The BFG appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became an excellent presentation.
Sharpness worked well. Virtually no softness appeared, so the flick offered fine clarity and delineation. I saw no shimmering or jaggies, and edge haloes failed to appear. Print flaws also stayed away from this clean presentation.
As for the palette, it showed a teal and orange tendency, but the different settings allowed for a few other hues as well. These came across as peppy and vivid. Blacks looked dark and deep, and low-light shots seemed smooth and clear. I felt pleased with the transfer.
In terms of the film’s DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack, it opened up matters pretty well. Most of the movie stayed with general atmosphere, but these elements still worked nicely.
Even in “quieter” sequences – like those in the BFG’s house – we got a great feel for the environments. Expect a lot of directional movement and dialogue, and the action picked up as the movie progressed. The climax added a lot of excitement and created a lively soundscape.
Music showed nice delineation, and effects continued to display appropriate placement and movement, even during the more gentle pieces. Much of the film lacked a lot of ambition, but the soundscape suited the story and became more immersive when appropriate.
Audio quality appeared good. Speech remained distinctive and concise, and music sounded robust and full. Effects demonstrated nice clarity and showed solid oomph when necessary. I felt pleased with this effective soundtrack.
Only a smattering of extras appear here, all in the form of featurettes. Bringing The BFG to Life runs 27 minutes, nine seconds and offers comments from director Steven Spielberg, executive producers Kristie Macosko Krieger and Kathleen Kennedy, producers Sam Mercer and Frank Marshall, novelist Roald Dahl’s daughter Lucy, previs creative supervisor Josh Wassung, production designers Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg, supervising art director Grant van der Slagt, senior visual effects supervisor Joe Letteri, motion capture supervisor Dejan Momcilovic, visual effects supervisor Guy Williams, supervising sound designer/re-recording mixer Gary Rydstrom, costume designer Joanna Johnston, property master Jimmy Chow, and actors Ruby Barnhill, Penelope Wilton, Mark Rylance, Rafe Spall, Rebecca Hall and Bill Hader.
In addition to Barnhill’s “video diaries”, we get notes about the source novel and its adaptation, story/character areas, previsualization and visual design, cast and performances, sets and locations, motion capture and various effects, costumes, props, and audio.
That’s a good array of subjects, and “Life” covers the topics well. Granted, it needs to rush through the material given its relative brevity, but it still delivers an appealing overview of production topics.
Next comes the one-minute, 55-second Big Friendly Giant and Me. It offers a semi-animated look at the adventures of the boy who lived with the BFG prior to Sophie. It becomes a cute addition.
For a look at the movie’s unique language, we go to Gobblefunk: The Wonderful Words of The BFG. It lasts three minutes, 16 seconds and features a quiz about the BFG’s vocabulary. Like “Me”, it offers a superficial but likable piece.
Giants 101 occupies four minutes, 57 seconds with notes from Marshall, Spielberg, Hader, senior animation supervisor Jamie Beard, movement coach Terry Notary, and actor Jemaine Clement. This piece looks at aspects of the work done to bring non-BFG giants to life. It gives us a smattering of good notes.
Finally, we go to Melissa Mathison: A Tribute. In this five-minute, 54-second piece, we hear from Kennedy, Krieger, Marshall, Mathison, Carter, Stromberg, and Spielberg. This mixes appreciation for Mathison – who passed away during production of BFG - with info about her participation in the film. It delivers a classy farewell.
The disc opens with an ad for Beauty and the Beast (2017). No trailer for BFG appears here.
A second disc provides a DVD copy of BFG. It includes the “Gobblefunk” and “Mathison” featurettes but lacks the other extras.
Anyone who hopes The BFG will recapture the glory of ET the Extraterrestrial will encounter severe disappointment. Dull, slow and joyless, the movie lacks any of the earlier classic’s magic. The Blu-ray offers terrific visuals as well as very good audio but it lacks substantial bonus materials. The BFG ends up as a sluggish dud.