Harry Potter & The Order Of The Phoenix (2007; HD-DVD/DVD Combo Format)
B/C+ Sound: B+/B- Extras: C+ Film: C+
after the Rings films ended and
Fantasy genre has played itself out, the Harry Potter franchise marches on and
though the book series has wrapped up, the film series offers its fifth entry
with Harry Potter & The Order Of The
Phoenix (2007) with as much money and tricks as any of the films. Unfortunately for Warner at the time of the
theatrical release, the final book’s sales were so strong that it cut into the
box office of this film. Now, the studio
is expecting this will do better on disc (it comes out in all three formats)
is a Harry Potter film, which can be as safe and simple as say, an Elvis
Musical with much more money into it. I
have never been impressed with any of these films, but for fans, the makers
have known how to deliver the goods to keep fans happy and this is no
of the series started as very restricted, but as Rowling and company have let
go of control, the films have become both darker and more flowing in their
narrative, which has been to the advantage and survival of the series. Most series do not get to a fifth film and
when they do, it is either a hit (You
Only Live Twice,) an oddball event (Star
Trek V) or time to hang it up. This
is somewhere between the first two, as Harry is back in the normal world, but
not for long as demons from the netherworld invade and try to destroy him.
he though he was out, they pull him back in, but if not, there would be no
story. What follows is trite as worse
and amusing at best if you like this kind of fiction. The money and action is on the screen, which
is good, because the script is only going to go so far, especially after so
many of these films, but it is better at being such a production on an
A-Hollywood level than most of its competitors.
However, if you do not read the books or have not seen the previous four
films, this is not the place to start. See
it only if you start at the beginning.
2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image on the HD side and lesser anamorphically
enhanced low def version on the standard DVD side both come from a master that
has haziness issues form the digital internegative that make no sense. The film was shot in Super 35mm like the
previous four and none of the footage I have seen in all the franchise has the
problems here. It is like watching the
film through a slight version of what you get when looking through a screen
door panel. The result is a
disappointing visual presentation either side, though the HD side is better,
with a more solid appearance overall.
the first of the five films that gets the Sonics-DDP sound treatment for IMAX
presentation, which naturally in Warner’s case means the HD side offers Dolby
TrueHD. No doubt this can be a state of
the art presentation, which is even apparent at times with the Dolby Digital
Plus 5.1 mix on the HD side and lesser standard Dolby 5.1 on the DVD side, but
this is not the best such mix in either Sonics or TrueHD, reminding one more of
Superman Returns than Batman Begins or V For Vendetta in performance.
However, it should make fans happy.
include ten minutes of never before shown additional scenes, Trailing Tonks, Harry Potter: The Magic of Editing, The Hidden Secrets of Harry Potter and Focus Points featurettes, plus HD exclusive In-Movie Experience
feature and web-enabled features offering downloads, community screenings
watching the film with others on-line (not unlike playing a game on the web)
and a pick your favorite scenes
feature that makes this as involving as any HD-DVD on the market. That is, if you like the film.
- Nicholas Sheffo