Gattaca—Columbia Pictures (Blu-ray)
It has been interesting to see all the doomsday films that have been released about biological identity. It has become almost as popular as our fear of computers taking over in some respects. Hopeful this won't be the case as we progress in biological science. Gattaca takes a grim look at the future and how genetics could have a toll on our personal freedoms. Thankfully it doesn't get too preachy and the strong performances go a long way in making the film a satisfying thriller.
Sony has been on a roll with strong standout transfers but this one is a bit of a risk. The film has a very warm look to it and colors don't have a lot of contrast in the image. Film grain is also a bit heavier than we usually see, but this is the nature of film. Fine object detail is still excellent and even longer shots benefit from the increased resolution of Blu-ray. There is a bit of ringing in the image though around hard transitions. I am not sure if this is a print issue or if some noise reduction has been applied, but it is noticeable from time to time. Aside from that this is a good presentation of the film's style, but it doesn't stand out against most of the other HD material out there.
Sony continues its transition to almost exclusive use of Dolby TrueHD with their Blu-ray releases. This is a strong mix and I was surprised how open the mix was. There is a great spatial presence and I was impressed with the use of the surround channels both for atmosphere and discrete effects. Bass response is a bit reserved, but there when needed. The noise floor can be a bit high at times, which does hurt balance and resolution at times. A strong effort, but a bit short of reference.
Sony has included some new extras for this Blu-ray release. There is a new documentary on the themes of the film and a look at the film itself. Some deleted scenes are included along with an alternate take of one scene. Some trailers are also included.
While not completely mind blowing in the A/V department, Sony still releases a strong presentation for a solid catalog offering. A nice step up from the DVD presentation makes this an easy recommendation for fans of the film.