Batman: The Long Halloween, Part Two appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Given that the two parts of Halloween were created together, one would expect identical visuals/audio for the two releases.
Does this grant me the chance to simply recycle my Part One opinions for Part Two? Yes, it does! Hooray for cut and paste!
Sharpness excelled. The movie always came across as tight and well-defined, so don’t expect any signs of softness.
Jaggies and moiré effects also remained absent, and the image lacked edge haloes or artifacts. In addition, print flaws were a non-factor and didn’t appear at any point.
In terms of colors, Halloween went with a dark palette that favored moody greens, reds and ambers. The tones looked solid, as they showed positive richness and vivacity.
Blacks were deep and tight, while shadows showed nice clarity. Across the board, the image worked well.
I thought the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Halloween opened up the comic book material well. The forward channels brought out the majority of the audio, but the entire package added a lot to the movie. Music presented strong stereo imaging, while effects cropped up in logical spots and blended well.
The surrounds also contributed good information. For the most part, these reinforced the forward channels, but they also contributed a fair amount of unique material.
These instances mainly occurred during bigger action scenes. The back speakers brought out a nice sense of space and environment.
Audio quality always satisfied. Speech was warm and natural, without edginess or other issues.
Music sounded lively and full, while effects displayed good definition. Those elements seemed accurate and dynamic. All of this led to a positive presentation that deserved a “B+”.
A few extras appear here, and from the “DC Showcase” line, we get a short called Blue Beetle. It runs 15 minutes, 30 seconds as it features the title hero in action.
We find a decidedly campy Saturday morning vibe here, replete with terrible dialogue, cheesy voice acting and even some “print flaws”. It walks a fine line between clever and stupid, but it entertains.
Next get a Sneak Peek at an upcoming DC Animated effort called Injustice. It goes for seven minutes, 48 seconds and includes comments from writer Ernie Altbacker, producers Jim Krieg and Rick Morales, director Matt Peters, and actors Kevin Pollak, Anson Mount, Justin Hartley, Brandon Micheal Hall and Anika Noni Rose.
Injustice comes from a DC series called “Elseworlds”, which goes with alternate realities. We learn about story elements and cast in this promo piece.
More previews ensue, and A Sneak Peek at The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 lasts six minutes, 53 seconds. It delivers statements from Timm, Romano, director Jay Oliva, screenwriter Bob Goodman, co-producer Alan Burnett, DC Entertainment Animation Creative Director Mike Carlin, and actors Michael Emerson and Mark Valley.
We get notes about story and characters as well as cast and performances. It’s basic advertisement and not much more.
We also find a Sneak Peek at Batman: Hush. This nine-minute, 17-second clip features director Justin Copeland, voice director Wes Gleason, producers Jim Krieg and James Tucker, screenwriter Ernie Altbacker, and actors Jerry O’Connell, Geoffrey Arend, Peyton List, Jennifer Morrison, Maury Sterling, and Jason O’Mara.
“Peek” covers the source comic and its adaptation as well as story/character areas and cast. Most of this learns toward promotion, but the “Peek” becomes a bit more substantial than most.
We also get two Bonus Cartoons. From Batman: The Animated Series, we find “Two-Face Part 1” (22:27) and “Two-Face Part 2” (22:30).
“Two-Face” presents a good introduction to this major villain. It also reminds us how well the The Animated Series did darkness. From the extremely moody visuals to the startling vision in Bruce’s dream, this sure doesn’t feel like the standard kiddie cartoon.
Though Part One of Batman: The Long Halloween left me cold, I held out hope that Part Two might deliver greater excitement. Unfortunately, the second chapter comes with the same overstuffed collection of characters and plot threads that makes it a disappointing project. The Blu-ray boasts strong picture and audio along with a minor set of supplements. This winds up as a lackluster Batman story.