The comparison images below are from Space Cowboys. This is a very dark scene with Clint Eastwood, on Blu-ray disc. The photos are intentionally way overexposed. Look for the blacks in the shades, and the details in those shades in the form of the white trim. (At this level of overexposure, don't even worry about the skin tones, as in these type of photos they always look terrible, and way oversaturated/too high contrast).
First image is the VPL-VW70, followed by the less expensive Sony VPL-HW10, and the Mitsubishi HC7000. Then comes the the JVC DLA-RS10 and RS20. The last two in the sequence are the InFocus IN83 and the Epson Home Cinema 6500UB.
The Sony VPL-VW70's performance is very good at revealing details in the window shades, in this very dark scene.
Again, from Space Cowboys, this is a cropped image. The right side is very bright (so dynamic irises will not be effective). The VPL-VW70 (top left) shows a pretty good amount of detail in the dark areas of the satellite. Still, there is some loss of detail as the dark ares are very dark, darker than some of the other projectors, making it hard to make out the darkest details. Next to it on the first row, is the Sony VPL-HW10, Those images are followed by the Panasonic PT-AE3000 and the JVC RS20 (second row). The Mitsubishi HC7000 is the last image (3rd row), and may well have the best dark shadow detail handling.
The re-entry image below, is a tough shadow detail test. Projectors with weak black levels and average shadow detail ability tend to generate an image where much of the right side of earth, looks to have that flat, lacking in detail look. All projectors pick up some of the brighter features on the right side, while better ones, pick up a lot more and usually have richer blacks as well.
On the left, is the VPL-VW70, the middle, the JVC RS10, and on the right, the InFocus IN83 which is about as good as it gets, in terms of shadow detail.