has an average rating of 8.0 on IMDb
1080p in AVC MPEG-4 on a 50gb disc
DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
new content like commentaries & more
– 99 minutes
This uses 28.4GB for the movie.
Street Date: September 22nd, 2009
Overall Verdict – Fans Will be Pleased
— Review written by: Brendan Surpless —
The Movie Itself is directed by Edgar Wright (known for directing “Hot Fuzz“). Shaun (Simon Pegg) and Ed (Nick Frost) are best of buddies who share a flat with another roomie. Shaun works hard at a local electronics store, while Ed doesn’t really accomplish much besides playing games. Shaun has recently become despondent after breaking it off with his girlfriend Lizzie and fails to notice that London is slowing being taken over by zombies. When Shaun realizes what’s occurring, he and Ed decide they must work together to fight these creatures off as well as now travel to save Shaun’s mum and his ex/girlfriend from these zombies. Along the way, a few laughs are found, but the film’s main theme of trying to include romance with a comedy, just didn’t overall click for me (especially when compared to their follow-up film “Hot Fuzz“).
Please don’t get me wrong here folks. I’m not saying that “Shaun of the Dead” is a bad film. It’s just not as good as “Hot Fuzz, which is downright hilarious. Yes, the first 30-40 minutes of the film are funny with Shaun and Ed enjoying their lives and trying to figure out which records to throw at the zombies (“Throw the Batman”), but the film’s second act in the Winchester Pub just didn’t do it for me. I know this is labeled as a romantic comedy and I did understand the connection between Shaun and his mum, but the sequence toward the end felt too forced. It’s almost as if the film went from satire comedy to serious comedy to satire comedy (the ending is priceless, but more on that in one minute).
Speaking of the film’s ending, the manner in which the film used the zombies at the end, was just priceless. In fact, the ending really saved the film. As I was finishing up the film, I was discussing with my brother that this wasn’t as enjoyable as “Hot Fuzz” (we had just seen it a few days previous), but the second the ending came up with the first remark of how the zombies were being used, we both lost it. The pokes at a certain ‘Mart’ and pop-culture, was great.
In closing, “Shaun of the Dead” definitely isn’t a bad film, it just isn’t a great film (more of a good one). The humor, when present, works and is amusing. The characters, minus Shaun and Ed, are mostly forgettable (which is similar with “Hot Fuzz“), while the main plot doesn’t overly work in the area where it’s suppose to work. Still, the humor is enjoyable enough that fans of “Hot Fuzz” or other British humor will want to check this one out. Just give it a rent before purchasing to see you enjoy this one.
Video Quality on this release is 1080p in AVC MPEG-4 on a BD-50 (50 gigabyte dual-layered Blu-ray Disc) and is presented in the 2:35:1 aspect ratio. Color usage was spot on for a majority of the film, despite a majority of the locales containing rather drab looking scenery. A lot of bolder colors, like reds and blacks, dominate the film, but I never really noticed any real bleeding or any sequence where blacks (or any color) seemed washed out. Grain was kept in check only really creeping up in a few sequences. EE wasn’t noticeable at all, while the film’s print contained a few specks of dirt here and there. All in all, this is a solid enough transfer that more than suits the film earning a “4 Star Rating“.
Audio Quality on this release is in DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio. Dialogue was easy to understand for the most part with only a few areas where it seemed to become muddled. Dynamic Range was active with a majority of the discrete effects arriving courteous of our zombie friends. The biggest difference I found between the Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 found on the HD DVD and this DTS-HD was the surround usage and LFE. It’s almost as if because this track was given more room to breath that the sound field opened up. Originally I found the surround effects rather minimal at best with the rears only really becoming noticeable when there were a lot of zombies on screen. Perhaps because I now had a more robust speaker setup (basic Sony’s with the HD DVD vs. Bose with this Blu-ray), but I was able to detect more of the subtle ambiance the track had to offer. Most notable was that even in the quieter sequences, you can hear the little effects. And the film’s LFE has been kicked up a notch as well. Bass is deep, immerse and booming. Whether the music is playing or the zombies are lurking around, you’re bound to hear a little boom here and there. All in all, this is quite the improvement and proves to make this a truly enjoyable aural experience. This earns a “4.5 Star Rating“.
Bonus Materials are presented in Standard Definition with Dolby Digital 2.0 Sound
- U-Control on this release includes “Storyboards” as well as “Zomb-O-Meter“, which allows fans access to a trivia track during the film.
- BD-Live on this releases includes Universal’s standard “My Scenes“, which allows viewers to bookmark their favorite scenes so they can share them with people around the world via BD-Live. As always, this requires the user to be on a “Profile 2.0” Blu-ray Disc Player with internet connection to access the feature.
- Audio Commentary with director Edgar Wright and actor Simon Pegg: This one was quite the solid commentary. Both Wright and Pegg are informative and, despite some odd comments, are enjoyable to listen to throughout.
- Audio Commentary with Simon Pegg, Dylan Moran, Nick Frost, Lucy Davis and Kate Ashfield: Despite all the included cast members, I just couldn’t find myself enjoying this one. Even though I liked what Frost had to say out of all the participants (Pegg tended to recycle his comments from the above commentary, while the other participants were rather flat), his comments couldn’t really keep my interest.
- Zomb-O-Meter: This run is similar to the track that was found on Hot Fuzz in that we get some tid-bits that pop-up during the course of the film. The film’s biggest fans will love this one.
- Missing Bits: Here we get a few deleted scenes and some outtakes. The most notable sequence is a deleted scene that explains what happened when Shaun ran off to distract the zombie’s toward the end of the film.
- ”Raw Meat”: This one leads to a few other features such as Simon Pegg’s video diary and some Casting Tapes, as well as Make-Up Tests and a few making of bits. Most of the information is interesting enough for fans, but the more casual fans won’t really find much here that’ll warrant more than one viewing.
- Galleries: Here we get two photo galleries (Zombies and a Storyboard Gallery) that show a series of promotional photos from the film.
- D-Box: For those rich folks out there.
Overall, the bonus materials are basically the DVD / HD-DVD ports with a couple new things thrown in as well as D-BOX motion code for the rich people out there with equipment to actually get to use that.
Blu-ray Disc packaging:
NOTE: The full-sized 1920×1080 files are in a .PNG file format and uncompressed. Bare with the slow loading times, keep in mind these files are at least 1MB (1 megabyte) in size each.