Victor/Victoria appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. Films circa 1982 can tend to look iffy, but this one came across pretty well.
Sharpness seemed largely solid. A few shots came across as a little soft and fuzzy, especially during interiors. For the most part, though, the movie appeared distinct and accurate. No problems with jaggies or shimmering occurred, and edge haloes were absent. Source flaws also failed to be a factor.
Colors seemed fairly distinct and vivid. The film opted for a palette heavy on reds and ambers, and these seemed mostly positive, though a few shots looked a bit heavy. Blacks were pretty dark, and shadows were fine, with mostly strong delineation. Overall, the transfer replicated the source well.
Note that the original Blu-ray suffered from an error, as it accidentally repeats one eight-second shot. By the time you order, you may get the corrected version, but if you receive the original, you can request a replacement at http://www.warnerbros.com/customer-service.
Given the film’s age, I felt pleased with its DTS-HD MA 5.1, though the mix mainly hewed to the front speakers. In that spectrum, I heard reasonably good stereo separation and imaging for the music, and effects also spread across the forward channels to a positive degree.
Surround usage appeared to be modest. In general, the rear speakers offered general reinforcement of the score and some mild ambient effects. A few scenes opened up better – like crowd noise at a club or a rain storm – but the track concentrated on the front most of the time.
Audio quality was dated but good. Dialogue occasionally displayed some edginess, but speech usually seemed reasonably natural and distinct, and I heard no concerns related to intelligibility. Effects also demonstrated periodic bouts of distortion; gunfire provided the most notable examples of these concerns. Otherwise, those elements sounded acceptably clean and accurate.
Music also seemed pretty positive. The score and songs showed reasonable pep and held up well over the last 34 years. Nothing about the soundtrack excelled, but I felt that the audio seemed more than satisfactory based on its age.
The disc’s most intriguing supplement comes from an audio commentary with writer/director Blake Edwards and actor Julie Andrews. Both sit together for their running, screen-specific look at the source material’s adaptation and characters/story, cast and performances, sets and production design, cinematography, editing, music and related domains.
For the track’s first hour or so, it works pretty well. Despite occasional lulls, Edwards and Andrews remain fairly involved and they add a nice mix of stories and facts about the film.
After that, however, the commentary goes downhill. Silence becomes more prevalent, and Edwards largely vanishes. This leaves Andrews to carry the weight, and she can’t shoulder the load. Some decent notes still emerge during the movie’s second half, but not many, so this ends up as an erratic commentary that gets less engaging as it goes.
In addition to the film’s trailer, we get a DVD Easter Egg. This provides a 36-second clip in which Edwards tells us a little about Andrews – very little, so don’t expect much.
By the way, I don’t view this as an “extra”, but note that the disc includes “Song Selection” instead of standard “Chapter Search”. While the Blu-ray includes many chapter markings beyond 12 songs, you can’t directly access any of those from the main menu.
Vaguely outrageous in 1982, Victor/Victoria now lacks the same gender-bending sizzle and needs to stand on its own merits. It flops, as the movie seems too long, too slow, too witless and too dull. The Blu-ray offers fairly good picture and audio as well as an erratic commentary. Victor drags and bores.