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The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1

Blu Ray

  • Score
    65
    from 2 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • Breaking Dawn divides opinions, flawed yet peaks thematically; stellar Blu-ray tech, fans delighted.

    The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

    DTS-HD MA
  • Video
    75
  • 'Breaking Dawn' shines on Blu-ray with stunning 1080p clarity, vibrant colors, and fine details, despite slight inconsistencies in blacks and minor visual flaws.

  • Audio
    78
  • Breaking Dawn's DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack delivers total immersion, richly detailed environments, and precise dialogue, making it a vividly sonic experience.

  • Extra
    60
  • Breaking Dawn's extras include an in-depth audio commentary, a six-part documentary on filming, character insights, a mock wedding video, and scene selection, offering fans a rich behind-the-scenes look.

  • Movie
    50
  • The 'Twilight Breaking Dawn' Blu-ray review explores the film's darkly comical flaws, evolving from wedding bliss to chaotic vampire-human-werewolf dynamics, amidst critique on narrative and cinematic execution.

    Video: 75

    The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" on Blu-ray presents a visually stunning 1080p transfer that breathes new life into this segment of the beloved series, with Summit Entertainment delivering a near-flawless visual feast. The transfer showcases an impeccable clarity, sharpness, and detail that stand out in every frame, preserving the film's natural, film-like texture with a fine layer of grain that highlights everything from the intricacies of wedding invitations to the subtleties of facial expressions. Despite a few scenes where blacks border on crush and faces occasionally appear pasty, particularly in dimmer scenes, the overall image integrity remains exceptional. The color reproduction is masterful, capturing a wide spectrum from the pure whites of Bella's wedding dress to the vibrant greens of the surrounding foliage, all while maintaining natural skin tones and avoiding any sense of artificial enhancement.

    The Blu-ray edition further impresses with its AVC MPEG-4 encode, thriving with spot-on contrast and some of the most remarkable whites seen in the format, thus reinforcing the cinematic quality of the presentation. Despite the occasional inconsistency in black levels and brightness which slightly affects the depth and luster of the image, the transfer remains razor-sharp. Fine details are evident in everything from household furniture to the endless greenery surrounding the Cullens' home, with facial textures revealing an almost lifelike quality. The richly saturated colors, especially the greens and reds, are vivid yet never overdone. While minor issues such as slight banding in fast-paced scenes and murky shadows in a few instances are noted, they are far outweighed by the transfer's strengths.

    In sum, "Breaking Dawn - Part 1" offers an audio-visual experience that is not only exceptionally well-executed but also enhances the film's dramatic and emotive tones. The Blu-ray provides a glossy, crisp presentation that, despite minor hiccups in black levels and shadows, doesn't detract from its overall excellence. This release stands as a testament to the care and precision invested in bringing this cinematic journey to home audiences with an outstanding level of detail and color fidelity.

    Audio: 78

    The audio presentation of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" on Blu Ray is an exemplar of immersive sound engineering, featuring a DTS-HD MA 7.1 lossless soundtrack that not only envelops but enhances every scene with meticulous detail. The added surround channels are utilized with such precision that they create a seamless sound environment, making the listener feel completely enclosed within the movie's varied settings. From the subtlety of rain enveloping the soundstage in the opening moments, to the rich woodland ambiance at the wedding scene, and to the precision of action sequences where every growl and clash is felt rather than heard, the soundtrack ensures a total immersion. Noteworthy is how it maintains clarity without sacrificing power, especially in scenes filled with chaos, where werewolves and vampires engage in battle, demonstrating a flawless integration of effects that places the audience right in the middle of the action.

    Carter Burwell's music score is another highlight of this sonic masterpiece, extending beautifully into the rear channels and enveloping the listener in a cocoon of romantic sounds that add depth and emotion to every scene. The soundstage is expansive, with imaging that feels broad and crystal-clear, allowing for precise differentiation of key movie moments. The soundtrack excellently balances discreet effects that pan between channels with ease, ensuring dialogue remains crisp and centered. The low-end frequencies are notably weighty and responsive, adding unexpected depth to fight scenes, thus complementing the movie’s romantic and dramatic moments alike.

    Overall, the DTS-HD Master Audio sound mix delivers beyond expectations for a film that balances star-crossed romance with moments of intense action. It employs atmospherics in a manner that enhances ambience without overwhelming, ensuring that the attention to sonic detail shines through in both subtle scenes and those of heavier action. Dialogue is consistently clear, never overshadowed by the surrounding audio elements, supporting an audiovisual experience that's both dazzling and precise. Truly, this Blu Ray offers an auditory experience as compelling as the visual, rewarding "Twilight" fans with a level of immersion seldom achieved in home entertainment.

