Close Encounters of the Third Kind


ID:                   HVMC-10003

Price:                24,800 yen

Discs:               2

Sound:              A-Mode/EFM

Running Time:   2:17

Released:          Sony/Columbia Tri-Star

(from IMDb)


Planes reported missing in 1945 suddenly appear in the Mojave desert. A commercial flight is buzzed by a 'bright' object that the pilot 'wouldn't know how to describe'. Roy Neary, while working one night, has a Close Encounter... The US Government determine where the visitors plan to land and create an elaborate cover-up to keep people away. However, a group of people, including Neary, share a vision which draws them to the place and a meeting with new, and old, friends.

Another high profile movie that you expect to look fantastic.  Does it?  Kind of……..


The transfer is generally good, featuring detailed shots, a relatively clean film print.  Outdoor shots are generally bright and lively, but colors throughout the film have a muted feel to them.  This can most likely be attributed to the film stock and the age of the print.  Indoor scenes are a bit on the dark side with crushed blacks eliminating a lot of low level detailing.  However, the finale with the mothership is both bright, vivid and very pleasing to watch.  Fleshtones through out the film have a greenish tint to them, however in the finale that tinge seems to disappear. 


Compression artifacts are present, especially in low light scenes and in actors faces.  But compression artifacts are almost absent in the film finale (side 3 from here on out).  In fact, disc 2 side 3 is a great looking scene in the MUSE Hi-Vision format and a definite show off piece for any HDTV display.  While the rest of the film is very good, it just barely is worthy of 4 stars.


EFM track was auditioned, and the sound and effects are comprised mostly of mono.  What brings the front channels alive is orchestrated music from John Williams.  The sound in the EFM tracks is very pleasing never exhibiting a harsh sound to it.  I will update this review once I review the A-mode soundtrack and see how it compares to the EFM track.


Low frequency effects are used generally only with the space ship sequences, but otherwise LFE are rarely used.


A very pleasing looking disc especially the last 30 minutes of the movie.  I do recommend this disc, and can only point you to the screen shots below to help you form your own conclusion.   But I do recommend this disc, it is worth having in a collection of other MUSE titles.