Animation Blu-ray Review

'Sing' Blu-ray Review: An animated musical worthy of an encore

March 21, 2017Ben MK

In Sing, Matthew McConaughey voices Buster Moon, a diminutive and cuddly koala bear whose irresistibly cute and furry looks belie the fact that he's also a sharp-minded business entrepreneur, not to mention an ardent lover of musical theater. However, it would appear that not everyone in the bustling, multi-species metropolis that Buster calls home — no, this isn't Zootopia — is as big a fan of toe-tapping musicals as he is; and, as a result, Buster finds his once-grand Moon Theater — a labor of love which he's poured his heart and soul into — floundering.

But don't count Buster out yet, because he has a surefire plan to revitalize his diminishing revenue stream: a singing contest where everyday citizens will have a chance to showcase their hidden vocal talents for all the world to see. There's just one problem, though — for when a couple of extra zeroes mistakenly make their way into the advertised prize amount, Buster not only finds himself overwhelmed with potential contestants; he's also left scrambling to try and scrounge up the extra cash to make up the massive shortfall in the prize money.

And so, the film's plot is set into motion, which sees creatures big and small queuing up to prove their worth. Among them, however, five characters stand out: Rosita (Reese Witherspoon), a neglected housewife and mother of twenty-five; Johnny (Taron Egerton), the son of a British gangster; Ash (Scarlett Johansson), a moody teen with a chip on her shoulder; Mike (Seth MacFarlane), a jazzy street performer; and Meena (Tori Kelly), a shy wallflower. It just so happens that they're a pig, a gorilla, a porcupine, a mouse and an elephant, respectively.

In case it's not readily apparent, Sing more or less delivers exactly what moviegoers have come to expect from CG-animated children's fare, which is to say that while it isn't particularly innovative in the storytelling department — evoking the feeling of the countless other kid-oriented animated films in recent memory — it more than makes up for it with its colorfully inviting visuals, charming sense of humor, and heartwarming center. Still, Sing's biggest highlight is, of course, the music, which is so infectiously fun that you'll find yourself wishing for an encore.

Sing debuts on Blu-ray with a pixel-perfect 1080p transfer, precisely as one would expect from such a CG-animated production. Thankfully, the image quality here does not disappoint in the slightest, with corner-to-corner clarity that showcases the film's cartoonish character design, and bolstered by richly saturated colors that highlight its vibrant and varied visual palette. The disc's Dolby Atmos sound mix is also a winner, as voices and sound effects come through loud and clear. Nonetheless, the centerpiece of the movie's sound design is, of course, the music, whether it's rocking piano ballads or shredding guitar solos, all of which sound equally fantastic.

Universal's two-disc Blu-ray combo pack includes an iTunes/UltraViolet digital copy, a DVD and the following Blu-ray extras:

  • The Making of Sing (4:40) - A behind-the-scenes look at the film, from the concept art and the characters, to the casting and the tone of the movie.
  • Finding the Rhythm: Editing Sing (2:44) - Editor Gregory Perler talks about his work on the film.
  • Character Profiles (12:25) - Six featurettes in which the film's stars talk about their roles ("Matthew McConaughey as Buster Moon," "Reese Witherspoon as Rosita," "Tori Kelly as Meena," "Taron Egerton as Johnny," "Nick Kroll as Gunter" and "Garth Jennings as Miss Crawly").
  • "Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing" Music Video (3:11) - A music video for the song from the movie, starring Tori Kelly.
  • Making a Music Video with Tori Kelly (2:52) - A behind-the-scenes look at the making of the video, with Kelly, Music Video Director Alan Bibby and Choreographer Denna Thomsen.
  • "Faith" Music Video (2:46) - A music video for the song from the movie, starring Stevie Wonder and Ariana Grande.
  • "Faith" Lyric Video (2:49) - Another music video for the song, starring the squids from the movie, this time with lyrics.
  • "Set It All Free" Lyric Video (3:40) - A music video for the song from the movie, starring the characters, also with lyrics.
  • Sing & Dance! - "Faith" (6:31) - Dancer and choreographer Aakomon Jones shows viewers some dance routines specifically created for the song.
  • The Sing Network (13:12) - A series of faux ads modeled after the E! Network and themed around the movie ("Gunter's Dance Studio," "The Moon Theater," "Rosita's Babysitting Gizmo," "Miss Crawly's Matchmaking Service" and "In the News").
  • The Best of Gunter (1:03) - A collection of clips from the movie starring Nick Kroll's character, Gunter.
  • Mini-Movies (18:17) - Three Mini-Movies ("Gunter Babysits," "Love at First Sight" and "Eddie's Life Coach") and one "The Making of the Mini-Movies" featurette.

Sing is available from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment as of March 21st, 2017. The Blu-ray features English Dolby Atmos, Spanish Dolby Digital Plus 7.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1 and English Dolby Digital 2.0 Descriptive Audio tracks. The film is presented with English SDH, Spanish and French subtitles. The total runtime is 1 Hr. 48 Mins.

* Reviewer's note: Portions of this Blu-ray review were adapted from my original review of the theatrical release, published on December 21st, 2016.

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