Men in Black 3 appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a high-quality presentation.
Sharpness was fine, as the movie offered solid clarity. Virtually no softness interfered with this tight, concise image. I saw no moiré effects or jaggies, and the film lacked edge haloes. Source flaws were non-existent, as I detected no specks, marks or other blemishes.
The film’s palette usually opted for a teal orientation, with splashes of orange as well. Within that design range, the colors seemed strong.
Blacks showed nice depth and darkness, while low-light shots presented appropriate delineation and smoothness. Across the board, the image seemed terrific.
I also felt pleased with the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of MIB3, as the soundfield appeared broad and engaging throughout the movie. All five speakers got a strong workout as they displayed a lot of discrete audio.
This made for a convincing environment as we heard plenty of atmosphere and objects swirl actively and appropriately about us. Segments like the chases and fights stood out as particularly dynamic, but a mix of action sequences kicked things into high gear. All these elements created excellent feelings of place and brought the material to life well.
Sound quality also appeared good. Dialogue was crisp and distinct. Speech showed no signs of edginess or any problems related to intelligibility.
Effects were always clear and dynamic, plus they displayed virtually no signs of distortion even when the volume level jumped fairly high; throughout explosions, blasts, and various elements, the track stayed clean.
Music sounded appropriately bright and accurate and portrayed the score appropriately. The mix featured some pretty solid bass at times, and the entire affair seemed nicely deep. Overall, the audio provided the expected levels of involvement and activity.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD release? Audio showed more range and power, while visuals were much tighter and more concise, with stronger colors. The DVD offered lackluster visuals so the Blu-ray became an obvious improvement.
The Blu-ray offers the DVD’s extras as well as some exclusives. Partners in Time: The Making of MIB3 lasts 26 minutes, 24 seconds and includes comments from director Barry Sonnenfeld, producer Walter F. Parkes, screenwriter Etan Cohen, executive producer G. Mac Brown, alien makeup effects creator Rick Baker, visual effects supervisors Jay Redd and Ken Ralston, production designer Bo Welch, production designer Doug Harlocker, animation supervisor Spencer Cook, digital effects supervisor Ken Hahn, and actors Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, Nicole Scherzinger, Michael Stuhlbarg, Jemaine Clement, Emma Thompson, and Alice Eve.
The show covers story/character subjects, cast and performances, Sonnenfeld’s work on the set, sets and locations, alien/makeup design and visual effects, props and production design, and general thoughts. This gives us a pretty standard – and fairly fluffy behind the scenes piece. That said, we learn a decent amount of information from it, so it’s not bad. While I’d like something more in-depth – and I wish we’d gotten a commentary – “Partners” delivers an acceptable program.
Next comes a three-minute, 54-second Gag Reel. It delivers a pretty standard mix of mistakes and silliness. It’s nothing special, but it has a few mildly amusing moments.
We progress with a Music Video for Pitbull’s “Back in Time”. I hoped this would sample the Huey Lewis song of the same name, but instead it uses the old Mickey and Sylvia tune “Love Is Strange” as its framework. It’s a forgettable update on that tune. The video itself mostly mixes shots of Pitbull and movie clips, though it does manage to attempt to put him in the action, so it’s a watchable piece.
With that we go to the Blu-ray’s exclusives, and we find two featurettes. The Evolution of Cool lasts 11 minutes, 14 seconds and features Sonnenfeld, Harlocker, Smith, Welch, Jones, Brown, Brolin, Parkes, and costume designer Mary Vogt.
“Cool” examines set, prop, vehicle and costume design, with an emphasis on period details for the 1969 scenes. The show brings us a brisk, informative reel.
Keeping It Surreal fills 10 minutes, 26 seconds with comments from Sonnenfeld, Redd, Ralston, Hahn, Baker, Cook, computer graphics supervisor David Seager and key artist Bart Mixon. This program digs into the movie’s effects, and like “Cool”, it does so in a tight, enjoyable way.
Under Scene Investigations, we get four segments with a total running time of 17 minutes, 25 seconds. We find “Lunar Prison Escape”, “Showdown at Mr. Wu’s”, “J’s Time Jump” and “The Monocycle Chase”, and across these we hear from Cohen, Redd, Ralston, Hahn, Harlocker, Cook, Mixon, Baker, Brown, computer graphics supervisor Brian Steiner, and actor Nicole Scherzinger.
As implied by the title, the “Investigations” give us details about the four specific sequences in question. These offer nice notes and dig into the scenes well.
Six Progression Reels appear as well: “MIB3 Trailer”, “Creating the Weasel”, “Alien Fish”, “Agent J Prepares to Time Jump”, “Monocycle Chase”, and “Creating Cape Canaveral”. These take up 17 minutes, 37 seconds and include comments from Ralston, Cook and Redd as well as text blurbs.
The “Reels” look at various effects used in the film, and we see these elements at different stages of completion. Overall, the “Reels” provide good information.
Finally, we find a game called Spot the Alien. It requires you to move a cursor around the screen and “shoot” aliens. It’s clumsy and no fun at all.
The disc opens with ads for The Amazing Spider-Man and Total Recall (2012). These also appear under Previews. No trailer for MIB3 pops up here.
A second disc provides a DVD copy of the film. It duplicates the DVD I reviewed in 2012, so it comes with “Partners in Time”, the music video and the gag reel.
After the disappointing MIB2 - and a 10-year layoff – I didn’t expect much from Men in Black 3. To my happy surprise, the film manages to give us a clever, entertaining romp with a nice emotional payoff along the way. The Blu-ray boasts excellent picture and audio along with an informative set of supplements. MIB3 brings us a fun flick and a quality Blu-ray.
To rate this film, visit the DVD review of MEN IN BLACK 3