The Wonders of HD: Re-Discovering the Fifth Element

Posted by Tom Hannaher , Thursday, October 15, 2009
When I was at Cambridge SoundWorks in the late 1990s, one of my favorite home theater demo movies was Luc Besson's The Fifth Element, with Bruce Willis, Milla Jovovich, Gary Oldham, Ian Holm and Chris Tucker (as "Ruby Rhod"). The colors, staging, explosive sound effects and great music brought out the best in a TV and surround sound system. I have probably seen the "Diva scene" of the movie over 50 times -- and the entire movie a dozen times.

So it came as something of a surprise the other day that, when I came across it on HBO in HD, that I simply couldn't stop watching it. While all movies are better in HD, some movies are hugely improved. Besson's thematic use of color -- some scenes are orange, some are yellow -- and his incredible scene compositions, are sooo much more enjoyable in HD! What a treat.

If you've never seen the movie, do so. If you've seen it six times, see it again on Blu Ray or an HD broadcast. And make sure you've got a great audio system connected. The soundtrack is as good as the visuals -- and your TV speakers are not going to be able to keep up with it. We believe that no TV made in the past five years should be listened to -- their built-in speakers are dreadful. Get a $1500+ 5.1 surround sound system...or a ZVOX system....or hook up a boom box or the cheap set of amplified speakers that came with the last PC you bought. Anything is better than the 30 cent speakers they stuck in your flat-panel TV.


Roger C. Parker said...

Dear Tom:
Glad to hear there's still some serious professionals still interested in sound quality -- products look great.

Best wishes--discovered you through an e-mail from Bruce Lee, another Seattle alumnus.

Say hello to Win B. for me, too.


Upshot Commerce
Shopping Cart Software by
Upshot Commerce