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Smurfs: The Lost Village (a J!-ENT 4K Ultra HD Review)

July 2, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

For those who enjoy the Smurfs and videophile/audiophile parents looking for an animated film that looks great in 4K Ultra HD, who also want to entertain their children or the entire family, you can’t go wrong with “Smurfs: The Lost Village”. Recommended for the entire family!

Images courtesy of © 2017 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


TITLE: Smurfs: Lost Village

DATE OF FILM RELEASE: 2017

DURATION: 90 Minutes

BLU-RAY INFORMATION: 2160p Ultra High Definition (1:85:1 aspect ratio), English Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 5.1 Compatible), English – Audio Description Track, Catalan, Cantonese, Mandarin, Danish, Dutch (Netherlands), finnish, French, German, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Vietnamese 5.1 Dolby Digital, SUBTITLES: English, English SDH, French, Arabic, Cantonese, Chinese, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Indonesian/Bahasa, Korean, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Vietnamese

COMPANY: Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

RATED: PG (Some Mild Action and Rude Humor)

RELEASE DATE: July 11, 2017


Based on the Characters by Peyo

Directed by Kelly Asbury

Written by Stacey Harman, Pamela Ribbon

Producer: Mary Ellen Bauder, Jordan Kerner

Co-Producer: Veronique Culliford, Mandy Tankenson

Executive Producer: Raja Gosnell, Ben Waisbren

Co-Executive Producer: Ben Haber

Music by Christopher Lennertz

Edited by Bret Marnell

Casting by Mary Hidalgo

Production Design by Noelle Triaureau

Art Direction by Dean Gordon, Marcel Vignali


Starring:

Demi Lovato as Smurfette

Rainn Wilson as Gargamel

Joe Manganiello as Hefty Smurf

Jack McBrayer as Clumsy Smurf

Danny Pudi as Brainy Smurf

Mandy Patinkin as Papa Smurf

Dee Bradley Baker as Monty

Frank Welker as Azrael

Michelle Rodriguez as SmurfStorm

Ellie Kemper as SmurfBlossom

Julia Roberts as SmurfWillow

Ariel Winter as SmurfLily

Meghan Trainor as SmurfMelody

Bret Marnell as Snappy Bug

Brandon Jeffords as Cauldron

Kelly Asbury as Nosey Smurf

Jake Johnson as Grouchy Smurf

Gabrielle Iglesias as Jokey Smurf

Tituss Burgess as Vanity Smurf


In this fully animated, all-new take on the Smurfs, a mysterious map sets Smurfette and her best friends Brainy, Clumsy and Hefty on an exciting and thrilling race through the Forbidden Forest filled with magical creatures to find a mysterious lost village before the evil wizard Gargamel does. Embarking on a roller coaster journey full of action and danger, the Smurfs are on a course that leads to the discovery of THE biggest secret in Smurf history!


Back in the late ’50s, Belgian cartoonist Peyo created the comic strips featuring small blue fictional characters known as the Smurfs. A big success in France, the Smurfs would receive various adaptations.

The first were in Belgium via TV animated shorts that were created in 1961-1967, a few of the shorts would be featured in the 1965 in the black-and-white animation “Les Adventures des Schtroumpfs” and then followed by a 1976 animation titled “La Flûte à six schtroumpfs” (The Smurfs and the Magic Flute) which would receive an English version that would inspire more full-length Smurf animated films.

But in America, where the Smurfs gained its popularity is through the 1981 animated TV series which was nominated many times for a Daytime Emmy Award and won the “Outstanding Children’s Entertainment Series” for 1982-1983. The animated series would broadcast on television through 1989.

In 1997, producer Jordan Kerner has been trying to get a “Smurfs” film created but it wasn’t until 2002 when Peyo’s heirs accepted Kerner’s offer and people were able to get their first look at the film via leaked footage on the Internet in 2008.

