Babylon A.D.

Featured In Issue 138, January/February 2009

WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
First Run Features
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Not Rated
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Mathieu Kassovitz
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Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS HD Lossless 5.1
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Based on Babylon Babies by Maurice Dantec, Babylon A.D. is the story of a veteran-turned ruthless mercenary named Toorop (Vin Diesel), who is hired to protect and smuggle a mysterious young and innocent woman named Aurora (Therry) and her guardian (Yeoh) from the post-apocalyptic confines of Eastern Europe to the glittering megalopolis of New York City. In the style of Blade Runner, this futuristic tale follows them as they fight to stay alive on a journey that could very well determine the fate of humanity. (Gary Reber)

Special features include Bonus View™ behind-the-scenes and interviews, and commercials; five featurettes: Babylon Babies (HD 11:05), Arctic Escape (HD 11:41), Fit For The Screen (HD 7:04), Fight Of The Hummers (HD 8:00), and Prequel To Babylon A.D.: Genesis Of Aurora (HD 5.:08); deleted scene: Hummer Sequence (HD 2:32), still galleries; three trailers; an inside look at Behind Enemy Lines (3:00); and a digital copy of the movie.

The 2.36:1 1080p AVC picture is fantastic, exhibiting a stylized darkly grim character. Resolution is outstanding, with incredible fine details resolved on faces and in textures and objects. The detail is often amazing, especially on faces. Fleshtones are perfectly accurate and natural throughout. Colors are not exaggerated but are naturally saturated with deep, rich blacks and finely resolved shadow delineation. The color contrasts, at times, provide glimpses of warmth in otherwise bleak environments. Artifacts and noise are virtually absent, for a very pristine picture. The images of New York City future are spectacular and colorful, with fully saturated colors and superb contrast. And the resolution is mesmerizing. This reference-quality picture ranks among the very finest Blu-ray Disc presentations yet released and far surpasses any other video medium delivery in the home. (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1 soundtrack is extremely dynamic, pushing the limits of SPL levels and deep, very powerful bass extension, often below 25 Hz''a real workout for subwoofers. The bass is often punchy, with excellent directionalized sound effects that aggressively envelop the soundfield, for a wonderful holosonic® experience. Sound effects and Foley effects are perfectly integrated into each scene, to create a sense of realism and danger. Phantom imaging, moving effects between channels, are quite effective and, at times, the sound images center back and overhead. The music score is powerful, with at times, a symphonic orchestra and a male chorus expressing Russian/Eastern European music, and at other times, a rhythmic electronic score. Dialogue is often ADR produced and perfectly intelligible, even in the loudest parts, which are prominent throughout. While not particularly well integrated spatially on its own, combined with the effects, all the sound elements work together as a whole. The D-BOX® Motion Code™ simulation is perfectly mated to the picture and sound, for an incredible motion experience that tremendously enhances the whole experience. This is an extremely exciting and system-threatening soundtrack that is sure to pump your adrenaline. The sound designer and mixers are to be commended. (Gary Reber)