National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets Blu-ray Review
PictureNational Treasure 2: Book of Secrets comes to Blu-ray presented with a shining 1080p High Definition picture in the movie's original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.4:1 widescreen. Detail is excellent throughout, with very little noticeable softness, no edge enhancement or artefacting and negligible grain, which only becomes occasionally apparent during the darker sequences. The colour palette is quite broad - understandably for this globe-trotting adventure - and everything from the skin tones to the location backdrops comes across as rich and authentic. Black levels are generally good, taking into consideration the aforementioned grain that sporadically rears its head and overall it is a superior presentation, perhaps not quite perfect enough to benchmark your equipment with, but impressive nonetheless.
SoundTo accompany the movie on the aural side we get a choice of soundtracks, the prime contender being a Dolby True HD 5.1 track. Dialogue is presented clearly and coherently, largely dominating the frontal array whenever appropriate. The effects are quite numerous, with keen observation of the quieter nuances that create the relevant ambience for the scenes, as well as plenty of boisterous grandstanding in the form of gunshots and crashing about, although this is largely overshadowed by the score which, as with the first movie, really does feel like it is accompanying the wrong visuals. Don't get me wrong - it's a decent enough score, but it promises far more than the movie actually delivers, with lots of heightened tension and suspense from the instrumental work that never comes across as being an accurate representation of the on-screen action. It is still arguably the highlight of a decent enough soundtrack, even kicking in a little bass from time to time.
VerdictNational Treasure 2: Book of Secrets is one of those forgettable movies useful for whiling away a quiet afternoon with. It's a family adventure, a pure Indy rip-off and arguably a sequel to a movie that should not have really been made in the first place. To see all these big names reunite for this lacklustre by-the-numbers production is disappointing to say the least, but fans of the original are likely to be happy that they bothered to make a follow-up, and particularly one which is an even glossier, bigger budgeted variation on the original. On Blu-ray the movie comes with decent video and audio, as well as a few nice extras to round off the disc. Overall, a purchase is only really recommended to those who have seen and enjoyed the movie, or who really love the first outing.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £21.69
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