Directed by: Jayson Thiessen, Ishi Rudell
Starring: Tara Strong, Ashleigh Ball, Andrea Libman, Tabitha St. Germain
Well it would appear it’s been about a year since I stopped watching MLP, at least for a while, and now there’s another Equestria Girls movie. While I did like the first film, I found it to be flawed and have little lasting appeal, aside from its soundtrack. Will this one hold up the same way?
Taking place around three months after the first Equestria Girls film ended, the story once again finds our characters adjusting back to the normal life of Canterlot High and trying to add Sunset Shimmer into the group. Everything is normal when suddenly three new girls enroll into the school, only they also posses’ magical abilities that could jeopardize the safety of the school. With no other choice the girls then contact Twilight Sparkle in Ponyville for her assistance. Will the girls be able to save their friends and the school?
Personally I was a fan of the first film, even though I did find it to have a lot of flaws that brought it down upon subsequent viewings. With this film I was able to see the characters I know and love, and since the show has been unable to satisfy this need, in my book it’s a success. I know I might get made fun of, but who cares, its nice to see a real return to the characters and not stereotypes that have taken over with the show runners leave. The plot, while simple, is always easy to follow and had some really good laughs throughout.
Musically is where Rainbow Rocks really shines, with an excellent title sequence and musical numbers throughout that really give the film some zest and Daniel Ingrum, the composer, really stepped up to the plate for it. While I did find the first film to be re-watchable in at least some since of the word, Rainbow Rocks does unfortunately have little to no replay-ability other than listening to the song numbers again. I also found the main antagonists to be incredibly one-dimensional with their personalities and even their main plot. They never really did anything than just be the “bad guy” and have any originality to them.
Rainbow Rocks has a ton of material that is specifically directed to the fans of the show but also to kids and families, and to that I cant really say its bad in the slightest. It is plagued however, with stock villains and a plot that really doesn’t have much to do other than fix one problem, in other words, there’s hardly any tension.
Presented in a 1:78.1 aspect ratio Rainbow Rocks looks absolutely great in almost every way. Colors are bright and pop extremely well, along with black tones looking deep and true. The only problem I found was occasional jagged lines, possibly sharpening, around character arms or eyes. Aside from that I found no blanding, haloing or crushing.
Presented in a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 Mix Rainbow Rocks comes alive, but not as often as it should. Dialogue is firmly centered and the subwoofer gets a kick every here and there as the music kicks up. Rear speaker usage is mostly devoted to when the musical numbers start or sporadically when it decides to turn on. It’s a weird mix, but only when it decides to be. For the most part it’s a really good mix that gets the job done.
Packaging and Bonus Features
Packaging for this release comes in a standard blu ray case along with a very sparkly slipcover. I did find it interesting that the sound mix wasn’t listed as a lossless mix, but rather a DTS mix. No major complaints here.
Bonus features on the other hand sound good at first, but quickly turns into kind of a letdown.
First up is an audio commentary from nearly every main person involved in the production of the film, but instead of providing a real good, in depth look at what it was like, behind the scenes, it quickly becomes just talking about what is happening on screen. In other words, why even have this track if you’re just going to be like “uh oh, look who it is!” when a character comes on screen.
Also included is a small collection of shorts that run about three minutes each. These are mostly good and some I even found better than the film itself.
Lastly there is Sing Alongs with some, but not all of the songs from the film.
DVD copy is also included.
Overall(not an average)
If you’re a fan of the show, I would recommend this to watch. It has some really good song numbers and some fan service here and there, but is an easy watch at just under 75 minutes. The blu ray has an excellent video presentation and a really great audio mix with some bonus features here and there that will fill the gap after you watched the film. Nothing groundbreaking here, but still a fine disc.