced along the way. Basically, the 3D animated film is about the efforts of three young children, D.J. Walters [voice of Mitchel Musso], Chowder [voice of Sam Lerner] and Jenny [voice of Spencer Locke] and to rid the neighbourhood of a possessed house that sits across the street from D.J. Walters's home. The possessed house has a bad habit of "eating" anyone who ventures onto its property. The door opens, a carpet tongue rolls out, and the widows stare balefully at the offending party who is about to become dinner. To add urgency to the situation, it is Halloween and dozens of trick-or-treaters will be approaching the door in costumes, expecting to be given treats, not to become them.
It is a wonder that first time feature director Gil Kenan, hasn’t been swamped with offers for other films after this impressive debut. Though much of the computer animation in ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ 3D is by today’s standards somewhat sub-par, the look of the house itself is stunning, beautiful, and definitely a nightmarish dream that looks like it might have fallen right out of the imagination of Tim Burton. It is a wonderfully feeling it is alive, it is also a fiercely cinematic set piece; and so totally effective and brilliantly conceived that a lesser animated film might have been content to rely upon merely the house’s toothy appearance as justification for the entire animated film’s existence.
From the opening, where we are treated to an impossible, meandering, tracking shot following a leaf on the wind and then the path of a little girl riding her tricycle, he proves that he has got some directing chops. From there on, we are introduced to our main characters D.J. Walters and Chowder. The writers of ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ 3D have not tried to over complicate the characters here, and are not really doing anything new, which is fine. D.J. Walters is very stoic and more serious minded. D.J. Walters best friend Chowder is his opposite, a video game playing clown who likes to make armpit noises.
Mr. Horace Nebbercracker dies of a heart attack, which D.J. Walters thinks is his fault. That night, he starts getting calls from the house, though nobody is there. D.J. Walters is convinced that Mr. Horace Nebbercracker has taken possession, and now is the house. After Chowder tries to convince him otherwise, and the house tries to eat him and they think that maybe something is up. This is when they meet Jenny, the precocious, smart, cute girl from the neighbourhood, and promptly falls in love with her. D.J. Walters and Chowder rescue her before the house can eat her, and after they both fail at impressing her, the three of them decide they need to do something about the monster house.
The three main characters all talk and act just as pre-teens should do in their group, which I think is where the heart of ‘MONSTER HOUSE' 3D lies and not in the furnace in the basement, as the 3D animated film would have you believe. This is a testament to the performance capture technology used in the film, as we get to see all the tics and awkwardness that pre-teens have. A lot of this has to do with the actors being able to play off each other naturally, without reading from separate booths one at a time as traditional and computer animated film dialogue is normally recorded. Though sometimes it is weird to be able to see certain actor’s traits come through the physical performance of a character; Catherine O’Hara and Jason Lee’s characters in particular, though it never detracts from the 3D animated film.
This 3D animated film has gone from leaps and bounds above ‘The Polar Express’ 3D animated film, which used the same technology to the performance capture technology in itself is very interesting and fascinating at the same time, as the filmmakers get the spontaneity of a live action film during the “filming” stage of the process, but they get all the nuance and caricature of an animated film in the final product we finally get to view.
In fact the only characters that detract from the 3D animated film are the two policemen, played by Kevin James and Nick Cannon. Whenever they show up the film tends to slows down and they are not at all funny and are an artificial means of moving the plot forward and the animated film did not really need these obnoxious characters. But despite this slight annoying feature of the animated film, visually it looks really impressive, especially the 3D animation and will give you are real treat in the 3D format presentation and it will be closer to a cross between an animated film and a thrill ride.
MONSTER HOUSE IN 3D MUSIC TRACK
A LITTLE MORE LOVE (Written by John Farrar) [Performed by Olivia Newton-John]
MERCIFUL HAMMER (Written and Produced by D. Sardy) [Performed by Ralph Saenz, D. Sardy, John Shmersal and Bobby Jarzombek]
THOUS ART DEAD (Written Performed by Gil Kenan) [Performed by Gil Kenan]
HALLOWEEN (Written by Siouxsie Sioux, Steven Severin, Peter “Budgie” Clarke and John McGeoch) [Performed by Siouxsie and The Banshees]
3D Blu-ray Image Quality – Sony Pictures Home Entertainment presents this 3D Blu-ray disc in a stunning 1080p image presentation and equally impressive is the 2.40:1 aspect ratio. Unlike the previous 2D release encoded with MPEG-2 compression, the 3D version is encoded with the more efficient AVC MPEG-4 codec. Included on the same disc are both the 3D and 2D versions of the film. Since the previous 2D version has been on the market for near on three years, I am of course going to only review the 3D version of the animated film ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D and really looks a total treat, but also inherently different to many other computer generated offerings. The 3D effects gives you that more in your face experiences, in which the 3D is more intended for added depth throughout this animated film, but those who like 3D things that really pop out of the screen at you will be very pleased by this 3D Blu-ray release. This is another perfect 3D experience for the new format and the 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. ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D makes for a decidedly unique CGI computer generated 3D animated film. On top of all that that I am also very happy to report that the Blu-ray disc image quality is top quality and it does a really superb job at everything related to the 3D animated film that throws at us.
