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4K Ultra HD

Blu Ray

  • Score
    from 6 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • 1917 shines as a technical and narrative masterpiece, celebrated in stunning 4K.

    1917 4K UHD Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
  • 1917's UK 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray offers a visually stunning, native 4K, HDR-enhanced presentation, perfectly capturing the film's meticulously detailed and textured cinematic beauty.

  • Audio
  • 1917's Dolby Atmos track shines with immersive, dynamic audio, enveloping listeners in the war's intensity with crystal-clear dialogue and powerful effects.

  • Extra
  • 1917's Blu-ray extras, spotlighting Sam Mendes and Roger Deakins' commentaries, offer deep insights into the film's making, overshadowing standard featurettes.

  • Movie
  • 1917 blends stunning visuals with a gripping tale of a mission against time in WWI, showcasing technical brilliance and deep emotional resonance, despite its contrived moments.

    Video: 95

    1917" achieves a stunning visual milestone in its 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray presentation, distinguishing itself as a reference-quality showcase of modern home cinema. Captured digitally using the Arri Alexa Mini LF in ARRIRAW at 4.5K and deftly finished with a 4K digital intermediate, this release maximizes the potential of high-resolution home viewing. Displayed at a 2.39:1 aspect ratio, and incorporating HDR technologies including Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HDR10+, the film's visual narrative is rendered with an unprecedented level of clarity and detail. The enhanced resolution provides an almost tangible texture to the mise-en-scène, from the gritty battlefronts to the intricate facial expressions and uniforms of the soldiers, further augmented by the expanded color palette and dynamic range offered by the disc’s HDR grading.

    Color reproduction is notably superior to that of its Blu-ray counterpart; Dolby Vision, in particular, brings a significant improvement in visual depth and intensity without distorting the film's artistic vision. This technology amplifies the nuanced tones and saturation of the bleak wartime landscapes, adding life to the film’s predominantly grey, beige, and green palette. Black levels are strikingly deep and detailed, enhancing key moments of tension and drama without sacrificing detail for darkness. Moreover, the presentation's fidelity to color, texture, and contrast elevates every frame, from the muddy trenches to the smoky vistas of no-man's-land, capturing both the oppressive atmosphere of WWI and brief instances of stark beauty.

    The disc’s meticulous attention to detail is evident in the sharpness of the visuals. From the individual blades of grass that survive the battlefield to the nuanced decay of buildings and wartime paraphernalia, every element contributes to an immersive viewing experience. The depth of field is expansive, offering a broad sense of scope that brings the harrowing journey of the two soldiers to life with impressive spatial dynamics and movement. Nighttime sequences stand out for their realism and emotional impact, masterfully lit to reveal subtle details in low light conditions. Despite a slight miss in not replicating the film’s IMAX presentation dimensions, this 4K release near-flawlessly preserves Roger Deakins' breathtaking cinematography, setting a benchmark for visual excellence in home entertainment.

    Audio: 94

    The Dolby Atmos track on the 4K UHD Blu-ray of "1917" sets a new benchmark for audio excellence, merging technical skill with an artful sound design to create an immersive auditory experience. The expert use of the Atmos platform envelops the viewer, utilizing overhead and surround channels to craft an environment that is as close to the chaotic and unpredictable theaters of World War I as one could imagine. From the intense clatter of gunfire and the roar of explosions to the subtleties of footsteps rustling through mud and the ominously quiet fields before dawn, the soundstage is dynamic and incredibly detailed. Notably, the audio mix excels in the precise placement of sound effects, whether it’s planes soaring above or the unsettling silence that accentuates the tension. Each sound element, be it dialogue, Foley, or Thomas Newman’s haunting score, is meticulously balanced and clear, ensuring that even in the cacophony of war, every word and note finds its place.

    Dialogue clarity is impeccable across all channels, maintaining its prominence without ever being overwhelmed by the surrounding audio landscape. The low-frequency effects (LFE) channel is particularly noteworthy for its judicious use; it punctuates the soundtrack with depth and impact during explosive sequences but remains restrained enough to let the quieter moments breathe. The interplay between silence and sound further intensifies the film’s immersive quality, allowing viewers to experience the sudden shifts from calm to chaos that characterize combat. Moreover, the Atmos mix does not just replicate sound but strategically uses it to enhance spatial awareness and emotional engagement, making scenes like the aerial dogfights and the climactic charge not only heard but felt.

    This Atmos track stands as a testament to what can be achieved when sound design operates at the zenith of its potential. From technical precision in sound placement and movement across channels to the emotional resonance of its quietest moments contrasted with its thrillingly loud sequences, "1917's" audio presentation is a marvel. It demonstrates an extraordinary attention to detail and understanding of how sound can shape the cinematic experience. The transitions between environments—whether the stifling narrowness of tunnels or the vast open landscapes—are rendered with such fidelity that viewers are transported directly into the heart of the narrative. This isn’t just watching a film; it’s being part of a moment in history, thanks to an audio experience that complements every visual with staggering impact and nuance.