And in 2011, the first live-action/CG Smurf film of a planned trilogy was released in theaters in 2011. The film which was budgeted for $110 million received lackadaisical reviews from film critics but the film was popular among the younger viewers and earned over $559 million in the box office ensuring the film as a success for Columbia Pictures which would ensure a sequel.

In 2013, “Smurfs 2” would go on to earn over $374 million in the box office, making it another success.

But wanting to create a full 3D CG animated film, the film series was rebooted (now no longer featuring the live action portion), this film (unrelated to the previous two films) is directed by Kelly Asbury (“Shrek 2”, “Gnomeo & Juliet”) and co-written by Stacey Harman (“The Goldbergs”) and Pamela Ribon (“Moana”, “Samantha Who?”, “Bears”) and the film would go on to make $194.7 million in the box office.

And now “Smurfs: The Lost Village” will be released on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD in July 2017.  The version I am reviewing is the 4K Ultra HD version which comes with the Blu-ray and an UltraViolet Digital Code.

In this latest film, we are introduced to the story of Smurfette, the only girl in the Smurf Village and how she was created by the wicked wizard Gargamel from a lump of clay.  Despite being created for the purpose of evil (as he in search of the Smurf village to steal all of their essences to become the most powerful wizard in the world), she was given a chance by Papa Smurf and became part of the village.

One day, Brainy Smurf is creating an invention that can determine one’s energy.  As Hefty Smurf was tested, the invention showed that his energy was strength and Brainy was able to extract that into a liquid.  But when tested on Smurfette, because she isn’t a true Smurf, she drew in energy and so the invention didn’t work on her.

As Smurfette, Brainy, Hefty and Clumsy Smurf go out for some playtime, while flying out with a leaf, a gust of wind carries her to the Forbidden Forest where she crashes.  Smurfette sees a smurf watching her and it runs off past the wall leading to the Forbidden Forest.

But when Smurfette tells the three of what she saw, she is grabbed by Gargamel’s vulture, Monty back to his lair.

This leads Brainy, Hefty and Clumsy to go on a rescue mission to save Smurfette and when they get her out to go to the village, they want to tell Papa Smurf about her discovery.  But when Papa Smurf forbids them and punishes them for going out there, the four sneak out to search if there is a “LostVillage”of Smurfs aside from theirs.


VIDEO:

“Smurfs: Lost Village” receives its first 4K Ultra HD release and this latest animation is fantastic.  Presented in 2160p (1:85:1 aspect ratio), it’s a different style compared to the previous two films which tries to add skin texturing but for the most part, the animation is done very well with great hair physics and for the most part, it’s an animation style that is respectful to Peyo’s original work and also for those who remember the animated series.   Meanwhile, environments are well-rendered with amazing detail.  The picture quality of this film is fantastic!

IMPORTANT TO KNOW: To watch 4K Ultra HD, you will need a 4K UHD TV with HDR and an Ultra HD Blu-ray Player + a high-speed HDMI 2.0A Cable.

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

Audio quality is equally impressive. Presented in English Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 5.1 Compatible), English – Audio Description Track, Catalan, Cantonese, Mandarin, Danish, Dutch (Netherlands), Finnish, French, German, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Vietnamese 5.1 Dolby Digital.

Considering that this animated film has a good number of action sequences, the lossless audio utilizes the surround channels.  Dialogue and music are crystal clear, while action sequences sound magnificent through the surround channels.

Subtitles are in English, English SDH, French, Arabic, Cantonese, Chinese, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Indonesian/Bahasa, Korean, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish and Vietnamese.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“Smurfs: The Lost village” on 4K Ultra HD comes with the following special features:

