College Road Trip

Featured In Issue 134, September 2008

WSR Score2.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Walt Disney Home Entertainment
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Roger Kumble
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Dolby Digital 5.1
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James Porter (Lawrence) is by all accounts a doting, protective parent who has put much thought into his daughter's further education, having chosen nearby Northwestern University when his beloved Melanie (Symoné) was just a baby. But Melanie is now high-school senior with her own idea of where she wants to attend college. In order to feel that he has some effect on his daughter's decision, James becomes an unwanted occupant on a College Road Trip as Melanie explores her university prospects. (Stacey Pendry)

Special features includea feature commentary track by Actress Symoné and Director Roger Kumble, Raven's Video Diary (ten minutes), ten deleted scenes, an alternate beginning and two alternate ending scenes—both available with commentary—a three-minute gag reel, a three-minute "Double Dutch Bus" music video by Symoné, a three-minute behind-the-scenes making of "Double Dutch Bus," and previews.

The anamorphically enhanced 2.39:1 DVD appears somewhat soft, but there are few compression artifacts to distract from the image. Black levels are deep and shadow delineation is good. Fleshtones appear natural, and contrast is balanced well. Colors are slightly desaturated, but there are many bold colors used. Edge enhancement is noticeable throughout, but it isn't overly distracting. The H.264 AVC-encoded Blu-ray Disc shows impressive resolution and maintains the solid black levels and shadow delineation. Fleshtones appear natural, and contrast is nicely balanced. (Danny Richelieu)

The DVD's Dolby® Digital 5.1-channel soundtrack incorporates the front stage well for atmosphere and music, but the surrounds are encoded at far too low of levels to be very effective. Music and effects sound pristine, but dialogue often sounds overly chesty. Phantom imaging is rare around the room. The LFE channel is used well for music, with good definition. The front stage sounds wide and deep, and dynamic range is adequate. The Blu-ray Disc's uncompressed linear PCM encoding improves fidelity noticeably, but dialogue can sound overly forward. Dynamic range is solid, but the problems with the mix persist. (Danny Richelieu)