Blue Planet (IMAX)
Blue Planet, originally released in the IMAX format, is narrated and written by Toni Myers. The film consists mainly of footage of Earth shot from space by astronauts. The film was meant as a public service, presented by both the National Air and Space Museum and the Lockheed Corporation, and filmed with the cooperation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
The film exposed the viewer to a variety of locations from the viewpoint of 200 miles above the Earth. Some locations include: the ocean floor, the rainforests, and the Serengeti grasslands. There's also a computer-generated trip through the San Andreas Fault line.
To a certain extent, the film traces the evolution of mankind, mostly in fairly basic explanations, which makes the film ideal for all ages. The film also shows how natural disasters affect the Earth, and how, ultimately, we are destroying our home.
Blue Planet is only the third IMAX film I've seen, the other two being Everest and Michael Jordan: To the Max. Not having an IMAX theater around where I live, I had to settle for seeing them at home. I hadn't heard anything about Blue Planet, so I was pleasantly surprised, as its genuinely interesting, informative, and entertaining. It seems a bit short at only 42 minutes, but that length is fairly common for IMAX films.
Blue Planet is presented in 1.33:1, which is the closest aspect ratio to the IMAX presentation. There are a few specks, some minor edge enhancement in a few scenes, and some heavy grain in some of the older stock footage taken from space. Colors are vibrant and rich, with natural flesh tones and deep blacks.
Blue Planet features a remastered Dolby Digital 5.1 track in English or French. Simply put, the 5.1 track is awesome and blew me away. Surrounds are used frequently and with great effect; from the early space shuttle launch to the thunderstorms, hurricanes, volcanoes, and earthquakes featured throughout, the surrounds are almost constantly active. Dialogue throughout the film is crisp and clean with no distortion that I could detect. The fantastic music, by Micky Erbe and Maribeth Solomon, adds immensely to the film. Optional subtitles are available in English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese.
The only extra is the IMAX trailer.
Fans of other IMAX films, or those interested in the idea of seeing the Earth from space, should definitely see Blue Planet. The film, courtesy of Warner, is presented with terrific picture and breathtaking sound. Though virtually no extras are included, the relatively low MSRP makes this an easy purchase if you're interested. Recommended!