Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - DVD Review (3D Version) - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

 
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-11-09, 09:08 PM Thread Starter
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Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - DVD Review (3D Version)

Journey to the Center of the Earth
Starring:
Brendan Fraser, Josh Hutcherson, Anita Briem, Seth Meyers
Writters Michael D. Weiss (screenplay) and Jennifer Flackett
Director: Eric Brevig
Release Date: 11 July 2008
Runtime: 93 min
Region: 1
Format: DVD

Movie


What dangers or mysterious secrets does the center of the earth have in store for us this time around, and will it live up to the original? In this remake of the classic 1959 film we get a different perpective in home theater with 3D video effects, and an extravaganza in CGI. While there are scientific thories into the probability of simply taking a strole down to the center of the earths core, lets look at what New Line Cinema, Walden Media, and director Eric Brevig has to offer us.

Trevor (played by Brendan Fraser) is a Professor that follows in his brothers foot steps towards discovering geological seismic activities and their underlying meanings. He is under pressure in his work but he is determined with the idea he is onto something. When it is about time to call it quits he is visited by his nephew Sean while his mother is preparing to move. Trevor is given a box full of his brothers items and discovers a book with clues to leading him into the meanings behind his research. Using the notes by his brother Max, he begins to continue where was left of. They travel to Iceland and hire a travel guide to locate an instrument with hopes to collect data used in the area, but fate has him thrown into a situation where they must find a way out of the mountain. As they descend through various tunnels and caverns they are quite equipped to make the journey down into the center of the earth, and while using only their hiking gear. Without giving to much away; using their expertise, instincts, and with a little luck, they eventually are successful in their quest. With an environment unenhabitable by man it is quickly time to get out while the getting is good. A thrill ride with creatures, obstacles, and challenges lay ahead as the action does not let up making this journey one to remember. This movie received a nomination for the Teen Choice Award.


This isn't to say you might get the same experience for the flip side of the disk which is the 2D version. Without the 3D effects the storyline is not near as interesting and does not capture the imagination like I would have expected. The characters are rather depressing but there is fair amount of good humor thrown in. The first experience is rather good with some exitement and downplay into the life or death dramatization, but it's a tough pill to swallow given the ongoing events are supposedly taking place on earth. The scenes are rather drawn out and focus more on visual illusions with while are interesting, they can become slightly repetitious, which takes away from the suspense. If you have a good system for with which you enjoy, the realism and entertainment factor may very well make up for this. It's a 3D movie so what is not to like about that? With interesting visuals, mild with clean humor, and a little bit of patience on your part, it is a movie worth seeing.


Acting

Do these characters have roles really? They do, but I could not seem to figure out what was going on inside half the time. I did not get the impression there was much involved to the acting by everyone as they seemed pretty much like your typical down to earth (no pun intended) group. I'm sure they enjoyed making the film with each role having mulitiple significances, but what I found mostly was that each had a good presence about them on screen. At moments they appeared to have some slight bit of truth behind them when it came to family values. I only give this 3 stars because in my opinion they did not always seem to be fearful at times.

Video
Codec: MPEG-2
Resolution: 720480 (NTSC) WS,FS,3D WS
Aspect Ratio: 1.85 : 1


The video is both excellent in the standard and 3D versions. Detail was sharp and the cinemaphotography was correographed very well. Director of photography Chuck Shuman deserves recognition for creating such a masterful piece of art work. I do have to complain about the lighting at times where they added some glow to the image in different shades of color. That just didn't seem to look very natural to me, although it was the intended effect by the director. Other times they took short cuts on set and to me those were noticeable as well. The lighting works somewhat better in the 3D version. For the 3D version it is very important the image has correct tone and contrast, or layers loose focus and draw attention to themselves when they should not be. Wearing the 3D glasses makes the image somewhat darker, and puts a haze to both red and green which takes some getting used to. Attempting to make corrections to compensate for the different look only makes things worse, and it will look best in it's natural presentation.

