Monsters Vs. Aliens 3D

Featured In Issue 157, May/June 2011

3D Picture5
WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
DreamWorks Home Entertainment
(Catalog Number):
Samsung 3D Starter Kit
(MPAA Rating):
(Rating Reason):
Sci-fi action, some crude humor and mild language
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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(Full Screen Edition):
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(Regional Coding):
Not Indicated
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(Theatrical Release):
(Direct-To-Video Release):
(Disc Release Date):
(THX® Digitally Mastered):
Conrad Vernon & Rob Letterman
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(Disc Soundtrack):
Dolby Digital 5.1
(Theatrical Sound):
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In Monsters Vs. Aliens 3D Susan Murphy (Witherspoon) is unexpectedly clobbered by a meteor full of outer space gunk. She mysteriously grows to 49-feet-11-inches tall and is instantly labeled a "Monster" named Ginormica. The military jumps into action, and she is captured by General W.R. Monger (Sutherland) and held in a secret government compound filled with other "monsters" like herself. This ragtag group consists of the brilliant but insect-headed DR. Cockroach Ph.D. (Laurie); the macho half-ape-half fish The Missing Link (Arnett); the gelatinous and indestructible B.O.B. (Rogen); and the 350-foot grub called Insectosaurus. Their confinement time is cut short, however, when a mysterious alien robot lands on Earth, and the motley crew of Monsters is called into action to save the world from imminent destruction. Along with the main feature is B.O.B.'s Big Break, a 3-D companion story starring everyone's favorite gelatinous hero and featuring the voice talents of Seth Rogen, Hugh Laurie, Will Arnett, and Kiefer Sutherland. (Gary Reber)

Special features include B.O.B.'s Big Break in 3D (HD 13:19) and two other Ginormous Extras: How To Train Your Dragon (HD 02:23) and Shrek Forever After: The Final Chapter (HD 01:13), trailers in 3D, and D-BOX Motion Code.

Theatrically shown in D-Cinema 3D and in 70 mm blowup dual-strip 3D in IMAX® Theatres Monsters Vs. Aliens was released on Blu-ray Disc™ in a standard 2-D 2.35:1 1080p AVC transfer. This 2.35:1 1080p MVC 3-D Blu-ray Disc promotional release is every bit as good as the 2-D version in terms of picture quality attributes, which is spectacular! Colors are rich and beautifully rendered, with warm and vibrant hues, for an eye-popping visual experience. Contrast is well balanced, with deep, solid blacks and shadow renderings that reveal impressive detail. Resolution is incredible, with very fine intricate details rendered perfectly. Every facial line, pore, and freckle is vivid, and object textures are clearly discernible. The animators managed to project a very dimensional picture on the 2-D release, no doubt due to the 3-D framing in the original production. Of course, when viewing in true 3D, the dimensional experience is superb! This is a fantastic, if not flawless, 3-D picture that is impressive throughout, displaying true reference quality. Not only is depth perception exceptional, but there are fun moments when the 3D jumps out of the screen. The imagery is smoothly polished, with virtually no distorted double image ghosting to distract, except for the appearance of faint verticals during the Golden Gate Bridge destruction sequence and a few other spots. Depth perception is impressive and provides a truly enhanced sense of spatial dimensionality, distance, and perspective. This is a wonderful animated 3-D experience that does not disappoint. The family is sure to enjoy the experience and be amazed. The companion featurette, B.O.B.'s Big Break was presented on the previous Blu-ray release in anaglyph 3D. Viewed through the provided red/green anaglyph glasses, the depth of field was enhanced, but the color palette was faded and seriously deficient, as is the case with color-coded anaglyph 3-D presentations. B.O.B.'s Big Break is presented in true frame-packed sequential 3D on the 3-D Blu-ray Disc, and the comparative quality difference is drastic, with the 3-D Blu-ray presentation far, far superior! (Gary Reber)

The previous Blu-ray release featured a reference-quality Dolby® TrueHD 5.1-channel lossless soundtrack. Unfortunately, the 3-D Blu-ray Disc's soundtrack is encoded in lossy Dolby Digital instead. Surprisingly, given that this was the first 3-D Blu-ray Disc release, DreamWorks and Samsung deprived the serious enthusiasts of the full sonic quality now routinely available on virtually all Blu-ray Disc releases. The differences in perceived fidelity, dynamics, and refinement are apparent. Still, the soundtrack delivers aggressive holosonic® envelopment, with directionalized surrounds provided by atmospheric sound effects and panned sound effects. ADR dialogue is perfectly intelligible and effectively integrated spatially. The orchestral music score is beautifully recorded, with a wide and deep soundstage that extends well into the surrounds. The sound is, at times dynamic, with deep bass extension in the .1 LFE channel. Atmospheric sound effects and Foley create a sense of space, providing enhanced dimension and nuance to the animation. The action sequences engage the surrounds aggressively, to create a sense of spatial involvement. The sound elements are all well balanced and well integrated, to create a coherent dimensional soundfield. All the former attributes would have been refined had this been a lossless soundtrack. The D-BOX Motion Code encoding is incredibly exciting and delivers full-on motion, with rocking and jolts that really enhance the visceral experience delivered by the 3-D mode. While the pristine characteristics of the previous Dolby TrueHD soundtrack are lacking, still, all ages will be enthralled with the excitement and nuances set in motion in this soundtrack production. (Gary Reber)