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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Nature > Animals > Arctic Tale (HD-DVD + DVD-Video)

Arctic Tale (HD-DVD + DVD-Video)


Picture: B/B-†††† Sound: B-†††† Extras: C†††† Film: B-



Because of their recent commercial viability, we are now in a new cycle of nature films like nothing seen since Marlin Perkins.Though it did not get as much attention as some productions, Paramount and National Geographic co-produced the Adam Ravetch/Sarah Robertson HD-shot documentary Arctic Tale (2007) being released in both HD-DVD and DVD separately.If Paramount has abandoned Blu-ray (for now?) they have never endorsed the HD Combo Format either.


From ice cold water shots to surface snow shots that are always easy on the eyes, the brisk-but-rich 86 minutes start with a new family of polar bears and expand to a journey worthy of National Geographicís name as each segment adds up to a larger portrait of life where most humans could not easily (if at all) exist on a normal basis.One of the more family-friendly such productions of late, especially after more than a few that seemed designed to upset the audience on purpose, it is nice to see a program done with some integrity that has its act together and makes for a good show.Catch it and be pleasantly surprised.


The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image looks good on HD-DVD and about as good on the anamorphically enhance DVD-Video, but the production cannot escape the various types of HD used and how they do not always cohere.There are enough great shots to tolerate that, but donít expect as smooth a presentation as the likes of Planet Earth (the BBC versions reviewed elsewhere on this site.)The Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 on the HD and regular Dolby 5.1 on the DVD are about the same, with limited soundfield, some good location recording and Latifahís narration nicely captured.Extras include a making of featurette, Are We There Yet? World Adventure: Polar Bear Spotting and the theatrical trailer.




-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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