    Extra: 60

    The extra presentation of the Blu-Ray of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" is a comprehensive collection that will delight fans with its depth and variety. Notably, the audio commentary by Director Bill Condon provides an insightful exploration of the film’s production, touching on themes, casting, and the transformation of the novel into a cinematic experience. The highlight is undoubtedly the six-part documentary "Love, Death, Birth," which offers an in-depth look at the making of the movie, from the initial stages to the final, dramatic birthing scene, including challenges such as filming in Brazil and the creation of visual and practical effects. Additional features like "Jacob's Destiny" and "Bella and Edward's Personal Wedding Video" add layers to the understanding of character development and provide a personal touch to this beloved franchise. Technical enhancements ensure that these extras are not merely afterthoughts but integral parts of the Blu-Ray experience, crafted with care for fans and newcomers alike.

    Extras included in this disc:

    Audio Commentary: An engaging track that covers a wide range of topics from the filmmaking process to specific details about "Breaking Dawn - Part 1."

    Love, Death, Birth: Filming The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1: A detailed six-part documentary looking at all aspects of production.

    Jacob's Destiny: A featurette on Jacob's character arc throughout the movie.

    Bella and Edward's Personal Wedding Video: A unique addition offering a "personal" touch from the wedding scenes.

    Jump To...: A feature allowing viewers to jump directly to their favorite scenes.

    Movie: 50

    The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" marks a significant tonal shift and story evolution in the well-known franchise. This installment progresses from the tormented love triangle of Bella, Edward, and Jacob to address far more complex and mature themes, encapsulating the ecstasy and agony of forbidden love with all its consequences. The film embarks on a journey that interweaves the threads of marital bliss with the dark complexities of a supernatural union. The narrative slow-burns into an explosive exploration of life-altering decisions against the backdrop of fantastical elements, highlighting the couple’s secluded honeymoon in Brazil, an unexpectedly perilous pregnancy, and ensuing supernatural familial dynamics.

    Director Bill Condon navigates this multifaceted storyline with a blend of elegance and intensity, despite occasional missteps in pacing and clarity. The initial half of the movie meanders, attempting to marinate the audience in the characters' emotional states but at times bordering on tedium. However, this buildup pivots dramatically as we delve into the darker, more urgent themes of the latter half. The transformation from a fairy-tale wedding to a life-threatening pregnancy underscores a significant thematic depth, exploring the stark realities that can follow closely behind seemingly idyllic love stories. The film attempts to balance these elements with varying success, presenting a compelling if sometimes jarringly uneven cinematic experience.

    Critically, "Breaking Dawn - Part 1" evolves beyond the franchise's earlier entries by confronting its characters with mature, existential dilemmas that challenge their previously held beliefs and alliances. It stretches the boundaries of its PG-13 rating, daring to explore grotesque and provocative themes while still retaining moments of genuine tenderness and conflict resolution. However, the film's ambition is occasionally its undoing, as it grapples with conveying its complex themes amidst a narrative crowded with supernatural lore and relationship dynamics. Despite these challenges, Condon's direction and Navarro's cinematography lend a visually appealing texture to this transitional chapter of the Twilight saga, setting the stage for its climactic finale.

    Total: 65

    The Blu-ray release of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" presents a paradoxical situation. On one hand, the movie itself has faced its fair share of criticism, being described as a film that teeters on the brink of thematic fulfillment but ultimately fails to deliver a coherent, engaging narrative throughout its entirety. Critics note that the movie's ambitious thematic aspirations are marred by a sluggish first half and several crucial yet poorly executed scenes in the latter part. Despite these narrative shortcomings, the anticipation for its sequel is undeniably whetted, highlighting a tale of pain and difficulty that resonates with its audience, albeit through a fragmented delivery.

    Technically, the Blu-ray edition stands out impressively. Both critics, despite their differing views on the movie's qualitative aspects, acknowledge the superior quality of its video and audio presentation. The Blu-ray disc showcases an excellent visual experience accompanied by astonishing audio quality, elevating the overall home-viewing experience. Furthermore, the additional content included with the Blu-ray release seems to have been curated with the franchise's fanbase in mind, offering supplements that are likely to appease the die-hard followers of the Twilight saga. However, it is indicated that the array of extras provided scores only average in comparison to the movie's box-office success, hinting at a potential missed opportunity to further enrich the Blu-ray offering.

    In conclusion, "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1" Blu-ray presents a compelling case for fans and tech enthusiasts alike. While the movie itself may not have garnered unanimous praise, the technical prowess displayed in its home media format is undeniable. The Blu-ray edition distinguishes itself with outstanding video and audio quality but leaves room for improvement in its supplementary content. For fans of the saga, this release is a must-have, offering an immersive revisit to one of the saga's most pivotal chapters. For others on the fence, the technical merits of this Blu-ray make it worthy of consideration, providing a superior viewing experience that somewhat mitigates the film's narrative and structural flaws.