Monday, January 16, 2012

PREVIEW: Transformers Limited Edition Collector's Trilogy Blu-ray

For years, fans of the Transformers movies have been waiting for the ultimate release which would signal a close to the uneven, and sometimes silly, first trilogy.  From a consumer perspective, it was hard to wait through the holiday season as director Michael Bay released a stripped-down Blu-ray release of Transformers: Dark of the Moon.  No special features, only the movie.  And while the film did do a lot to bring fans back after the disasterous Revenge of the Fallen, expecting fans to shell out $19.99 for a feature-less release was too much to ask.

So, when word got out that Bay was releasing an ultimate collection on January 31, it was finally a moment for fans to rejoice.  This seven-disc set contains the 3D releases, as well as new featurettes and a 4-disc release of Dark with nearly 4 hours of special features.  The set also includes a plaque of the movie signed by Bay .  If you have any doubt that this is THE ultimate collection, check out the breakdown below:

Michael Bay's mammoth release of the franchise includes one of the best packaging efforts seen in quite awhile.

7-Disc Limited Collector's Edition Blu-ray Trilogy

"Transformers (2 Disc Special Edition Blu-ray )"
Disc 1:
  • Feature film in high 1080p definition
  • Audio: English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD, French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby
  • Digital Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese
  • Commentary by Michael Bay
Disc 2:
Our World
  • The Story Sparks - Steven Spielberg discusses his love for the franchise and early concept art for the film. Explores how the writers adapted the cartoon into a live action movie and why Michael Bay is the perfect director for the film.
  • Human Allies - A look at how the actors were selected and their experiences on the set.
  • Fight Giant Robots - An exploration of the military training that Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson underwent for their roles and the various stunts that the actors were asked to perform.
  • Battleground - A piece on the senior officials from the Department of Defense and Air Force who consulted on the film to give it authenticity and the key locations that the U.S. government provided access to.
Their War
  • Rise of the Robots - Explores the interaction between Hasbro designers and Michael Bay to bring the toy line roaring to life.
  • AUTOBOTS Roll Out - Michael Bay discusses working with Chevy and its designers and the modifications that were made to the cars seen in the film.
  • DECEPTICONS Strike - The film's military advisors discuss the "toys" they allowed the production to borrow: F-22 Raptors, Ospreys and A-10 Warthogs.
  • Inside the AllSpark - ILM's digital artists discuss the challenges of bringing the TRANSFORMERS to life.
More Than Meets The Eye
  • From Script to Sand: The SKORPONOK Desert Attack - An in-depth look at the making of this particularly epic and challenging scene from initial storyboarding through production and visual effects.
  • Concepts - Early sketch concepts of the robots.
  • Trailers
"Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2 Disc Special Edition Blu-ray)"
Disc 1:
  • Feature film in high 1080p definition
  • Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese
  • Commentary by Michael Bay, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman
Disc 2:
The Human Factor: Exacting Revenge of the Fallen--This multi-chapter documentary chronicles the entire creation of the film and includes interviews with the cast and crew:
  • Seeds of Vengeance - Development and Design - After the overwhelming success of 2007's Transformers, how do the filmmakers top themselves for the sequel?
  • Domestic Destruction - Production: United States - Michael Bay believes in going big: Big action and big explosions. Cast and crew are pushed to the limit as they traverse the U.S. from New Mexico to Pennsylvania.
  • Joint Operations - Production: Military - No other filmmaker in the world enjoys the kind of military access and cooperation Michael Bay has. Here we see just how efficient our armed forces are and the awe and respect shown by the cast.
  • Wonders of the World - Production: Middle East - You can't really reproduce Egypt anywhere but Egypt so off we go to Giza and Luxor.
  • Start Making Sense - Editing - In order to turn over the massive amount of film as quickly as possible to VFX, four editors work tirelessly in a unique tag-team approach to shape the film.
  • Under the Gun - Visual Effects - Revenge of the Fallen features the most complicated VFX in film history. So complicated in fact that the filmmakers were unsure they would make the deadline. The DEVASTATOR VFX alone required 83% of ILM's total render farm capacity.
  • Running the Gauntlet - Post-Production and Release - Working seven days a week, Michael Bay and company usher the film through sound design, Digital Intermediate color-timing and a globe-trotting whirlwind of premieres.
  • A Day with Bay: Tokyo--An intimate and fun all-access journey with Michael Bay as he travels to Tokyo, Japan for the world premiere of the biggest film of the year.
  • 25 Years of TRANSFORMERS--Access an all-new featurette celebrating a monumental milestone for one of Hasbro's most successful and popular franchises.
  • NEST: Transformer Data-Hub--Explore conceptual artwork created by the production for 12 of the most popular AUTOBOTS and DECEPTICONS from the film.
  • Deconstructing Visual Bayhem with Commentary by Pre-Vis Supervisor Steve Yamamoto-- A series of multi-angle pre-visualization sequences allowing viewers to learn how some of the film's most spectacular scenes were created with an introduction by Michael Bay.
  • Extended Scenes
  • Music Video: Linkin Park's "New Divide"
  • NEST: Transformer Data-Hub--A database of some of the TRANSFORMERS characters that appear in the new film, offering users access to each robot's confidential file including:
  • Innovative 3D spin galleries of each robot
  • A timeline for each TRANSFORMERS character charting its origins, back story and design evolution from toys to animated series to comics and finally feature films
  • Giant Effing Movie - A very personal look at the making of the movie.
  • The Matrix of Marketing--An archive of the film's promotional media including trailers, posters and television spots.
"Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2 Disc Special Edition Blu-ray)"
Disc 1 (Blu-ray):
  • Feature film in high definition with Blu-ray 3D and Blu-ray are presented in 1080p high definition with English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD, English 5.1 Discrete Dolby Digital
Disc 2 (Blu-ray):
  • Above and Beyond: Exploring Dark of the Moon
  • Rising from the Fallen: Development and Design
  • Ready for Prime Time: Filming Across America
  • Battle in the Heartland: Shooting in Chicago
  • Attack of the Birdmen: Aerial Stunts
  • Shadow of the Sentinel: Post-Production and Release
  • Uncharted Territory: NASA's Future Then and Now
  • Deconstructing Chicago: Multi-Angle Sequences
  • Previsualizations with optional commentary by director Michael Bay and previsualization supervisor Steve Yamamoto
  • Previsualizations/Final Shot Comparison with optional commentary by director Michael Bay and previsualization supervisor Steve Yamamoto
  • Visual Effects with optional commentary by visual effects supervisors Scott Farrarand Matthew Butler
  • Visual Effects/Final Shot Comparison with optional commentary by visual effects supervisors Scott Farrar and Matthew Butler
  • The Art of Cybertron
  • Autobots
  • Decepticons
  • Environments
  • Weapons and Gear
  • Ships
  • The Dark of the Moon Archive
  • 3D: A Transforming Visual Art
  • Moscow World Premiere
  • Birdmen Featurette
  • Cody's iPad
  • The Sound of Transformers: Dark of the Moon
  • The Matrix of Marketing
  • Trailers
  • Marketing Gallery
Disc 3 (Blu-ray 3D):
  • Feature film in high definition 3D
Disc 4 (DVD):
  • Feature film in standard definition
  • Digital Copy-Compatible with iTunes and Windows Media


Regardless of whether you like Michael Bay as a director, this release should go down as one of the best overall efforts I've seen since Watchmen released a 2-disc set with Night Owl's ship. If you're still not convinced, listen to Bay talk about the release: