Alvin and the Chipmunks (Blu-ray)

January 28, 2012 4 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Dave Seville (Jason Lee) has dreams of being a music mogul, but he doesn’t want to be a rock star, he just wants to write songs for one. But whatever material he takes to record producer Ian (David Cross), he gets rejected and Ian advises him to give up and take his life in a new direction. The years of frustration lead Dave to throw all of his equipment out the front door, but he soon gets a second chance at his dreams. A trio of talking chipmunks manage to show up at Dave’s place after their tree is cut down, but when they talk to Dave, he freaks out. But when he hears the three singing, he changes his mind and soon enough, Alvin and the Chipmunks are overnight sensations. The chipmunks are too wild for Dave, but Ian overworks them to the point of exhaustion, so what will become of Alvin, Simon, and Theodore?

Of all the nostalgia children’s shows to be made into a movie, Alvin and the Chipmunks wasn’t one I expected to see brought to the big screen. But with over two hundred million at the box office, the movie proved to be a success and who knows what we’ll see in the future, perhaps the Snorks? I liked the television show and so I figured I’d like the movie of Alvin and the Chipmunks, or at least get a few laughs. As it turns out, the movie isn’t bad, but it wasn’t as good as I hoped. Jason Lee is fine and David Cross has some good moments, but the fun, madcap spirit of the show isn’t captured here. I wanted ninety minutes of fast paced fun, but instead the pace is rather slow at times. As far as story or dialogue, this is a movie about animated chipmunks, so to expect much would mean you’re insane. Alvin and the Chipmunks is worth a rental, but there aren’t enough laughs to make this one you could watch over and over.

Video: How does it look?

Alvin and the Chipmunks is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. This transfer looks good, but doesn’t rank as one of the best out there. As expected, the colors have been juiced to the moon and hues look rich and vivid. I found contrast to be solid, with deep blacks and no real concerns I could detect. The detail is good, but doesn’t display the kind of subtle visual depth I’d like, but is miles better than the standard release. So while this might not pop as much as we’d want, the movie still looks good and should please fans.

Audio: How does it sound?

This lossless DTS HD 5.1 option is lively and fun, but never rises above basic standards. The surrounds are put to good use, especially when the musical numbers are on, but the depth and power isn’t there. This is fine though, given the nature of the movie and since all the audio elements sound good, there’s no cause for concern. The music is loud and clear, sound effects are well handled, and vocals come across with no problems. This disc also includes Spanish and French language tracks, as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, and Korean.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This disc includes two brief featurettes, one about the film’s music and the other about the property’s past incarnations.

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