    Extra: 84

    The "1917" 4K UHD Blu-ray extras section is a strong collection that bolsters the remarkable cinematic achievement of the film with a detailed exploration of its production. Headlined by insightful audio commentaries from Director Sam Mendes and Director of Photography Roger Deakins, these offer a compelling glimpse into the film’s creative and technical processes, from storytelling to the intricate camerawork that simulates a single-shot experience. The commentaries are complemented by featurettes like "The Weight of the World: Sam Mendes," providing a personal look into Mendes' connection to the story, and "Allied Forces: Making 1917," which showcases the challenges and innovations of filming. Other featurettes delve into the film's score, on-set experiences, and the meticulous recreation of WWI environments, presenting a well-rounded package that, despite some critiques of being akin to promotional material, offer valuable insights into this monumental filmmaking endeavor. Additionally, the package includes a digital code for a more versatile viewing experience.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • The Weight of the World: Sam Mendes: A deep dive into the director's personal journey and scriptwriting process.
    • Allied Forces: Making 1917: Examines the one-shot format and Deakins' pivotal role in visual storytelling.
    • The Music of 1917: Discussion with Composer Thomas Newman and filmmakers about the score's impact.
    • In The Trenches: Behind-the-scenes with the cast, focusing on performances and casting.
    • Recreating History: The intricate production design and efforts to authentically replicate WWI settings.
    • Feature Commentary with Director/Co-Writer Sam Mendes: Mendes covers a broad range of topics offering personal anecdotes and filmmaking insights.
    • Feature Commentary with Director of Photography Roger Deakins: A technical look at the film’s cinematography and shot coordination.

    Movie: 93

    Sam Mendes' "1917" delivers an ambitious cinematic feat, masterfully blending a gripping narrative with groundbreaking technical craftsmanship, particularly in its visual storytelling. Set against the harrowing backdrop of the First World War, the film embarks on a high-stakes mission with two young British soldiers, Lance Corporals Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman), tasked with delivering a crucial message that could save thousands of lives, including Blake's own brother. The urgency and peril of their journey through enemy lines are heightened by the film's innovative presentation, seemingly filmed in one continuous shot. This directorial choice by Mendes, in collaboration with Cinematographer Roger Deakins, creates an unparalleled immersion into the war-torn landscapes and the intimate struggle of its characters.

    Despite some criticism regarding the potential gimmickry of the single-shot illusion and its impact on narrative depth, the execution proves to be a narrative device that significantly enhances the emotional weight and realism of the storyline. It's a technique that demands the audience's full engagement, drawing them into the visceral realities of warfare while maintaining a focused lens on the human elements at its core. The performances of MacKay and Chapman are pivotal, lending authenticity and emotional gravitas to their roles, complemented by a series of poignant cameos that enrich the narrative journey.

    In essence, "1917" stands as both a technical marvel and a profoundly moving piece of storytelling. Its achievements in cinematography, under Deakins' expert eye, are nothing short of Oscar-worthy, capturing breathtaking visuals that serve both the story's intensity and its underlying humanity. While some viewers may seek a deeper exploration into character backstories or broader thematic exploration, "1917" excels in delivering an immersive experience that underscores the horrors and valor found in war, making it a landmark in wartime cinema.

    Total: 90

    1917" stands as a cinematic tour de force, bolstered by its innovation in storytelling and groundbreaking technical achievements. The film, which has received universal acclaim both for its narrative depth and unparalleled visual grandeur, makes its way to 4K UHD Blu-ray courtesy of Universal Studios, presenting a package that's as compelling in its home release as it was on the big screen. Armed with Roger Deakins' Oscar-winning cinematography, the 4K disc features a native 4K Dolby Vision HDR presentation that brings the vividness of the war-torn landscapes and the intensity of the characters' journey to life with striking clarity and depth. Accompanied by a robust Dolby Atmos audio track, the release immerses viewers into the heart of the story, capturing the emotional currents and the thunderous chaos of battle with impeccable precision.

    The Ultra HD Blu-ray delivers not just on the technical front but also in its additional content, offering a suite of extras that, while not exhaustive, provides insightful commentary tracks and behind-the-scenes looks that fans and cinephiles will find enriching. Despite some criticisms regarding the brevity and depth of the video-based special features, the overall package is undeniably fan-friendly. It's a perfect blend of superior technical quality and engaging supplementary material that enhances the viewing experience, making "1917" not just a must-own title for its cinematic merit but also for its reference-quality demonstration of what the 4K UHD format can accomplish.

    In conclusion, Universal Studios' 4K UHD Blu-ray release of "1917" sets a new standard for home cinema presentation. Its meticulous transfer honors every nuance of Deakins' masterful cinematography, while the accompanying audio mix places viewers squarely in the trenches alongside its protagonists. This release reaffirms "1917" as not just one of the finest war films ever made, but a landmark achievement in film presentation. For enthusiasts seeking to showcase the zenith of home theater capabilities and for fans eager to delve deeper into the film's layered narrative and production intricacies, this edition is unequivocally essential.