  • Emoji Sneak Peak – (2:04) A sneak peek for the upcoming “Emoji” film.
  • Filmmaker Commentary– Featuring audio commentary by director Kelly Asbury and Allan Hawkins (Animation Supervisor) and Brandon Jeffords (Head of Story).
  • Deleted Scenes – (7:35) Featuring four deleted scenes.
  • Kids at Heart! The Making of Smurfs: The Lost Village – (9:09) The making of “Smurfs: The Lost Village” and behind-the-scenes at Sony Pictures Animation.
  • The Lost Auditions – (4:07) Voice talents auditioning for other Smurf roles.
  • Demi Lovato Meets Smurfette – (:58) Smurfette interviews Demi Lovato.
  • Lost Village Dance Song  – (3:10) Featuring children dancing to the “Lost Village Dance Song”.
  • Smurfify Your Nails – (2:18) A featurette on how to smurfify nails.
  • Baker Smurf’s Mini Kitchen – (4:05)  A featurette featuring Baker Smurf narrating one preparing a baked dish.
  • Meghan Trainor “I’m a Lady Music Video”
  • Making the Song “You Will Always find Me In Your Heart” – (3:00) Christopher Lennertz discuss making the music for a certain scene.
  • The Sound of The Smurfs – (3:42) Kelly Asbury and Christopher Lennertz discuss the music for Smurfs: The Lost Village”.
  • Draw Your Favorite Smurfs – (7:40) How to draw various Smurf characters.
  • See More Smurfs! – (5:48) “Smurf” film trailers

EXTRAS:

“Smurfs: The Lost Village” comes with a slipcover, both the 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray disc and an UltraViolet Digital HD code.


Having grown up with watching “Smurfs” on television and reading the comics, and since 2011, it was cool to watch the films alongside my young son who pretty much grew up not with the animated films but the two previous films.

And he were are now in 2017, we have an animated film which will no doubt entertain families but I feel it’s a film that is much easier for me, as an adult to watch, versus watching Smurf and human collaborations onscreen.

Part of the entertaining factor of the original series is the adventures that the Smurfs are involved in and the various characters to work with.  While “Smurfs: The Lost Village” features primarily Smurfette, Brainy Smurf, Hefty Smurf and Clumsy Smurf, the film does a great job of incorporating other Smurfs but most importantly answers a question of what if there is a village of other Smurfs out there?

What if Smurfette wasn’t the only female Smurf around?

And sure enough, “Smurfs: The Lost Village” is quite fun to watch because we see another village but instead of all male, it’s all female.  And similar to Papa Smurf and his village of male smurfs, we see Mama Smurf and her village of female smurfs.  And needless to say, it makes for a fun, entertaining story.

As always, Gargamel is the primary antagonist.  Still trying to search for Smurfs to capture their essence in order to make him a powerful wizard.  Sure there is quite a bit of peril and rude humor (thanks to Gargamel) that raises the rating to PG but parents watching alongside their children need not worry at all.  It’s a great animated film that the entire family can enjoy!

As for the 4K Ultra HD presentation, animation is fantastic.  While much different compared to the previous two films, this time around, the animated film is much truer to Peyo’s work.  Especially for those who grew up watching the animated series.  Movements and hair physics to the way the characters move were well-animated and the detail of environments are full of detail.  In fact, this film looks absolutely vibrant in HD.

The lossless soundtrack is just as impressive.  Featuring crystal clear dialogue and music but also great use of the surround channels during the action sequences.  And last, there are a good number of special features included as well.

Overall, for those who enjoy the Smurfs and videophile/audiophile parents looking for an animated film that looks great in 4K Ultra HD, who also want to entertain their children or the entire family, you can’t go wrong with “Smurfs: The Lost Village”.  Recommended for the entire family!

 

SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE Debuts on Digital June 20 and 4K, Blu-ray & DVD July 11

June 3, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Starring Demi Lovato, Rainn Wilson, Joe Manganiello, Jack McBrayer,
Danny Pudi, Michelle Rodriguez, Ellie Kemper, Ariel Winter,
with Mandy Patinkin & Julia Roberts

Packed with Interactive Bonus Materials Available on Digital June 20
And On 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray + Digital, Blu-ray + Digital, & DVD July 11

