PictureChicago is presented in 1.85:1 Anamorphic widescreen and looks very good considering how dark the movie looks. The blacks are solid and well defined with good shadow detail on show. Colours are also rich and well saturated with blues and reds being used throughout without any blooming or bleed present. There are no problems with dirt or scratches on the print and the occasional grain that is seen is intentional. The image also looks very crisp and sharp with a high level of fine detail on show. There are a few little problems seen with this transfer and although nothing to really worry about, slight edge enhancement and pixelation is present during the darkest scenes which tends to be more noticeable on larger displays. The R2 disc looks identical to the R1 edition and also has the same slight flaws present. The R2 disc is also THX certified, but I was hard pushed to notice any difference between the two regions, both look very good indeed.
SoundThis fantastic sound mix is presented in both Dolby Digital 5.1 (448kbps) and DTS 5.1 (768kbps) and both sound brilliantly dynamic and sharp. I was expecting quite a noticeable difference between the two formats, with DTS winning by a fair margin due to its ability to convey music very well. However switching between both the difference is very slight with just a more assured Bass and crisper treble on the DTS flavour, but it is not a huge difference. The musical numbers sound very dynamic with vocals taking on a very "Live" feel to them, they just fill in the front of the sound stage with a reassuring weight and depth. Bass is also used to great effect with fast and deep notes providing a great live feel to the numbers.
I could find no difference between the R1 and R2 discs on review, both sounded well defined and assured. I could not notice any pitch difference between them either. An excellent musical sound mix which is treated in a convincing manner by both technologies.
ExtrasThe extras are a little disappointing for what is a multi award winning production. First up is a Commentary track from Director Rob Marshall and Writer Bill Condon. Both provide an entertaining look behind the scenes providing some real insight into the problems encountered in adapting the movie, and the characters. Next we have the usual press kit featurette which runs for 28 minutes and features the usual behind the scenes interviews and clips from the film which although welcome, doesn't add any more information into the production. There is a musical number called “Class” which was cut from the film. Finally we are given some sneek peeks. I can only surmise that Miramax have a special edition in the pipeline, as the extras here are rather lame.
VerdictChicago is a technically dazzling production with strong performances and direction, presented here with good picture and sound quality but the extras are a little disappointing.
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