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Quantum of Solace

4K Ultra HD

Blu Ray

  • Score
    71
    from 2 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • Quantum of Solace in 4K struggles visually but is essential for completing Craig's Bond story arc.

    Quantum of Solace 4K UHD Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
    73
  • Quantum of Solace's 4K upgrade offers modest improvements with finer details and colors, but is marred by over-processing and stylistic choices.

  • Audio
    88
  • Quantum of Solace retains its decade-old, yet stellar DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track, missing Dolby Atmos but still delivering an immersive, dynamic sonic experience that's among the best, packed with punchy, thrilling sounds.

  • Extra
    78
  • The 4K Blu-ray of Quantum of Solace disappoints with no new content or enhancements, merely repackaging the 2009 version's extras, including featurettes and trailers.

  • Movie
    83
  • Quantum of Solace, a relentless action-packed sequel and direct Bond series continuation with stylish execution by Marc Forster, suffers as a standalone but thrives as a Casino Royale follow-up. The 2008 UHD release adds no new features, keeping previous audio specs and supplements.

    Video: 73

    Quantum of Solace's 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation, part of the larger Daniel Craig Collection, offers a visual experience that, while an upgrade from its Blu-ray counterpart, falls somewhat short of expectations due to inherent limitations and stylistic decisions. The film is presented in a 3840 x 2160p resolution with its original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.39:1, utilizing 10-bit video depth, a Wide Colour Gamut (WCG), High Dynamic Range (HDR) in the form of Dolby Vision, and encoded with the HEVC (H.265) codec. This setup promises an enhanced viewing experience with richer colors and deeper blacks, showcasing the film's diverse locales with more vivid detail and texture, especially in brighter scenes and explosive sequences. However, despite these technical strengths, the overall effect is somewhat undermined by the film’s stylistic over-processing and by the limitations of being sourced from a 2K Digital Intermediate, causing a noticeable softness and occasional over-processing that detracts from what could have been a visually stunning presentation.

    Detail enhancement over the previous Blu-ray release is modest at best. There's a slight improvement in textures and sharpness, particularly in close-ups, which adds some depth to skin tones, clothing, and the film's global settings. However, these incremental upgrades struggle against a prevailing flatness and an almost imperceptible grain structure that doesn't quite capture the filmic quality one might expect from a 4K UHD release. The application of noise reduction has been handled with care, aiming to retain the movie’s original aesthetic without compromising its natural look. Color rendition benefits from Dolby Vision, offering improved saturation and deeper black levels, yet these improvements are more nuanced than transformative. Some scenes do witness notable enhancements - such as the Bolivian airport sequence with its enriched textures and more evenly distributed light - but such instances are exceptions rather than the norm.

    In sum, MGM's 4K UHD release of Quantum of Solace delivers an experience that sits between the superior potential of 4K technology and the practical outcome of its application. The video presentation is certainly above average and presents some of the most stylish moments of the Bond saga with enhanced flair thanks to WCG, HDR, and Dolby Vision. Yet, the visual feast promised by these technologies is sporadically served, often hampered by an adherence to a stylistic grittiness and an upscale from a 2K DI that leaves viewers longing for more consistency in quality. The overall result is a lukewarm improvement on its Blu-ray predecessor, with fleeting moments of brilliance that highlight what could have been achieved under ideal conditions.

    Audio: 88

    Quantum of Solace's 4K UHD Blu-ray offers the same DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track that has graced fans' home theaters for the last ten years, a decision by MGM that bypasses the now-common immersive audio upgrades like DTS:X or Dolby Atmos found in newer UHD releases. Despite this, the track stands as a testament to sonic craftsmanship, delivering a dynamic and expansive auditory experience. It masterfully captures the essence of the Bond franchise, featuring an exceptional score by David Arnold—arguably his best work across the four Bond films he scored. The track excels in its ability to immerse the listener in the film’s high-paced action sequences, with punchy gunfire, the roar of car chases, and the intensity of explosive climaxes being conveyed with exceptional clarity and depth.

    Critics might argue that by not incorporating the newer audio formats, MGM missed an opportunity to enhance Quantum of Solace's soundscape with the added dimensionality these formats offer. However, it's clear that the existing 5.1 lossless soundtrack lacks nothing in terms of delivering a large, dynamic, and engaging audio experience that Bond films are renowned for. The soundtrack's engineering ensures that despite the lack of overhead and additional rear channels, there is no noticeable deficit in the audio coverage. Subtle nuances may have been added with these newer formats, but their absence does not detract from an otherwise stellar audio presentation.

    The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track, while perhaps seen as a missed chance for sonic expansion, does not fail to deliver a thrilling auditory experience. Its capacity to draw audiences into Quantum of Solace's fast-paced world is undiminished. This soundtrack continues to exemplify audio excellence on the format, maintaining a robust and engaging sound field that brings the cinematic elements of this Bond installment to life with remarkable fidelity and impact.

