Shine a Light—Paramount Classics (Blu-ray)

Video: 4.5/5
Audio: 4.5/5
Extras: 3/5

Academy Award-winning filmmaker Martin Scorsese and the world’s greatest rock-n-roll band, The Rolling Stones, unite to bring audiences the year’s most extraordinary film event “Shine A Light”. With special appearances by Christina Aguilera, Jack White and Buddy Guy and four Rolling Stones performances not seen in theaters, Shine A Light is a must-own for rock-n-roll fans across generations.

I’ve always had mixed feelings for the Rolling Stones. I’m a huge fan of their library from the 60’s and 70’s but they started losing me in the 80’s and after. I don’t know why, I just think some of the edge was gone and they started sounding a bit to mainstream and blended in to the background. This really isn’t a film but more of a capturing of events. The film showcases a concert in New York that was part of a Clinton benefit. You see a bit of pre-show footage including the filmmakers scrambling to make it all work and the Stones laughing at all the hubbub. Once the concert gets started this becomes a pretty standard concert release but there is some historical interviews cut in between songs in the set. Some special guests join the Stones onstage including Jack White and Christina Aquilera. Overall the concert is a lot of fun and I have to give the band props for their energy level despite their age. The set list has some solid hits in there and some great covers as well.

This concert was shot using quite a few different cameras so the image varies in quality from time to time. Thankfully, it look outstanding the majority of the time. The only complaints would probably stem from the vintage footage but that is to be expected. Fine detail is outstanding throughout and the stage production lends a lot to the look. Even with the lighting and constant flashing the compression held up really well and I didn’t see any issues like banding or blocking. Colors are dazzling and the sense of depth in the image is outstanding. The black and white footage has a nice sense of dimension as well and shadow detail is preserved perfectly. Simply a great looking release from Paramount here.

The audio is presented in both Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1. The tracks are nearly identical expect in overall volume. The DTS mix is a bit hotter but if I switched to the Dolby mix and turned it up to compensate dynamics and presence sounded exactly the same in my setup. This track does a great job of preserving the ambiance and live presence of the concert. This hasn’t been toned down for home presentation and the highs are even a bit shrill at times. Dynamics are great though and the sense of being there is delivered 100%. Fans of the band will be blown away.

Extras include four performances that weren’t included in the feature. They are shown in full HD and lossless audio as well. There is also a behind the scenes featurette that goes into the production.

This is a great A/V presentation all around and a perfect complement to any Rolling Stone’s fan collection. Highly recommended.