Audio

There seemed to be quite a lack thereof dynamic and full sound to the entire movie. The surround howeveer is nicely done, and adds to some wow factor with the 3D effects as things wizz by our heads. At reference level there was some nice detail, but it really seemed like it could have been better compared to some other DVD's that I have heard. The musical soundtrack I found enjoyable but the melody I thought played well was depressing, much like the characters seemed to be in the movie at times. The main theme music was not terrible but there was not much continuity for it thorough out the rest of the movie, and there was plenty of it going on. I really don't need to listen to what seemed like 93 minutes of a soundtrack for each and every moment of the story.

English: Dolby Digital
Spanish: Dolby Digital


Special Features

Commentary by Brendan Fraser and Director Eric Brevig:
A World Within Our World:
Being Josh: Profiling 12-Year-Old Costar John Hutcherson:
How to Make Dinosaur Drool:
Adventure at the Center of the Earth Challenge:

Listening to the commentaries I realized I watch way too many movies, as they confirm and seem to agree on most of what I have gone over in this review. We learn the actors and actresses were performing their own stunts at times and that many scenes were created entirely on blue screen. Brendan Fraser is a riot. The history behind what was a religion and what beliefs were behind the theology was not something I was familiar with, so it was interesting to watch. Overall, it isn't the greatest set of special features, and they seem more targeted towards the younger generation. The games are nice but they should have been in 3D.

This a fun movie for the family to enjoy with great visuals. The humor and the 3D factor gives it potential for viewing more than once, and it has some good scenes worthy of showing others what a great picture you have in both 3D, or 2D. The arial shots are not as good a quality so you might want to skip over those for a demo. Included with this I got a glow in the dark yo-yo, four paper 3D glasses, and the option to download a digital copy. The story could have been far more elaborate which I would have liked to have seen for a sci-fi such as this one. The movie was overall somewhat short probably due to budget limitations, so I only give this 3 and half stars. To quote one audience member "I had so much fun watching the movies (the 3d one was amazing)".


Last edited by thewire; 01-12-09 at 06:27 AM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-13-09, 12:18 AM
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Re: Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - featuring a 3D version

This was one of my favorites when I was a youngen.... along with Mysterious Island. I use to watch it over and over and over.

I have it lying on my coffee table in front of me and hope to get to watch it either Wednesday or this weekend. The 3-D should be interesting.

Good review

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post #3 of 6 Old 01-13-09, 05:38 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - featuring a 3D version

I remember the original one pretty well. I think I had watched that so many times I had it memorized. There are a few scenes from that one stuck with me, such as when the characters were all arguing, or when the walls were getting more narrow. I saw a show on the Discovery channel about it also that mentioned the movie also. I have not seen Mysterious Island that I remember, but the trailor looks good. Thanks Sonnie.
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post #4 of 6 Old 01-13-09, 05:08 PM
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Re: Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - featuring a 3D version

The original version was one of my favourites also..
Just how many versions are there of this film?
I had already seen three versions (including the first one) plus one that was released just recently here, which doesn't include the one that's been reviewed here~!!

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post #5 of 6 Old 01-14-09, 12:08 AM
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Re: Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - featuring a 3D version

The one I always watched is the Jules Verne 1959-60 movie.

There was one that I picked up by mistake at the movie rental place here a while back. I am not sure when it was released, but it was the worst acting and special effects I have seen in a long time... sooooo bad that I ejected the DVD after only 10 minutes or so of scanning through the movie. Horrible would be complimenting it... ZERO stars! Seriously, it was that bad. I even told the lady at Movie Gallery that they should be ashamed to rent movies like that.

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post #6 of 6 Old 01-14-09, 04:16 PM
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Re: Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008) - featuring a 3D version

I think that might have been the third version I saw just recently..
Can't remember who stared in it, but it was pretty corny..
They were on a lake and attacked by some sort of Pterodactyl birds..which some sort of creature rose up from the lake and fed on them..
Someone might know it..Very disappointing..

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