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Primal Fear Blu-ray

United States
Paramount Pictures | 1996 | 130 min | Rated R | Mar 10, 2009

Primal Fear (Blu-ray)
Large:


Video
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC (37.97 Mbps)
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Audio
English: Dolby TrueHD 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles
English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese

Discs
50GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)

Playback
Region free

Price
List price: $21.99, Price history
Amazon: $10.17 (Save 54%)
New from: $0.99 (Save 95%)
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Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
7.6
171
ratings.


Blu-ray rating
Video 3.8 of 53.8
Audio 3.9 of 53.9
Extras 3.1 of 53.1
Based on 7 user reviews

Movie appeal

 
Crime100%
Drama97%
Psychological thriller50%
Thriller33%
82%
popularity
1652
collections
26
fans




Primal Fear

 (1996)

Primal Fear Blu-ray offers solid video and great audio in this overall recommended Blu-ray release

A high-profile slaying becomes the case of an ambitious attorney's career in this legal thriller based on the novel by William Diehl. Martin Vail is a famed defense lawyer who volunteers his services to Aaron Stampler, a Kentucky teenager charged with the murder of a Chicago archbishop. Covered with blood, Aaron was captured after a foot chase broadcast live on TV, making a gleeful Vail certain that he could raise his profile by defending the obviously guilty suspect. Assigned to prosecute is Assistant District Attorney Janet Venable, who is Vail's ex-girlfriend. Vail's case becomes more complicated than he expected when a psychologist concludes that Stampler suffers from multiple personality disorder. Vail also uncovers evidence that the archbishop was involved in a corrupt land scheme and may have molested young parishioners. Now the cynical, opportunistic attorney is faced with a daunting prospect, a client who may actually deserve his best defense.

For more about Primal Fear and the Primal Fear Blu-ray release, see Primal Fear Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.

Starring: Richard Gere, Laura Linney, John Mahoney, Edward Norton, Frances McDormand, Alfre Woodard
Director: Gregory Hoblit

» See full cast & crew


Primal Fear Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.5 of 5

Before I drop any adjectives that scare you away from the Blu-ray edition of Primal Fear, you should know that, overall, Paramount's 1080p/AVC-encoded transfer manages to overcome the limitations of Hoblit's drab palette and his director of photography's uninspired lighting. In fact, aside from some lingering edge enhancement and an unnecessary (albeit minor) scene-specific application of noise reduction, the transfer looks quite good. While the film's colors are presented with strong and stable hues, skintones are pale, primaries are subdued, and blacks aren't as well-resolved as I would have preferred. Even so, delineation is more revealing than it is on the standard DVD, dimensionality is more remarkable, and detail, above all else, has received a noticeable boost in clarity. Sure, a few textures are undermined by the use of DNR and a few shots are softer than most, but object edges are usually sharp, fabric and stubble look fairly crisp, and several establishing shots and close-ups show off the disc's upgraded resolution. If anything, the transfer suffers from consistency issues -- some scenes look fantastic and others are underwhelming. Thankfully, artifacting is kept to a minimum, source noise only invades the image during a handful of shadowy scenes, and film grain is steady, faint, and unobtrusive.

Primal Fear won't reach out and slap anyone with its visuals; even longtime fans of the film. However, Paramount has handled the original print with respect, producing an above average presentation. As it stands, if it weren't for the presence of unnecessary post-production tampering, the studio's transfer would probably be worthy of serious praise.


Primal Fear Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  4.0 of 5

Paramount improves matters with an unexpectedly immersive Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround track. Sure, catalog courtroom dramas aren't usually the source of involving sonics, but Primal Fear delivers several standout sequences including visceral cross-cuts, bass-pounding revelations, and regularly convincing interior acoustics and ambience. LFE support is minimalistic but natural, granting vocal tones and violent outbursts the same attention. Rear speaker involvement is just as notable, creating a realistic soundfield that delivers precise directionality and transparent front-to-back pans. Even little details like the slight echo of the courthouse halls and the dampened dynamics of a holding cell have been carefully crafted in the soundscape. There are a few scenes in which an actor's voice sounds a bit muddled compared to other performers in the same space, but the discrepancy never becomes a persistent problem or a substantial distraction. For the most part, dialogue is crisp, intelligible, and nicely prioritized throughout the film.

While Primal Fear isn't the second-coming of catalog lossless tracks, I don't have any major complaints. Impressive, weighty, and realistic, Paramount's TrueHD offering should satisfy fans of the film and audiophiles alike.


Primal Fear: Other Editions



1-disc
$8.38

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Primal Fear Blu-ray, News and Updates



Today on Blu-ray - March 10th - March 10, 2009

For their second Platinum Blu-ray title, Disney decided to open their vaults and release their second feature-length animated feature 'Pinocchio'. This timeless story of a wooden marionette who, with help from his designated conscience Jiminy Cricket, is tempted ...

Primal Fear Special Edition Announced for Blu-ray - December 15, 2008

Paramount Home Entertainment has announced that they will bring 'Primal Fear: Special Edition' to Blu-ray on March 10th. The film is mostly known for being Edward Norton's first feature film, for which he earned an Oscar-nomination. Video will be presented in 1080p ...


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