CULVER CITY, Calif. (May 31, 2017) – Make it a family movie night with the beloved blue creatures in the fully animated, all-new take on The Smurfs when Sony Pictures Animation’s SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE debuts on digital June 20 and on 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray + Digital, Blu-ray + Digital and DVD July 11 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Boasting an “A” CinemaScore with general audiences and a rare “A+” with those under the age of 18, SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE follows Smurfette and her friends Brainy, Clumsy and Hefty on an exciting and thrilling race through the Forbidden Forest filled with magical creatures to find a mysterious lost village before the evil wizard Gargamel does. Embarking on a rollercoaster journey full of action and danger, the Smurfs are on a course that leads to the discovery of the biggest secret in Smurf history!

SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE features an all-star voice cast, including platinum-selling recording artist Demi Lovato (Camp Rock franchise) as Smurfette, Emmy®-nominated comic actor Rainn Wilson (“The Office”) as Gargamel, Joe Manganiello (Magic Mike) as Hefty Smurf, Jack McBrayer (“30 Rock”) as Clumsy Smurf, Danny Pudi (”Community”) as Brainy Smurf, Michelle Rodriguez (The Fate of the Furious) as SmurfStorm, Ellie Kemper (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”) as SmurfBlossom, Ariel Winter (“Modern Family”) as SmurfLily, with Mandy Patinkin (“Homeland”) as Papa Smurf and Academy Award® winner Julia Roberts (Best Actress, Erin Brockovich, 2000) as SmurfWillow.

SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE is bursting with bonus materials on the Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD, DVD and digital releases. Along with filmmaker commentary, there are 10 fun and interactive featurettes, including Meghan Trainor’s “I’m A Lady” music video and “Lost Village Dance Along” where you can join in the Smurf dance party. Get ready to represent your Smurf style with “Smurfify Your Nails” and create a Lost Village inspired manicure, then go inside “Baker Smurf’s Mini Kitchen” to follow along and guess what’s cooking, plus get step-by-step tutorials on how to draw your favorite Smurfs with three “how to” videos. Fans can also go behind the scenes as Demi Lovato auditions for the film and goes through a pretty tough interview with Smurfette herself in “Demi Lovato Meets Smurfette.”

Making an animated movie is no easy task, but in “Kids At Heart! The Making of Smurfs: The Lost Village,” you’ll get a lighthearted look at how the film was made with both interviews from the cast and animators as well as silly re-enactments featuring adorable kid versions of the talented team. And “Making the Song ‘You Will Always Find Me in Your Heart’” goes into the studio with singer Shaley Smith, composer Christopher Lennertz and songwriter KT Tunstall as they record the film’s pivotal song, while in “The Sound of The Smurfs,” fans hear from composer Christopher Lennertz on how he created a magical score to accompany this colorful and exciting adventure. Lastly, don’t miss the sneak peek at Sony Pictures Animation’s highly anticipated film, The Emoji Movie.

Exclusive to the Blu-ray are deleted scenes as well as “The Lost Auditions,” where the superstar cast, each one already perfect for their roles, explore other ideas about which role they should play. And fans of all ages will enjoy going behind-the-scenes with Meghan Trainor as she films the videoto her hit “I’m A Lady,” available exclusively on the digital release of SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE at iTunes, Vudu and Xfinity.

SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE is also available on July 11 in THE SMURFS 3-MOVIE BLU-RAY COLLECTION, which includes The Smurfs and The Smurfs 2.

Synopsis:
In this fully animated, all-new take on the Smurfs, a mysterious map sets Smurfette and her best friends Brainy, Clumsy and Hefty on an exciting and thrilling race through the Forbidden Forest filled with magical creatures to find a mysterious lost village before the evil wizard Gargamel does. Embarking on a rollercoaster journey full of action and danger, the Smurfs are on a course that leads to the discovery of the biggest secret in Smurf history!

