(2012/Chiller/Image DVD)/Peter Pan (1953/Disney
Blu-ray w/DVD)/Rootin’ Tootin’ Wild West
& C+/C+ Sound: C+/B- & C+/C+ Extras: C-/B/D Main Programs: C/B/C
some new children’s titles, including a classic expanded…
a telefilm on the Chiller cable channel, Gregory M. Wilson’s Ghoul (2012) is a mixed, problematic,
failed adaptation of the book by Brain Keene about three teens who have to deal
with being outsiders but fans of pop culture in the 1980s. One has an abusive alcoholic father, the
other has a weight problem and they all are about to discover people are being
killed by an unknown force that turns out to be something terrifying and maybe
despite some interesting moments and a good cast, the directing is not good,
acting not believable enough, script formulaic and predictable, plus I thought
it trivialized domestic abuse by the makers simply not being able to handle the
basics. It seems it wants to at least
echo Monster Squad or Stand By Me,
but in more serious ways that do not work, failing in this respect too. We will likely see some of these actors
again, but I found the 81 minutes too short and forgettable.
extras is a behind the scenes featurette.
continuing series of HD upgrades, Disney has reissued their 1953 classic Peter Pan in a new Diamond Edition with
a DVD and new extras to go with the old ones.
The previous DVD release was a 2-disc set we covered seven years ago at
here is a repeat of the main film DVD from the first set, but with new trailers,
et al. The Blu-ray is much better, but
more on that below. Looking at the film
after several other films and TV programs have taken on the material, this
animated feature film remains the gold standard of all the adaptations (helped
by the fact Mary Martin never filmed her stage version of Peter Pan and had it theatrically released) and though it may not
be an adult version (which would merit a separate essay, but nothing sexual is
insinuated by that term) or perfectly faithful adaptation of the book (needing
its own essay), it remains the one with the most energy, most natural flow,
most magic and most iconic images associated with the legend. That is why it is nice to revisit it, even if
I do not remember most of the music. It
remains one of the most important animated features Walt Disney himself ever
made and this is a welcome upgrade, despite some reservations.
the DVD set including a then-never before seen Alternate Opening, Deleted Songs
and an excellent ‘Why I Made Peter Pan’ featurette starring Walt himself. New extras include Tinker Bell: A Fairy’s Tale, new optional introduction by Diane
Disney Miller, Growing Up With The Nine
Old Men featurette, never before scene Deleted Scenes and Digital Copy for
PC, PC portable and iTunes capable devices.
we have the latest Nickelodeon theme compilation DVD featuring several of their
hit shows with episodes connected by a topic.
Rootin’ Tootin’ Wild West is
a seven-episode set with Western-themed half-hours from Bubble Guppies, Team Umizoomi,
Dora The Explorer, Fresh Beat Band, two from Wonder Pets! and one from Go, Diego, Go! Not a Western fan and not as big on some of
these shows as others, I just felt it was flatter than the usual and might even
bore some children. But there are bound
to be fans just the same. There are no
anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is softer than usual throughout Ghoul, partly due to some style
choices, but not what it could or should be despite some good color. Shadow detail is also an issue and overall,
it does not look as good as the 1.33 X 1 episodes on the Wild West DVD.
1.33 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Peter Pan is definitely clean and clear without detail issues,
especially versus the older 1.33 X 1 DVD transfer which has aged more than
expected. Despite the money being put
into cleaning up and fixing the film, there is one issue I have with the
transfer and that is color, not so much it is bad or wrong, but its range is
slightly muted throughout most of the presentation and that bothered me. I would rate it lower if it were any weaker
original film was produced in dye-transfer, three-strip Technicolor and on the
best stills and clips, plus any such film prints you can get your hands on
(complete copies are very expensive and valuable), you can see the full range
of color intended. The range here on the
Blu-ray does not play through the color scale Technicolor has except in the
climax where the color looks like it has suddenly turned on. Not that it looks so off or bad the rest of
the way, but it looks more held back than it should be and just seeing the
climax and comparing it to the rest of the disc will show my point. Hope this is not why teasers, trailers and a
poster gallery were not added to this new set.
Dolby Digital 5.1 on Ghoul is really
more like simple stereo being spread around and it is no better than the lossy
Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo on the various Wild
West DVD episodes.
sonic champ is the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 7.1 lossless mix on Peter Pan upgraded from the original
theatrical mono as well as the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 from the DVD. It is as warm and clear as the music and
sound elements will ever be and reveals sonics that no previous DVD, LaserDisc
or soundtrack of the film in any format could, so that should satisfy fans,
even if the image might underwhelm a bit.
- Nicholas Sheffo