DVD & Blu-ray Reviews

Top Gun, Blu-ray 3D (1986/2012 3D conversion)

Barely an action movie by today’s standards, but great fun in 3D.

Published on March 4, 2013

Top Gun, Blu-ray 3D (1986/2012 3D conversion)

Director: Tony Scott
Cast: Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis
Studio: Paramount
Video: 1080p HD for 16:9
Audio: English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD, English 6.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital  
Extras: Commentary by producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Tony Scott, co-screenwriter Jack Epps, Jr. and naval experts; Danger Zone: The Making of Top Gun (six-part documentary); Multi-Angle Storyboards with optional commentary by Tony Scott; Best of the Best: Inside the Real Top Gun; Music Videos: Kenny Loggins-”Danger Zone,” Berlin-”Take My Breath Away,” Loverboy-”Heaven In Your Eyes,”Harold Faltermeyer and Steve Stevens -”Top Gun Anthem,” TV Spots; Behind-the-Scenes Featurette, Survival Training Featurette; Tom Cruise Interviews
Length: 111 minutes
Rating: ****

The 1986 hit has been released in a terrific 3D conversion on Blu-ray after a quick IMAX theatrical release. The film is a true artifact of the ‘80s, coming out right in the middle of the Reagan presidency with a gung-ho can-do attitude. Seeing it again, it is much more talky than I remember it, and by today’s action movie standards, it seems a bit dull. We really don’t get much action until the last 15 minutes or so.

The film itself looks terrific in 3D. The movie has been remastered, and colors pop and I didn’t see any evidence of edge enhancement or onerous noise reduction. The 3D conversion, done by Legend Studios is first rate. It almost looks like native 3D, and that is no small accomplishment. Of course the flying scenes have excellent depth, but low light scenes in control rooms also look natural. Most impressive are cockpit views, with the reflections off the canopy having depth and texture. The audio is good, but not outstanding. I listened to the 5.1 Dolby TrueHD lossless tracks, and they had some punch but lacked the dynamic range of a modern movie. Deep bass extension was OK, but not startling.

Extras are all brought over from earlier Top Gun home video releases. It’s a shame there is nothing on the 3D conversion, because that’s what is so interesting about this release. I don’t find Top Gun demo material in the usual sense, but it is a great demo of how far conversion technology has come. While watching the movie I started making my list of films in my collection that would benefit from this well-planned and executed conversion technology.

—Mel Martin

 

 




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