3D Blu-ray Audio Quality – Sony Pictures Home Entertainment presents us with a 5.1 DTS HD Master Audio experience. As to the sound design of the animated film ‘MONSTER HOUSE' IN 3D it reflects that of the house itself can sometimes get sounds that is very aggressive. At all stages of the animated film the rear sound effects are alive with plenty of action. Animators have done a very good job of retaining lip sync with the characters mouths and the audio is always intelligible. Bass activity is very deep and very low. During the climax of the film one scene in particular was so deep and groaning that I thought that I surely would incur some damage, but all was well. ‘MONSTER HOUSE' IN 3D definitely has the most aggressive soundtrack that I have heard attached to a CGI computer generated feature film, which I suppose is expected for an 3D animated film of this scenario. This is definitely Demonstration material worthy of anyone who wants to view this 3D Blu-ray disc.
Blu-ray Special Features and Extras:
3D Sneak Peeks: Here we get to view two 3D Blu-ray Trailers which are the following: ‘CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS’ 3D  [1080p] [2.35:1] [0:00] and ‘OPEN SEASON’ 3D  [1080p] [1.78:1] [1:32]. So put on those 3D glasses and enjoy two amazing 3D sneak previews, which is very unusual to view these 3D trailers. As a bonus you get to view them in 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound.
Filmmakers Audio Commentary with Director Gil Kenan: Here Gil Kenan introduces himself and informs us that he was the director ‘MONSTER HOUSE' and also informs us how he eventually became a director via different avenues. Gil Kenan also informs us how the insane script came to him for the animated film and this started his journey in producing the animated film. We suddenly get loads of other people come in to talk about the film and the director Gil Kenan, but we are not informed who these people are, which makes for a very frustrating situation, but despite this, they were all very impressed how the director Gil Kenan tackled this project and everyone involved with the animated film trusted him 100%, especially knowing precisely what he wanted to achieve in producing this animated film, as Gil Kenan in the past had previously been involved is very smaller animated film projects. We are informed that the start of the animated film was the first task that was tackled and knew what they wanted to achieve image wise, and it also combined lots of complicated elements to produce what we view. Gil Kenan was very keen to bring in the actor Steve Buscemi to play the part of Mr. Nebbercraker and Steve Buscemi was totally pleased to be involved with the project. With all the characters in the animated film, they wanted them to look slightly exaggerated, but they also at the same time the textures to look natural and also informed us that the style and look of what they wanted the animated film to look like for the audiences. They wanted to empower the three children to save the neighbourhood, because most of the adults were indifferent to the children’s concern, and of course did not believe them that the house was alive. The animated film’s message is to believe in yourself and work with others, and a strong message of self-esteem and empowerment. They all give great praise for the actress Kathleen Turner and her portrayal of the animated character Constance, giving a true rich performance towards her character, and also gives soul to the Monster House. All the commentators say that the animated film ‘MONSTER HOUSE' is based on a mythology, and they say it is “disambiguation” and meaning that a house often perceived as being inhabited by disembodied spirits of the deceased, and that the mythology is interpreted of the story about how a person or an entity enters the house and it defends the home or a castle and where the spirit merges with the bricks, with the wood and even the mortar of that building, to create a living, breathing monster, and that monster somehow has to be thwarted and you are going to put out its fire in its heart, so you can set the spirit free. As we come to the end of the animated film, the commentator say that the ‘MONSTER HOUSE' is a very scary movie mainly for young children, because it has all the chills and all the thrills, as well as the humour and all the fun and especially with the characters we can identify with, who ultimately triumph over evil in the end, and they feel it has everything you could possibly want from an animated film.
