The disc presents a theatrically correct widescreen 1.78:1 1080p transfer in both 2D and 3D. First thing to remember, this is not a feature film, it is therefore not filled with spectacular 3D moments, there are no real ‘point and the screen’ moments, neither is there any huge depth to frame as we are concentrating on an intimate setting, but what we do have is incredible attention to detail and everything is beautifully framed to give a distinct solidity to the image and tangible depth to the figures on screen. So when there are two people kissing and caressing there is a roundness and solidity to their respective bodies, there is ‘distance’ between them, each movement of their arms, i.e. fingers through hair, extends the frame out, while the bodies themselves ‘float’ in front of the background. Occasional establishing shots, such as in the flirting chapter, do show a noticeable distance to the frame, the tracking shots of the dinner table have excellent fore, middle and background separation, length shots over bodies show definite distance into frame. So whilst it may not ‘wow’ you with its ‘in your face effects’, it is absolutely natural. Each chapter is captioned with a nice title and shining light that does excel in being out of the screen, and I must mention the computer graphic bodies at the very beginning and end which show fabulous 3D effects as you move in and out of the body and nerves.
As to detail, well it is perfect, every pore, every hair, skin texture, clothing weaves or bedding and the various toys, are all sharp and well defined, it is almost as if you could reach out and touch the on screen happenings. Colour too is well defined and absolutely natural, it isn't here to show off bold and strong primaries, but establish a clear understanding, so skin tones are very natural. The rare external shots showcase clear blues and lush greens, the reds of the red wine, for example, are suitable deep.
Brightness and contrast are set somewhat high to really show off the detail level, meaning the occasional blacks are rather grey, particularly in the inter-scene shots (those depicted in the screen grabs), otherwise it’s clear and bright – there is no crush or bloom to contend with though.
Digitally there are no compression problems, no banding or posterization, nor is there any edge enchantment. Crosstalk was reasonably clear, only showing up in one or two scenes, mainly the inter-scene shots, or those with credits, although it was not to any significant degree and cleared very quickly, noticable due to the otherwise clean print.
There are two tracks to choose from English DTS-HD MA 5.1 and English LPCM 2.0, I chose the former. Once again, I must preface by saying this is a documentary, there are no effects here, it’s just a track to impart information, thus we have an extremely functional track that is absolutely clear and precise. Dialogue is clear and rooted to the centre channel and imparts information with any hint of a problem. All the other channels are used for the score, which is very nice stereo, little to no actual immersion, but I wasn’t expecting any. Bass is tamed to keep everything sounding natural, and there are, obviously, no LF effects. In all a perfectly functional, natural sounding track.
- Making of The Lovers' Guide – 17.18
For such a short runtime and on such a film as this, this is one of the best making of documentaries I have ever come across. It contains interviews with the series producer, Robert Page, who was instrumental in the very first video and he talks about how this episode came about, the thinking behind it, why 3D was chosen, where he thinks the series will be in the future and what he hopes people watching it will get out of it. We also hear from the director and best of all the cameramen responsible for filming the 3D – we learn how difficult and time consuming it is to produce these films, and how technically proficient everyone must be in order to produce an image that won’t affect the people watching with nausea or headaches - incredibly interesting section. We also hear from a couple of the models on why they wanted to be involved with the shoot. In all this is an excellent piece, it's just a shame it ran for such a short time, though it is very recommended watching.
- Trailer – 01.07
Trailer for the film
We should be grateful that a film such as this even gets any extra material, but even though it is as limited as what we have here, the content itself is incredibly informative viewing and far better than the hours of promotional puff pieces that inhabit so many discs these days.
The Lovers' Guide 3D is the latest in the best selling series of sex education DVDs that help to educate consenting adults in the pleasures of love making. By imparting knowledge of how the body works along with how to stimulate your partners desires by being attentive to their needs, showing you specific techniques and maintaining a clear open approach to the subject matter, the documentary manages to inform and express without the need to be graphic. By advocating safe sex within a loving relationship and an emphasis on increasing desire and sustaining sex, this educational tool should appeal to those starting out or those already in a stable relationship.
As a 3D Blu-ray disc Optimum has provided quite a basic package, but a worthwhile one at that, with an excellent picture, purely functional sound and a very brief, but quite excellent extra documentary making up the rest of the feature.
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