New Police Story DVD Review
PictureThe detail on show here is pretty awesome. This is the cleanest, most detailed region 0 DVD image I've yet seen. Right from the off it's clear that this is a pretty awesome transfer, with Jackie Chan's chin whiskers being easily counted, whist the quality of his skin is readily discernible by the clarity of his facial pores... and all this in the very first shot! Video noise is held in check for the most part and edge enhancement is not an issue with this transfer. Colours are bold and vivid - take a look at the lorry crash with the thousands of plastic ducks as an example. This is a good test for your monitor's colour setup - yellow is often difficult to accurately portray, but these ducks are truly, vibrantly yellow. New Police Story has excellent image quality.
SoundThis is a rich and fairly detailed audio fest of explosions and gunfire, with a few deep subwoofer moments thrown in for good measure - the aforementioned Police Station bomb scene for instance will likely make your room shake with expectation! There's a choice of audio tracks - Cantonese Dolby Digital 5.1, Mandarin Dolby Digital 5.1 (both 448Kbps) and a dts-ES matrix (768Kbps). As with other Hong Kong movies I've watched recently the Mandarin version is clearly dubbed so I chose to compare the Cantonese Dolby and dts affairs. At the moment I'm unable to take advantage of the centre rear speaker, but the difference between the two rival formats in standard 5.1 fare is minimal. Both will probably put a grin on your face, but neither reaches reference quality.
ExtrasDisc One holds the movie with zero extras, which are to be found over on the second disc. The menu system on the movie disc is in Chinese, but with only three options it's simple enough to navigate.
Inserting Disc Two into my DVD player brings up the Special Feature menu, and this time there's an option for us westerners to choose English as the main language, making things nice and simple. Unfortunately, although The Story and Characters supplemental features have English language options - so those not fortunate enough to be able to read Chinese can learn what makes Wing tick, and what motivates the other characters - the main extra, the making of documentary, can be viewed with the accompaniment of either Cantonese or Mandarin subtitles... but no English. As this is the main feature not being able to really appreciate what's being said is a bit of a letdown.
VerdictA solid story is accompanied by very good picture and audio qualities. It's a shame the supplemental features let the side down, but this DVD release of New Police Story took me a little by surprise and is well worth a punt - get a few mates round on a Saturday night, order in the pizza, kebabs, Chinese or Indian; sit back... and enjoy some popcorn fodder - Jackie Chan style!
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £15.99
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