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Battle in Seattle Blu-ray

United States
Screen Media | 2007 | 99 min | Rated R | Mar 10, 2009

Battle in Seattle (Blu-ray)

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.85:1

English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
English: Dolby Digital 5.1


25GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)

Region free

List price: $19.98, Price history

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Movie rating
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Blu-ray rating
Video 2.8 of 52.8
Audio 3.2 of 53.2
Extras 1.5 of 51.5
Based on 1 user review

Movie appeal


Battle in Seattle


Battle in Seattle Blu-ray offers decent video and great audio in this enjoyable Blu-ray release

In 1999, five days rocked the world as tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Seattle in protest of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Environmentalists, consumer advocates, labor unions, students, anarchists and pacifists all converged, bringing attention to how the WTO's laws were affecting democracy around the world. Among them are Django, Sam, Lou and Jay. United in their desire to be heard and to make a difference, for these protesters, this is very personal and the stakes are higher than mere politics. A peaceful demonstration to stop the WTO talks quickly escalates into a full-scale riot and an eventual State of Emergency results. The streets are mayhem, the WTO is paralyzed. Caught in the crossfire are Seattle residents, including its beleaguered mayor, a riot cop on the streets and his pregnant wife. The choices they make will change their lives forever and prove, ultimately, that ordinary people can change the world.

For more about Battle in Seattle and the Battle in Seattle Blu-ray release, see Battle in Seattle Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 3.0 out of 5.

Starring: André Benjamin, Jennifer Carpenter, Isaach de Bankolé, Woody Harrelson, Martin Henderson, Joshua Jackson
Director: Stuart Townsend

» See full cast & crew

Battle in Seattle Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.0 of 5

Battle in Seattle was shot mostly with 16mm cameras, and while the smaller format has it's benefits—size, portability, and cost, among them—the film's 1080p, AVC-encoded transfer only amplifies the medium's flaws. Since 16mm is roughly half the size of 35mm film, the amount of noticeable grain is effectively doubled, and Battle in Seattle often suffers under a thick and oppressive patina of analog noise. In some senses, this works for the film. It's gritty, raw, and certainly fits the overall docu-drama vibe. The grain also allows the film to slip in and out of archival footage without being too jarring between cuts. Can you imagine going from a pristine HD source to a battered and blurry Hi-8 tape from the late '90's? It would be like having 20/20 vision and then being suddenly forced to wear Coke-bottle glasses. So, on one hand, the decision to use 16mm gave director Stuart Townsend the ability to cut almost seamlessly between the old and new. On the other hand, however, Battle in Seattle is riddled with 16mm foibles. Besides being occasionally distracting, the heavy grain robs the film of subtle texture, decreasing the overall clarity and sharpness. In terms of color, the film veers toward grayish-green—appropriate for Seattle's near-constant cloud cover—and I had no qualms with the skin tones or color cast. Black levels, however, are much too dark at times, and shadow delineation proves to be a real problem during some key scenes. I also noticed some aliasing in the lettering and diagonal lines of the opening graphics. As many of Battle in Seattle's visual letdowns are source related, though, it's hard to be harsh on the transfer. Still, be aware that the jump from 16mm to high def isn't necessarily the most graceful.

Battle in Seattle Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  4.0 of 5

The Battle in Seattle rages with concussive clarity thanks to a well-designed DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround track. As many sections of the film are shot with a hand-held, documentary style, it's important for the sound to be immersive and involving. Thankfully then, Battle in Seattle drops you in the middle of the action. Rubber bullets pop and whiz, tear gas canisters hiss menacingly, and the screams of billy-clubbed protestors emerge from all corners of the audio field. Rear speakers are active throughout most of the film, with sirens that peel across channels and ambient effects—door slams, footsteps, radio squawks, etc.—that are realistic and appropriately placed. Voices are also clear and reflect their environments accurately. Outdoor tones sound flatter and carry less, while the mayor's voice, when speaking at the Key Arena, is laden with delayed reverb. During a few of the more raucous crowd scenes, some voices that we're supposed to make out do get lost in the mix, although this does lend to the film's docu- drama realism. I also noticed that many of the slogans chanted by the protestors don't really match up with what we see on screen, lip movement-wise. Since so many of the crowd scenes are shot wide, though, this really isn't apparent until you look for it. Finally, the score by Massive Attack is somber and complementary, accentuating the violence onscreen with pounding bass and searing synth pads. For a film with such a meager budget, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of thought that went into Battle in Seattle's sound design.

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Battle in Seattle Blu-ray, News and Updates

Extras Revealed for Battle in Seattle - January 30, 2009

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has revealed the special features for the upcoming Blu-ray of 'Battle in Seattle', which is due to hit store shelves on March 10th, day-and-date with the DVD release. Video will be presented in 1.85:1 1080p VC-1 accompanied ...

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