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The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray

United States
DigiPack / Koyaanisqatsi / Powaqqatsi / Naqoyqatsi | The Criterion Collection Criterion | 1982-2002 | 3 Movies | 275 min | Not rated | Dec 11, 2012

The Qatsi Trilogy (Blu-ray)

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: see individual releases
Original aspect ratio: see individual releases

Music: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

See individual releases

50GB Blu-ray Disc
Three-disc set (3 BDs)

Slipcover in original pressing

Region A (locked)

List price: $79.95, Price history
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Blu-ray rating
Video 4.8 of 54.8
Audio 4.8 of 54.8
Extras 4.8 of 54.8
Based on 1 user review

Movie appeal


The Qatsi Trilogy


The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray delivers stunning video and audio in this exceptional Blu-ray release

See individual titles for their synopsies

For more about The Qatsi Trilogy and the The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray release, see the The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 4.5 out of 5.

Director: Godfrey Reggio

This Blu-ray bundle includes the following titles, see individual titles for specs and details:

Koyaanisqatsi (Blu-ray)

Koyaanisqatsi Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection
Criterion | 1982 | 86 min | Not rated | Region A (locked) | No Release Date

Koyaanisqatsi is a documentary (of sorts). It is also a visual concert of images set to the haunting music of 'Phillip Glass' . While there is no plot in the traditional sense, there is a definate scenario. The film opens on...

Documentary / Music

Powaqqatsi (Blu-ray)

Powaqqatsi Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection
Criterion | 1988 | 99 min | Not rated | Region A (locked) | No Release Date

An exploration of technologically developing nations and the effect the transition to Western-style modernization has had on them.

Documentary / Music

Naqoyqatsi (Blu-ray)

Naqoyqatsi Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection
Criterion | 2002 | 89 min | Not rated | Region A (locked) | No Release Date

A visual montage portrait of our contemporary world dominated by gobalized technology and violence.

Documentary / Music

The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray, Video Quality

  4.5 of 5

Presented in their original aspect ratios of 1.85:1 (Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi) and 1.78:1 (Naqoyqatsi), encoded with MPEG-4 AVC and granted 1080p transfers, the three films in Godfrey Reggio's The Qatsi Trilogy arrive on Blu-ray courtesy of Criterion.

The text that is quoted below appears inside the booklet provided with this box set:

"Koyaanisqatsi - This new digital transfer was created in 2K resolution on a Northlight Digital Film Scanner from the original 35mm camera negative. A 1999 transfer supervised by Reggio was used as a direct frame-for-frame reference. Thousands of instances of dirt, debris, scratches, splices, and warps were manually removed using MTI's DRS; jitter was fixed using Pixel Farm's PFClean; and Image System's DVNR was used for small dirt, grain, and flicker.

Transfer supervisor: Maria Palazzola.
Colorist: Gregg Garvin/Modern Videofilm, Glendale, CA."

Koyaanisqatsi looks healthy and lush. Occasionally clarity fluctuates a bit as the camera moves from one location to another, but depth and detail are always very good. Color reproduction is very pleasing. There are plenty of very well saturated browns, greens, blues, reds, grays, and blacks, and none of them exhibit any signs of boosting. Furthermore, there are no traces of excessive sharpening or degraning corrections. Unsurprisingly, from start to finish the film has a very solid organic look. Compression is also excellent. Lastly, there are no serious stability issues to report in this review.

"Powaqqatsi - This new high-definition digital transfer was created on a Spirit Datacine from a new 35mm interpositive struck from the original camera negative. Thousands of instances of dirt, debris, scratches, splices, warps, jitter, and flicker were manually removed using MTI's DRS and Pixel Farm's PFClean, while Image Systems' DVNR was used for small dirt.

Transfer supervisor: Maria Palazzola.
Colorist: Gregg Garvin/Modern Videofilm, Glendale, CA."

Similar to Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi looks very healthy and vibrant. Detail and clarity here are particularly impressive, especially during the first half of the film where there are plenty of bright yellows, greens, reds, and browns. Some minor contrast fluctuations are noticeable during select panoramic shots, but the high-definition transfer is not to be faulted as they are very clearly part of the principal photography. There are no traces of excessive degraining corrections. Additionally, the film looks crisp but not artificially sharpened. Some very light noise occasionally pops up, but it is never distracting. There are no cuts, damage marks, debris, or warps.

"Naqoyqatsi - About 30 percent of Naqoyqatsi's footage was shot on 35mm negative; this was scanned on a Spirit Datacine at Technicolor New York. The rest of the film - apart from a small quantity of material that was created digitally from scratch - is made up of stock footage that was manipulated using Avid, Adobe After Effects, and, for the 3D material, Maya. The final high-definition footage was color corrected and restored using a Digital Intermediate workflow to create a new negative.

Supervision: Godfrey Reggio, Jon Kane.
Colorist: Joe Gawler/Technicolor New York."

Because of the various image manipulations, detail and contrast often fluctuate. The effects sequences, in particular, have different degrees of color saturation. Depth, however, is very good, while stability is clearly improved when compared to the old OOP R1 DVD release Miramax produced back in 2003. There are no macroblockig patterns. I also did not see any other purely transfer specific anomalies to report in this review.

(Note: All three discs are Region-A "locked". Therefore, you must have a native Region-A or Region-Free PS3 or SA in order to access their content).

The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  4.5 of 5

Each of the three films comes with a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track. Optional English subtitles are not provided because each film is complimented only by a music score composed by Philip Glass.

The lossless tracks give each film dimensionality that profoundly transforms the viewing experience. There are a number of different sequences, for example, where the powerful choir or Yo-Yo Ma's beautiful solos further enhance the unique atmosphere. Obviously, these are not films that will impress you with superb dynamic intensity, but depth and fluidity are indeed very good. There is some fine surround movement as well, but I think that the lossless tracks excel primarily by expanding and enhancing the nuanced dynamics that are part of the original sound designs for each film.

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The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray, News and Updates

Criterion Blu-ray in December: Clement, Gilliam, Reggio, Nolan - September 17, 2012

The Criterion Collection has announced four titles for Blu-ray release in December. On December 4th, the studio will release Purple Noon (René Clement, 1960) and Brazil (Terry Gilliam, 1985). A week later, on December 11th, it will release The Qatsi Trilogy (Godfrey ...

The Qatsi Trilogy Blu-ray, Forum Discussions

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