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The Hero Of Color City (Blu-ray Review)

Hero-Of-Color-CityAn imaginative animated tale for the pre-school/kindergarten set, The Hero Of Color City chronicles the adventures of a diverse band of crayons that come alive in a little boy’s room when he drifts off to sleep. Replete with valuable life lessons, this enchanting story will entertain and inspire in a stunningly rendered and utterly unique animated world.  In support of the December 2 release, Magnolia Pictures has partnered with the non-profit organization, The Crayon Collection. The group collects crayons from national and regional restaurant chains to donate to children in need.

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Film 

Each night, when Ben falls asleep, his Crayons’ magical Crayon Box transports them to Color City, a world of dazzling hues, soaring fantasy and the whimsy of childhood.  When timid Yellow is accidentally left behind in Ben’s room, she inadvertently awakens two Unfinished Drawings: King Scrawl, a huge, mute monster, and Gnat, Scrawl’s overactive sidekick. They follow Yellow to Color City and claim the enchanted Rainbow Waterfall and all of it’s color for themselves. Soon Color City will fade and our lovable crayon characters will disappear.   It’s up to Yellow and her pals, Blue, Green, Red, and the twins, Black and White, to save the day. Meeting with fantastical creatures and fun adventures along the way, Yellow discovers she has more courage and strength than she knew and learns to believe in herself and to count on the support of her friends.

I appreciate the cause for which this film was made and what the organization, The Crayon Collection, is setting out to do.  The crayon donation is such a simple, yet impactful act of charity that is something you kind of wish you thought of when you hear about it.  Smart, too, is they’ve crafted a film that feels as a big advertisement for young kids to donate, or get their parents to help them donate their own crayons to the cause.  They’ve also gathered a rather impressive lineup of celebrities to lend their voices to characters in this film.  The cast includes the likes of Owen Wilson, Sean Astin, Rosie Perez, Christina Ricci, Craig Ferguson and Jessica Capshaw to name a few.  When I was watching I was like “Man, that guy sounds like a dead ringer for Owen Wilson” and then I came to find out that it actually was Own Wilson.  Guess I should have paid more attention to the box information.

This movie isn’t just speaking to kids, its pretty much all for them.  As I’ve mentioned in previous animated reviews, not all cartoons need to appeal to or “respect” adults when being made.  Kids get to have their fun and their stuff too.  And The Hero Of Color City is easily one of those “for the kids and for the kids only” films.  After just a few minutes, I found myself wanting to check my phone and running through a list of things I’m wanting to do this weekend in my brain.  It was very hard to get attached or keep interested in the film.  However, on the other side of things, my two year old son watched the film with me and he was pretty much zoned in the entire feature.  He never once left his seat to go grab a toy or take a break.  So, while it was not working one bit for me, the complete opposite could be said of him during the runtime.  However, after the film he seemed pretty indifferent about it.  Case in point, I showed him Guardians of the Galaxy just a few days ago and he’s STILL walking around the house saying “I am Groot” and telling everyone he runs into that he watched it.  I’m not sure he’s doing any crayon impressions after this.

The Hero Of Color City is a film made for a good cause that also promotes one too.  It falls into the category of being strictly for the kiddies.  Adults, if your little one is wanting to watch this, or you picked it up for them, make sure you’re prepared with something else to do while you’re watching, because I’m sure you’ll be checked out very early on.  Your kids though?  They’re probably going to thank you a bunch for getting it for them and show their thanks by continually making you watch The Hero Of Color City over and over and over again 🙂

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Video 

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1

Clarity/Detail:  Magnolia brings a sharp and vivid transfer to Color City.  The image is pretty crisp and wonderfully vibrant, bringing a wonderful boost of energy to the film.  There’s not much in terms of the palette on display, but this transfer fully realizes everything that’s thrown its way.  Every detail is visible, most impressively the pencil markings on the unfinished drawings.

Depth:  There is a great 3 dimensional look to the film.  The uncolored drawings come to life are especially impressive in their appearance and movements.

Black Levels:  Blacks are natural, and feature many instances of different shading.  Solid.

Color Reproduction:  Colors are vibrant and rich.  There’s not much in terms of a palette, but that’s in the simplicity of our setting, not a fault of the transfer.  Accurately displayed is the colors dimming throughout the movie.  Oh, and the rainbow waterfall looks awesome!

Flesh Tones:  N/A

Noise/Artifacts:  Not a thing

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Audio 

Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA

Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French

Dynamics:  This is a pretty solid track that more than gets the trick done.  The music in the mix is really well done and really belts it out and gets your room really into the moment.  Balancing of the film’s effects, music and vocals is really well done here and the track feels pretty clean and loose.

Low Frequency Extension:  The subwoofer aids the music in the film, as well as some of the sound effects.

Surround Sound Presentation:  Not much action here, primarily some extra music and a little bit of ambiance.

Dialogue Reproduction:  Crisp, clean and center focused.  Singing voices are a little louder in the mix.

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Extras 

The reverse side of the cover has a coloring book like image for the kids to scribble on.  This looks like a lot of extras, but take note that they are small children focused and will be pretty worthless to you as a grown adult if you’re seeking more from the is movie.

*There is also Target exclusive edition that comes with a DVD and Digital Copy of the film that is also available.

Playing The Characters (HD, 9:53) – Christina Ricci, Craig Ferguson and Sean Astin discuss their characters they voice in the film.

Behind The Voices (HD, 4:01) – Footage of Craig Ferguson, Sean Astin and E.G. Daily recording some lines for their characters.

Colorful Crayon Lines – You basically click the picture of a character and it says a line from the movie.

Creating The Hero Of Color City (HD, 8:48) – A little making of featurette with the producer and director talking about the film.

The Hero Of Color City Sing-Along (HD, 6:34) – Sing-Along versions of 3 of the songs in the film.

Crayon “Juke” Box Music Medley – You press play and clips play in a small window, while like midi versions of songs from the movie play.

Artwork & Drawing Galleries – Features hand drawn versions of characters and places in the film.  Both stenciled and colored in.

Kid-Friendly Recipes From Bumble Bee (HD, 6:12) – 5 Tuna-riffic how-to videos.

Crayon Collection – How to Donate Your Crayons (HD, :47) – The same message that plays in the middle of the closing credits of the film.

How to Print Out The Coloring Pages – Not so much a “How To” as it is “Go To This Website”

How To Get The Soundtrack – Tells you that you can get it in stores and online.  Shocker!

Fusion x64 TIFF File

Summary 

Donate your crayons for a good cause.  Heck, pick this one up for your kids if they’re wanting something new.  While I wasn’t a big fan of this movie at all, I’m also an adult and not the audience for it.  The film has a great presentation and does feature a list of extras that’ll keep the young ones busy for a little bit after the film has finished.  Once again, I reiterate, for the kiddies, I’ll recommend this.

Hero-Of-Color-City-Blu-ray

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

1 Response to “The Hero Of Color City (Blu-ray Review)”


  1. Brian White

    The best part about this is the yellow case!