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The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray

United States
Blu-ray 3D + Blu-ray Paramount Pictures | 2010 | 103 min | Rated PG | Nov 16, 2010

The Last Airbender 3D (Blu-ray)

Codec: MPEG-4 MVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1

English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1

English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese

50GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)
Blu-ray 3D

Slipcover in original pressing

Region A, B (C untested)

List price: n/a  

Amazon: $39.95
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Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Blu-ray rating
3D 1.8 of 51.8
Video 3.1 of 53.1
Audio 4.5 of 54.5
Extras 1.5 of 51.5
Based on 4 user reviews

Movie appeal

Martial arts19%

The Last Airbender 3D


The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray offers solid video and reference-quality audio, but overall it's a mediocre Blu-ray release

Air, Water, Earth, Fire. Four nations tied by destiny when the Fire Nation launches a brutal war against the others. A century has passed with no hope in sight to change the path of this destruction. Caught between combat and courage, Aang discovers he is the lone Avatar with the power to manipulate all four elements. Aang teams with Katara, a Waterbender, and her brother Sokka to restore balance to their war-torn world.

For more about The Last Airbender 3D and the The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray release, see the The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 2.5 out of 5.

Starring: Noah Ringer, Nicola Peltz, Dev Patel, Jackson Rathbone, Shaun Toub, Aasif Mandvi
Director: M. Night Shyamalan

» See full cast & crew

The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.5 of 5

The Last Airbender received plenty of criticism when it was released to theaters, not only for the quality of the film but for what was reported as an underwhelming-at-best 3D experience. On Blu-ray, the 3D transfer is no Open Season or A Christmas Carol, but it gets the job done despite some problems and a few scenes that look downright awful. Airbender was filmed with traditional 2D cameras and converted to 3D in post-production, the same approach taken by Clash of the Titans, another oft-maligned 3D presentation that left audiences sour on the technology. The Last Airbender does fare better than Clash does on Blu-ray (or, at least the German release; a review of the U.S. release is coming soon) -- and much of the transfer looks quite good -- but there are some disturbing and distracting issues that, ultimately, make the handsome 2D-only release the better choice, even for 3D owners.

The Last Airbender's general attributes do seem to take a slight hit when directly compared to the 2D version of the film. Of note are black levels that appear to exhibit crush, a problem that wasn't readily evident on the 2D-only version. Here, darker scenes feature overwhelming blacks that seem to suck all of the surrounding details into some nether region where they're not perceptible by the human eye. Fortunately, the 3D transfer offers about the same level of excellent detailing when compared to its 2D counterpart. Viewers will note the same jaw-dropping textures on faces, clothes, and the like, though several shots go inexplicably soft, and the image as a whole occasionally lacks the crispness and definition of the standard 2D transfer. Colors appear to have retained the same vibrancy as those seen in the 2D image; Aang's flashback scenes deliver some very nicely realized reds and oranges, while both the film's many earth tones and the cold and blue Arctic imagery remain steady and accurate when compared to the non-3D version. Also of note is the blemish-free print, but slight banding and blocking are visible on the rarest of occasions.

The transfer's 3D components seem like a hit-and-miss grab-bag made up of part visual delights and part obnoxious eyesores. As to the better pieces of the puzzle, the 3D image often takes on the appearance of a film playing inside a box (giving a new meaning to "idiot box?"), where it seems edges are extending far back into the frame. Most every scene offers a fair amount of depth with characters, objects, and landscapes usually offset one against another to fine effect. It's certainly not as seamless, deep, or jaw-dropping as Open Season, but for a 3D image thrown together at almost literally the last minute (Paramount announced the conversion about two months prior to the film's theatrical release), it looks fairly good in many places. Several scenes do stand out as relatively impressive; a few straight-on shots of the deck of one of Fire Nation's massive seafaring vessels practically places viewers on it as they look from stem to stern or vice versa. Better yet, 3D playback, as sampled on Panasonic's TC-P50VT20 50" 3D plasma, displayed very little of the dreaded "ghosting" effect; the strongest instance appears on the Paramount logo at film's start with the cursive "P" looking like it has a ghostly twin, but otherwise, such an effect is kept to a minimum.

Unfortunately, there are parts of the 3D transfer that look downright awful, but like the "ghosting" effect, they aren't regular companions during the movie. When they do show up, though, they stick out like a sore thumb. Actually, a "sore thumb" might not be the best descriptor; they stand out far more than that. Maybe better to say they stick out like a giant "we're number one!" foam finger (that's The Last Airbender blue, of course, with some micro-sized legal print on the bottom and maybe a mustard stain from that fourth hot dog chased by that eighth beer). Anyway, the 3D transfer does no favors to many of the film's green screen effects. Look at several of the opening shots in the Arctic featuring Katara and Sokka; these characters look completely detached from the background, almost like they were sloppily cut-and-pasted into the frame. Such hiccups are visible throughout, and every time they completely suck the audience out of the movie (not that The Last Airbender does much to pull in its viewers in the first place). At the 6:19 mark, a few loose strands of Katara's hair look more like strange artifacts floating over the frame than they do her flowing locks; it's as if the 3D transfer was trying to add depth where none was really necessary, or maybe whatever process was used to convert the movie into 3D didn't handle the stray hairs properly. Either way, they look like a tangled mess and, for even such a small problem, manage to completely distract from the entire shot. The same effect may be seen on several shots of these characters' fur coats. Additionally, there are several instances where characters literally look like 2D cardboard cutouts inserted into a 3D environment, and the results aren't very good. It's important to note that these anomalies aren't regular occurrences; on the whole, the 3D image isn't bad, but when it does go bad, it really goes bad. Though the 3D transfer looks fairly good, the 2D version bests it by leaps and bounds.

Please note that all screenshots in this review were captured from the 2D version of the film found on the actual 3D release.

The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  5.0 of 5

Besting the video presentation is Paramount's reference-quality DTS-HD MA 5.1 lossless soundtrack, the same found on the 2D-only releases of the film. The Last Airbender sounds fantastic on Blu-ray, and from the opening seconds that feature the Paramount stars shooting across the screen and onward it delivers a nonstop barrage of quality sound effects, music, and dialogue that allow it to settle in as one of the year's finest audio presentations. The opening shot that features the distinct sounds of earth, air, water, and fire hurtling towards the audience sets a great tone for what's to come. Indeed, distinctive and spacious effects rule the day, as crackling ice, popping flames, gushy air, and crunchy dirt are all key sonic elements throughout the film that spring to life with amazing clarity in every instance. The sounds spread across the listening area with unmatched ease, often supported by potent and pleasantly tight bass that's aggressive but not overwhelming. Atmospherics are nicely handled by the 5.1 configuration, too; whether the constant chugging of the Fire Nation's hulking vessels or the slightest of breezes blowing across the back channels, listeners will enjoy the steady and satisfying immersion into the worlds of The Last Airbender that this track provides. Supported by a pitch-perfect presentation of James Newton Howard's incredible score and smooth and satisfying center-focused dialogue reproduction, The Last Airbender delivers an amazing sonic experience that has few equals.

The Last Airbender: Other Editions

2-disc set




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The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray, News and Updates

The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray at Best Buy - October 6, 2010

According to retailer information, Paramount Home Entertainment will release The Last Airbender 3D on November 16, making it the studio's first 3D Blu-ray release not exclusively bundled with 3D hardware. However, it will be a retailer exclusive, initially available ...

The Last Airbender 3D Blu-ray, Forum Discussions

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