13 Going On 30 Blu-ray Review
'13 going on 30' comes to Blu-ray presented in widescreen 1.85:1, with a very good 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 transfer. Colours are bright and cheerful, while black levels are comfortingly deep. There's no evidence of over sharpening and no digital artefacts to be seen. However, I did notice a slight horizontal line ripple the picture half way up the screen on several occasions, most notably when the cool kid with the gold Trans-am pulls up outside Jenna's house near the beginning. It's not a massive problem and didn't detract from my viewing pleasure, it's just that I spotted it. I was watching a pre-production sample, so I'm sure that this will not be present in the commercially released discs. Some light grain is noticeable on lighter shots and you have to expect it from a film source, but in general this is a grain free zone. There is good depth to the image that makes use of the high def format. Overall, a very pleasing looking picture.
The audio on '13 going on 30' is supplied in an English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix that makes good use of the surround channels for the toe-tapping pop/rock music numbers. Being a fairly recent movie, some thought has gone into getting the most out of the surround sound for its largely young audience and there are some discrete effects liberally scattered throughout. All the same, the mix is so good that the music and effects never interfere with the central dialogue, which is clean and crisp. A nice, bouncy mix with good dynamic range. Nothing to offend the ears at all.
This film is 'blessed' with a large selection of extras to gladden the hearts of the most ardent fans.
- Audio Commentaries
Here we have not one, but two commentary tracks. The first is by director Gary Winick and is by far the more interesting as it conveys his passion for the film, while the second includes producers Susan Arnold, Gina Matthews, and Donna Roth, who could induce a coma with their banality.
- Featurette: "Making of a Teen Dream" (480i, 18 minutes)
An insight into the behind the scenes efforts from the director Winick, the producers and star Jennifer Garner. They explain the plot (presumably for American audiences) and seem to have had a good time working together. "Making of a Team Dream: Another Take" provides additional footage of the film's "Thriller" dance number.
- Featurette: "I Was a Teenage Geek" (480i, 8 minutes)
This is the best of the featurettes, with cast members (including Garner) remembering their school days complete with old photos. Amusing and touching.
- Featurette: "Fashion Flashback " (480i, 7 minutes)
A group of teenage girls tell us how cool '80s fashions were. Ah, those were the days.
- Gag Reel (480i, 4 minutes)
Ms.Garner is the star of this show, acting all giggly. Serkis is also funny, seen here totally messing up his dance steps.
- Deleted Scenes (480i, 28 minutes)
In all, there are 18 deleted scenes , along with an alternate beginning and end. Unfortunately, many of these are simply extensions of featured scenes, but there is an amusing trip to the doctor where Jenna discovers she has a tattoo, and a cheesy montage where she tries on clothes. The alternate ending and beginning are mainly the same, save for some obnoxious Hollywood child actors (who should have been strangled). Thankfully they were recast for the theatrical version.
- Still Gallery (480i)
About 36 stills are provided, mostly publicity and behind-the-scenes shots.
- Music Videos (480i)
- Finally, we have two clips, for the '80s classics "Love is a Battlefield" by Pat Benatar, and "Jessie's Girl" by Rick Springfield.
'13 going on 30' is a bright, cheery piece of teenage froth that will keep a tired brain just ticking over. The 'body swap' story is nothing really original but it provides a vehicle for the comedic talents of 'Alias' star Jennifer Garner and gives her a chance to demonstrate her acting range.
The 1080p AVC/Mpeg4 transfer is very good indeed, providing a colourful image with a depth that makes full use of the high def format.
The English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround track comes alive during the pop/rock musical numbers and also delivers crisp, clean dialogue throughout.
The extras provide everything a fan of this movie could ever want - including two commentary tracks.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £19.99
Our Review Ethos
To comment on what you've read here, click the Discussion tab and post a reply.
- Audio Commentaries