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High School Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Video Codec: AVC MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: R
  • Run Time: 100 Mins
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • List Price: $29.99

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:4/5]

High School tells the story of Henry Burke (Matt Bush), valedictorian to his High School class. Henry has always lead a very simple laugh, relying on books and brains instead of having a little bit of fun, like that of his stoner friend Breaux (Sean Maruqette). Encouraged to just ‘let go’ and try a hit of chronic, Henry gives in and, seemingly, enjoys it. That is until his principal Dr. Leslie Gordon (Michael Chiklis) institutes mandatory drug tests for all his students. Henry must figure out exactly how he’s going to pass this latest test if he wants to receive that coveted valedictorian title. What results is a rather funny movie, something that shocked me.

Let’s begin this by clearing stating that I had ZERO expectations for High School. I figured this would be a dumb, bland teen comedy sort of in the same category as the latter American Pie entries (you know, the films you watch just to have background noise on). Well, imagine my utter shock and surprise to find out that School is actually an entertaining comedy. The real charm comes from the wide assortment of actors, particularly that of the fairly unrecognizable Michael Chiklis and the hilarious, drug lord Adrien Brody. Both create a bunch of laughs, from the out-of-place kind of weird performance by Chiklis to the extremely over-the-top, ‘psycho’ (pun intended) delivery by Brody. I can imagine that both had a complete ball during this movie, something that is easily seen throughout. It’s aspects like that make School something worth watching, not something you’d immediately skip.

Video Quality

[Rating:5/5]

High School arrives with a 2.40:1 framed, AVC MPEG-4 encoded transfer which is excellent. The film uses the kind of color palette that doesn’t really rely on one side of the color spectrum. We have the dark blacks of Psycho Ed’s basement, then we see the bright yellows of the sun or the reds of the bricks of the school. A majority of these color hold a fine amount of detail, with no real instance of crush, smearing or image blurring. Flesh tones/facial close-ups result in strong textures. I couldn’t exactly find any information on how exactly the film was shot, but I will easily say this transfer has a very natural look and feel to it. What looks like grain is somewhat present in some of the darker moments, but never is an overbearing issue. All in all, this is a fine effort from Anchor Bay and is one that certainly surprised me.

Audio Quality

[Rating:3.5/5]

Featuring a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track, this provided mix for High School has a few of the comedy genre limitations to it; however, this lossless effort is better than I had expected. Dialogue is well reproduced throughout via the center channel. Atmosphere is a bit subdued here. We do here the hustle and bustle that a normal high school would have (background dialogue, lockers slamming, etc). Inside the basement of Psycho Ed, the sound field does up a bit as we can hear sprinkles going off or his ‘feeding schedule’ starting up. Outside of this, the track handles what it came to do, just not that much more. All in all, this is a clean, good effort from Anchor Bay.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:1.5/5]

The included supplements are featured in High Definition:

  • Audio Commentary with Executive Producer/Writer/Director John Stalberg, Jr.
  • Deleted Scenes – 12:11 worth of scenes are presented.
  • Trailer – The film’s trailer (1:31) is shown.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

Plainly said, High School is just enjoyable on nearly all levels. The humor is funny, and the acting is quite good. Anchor Bay’s Blu-ray features an excellent, perfect video presentation and a solid audio mix. Even though the features do lack a bit, I can’t help but recommend this one for a purchase to people who just like quality, consistent laughs.

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase High School on Blu-ray at CD Universe

High School

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

[amazon-product]B008DL4LG2[/amazon-product]

Purchase High School on Blu-ray at CD Universe

High School

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:3.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:1.5/5]

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