Directed by Kelly Asbury (Shrek 2) from a screenplay by Stacey Harman (“The Goldbergs”) and Pamela Ribon (Moana) and based on the characters and works of Peyo, SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE is produced by Jordan Kerner and Mary Ellen Bauder Andrews; with Raja Gosnell and Ben Waisbren serving as executive producers.  Based on the characters and works of Peyo.  Music by Christopher Lennertz.  Imagery and Animation by Sony Pictures Imageworks Inc.

DVD and Digital Bonus Materials Include:

  • Filmmaker Commentary
  • Meghan Trainor “I’m A Lady” Music Video
  • The Emoji Movie Sneak Peek
  • Featurettes:
    • “Kids at Heart! The Making of  Smurfs: The Lost Village
    •  “Demi Lovato Meets Smurfette”
    • “Lost Village Dance Along”
    • “Smurfify Your Nails”
    • “Baker Smurf’s Mini Kitchen”
    • Meghan Trainor “I’m A Lady” Music Video
    • “How To Draw Smurfette”
    • “How To Draw Brainy”
    • “How To Draw Clumsy”
    •  “Making The Song ‘You Will Always Find Me In Your Heart’”
    • “The Sound Of The Smurfs”

Blu-ray & 4K Ultra HD Exclusive Bonus Materials Include:

  • Everything listed above, plus:
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Featurettes:
    • “The Lost Auditions”

Digital (iTunes, Vudu and Xfinity) Exclusive Bonus Materials Include:

  • Everything on the DVD, Blu-ray & 4K Ultra HD, plus:
  • “Girl Power! Making Meghan Trainor’s ‘I’m A Lady’”

SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE has a run time of approximately 89 minutes and has a PG rating for some mild action and rude humor.

“Academy Award®” is the registered trademark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

ABOUT SONY PICTURES HOME ENTERTAINMENT
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE) is a Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) company. Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. For additional information, go to http://www.sonypictures.com.

Sony Pictures Animation Announces Additional Cast For “SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE”

February 12, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

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Culver City, CA, February 12, 2016 – Sony Pictures Animation today announced the addition of three new cast for the lineup of talent in the next Smurf adventure Smurfs: The Lost Village, hitting theaters March 31, 2017.

Joining the already announced Demi Lovato as Smurfette, Rainn Wilson as Gargamel and Mandy Patinkin as Papa Smurf will be: triple Emmy nominee Jack McBrayer (30 Rock, Wreck-It Ralph) as the sweet, awkward and honest-to-a-fault Clumsy, who’s forever trying his best and missing the mark; Danny Pudi (Community) as book smart and geek proud Brainy, who’s long on knowledge, but short on inter-Smurf-onal skills; and Joe Manganiello (True Blood, Magic Mike) as the strong and super-positive Hefty, a loyal dynamo struggling with his hero complex.

The newest entry in the Columbia Pictures movie franchise that has grossed more than $900 million globally, Smurfs: The Lost Village is set for a worldwide release on March 31, 2017. The fully-animated return to the tone and style of the beloved comic book creations of Peyo is directed by Kelly Asbury (Shrek 2, Gnomeo & Juliet), produced by Jordan Kerner (Charlotte’s Web, The Smurfs), co-produced by Mary Ellen Bauder (Hotel Transylvania), and executive produced by Raja Gosnell and Ben Waisbren.

It seems to Smurfette that everyone else in the Village has a purpose – Papa Smurf (leading), Baker Smurf (baking), even Grouchy Smurf (grouching) – except for her. So what’s the only girl in the village to do? Go in search of hers, of course! When she accidentally crosses paths with a mysterious creature that takes off into the Enchanted Forest, she follows, and sets off into the uncharted and strictly forbidden woods. Joined by her brothers Brainy, Hefty and Clumsy – and with the evil wizard Gargamel shadowing their every step – Team Smurf undertakes a wild journey full of action, danger and discovery, setting them on a course that leads to the biggest mystery in Smurf history!

Based on the characters and works of PEYO.

SMURF, and all Smurfs characters: ©Peyo. All Rights Reserved. “Smurf” and “The Smurfs” are registered trademarks of STUDIO PEYO

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