Edward Scissorhands Blu-ray Review
PicturePresented in it's original aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and coded using the MPEG 2 coding system, the picture quality on this 25gig single layer Blu-ray disc is a bit of a mixed bag.
Using the same master that was used to make the initial SD DVD and then the 15th anniversary edition in 2005, this set obviously suffers from the same problems as those two. For some strange reason, at certain times, the picture seems to wobble. I have the 2000 released R2 SD release and it does it on that as well. I can't explain why it does though...I would have thought that Fox might have got it sorted for this High Definition release though...
The master used is relatively clean - it does have a couple of flecks and marks on it, but not enough to spoil your enjoyment though. What could spoil it though is the inconsistency of the picture quality. Parts of the film are breathtaking - particularly in the amount of detail that's on offer. But, for some unknown reason, some scenes are murky and dark - something I didn't notice on my SD copy. I can only put it down to poor authoring.
On the whole, colours are bright and solid. Edwards white face contrast well against his jet black leather suit. At the same time, the bright pink of the scars caused by the scissors are well defined - even from distance.
There's a noticeable amount of edge enhancement in bright scenes - particularly in bright sunlight on the streets of suburbia. Dark scenes are highly detailed, mainly down to the use of clever lighting and shadow detail holds up well.
For me though, the picture is never sharp enough. Edges are spoilt by the over-use of edge enhancement and this spoilt the part a little for me.
Not the best Blu-ray picture I have seen by a long shot - and, if I'm honest, a little disappointing.
SoundComing by way of a DTS HD Master track in 4.0, this was never going to be the most dynamic of soundtracks, completely lacking a low frequency channel. What we do have is also somewhat subdued, with almost all of the action coming by way of the front trio of speakers - which I'm a little miffed about.
I saw this film on it's theatrical release back in 1990. the one lasting memory I took away with me was Danny Elfmans magical musical score. I remembered the choir ringing out from all around me and it really got me into thinking that I could maybe recreate the sound in the home.
All of that wonderful choir music is present on the disc in DTS HD Master lossless sound - but is anchored to the front soundstage. I for one was really disappointed with this aspect of the soundtrack. I can't however listen to the lossless due to technical limitations (Not mine I might add - I have the equipment to decode it - I'm just waiting for Sony, like millions of you out there, to release the firmware update for my PS3 that will enable me to listen to it!)
The rest of the soundtrack is a pretty standard affair. Dialogue is locked to the centre channel and effects pan across the front nicely. There's no LFE to mention so it's a pretty neighbour friendly movie to watch late at night.
I feel short-changed by Fox for not including a more enveloping soundtrack. This films score is a masterpiece on it's own and one of Danny Elfmans favourites. Spoilt again by some lazy authoring.
ExtrasAfter a below par performance from Fox on the audio and video side of things, could they pick up the ball again and deliver a decent set of extras - after all, we know they are out there, because they have been released before...
But once again, Fox have dropped the ball when it comes to the extras set. As with From Hell, another eagerly awaited Fox back catalogue release on Blu-ray, a lot of the extras from the SD version are missing - WHY? Much has been made by Blu-ray followers of it's higher storage capacity than rival HD DVD, so that's not an excuse, is it?
I'll report on what IS is here first and comment on what's missing at the end of this section...
A Commentary By Director Tim Burton is the first offering. Quiet and subdued, Burton comments on his film as if he doesn't really want to be there. I never knew a man with such a vivid imagination could be so boring! We do find out that this is Burton's personal favourite of his movies up to when the commentary was recorded - but that's about it.
A second Commentary, this time by composer Danny Elfman is our second course on the extras menu. It's really no better than Mr Burtons offering and is full of lulls as Elfman lets his score play.
it's revealed that this is also Danny Elfmans favourite work and he does become quite emotional during the piece.
A Non titled Featurette is the next offering from the Fox extensive extras library. It's a four minute behind the scenes/promotional piece that is pretty useless to be honest.
Two Theatrical Trailers in 1080P High Definition round off the extras package.
Ok - so this film has never been that well served on SD DVD - but come on! Fox haven't even given us the anniversary edition here that included more cast and crew interviews, a fascinating concept art feature some TV spots. They are missing from this Blu-ray edition and in my opinion, Fox are becoming way to lazy when it comes to releasing their High Definition discs. All seems rather rushed to me.
VerdictI have a constantly changing top five movie list. Every now and again, I will turn to my wife after watching a movie and comment that it's gone straight into my top five. One thing that has never changed though is that Edward Scissorhands has been there for the past seventeen years - and after watching this Blu-ray disc, it's set to remain there.
The movie is a rollercoaster ride for all involved - cast and audience. Every time I see it, I'm transported back to the cinema in Canterbury where I saw it for the first time, wide eyed and open jawed.
As a Blu-ray set, Edward has been let down somewhat by the studio. Lazy authoring seems to be the order of the day. Using the 25gig version of the disc instead of the more widely used 50gig offering, the picture and audio seem to have been overly compressed to fit on the disc. The picture quality is certainly not much better than my seven year old R2 SD DVD - but it is better - just. The soundtrack lacks an LFE channel (just like the SD version) but is less enveloping. Danny Elfmans magical score is held back by the front three speakers as you can almost hear the surrounds crying out for a piece of the action.
I'll mention the extras by commenting that there are at least some here. They are exactly the same as my aforementioned SD platter purchased seven years ago - and there are no HD exclusive extras to speak of.
I love Edward Scissorhands to death and even this lacklustre offering by the studio can not dent my enthusiasm for the film. I can recommend this disc to first time buyers - but if you already have either of the SD versions, you'd be better off keeping your money in your pocket as it really isn't a worthwhile upgrade.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £24.79
Our Review Ethos
To comment on what you've read here, click the Discussion tab and post a reply.