Snakes on a Plane Blu-ray Review
'Snakes on a Plane' hisses on to Blu-ray with an excellent 1080p VC-1 encoded transfer that's framed correctly in the widescreen 2.40:1 aspect ratio.
The opening shots in Hawaii are bright and colourful, with verdant vegetation and the contrast is spot on. The image clarity and detail are very impressive to the eye.
As we take to the air and the lights dim we're treated to a more restrained colour palette and there's just a tiny waft of smoke in the air to add a misty look to the background. The skin tones look healthy and there are deep blacks where required.
Although this is a recent release, we're reminded of the fact that it was shot on film by the thin veil of grain that permeates the image. It's not intrusive in any way, it looks good. There's a depth to the image that helps as we keep an eye out for any snake that might be lurking nearby. Overall a first class transfer.
SoundThe audio on 'Snakes on a Plane' comes in the Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround flavour that makes the most of the surrounds to involve the audience in the aircraft environment. In quieter moments we hear the sound of the engines, but when things kick off we are surrounded by screaming passengers, alarms going off in the background and, of course, hissing snakes.
Turbulence gives the subwoofer a bit of a workout but the most impressive sequence has to be where the portholes are broken so the air whistles and whooshes all around you. Despite all the distracting noise, dialogue is kept intelligibly clear throughout in this thoroughly immersive mix.
- Audio Commentary
Director David R. Ellis, Actor Samuel L. Jackson, Producer Craig Berenson, Associate Producer Tawny Ellis, VFX Supervisor Erik Henry, and 2nd Unit Director Freddie Hice provide us with a fairly light hearted commentary track. It sounds like they all got on well during the production as it comes across in an easygoing, fun and laid back manner. They discuss the film's origins, the change in director from Ronny Yu to David Ellis, Samuel L. Jackson's involvement, the controversy surrounding the title as well as the rigours of working with hundreds of snakes. There is much to enlighten fans of the movie here.
- Pure Venom: The Making of 'Snakes on a Plane' (1080i, 18 mins)
Here we have a fairly basic behind-the-scenes featurette that includes a collection of cast and crew interview clips combined with footage from both the set and the final film. They discuss the film's mixture of fear of flying as well as of snakes, the work of Samuel L. Jackson, the importance of strong characterization, set design, the presence of snakes on the set among other things.
- Meet the Reptiles (480p, 13 mins)
This short takes an in-depth look at the film's slimy stars and begins with the cast and crew sharing their opinions on the creatures before moving on to look at the work of snake handler Jules Sylvester.
- VFX (480p, 5 mins)
This is a very short featurette that introduces viewers to the process of digitally animating some of the snakes that appear in the movie.
- Snakes on a Blog (1080i, 10mins)
This piece examines the role of the Internet in marketing the film with buzz from the set, rumours and scandal that all raised interest in an audience.
- Snakes on a Video (1080p, 3mins)
Not only do we get the music video by Cobra Starship, we are also allowed a look at the making of the video (480p, 9mins).
- Gag reel (480p, 5 mins)
The obligatory gag reel. What would we do without it?
- Deleted scenes (480p, 12 mins)
In total there are 10 scenes with optional commentary by Director David R. Ellis, Associate Producer Tawny Ellis, and Producer Craig Berenson.
- Trailers (480p, 6 mins total)
Here we have the film's teaser and theatrical trailers, as well as five TV spots.
'Snakes on a Plane' slithers on to Blu-ray with an excellent Region free, 1080p, VC-1 encoded transfer, framed at 2.40:1. The image is sharp and detailed throughout with good colour and contrast. There's a fine veil of grain to remind us of its source.
The audio comes in an immersive Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround mix that places us at the centre of the action as screams, hisses and rumbles go on all around. Dialogue is thankfully clear throughout.
There's a nice selection of extras including a lively group commentary track and a handful of Featurettes.
As a movie, it has its tongue firmly planted in its cheek as it robs every 'Airport' cliché in the book and milks it for all its worth, with Samuel L Jackson playing it straight from start to finish. Plenty of bumps but not meant to be taken seriously - a bit of fun.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £17.97
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- Audio Commentary