Special Feature: Inside ‘MONSTER HOUSE'  [1080i] [1.78:1] [24:40] Here we have a real bonus, we get to learn quite a great detail on all aspects that went into producing this amazing 3D animated film. You also get to see some absolutely stunning colourful artistic illustrations that are more like sophisticated storyboard illustrations and we never get to know who produced them. We also get to see the craftsman Leo Rijn at work making the brilliant sculptured models of the characters that will eventually get scanned into the computer. We also get view rare behind-the-scene filming of the voice actors wearing their computer capture dots on their faces. As we view this special feature we get to view seven individual features on how the 3D animated film was produced and they are as follows: IMAGINRY HEROES: Character Design [3:30]; BEGINER’S LUCK: Casting [2:27]; THE BEST OF FRIENDS: DJ, Chowder & Jenny [2:41]; LOTS OF DOTS: Performance Capture [2:29]; BLACK BOX THEATER: Motion Capture [4:14]; MAKING IT REAL: Inside the Animation Process [6:04] and DID YOU HEAR THAT?: Sound Design [2:56]. As usual you can either watch each one of them separately or Pay All. Contributors include: Gil Kenan [Director], Steve Starkey [Producer], Leo Rijn [Sculptor], Chris Appelhans [Conceptual Artist], Jake Rapke [Producer], Spencer Locke [Jenny], Kathleen Turner [Constance], Michael Musso [DJ], Sam Lerner [Chowder], Jon Heder [Skull], Steve Buscemi [Nebbercracker], Ed Verreaux [Production Designer], Demian Gordon [Motion Capture Supervisor], Jay Redd [Visual Effects Supervisor], DJ Hauck [Sr. Technical Animator], John J Meehan [Lead Sr. Technical Animator], Brian Dorman [Integrator], Robert Zemeckis [Executive Producer], Randy Thom [Sound Designer], Dennis Leonard [Supervising Sound Editor] and William Files [Assistant Sound Designer]
Special Feature: Evolution Of A Scene: Eliza Vs. Nebbercracker  [1080p] [1.78:1] [20:00] Here we get to view a series of black-and-white animated storyboards which presents us with the opening shot of the animated film via the animatic storyboard to the final product. I liked this feature, as we get to view how much “key frame” animation has been involved to make the character performances come alive. It also shows us an in-depth look at several stages between the rough storyboards to the rough CGI computer animation, to ultimately the finished animated film footage. It is a really nice glimpse into the long process that some people take for granted in thinking that a computer does everything automatically and what we view are as follows: FEATURETTE; STORY REAL ANIMATIC; PERFORMANCE CAPTURE; LAYOUT STAGE; ANIMATION; FILNAL FILM and COMPOSITE. As usual you can either watch each one of them separately or Pay All.
Special Feature: The Art of ‘MONSTER HOUSE' [Image Galleries]  [1080p] [2.40:1 / 1.78:1] With this feature, you get to view a series of brilliant colour and black-and-white illustrated images from the animated film ‘MONSTRE HOUSE.’ Director Gil Kenan referred to these illustrations as “BEAT BOARD.” We also get informed that some scene never made it to the final version of ‘MONSTER HOUSE,’ and we get to view those scenes via extra colour illustrated images. To view all the illustrated images, you press the right arrow on your remote control to step each frame forward to the next image. Press the left arrow on your remote control to step back to the previous image frame. Press the ENTER button on your remote control when you see the MONSTER HOUSE icon at the bottom of the screen to return to the The Art of ‘MONSTER HOUSE' menu. For this special feature you get to view three separate features and they are as follows: CONCEPTUAL ART [69 images]; PEOPLE [67 images] and PLACES & THINGS [38 images].
Special Feature: BD-LIVE is a standard for Blu-ray players that utilizes your internet connection and allows you to download additional content for your Blu-ray animated film. You need a broadband Internet connection with high bandwidth.
Finally, ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D  is a really great deal of fun, but also in very scary 3D animated image presentation, and I was hoping this would be the start of a very successful career for the brilliant director Gil Kenan, and again this is not the only film he has made that has actually entertained the whole family. Another great thing about this 3D animated film is its brilliant stop motion animation and gives to date, one of the strongest technical releases, and it is clear Sony has moved past some of the early growing pains for their 3D format. ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D is a very enjoyable animated film for viewers of all ages. Plus, throw in some very excellent 3D image presentation and top notch audio quality and some really good extra features. ‘MONSTER HOUSE’ IN 3D also gives you everything you are seeking with a totally fun, fun, fun off the wall attitude feel to it, and especially with some really scary creepy edge of your seat atmospheric moments, that really adds 100% fun to this 3D animated film, which I am sure will definitely get a lot of repeat viewing, especially for young children, as they always love a really good scare. Highly Recommended!
Andrew C. Miller – Your Ultimate No.1 Film Aficionado
Le Cinema Paradiso
Monsterhouse does not do this either, however all in all, the effects are clearly visible and good, but keep your expectations away from the demostuff that you might have seen at your retailer, otherwise you might end up being disapointed.
In short : Good movie for young and old, good visible effects in 3d, if you dont have the 2d version , get this !
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