The Deep Blu-ray Review
'The Deep' dives on to Blu-ray with a very good region free 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 encoded transfer that's framed handsomely in the widescreen 2:35:1 aspect ratio. It looks as though the complaints about the use of DNR causing a lack of detail and image softness on other titles may have been heeded by Sony as this one retains its sharpness, clarity and detail, while there is also some grain noticeable throughout. Most of the time the grain is not a problem, but on the opening shot it is horrendous as the camera flies in through the white clouds. I felt I was constantly aware of it as it showed up not only on light coloured backdrops but also in some dark shots such as the scene where Cloche and his men 'interrogate' David and Gail. On most recent transfers where the movie has started off grainy, it has settled down after the first few minutes. Unfortunately this is not the case with 'The Deep' as there are frequent reminders.
There's no ringing to suggest over sharpening, yet for a film made in 1977 it is so sharp. There is also a great vibrancy to the colours of the Bermuda location with its lush greens, brown sand and turquoise waters. Skin tones are nicely rendered in that Hollywood tan way. Blacks too are nice, deep pools while contrast remains faithful throughout. Overall this is a very nice transfer indeed that remains faithful to the original look of the film with the slight caveat of the noticeable grain. Maybe carefully applied DNR isn't such a bad thing after all.
The sound on 'The Deep' is presented in a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround mix which is mostly front centre channel weighted. Dialogue is clear enough to be intelligible throughout while surround effects do occasionally bring the rears to life and the John Barry music score wakes up the main stereo pair when it swings into action. There was no great use of LFE to give the subwoofer a shake down though overall, the sound is good for a film of this vintage but not spectacular.
- The Making of 'The Deep' (SD, 48 mins)
Here we have an original 1977 featurette hosted by Robert Shaw, which looks as if it was transferred from a ropey old 16mm print. Putting the rough quality to one side, besides interviews with the cast and crew, we get a behind-the-scenes look at the experiences of the people who worked on the film, their scuba training and how some of the aquatic scenes were shot as well as a look at how the Goliath wreckage was created.
Selected Scenes from the 3-Hour Special Edition
Although the 3-hour version of the film may not be included on the disc, we do get certain segments in SD including:
- Prologue - The Goliath Sinks (3:06)
How the Goliath sunk during World War II
- Romer Treece's Disposition (1:06)
Dan and Gail learn a little more about Romer.
- Treece and David Harassed by Cloche's Goons (2:12)
While scuba diving, Cloche sends a few of his men to scare both Treece and David.
- Pillow Talk (6:22)
A longer, romantic scene between David and Gail.
- Extended Conversation between Cloche and Treece (3:22)
The two make an uneasy business proposition to work together.
- Treece's Past Revealed (5:19)
Gail tries to learn about what happened to Treece's wife.
We have trailers for 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind', 'Dr Strangelove', 'Secret Window', 'Dark Crystal', 'The Da Vinci Code' & 'Rocky Balboa'.
'The Deep' comes to Blu-ray with a fine looking 1080p AVC/MPEG-4 transfer framed at 2.35:1 where sharpness and detail have been held while also retaining some noticeable grain throughout. The vibrant colours of the Bermuda location are very pleasing on the eye.
The Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround track provides us with clear dialogue and the occasional use of surround effects while the John Barry score enlivens the main stereo pair.
A nice production featurette and extracts from the 3 hour TV version will gladden the hearts of Benchley buffs.
Robert Shaw, Nick Nolte & Jacqueline Bisset star in this aquatic adventure with added bite. Jellied eels anyone?
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £17.95
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- The Making of 'The Deep' (SD, 48 mins)