The Pacific (BLU-RAY)

The Pacific

On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Joseph Mazzello starred in Steven Speilberg's Jurrasic Park as well as Radio Flyer, a film that featured Tom Hanks.

Let me first start off by clearing the air with the naysayer’s that have been complaining, of all things, that The Pacific is not Band Of Brothers. It was never meant to be. We all loved Band Of Brothers but to slight The Pacific as being anything less then a small fraction of what this particular war was for a few men would set sail assumptions that The Pacific has been viewed as entertainment only. Honestly that makes me a bit sick to my stomach. 

Tom Hanks, Steven Speilberg, Gary Goetzman, and the many directors of the 10 part series follow three Marines (Eugene Sledge, Robert Leckie, and John Basilone) through their respective tours in the Pacific Theater. Leckie and Sledge, whom both wrote about their experiences, provide much of the narrative through the series with their works; Helmet For My Pillow by Robert Leckie and With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa by Eugene Sledge as well as John Basilone's documented life in The Marines. While at times the story can become overwhelming as it tends to jump around a bit between Sledge, Leckie, and Basilone it never fails to capture the horror, beauty, and redemption of the Marines as they survive both the physical and mental terrors of the war. I would suggest also seeing Ken Burns The War, which also features Eugene Sledge’s With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa as a source, as well as WWII IN HD which offers up actual color footage from the raid on Guadalcanal that matches up well with this series. A must see.

The Pacific is one of the best, if not the best, examples of use when it comes to the Blu-Ray technology. Lines are super sharp, everything extremely defined down to the pores, color so amazingly lifelike and vibrant, and an overall pristinely immaculate picture almost in its entirety. There are some interior scenes that become a bit soft allowing just the slightest amount of video noise to take up in the background and wide out shots that lose a little bit of color and sharpness but between the fast moving action, enthralling storylines, and hypnotizing backdrops, unless your really looking for them, this release will stand as the definitive jewel in your Blu-Ray collection.

Audio, which comes in on a DTS-HD MA and a DTS Digital Surround are the icing on the cake. Every one of your speakers will be put to use ricocheting bullets behind your head, the sound of the wounded from the left to the right, front to back. Explosions will rock the foundations of your living room while allowing dialogue to come through crystal clear. It will more then likely be awhile before your impressed again by anything that doesn’t at least match the quality your going to find here.

As amazing as the series was the only thing more impressive to me right now is the amount of bonus material your going to find in this collection. The last disc in the set is dedicated to supplemental material, all shot in HD, such as:

~Profiles of The Pacific: Intimate portraits of the real Marines featured in The Pacific. This feature has mini-documentaries on John Basilone, Eugene Sledge, Robert Leckie, Sidney Phillips, R.V. Burgin and Chuck Tatum. Archive footage, family interviews, as well as historians and even the Marines themselves (some archive footage and some from the still living Marines) make up these fascinating profiles.

~Making of The Pacific: 30-minute feature providing an inside look at the making of this epic miniseries. What’s great about this featurette is that it’s the only one of its kind in the collection. If your looking for any information on how the series came together, the technical aspects of the backdrops, or even who the actors are who portray the Marines, this is where your going to find it.

~Anatomy of The Pacific War: Historical documentary on the events that influenced the merciless brutality in the Pacific Theater. Really short but somewhat informative.

*Exclusive Blu-Ray Features:
~The Pacific Enhanced Viewing: Learn more about the Marines and gain a deeper historical understanding while watching this 10-part, 10-hour, picture~in~picture experience. Once you’ve watched the series in its entirety you can go back through it again and toggle back and forth between the film and interviews with Historians, Military Icons, and others as they talk about the events taking place throughout the series as it plays.
~The Pacific Field Guide: Navigate through the major events featured in The Pacific. View exclusive content including animated maps, interviews with historians and veterans, historical footage, photographs, and more. This feature uses a timeline that incorporates all of the above to lay out the events as they occur.

*The Pacific is also based off additional material pulled from the following works:
~Red Blood, Black Sand by Chuck Tatum and China Marine by Eugene Sledge, as well as original interviews conducted by the filmmakers.

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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