Jumper Blu-ray Review
PictureJumper teleports onto your screen with a good 1080p, MPEG-4/AVC coded 2.35:1 presentation. It's a new release and therefore shouldn't be plagued with dirt or blemishes and it isn't. The print is pristine and there's a variety of detail on show. It is a pity I wasn't able to grab captures from this disc because some shots looking over Rome and the Colosseum are absolutely stunning. Detail blasts out of the screen with these aerial shots showing the tiny streets and intricate roofs of the cityscape below. Jumper has the 3-D we yearn for these days and the scenes in Rome are a superb example of this.
Colours are strong and not over saturated with flesh tones on the mark, icy blues are introduced during the underwater scenes and glorious sun drenched yellows are the order of the day for the many middle eastern shots we see. The scenes in Tokyo are a wealth of vibrant colour from the neon advertising and again these scenes add to the 3-D experience in this film. Whites are suitably bright and clear yet still not blooming even in the bright Sahara desert. It's the blacks which suffer some though; darker scenes at night or in Griffin's hide out are not as deep as they could have been, almost shrouded in a grey veil. Detail is lost in these scenes because of this and shadow detail here is lacking somewhat.
The transfer on the whole has been executed well with no blocking or gradient banding on show but some of the characters when masked against a brighter background do exhibit some haloing or enhancement and it is conspicuous only because the rest of these borders are set in stone. Jumper is a good transfer with just a couple of places where it's let down somewhat, as such it's an enjoyable print but perhaps not one which you'll be showing off as demo material.
SoundThe only English language track we have is a fine DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 offering with our poor Spanish and French European cousins only given a standard Dolby Digital 5.1 outing. These two are weak and pale by comparison and it's a shame that high resolution audio is not offered across the board.
The MA track though is a wonderful list with effects coming thick and fast from most of the scenes. Surround use is almost constant only calming somewhat when some character dialogue is on screen, the action sequences, the jumps, the ambiance of an airport, the streets of Tokyo, the windswept heights of The Empire State Building all allowing the viewers to become immersed in the scenes in question. LFE use, particularly during the jumping sequences, goes low and will rattle a few items in your viewing room; it's distinct and defined, never booming. Equally the dialogue is crisp and centred with no syllables being missed.
The score has depth at the fronts and again adds to the ambiance and also the tension when the action begins. Tonal range is acceptable with perhaps the higher tones not peaking as high as they could have been. Panning from speaker to speaker is seamless with electronic weaponry rushed from the fronts to the surrounds, cars migrating from right to left and buses charging from front to rear.
- Commentary with Doug Liman, Simon Kinberg and Lucas Foster.
The director is joined by the writer and producer respectively to discuss the making of this film. It's a lively affair and you can hear the enjoyment and frustration these players experienced whilst making Jumper. Overall it's not a scene by scene commentary but more a character analysis, why major deviations were taken from the source novel, comparisons between this and other superhero films and who in fact are the heroes in Jumper. It's an enjoyable enough listen but as Fox were delving into the PiP world I always feel that these commentaries should take advantage of that feature.
- Jumping Around the World: PiP.
With PiP now coming to the fore with BluRay Fox have included a sampling of it here. At certain points throughout the film a small window will appear in the lower left of the screen with production details of the current shooting location. It works well although it is a little sparse at times. For those people who do not yet have this functionality from their BluRay player there is a separate extra which allows navigation of these location shoots through a standard remote controlled interface.
- Jumpstart: David's Story - Animated Graphic Novel. - 0:08:07
This is an unusual extra but a more than welcome one; it's an animated version of the story. In all honesty I preferred this to the entire 88 minutes of the main feature. It covers David again finding he has the ability to jump, and then using those powers to find out who his mother was and where in fact she might be living.
- Doug Liman's Jumper Uncensored. - 0:35:34
A standard making of featurette with interviews with cast and crew and their take on the making of and concepts behind this story. Liman freely admits that prefers to rip an original novel to its basic plotline or hook, then rebuild it for a movie going public. Producer Lucas is often shown complaining about lack of time and money and hurrying everyone along, location shoots are also shown. What comes across rather strongly here I feel is the often off the wall attitude Liman has to his directing; he likes to get in on the action, often seen stripping down on set to assist with underwater shoots and battling some cast members on the ice in a friendly ice hockey game. A definite watch is this one.
- Making an Actor Jump. - 0:07:36
A discussion initially on the concepts behind jumping, what would happen and what it would affect around it. Liman and his team discussed a few ideas then trialled some in test shots. Ultimately this goes the way of CGI and the technical wizards are brought into have their say on how they made this concept come to the big screen.
- Jumping from Novel to Film: The Past, Present and Future. - 0:08:08
Liman has already admitted that he took just the basic premise from the film and built it up around the fact that some people can teleport. Here we see a discussion about why some of these changes occurred. Stephen Gould is also interviewed to give his own view on the butchery of his novel and he's rather pragmatic acknowledging the fact that because of the film perhaps more people will now read his original works. Also because the film has introduced characters not contained in the original book he intends to retro fit them into a prequel novelisation.
- Deleted Scenes. - 0:11:54
A total of four scenes which were either trimmed or deleted for the final version. There's additional material of Roland in David's apartment, David talking to a psychologist about always returning home (in his dreams of course),a discussion about his mother and a good scene at a laboratory in Japan where the jump tracer machine is being developed. Most of these scenes were pretty good and I wished a few had remained, especially one with Roland and his family. It would have added more flesh onto these anorexic characters.
- Digital Copy.
A version of the film on a second disc giving you the ability to copy the film to your laptop, iPOD or other digital device. Fox graced us with this on AVP:Requiem and if you like the film then it's good value for money to be able to legally take your films on the road with you.
All of the extras detailed here are presented in HD so it seems like Fox is finally biting the extras bullet and putting content on their newly released discs. This of course is always good to see. Most of the items included here are standard fodder but worth a listen or a watch so I can't really complain. There is a little repetition between the various extras but as a whole there's some good information and again in my own view better than the film as a whole.
VerdictAction adventure man Doug Liman teams up with a couple of well known stars to produce a sci-fi action adventure film, so it sounds great but it doesn't actually work that well on the big screen. It has all the hallmarks of an introductory piece so that future sequels would be produced and in all honesty that fills me with dread a little to see these cardboard characters disgrace our screens again.
Perhaps the spanner in the works was because of the troubles when initially filming, the fact that casting had to be redone and filming restarted. I don't go for that though; the actors and the storyline never really made this anything other than a 2 dimensional type affair.
It looks as though Liman had plans for three films whilst production was ongoing and that means of course that we're likely to see another two of these. I might, just might, give the second one a cursory glance as this first instalment could have been an introduction piece and no more; I don't have much hope though for any improvement. Visually it's a good watch and there's some good audio trickery in there as well and although these rate highly enough to raise the overall score to a 7 beieve me that is done begrudgingly. I feel this is a rental at best.
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- Commentary with Doug Liman, Simon Kinberg and Lucas Foster.