    Extra: 78

    The 4K UHD Blu-ray release of "Quantum of Solace" does not present any new supplemental material, nor does it include any extras on the actual 4K disc. What purchasers receive is a companion Blu-ray disc that is a direct carryover from the 2009 release, featuring the same collection of extras including featurettes, trailers, and a music video. This bundle does not expand the "Quantum of Solace" experience for fans hoping for new insights or content in this 4K upgrade. The extras, although comprehensive regarding the movie's production, are only accessible through the Blu-ray disc’s cumbersome and outdated menu system. This package is geared towards newcomers or collectors who do not already own the previous releases, offering no additional value in terms of content richness or presentation upgrade for existing fans.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Music Video: Another Way to Die: The official music video.
    • Bond on Location: A behind-the-scenes look at the locations used.
    • Start of Shooting: Insight into the first days of production.
    • On Location: More in-depth coverage of filming locations.
    • Olga Kurylenko and the Boat Chase: Focusing on the actress and a key action sequence.
    • Director Marc Forster: A feature on the film's director.
    • The Music: Exploration of the movie's score and theme song.
    • Crew Files: Profiles and interviews with key crew members.
    • Theatrical Teaser Trailer #1: The first teaser for the movie.
    • Theatrical Trailer #2: The main theatrical trailer.

    Movie: 83

    In the realm of James Bond filmography, "Quantum of Solace" stands as a unique beast, particularly in its 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation. As a direct sequel to "Casino Royale," it carves out a niche for itself not by starting a new narrative but by continuing the story from where its predecessor left off. This continuation is executed with such relentless pace and visceral action sequences that it might leave those expecting a standalone Bond adventure somewhat disoriented. The film, with its concise 106-minute runtime, the shortest in the Bond series, doesn't waste a moment. It dives headfirst into a relentless chain of chases – from cars to foot, boats, and even planes – culminating in a cinematic experience that's both lean and explosive. Its connection to "Casino Royale" transforms what could have been seen as a four-act narrative into an extended action finale, making it an essential piece for fans seeking closure to the unfinished threads left by its forerunner.

    Director Marc Forster's stylistic execution of "Quantum of Solace" partly achieves its distinctive flair through its visual presentation, enhanced in this 4K UHD release. The 2160p/Dolby Vision video specification brings a new level of clarity and vibrancy to the film's fast-moving sequences and exotic locales, although the audio track remains the same DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 lossless soundtrack from earlier Blu-ray releases. This repetition in audio specs may seem like a missed opportunity for audio enhancement, but it does little to detract from the overall excellence of the film's visual overhaul. Intriguingly, while supplementary materials and special features are carried over from previous releases without additions, the sheer improvement in picture quality alone makes this release a compelling proposition for fans and collectors alike.

    The seamless combination of David Arnold's captivating score with Forster's direction ensures that "Quantum of Solace" is more than just a bridge between "Casino Royale" and "Skyfall" – it's a visually spectacular, if narratively interdependent, chapter in the Bond saga. The film's presentation on 4K UHD underlines its status as a relentlessly paced action sequel that, while possibly divisive for its deviation from standalone storytelling, is undeniably crucial for completing Daniel Craig's arc as Bond in a visually stunning manner. This release reaffirms "Quantum of Solace" as both a critical narrative continuation and a notable technical showcase within the broader Bond franchise.

    Total: 71

    Quantum of Solace," as part of the Daniel Craig 4K 'Collection', transitions from its preceding chapter, "Casino Royale," to offer a climactic experience to its saga. When watched back-to-back with its predecessor, it stretches a compelling narrative over four hours, marking an epic closure to a thrilling journey. However, despite its narrative prowess, it falters somewhat in its 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation. The expectations set by its 4K designation and the technological advancements since the release of the aged Blu-ray version leave viewers wanting more. The film receives a modest upgrade in visual quality, yet it remains the weakest link in terms of visual fidelity among the Craig-era Bond films, struggling to deliver a significant improvement or a remastered auditory experience.

    The UHD video quality of "Quantum of Solace" does indeed show some improvements over its Blu-ray counterpart, suggesting that while there has been an effort to enhance the visual presentation, it falls short of a comprehensive overhaul. Criticisms point to a flat and somewhat uninspired 4K rendering that lacks the vibrancy and detail that fans might expect from a film of its caliber. This is particularly noticeable when compared to other entries in the 4K 'Collection', where "Quantum of Solace" is considered the least visually impressive. Despite these shortcomings, it remains an essential piece of the overarching narrative, filling out the story arc initiated in "Casino Royale" but doesn't serve as a standalone highlight in terms of technical presentation.

    In conclusion, "Quantum of Solace" on 4K UHD Blu-ray presents a conundrum; it is an essential follow-up to "Casino Royale," completing an expansive storyline with its high-paced action sequences and deepening plot. However, its transfer to 4K is found lacking, failing to meet the high expectations for audiovisual quality that enthusiasts anticipate. While it does improve upon the older Blu-ray version in some aspects, it does not offer the spectacular home theater experience many would hope for, making it the least visually appealing entry in the Daniel Craig Bond series on 4K UHD. Nonetheless, for completists and fans of the narrative, it remains an unmissable conclusion to a compelling two-part story.