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The History of the World in Two Hours Blu-ray 3D Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4; MPEG-4/MVC-3D
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit)
  • Subtitles: English, Dutch, German, Spanish
  • Region: ABC (Region-Free)
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray/Blu-ray 3D )
  • Run Time: 88 Mins.
  • Studio: A&E Home Video/New Video
  • Blu-ray Release Date: May 15, 2012
  • List Price: $29.95

[amazon-product]B006QVRW0S[/amazon-product]

Purchase The History of the World in Two Hours on Blu-ray 3D at CD Universe

History of the World in Two Hours - History Specials

History of the World in Two Hours -- Amazon on Demand HD

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
2D HD: [Rating:3.5/5]

3D Effect: [Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:0/5]

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]

The title of this one-off special from The History Channel should really be “The History of the World in Just Under Ninety Minutes,” since this special clocks in at about 88-minutes in total once all the commercials are removed. All arguments over the audacity of the obviously gimmicky title aside, The History of the World in Two Hours is actually quite a decent attempt at summarizing the history of the planet and the existence of humanity. A complex discussion of many technical and philosophical topics it isn’t, but one very easily gets the gist of the immensity and vastness of human and planetary history and the interconnectedness of everything from this series. The creators have done a fine job bringing together commentary from experts from many different fields including astrophysics, archeology, paleontology, history, and warfare to explain everything beginning from the Big Bang to Sumerian history, the industrial revolution, and to the present, with a few other obvious stops along the way. The most technical part of the series comes early on at the beginning of the universe, but never does it become bogged down, pandering, or uninteresting.

Video Quality

2D HD: [Rating:3.5/5]

3D Effect: [Rating:2.5/5]

The video quality is unimpressive all around for History of the World, with this 1080p/24 AVC encodement showing all the typical video noise of these History Channel HD series in the 2D version and some inconsistent flesh tones as well during interview segments. There are also signs of video banding and posterization.

The 3D presentation is unspectacular to say the least. With very little 3D pop-out in any of the effects in places where it could have benefited the most, like early on during the CG sequences of the big bang/beginning of the Universe scenes, one wonders what the purpose of doing this in 3D was to begin with. I will admit that the 3D presentation for this release is just a little better than 7 Wonders of the Solar System, also from The History Channel, showing a little more natural looking background depth in many of the live-action sequences, but there’s nothing to write home about here, really.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4/5]

As for the audio, the sole supplied audio track, a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit) soundtrack is effective for the material with a good balance of front sounds and surround effects. It offers clear narration and dialogue and a spacious amount of dynamic range.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:0/5]

Move along everyone, nothing here to see or hear, for that matter. This is barebones in its truest sense.

The Definitive World

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

A strong effort given its bold title, The History of the World in Two Hours is an entertaining documentary for casual viewing, but one shouldn’t, and couldn’t, expect a doctorate level dissertation on the minutiae of every possible socio-political, or religious viewpoint. As for the 3D program available on this disc, it probably won’t be moving to the top of anyone’s reference list anytime soon.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B006QVRW0S[/amazon-product]

Purchase The History of the World in Two Hours on Blu-ray 3D at CD Universe

History of the World in Two Hours - History Specials

History of the World in Two Hours -- Amazon on Demand HD

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]
Video Quality
2D HD: [Rating:3.5/5]

3D Effect: [Rating:2.5/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:0/5]

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