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4K Ultra HD

Blu Ray

  • Score
    from 2 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • Cars shines in 4K HDR with an engaging Atmos sound; a Pixar gem that's highly recommended for family fun.

    Cars 4K UHD Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
  • Cars shines in UHD with HDR's vibrant colors and subtle visual upgrades, though resolution gains are modest. Enhanced depth and clarity impress, despite minor flaws.

  • Audio
  • The Cars UHD Dolby Atmos track exhilarates with immersive racing sounds, crisp dialogue, and dynamic music, offering a visceral seat at the track, despite slightly less low-end compared to rivals.

  • Extra
  • The UHD Cars disc lacks extras, yet its Blu-ray companion offers unique content not matched by earlier versions, including a variety of supplements and digital extras, with some overlapping from the 2013 edition.

  • Movie
  • Disney's 'Cars' gets a 4K UHD release with HDR and Dolby Atmos, sans new extras. Critics find it less surprising but still enjoyable, highlighting nostalgic drives and Pixar's visual charm.

    Video: 78

    The 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation of "Cars" accelerates onto the home entertainment scene with a visually appealing yet technically nuanced upgrade over its Blu-ray counterpart. The transition to 2160p resolution, powered by an HEVC H.265 encode from a 2K digital intermediate, demonstrates a disciplined but modest improvement in overall definition and clarity. While the uplift in resolution might not redefine the visual experience with stark sharpness, it does reveal finer details such as the legibility of lettering on McQueen's stickers, distinct imperfections on Mater, and the textured granularity of the rocky desert landscapes and urban structures of Radiator Springs. However, this increase in detail comes with minor drawbacks, including occasional moiré effects and aliasing on some of the sharper edges and metallic surfaces.

    The real horsepower behind this UHD edition comes from its HDR color spectrum, which revs up the visual fidelity far beyond what resolution alone could achieve. The wider color gamut injects a newfound vitality into the palette, with significantly deeper shades of red on Lightning McQueen and a more vivid array of colors across the automotive cast, from spectral blues to vibrant greens. This richer color presentation extends to the environmental textures too, enhancing the sunbathed facades of Radiator Springs and the contrast-rich nighttime scenes with luxurious, inky blacks and dazzling whites. This boost in color depth and contrast quality adds an eye-popping realism to the film’s various settings, bathing each frame in natural light and shadow that breathes life into the animated world.

    Despite its limits in textual enhancement attributable to its 2K source, the 4K UHD Blu-ray of "Cars" proves to be a worthier visual experience primarily due to its HDR prowess. While some may find the resolution upgrade from Blu-ray to UHD subtle at best, with minimal improvements on extremely fine details and occasional digital anomalies, the enriched color dynamics and improved contrast deliver a more immersive viewing experience. The presentation shines in its portrayal of dynamic daylight sequences and the nuanced gradations of night scenes, granting this beloved Pixar film a sparkling new lease on life that fans will certainly appreciate.

    Audio: 85

    The "Cars" 4K UHD Blu-ray races into home theaters with a Dolby Atmos soundtrack that makes a remarkable impression, especially during the high-octane racing sequences. The audio experience is immersive and dynamic, capitalizing on the Atmos format to envelop the audience with robust soundscapes that range from the thunderous roars of engines to the subtleties of Radiator Springs' ambient life. The use of surround sound is exemplary, with audio elements moving fluidly around the room, creating a convincing atmosphere where every sound, from the growls of the crowd to the meticulous details like the chirping of birds or distant buzzing of insects, contributes to a rich, layered listening experience. The racing segments, in particular, showcase the soundtrack's prowess with vivid sound placement that pulls listeners directly into the action, allowing for a visceral sense of speed and chaos that complements the visual spectacle splendidly.

    The track maintains its excellence across a variety of audio sources, from the film’s score to the popular songs featured within, all delivering crisp and clear acoustic details that enhance each scene's emotional and narrative impact. Dialogue remains crystal clear and well-prioritized, cutting through the mix even during the busiest scenes without losing clarity or presence. While the soundtrack is noted for its front-heavy presentation, its strategic use of the Atmos configuration ensures a spacious soundstage, where even the quieter moments in Radiator Springs are engaging thanks to well-balanced environmental sounds that foster an immersive viewing experience.

    However, while the audio presentation is overall highly praised for its fidelity and immersive qualities, it has been noted that the low-end response, although substantial and throaty during key action scenes, could benefit from a tad more depth and extension to fully match the visual dynamism displayed on screen. Despite this minor quibble, the Dolby Atmos track on "Cars" UHD Blu-ray offers an exceptional auditory experience that complements the visually stunning HDR presentation, proving to be an enjoyable listen that will satisfy both audiophiles and fans of the franchise alike.

    Extra: 70

    The 4K UHD Blu-ray release of "Cars" itself may not contain supplemental features, yet the included Blu-ray disc compensates with a comprehensive suite of extras. These extras are not entirely new, differing from both the original 2007 release and the 2013 3-D bundle, offering a glimpse into the making and inspiration behind "Cars" through a unique selection that matches neither previous releases exactly. Nonetheless, this package is enriched by an embossed slipcover and a Movies Anywhere digital copy code, making it a worthwhile purchase for fans. The amalgamation of content from the 2013 Ultimate Collector's Edition ensures a satisfactory array of behind-the-scenes insights, including documentaries, animated shorts, and a detailed look at the animation process, character design, and real-world racing inspirations.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Cine-Explore: Interactive behind-the-scenes feature
    • Carfinder Game: An interactive feature
    • Mater and the Ghostlight: Bonus short film
    • One Man Band: Animated short film
    • Epilogue: Extended film ending
    • Boundin' Cars: Mashup short film
    • Movie Showcase: Highlight reel
    • Inspiration for Cars: Documentary on film's origins
    • Deleted Scenes: Unused footage
    • Radiator Springs: Featurette on the fictional town
    • Character Design: Process of creating movie characters
    • Animation and Acting: Insight into the animation production
    • Real World Racing: Getting Geeky with the Details: Exploration of racing dynamics
    • Hudson Hornet: Tribute to the classic car's influence
    • Graphics: Exploration of the film's visual design
    • Darrell Waltrip Museum Tour: Tour of the racing legend's museum
    • Audio Commentaries: Filmmakers' insights
    • Behind-the-Scenes Documentary (HD, 55 min): In-depth look at the making of "Cars"
    • Animated Shorts (HD, 17 min): Collection of related short films

    Movie: 78

    Disney's 2006 seminal Pixar animation, "Cars," makes its revved-up debut on 4K UHD Blu-ray, presenting an ambitious upgrade to a modern classic with stunning 2160p/HDR visuals complemented by a dynamic Dolby Atmos soundscape. This release, while not adding new supplements to the Ultra High Definition disc itself, cleverly includes a Blu-ray with a collection of extras, differing slightly from the editions reviewed previously. These offerings, however, are not the primary allure; instead, it's the significantly enhanced viewing experience that shifts this release into the highest gear. The blend of cutting-edge technical enhancements with the beloved Pixar storytelling crafts an unparalleled home cinema experience, offering vibrant life to the picturesque landscapes of Radiator Springs and its charismatic automotive inhabitants.

    At its core, "Cars" narrates the tale of Lightning McQueen's (voiced by Owen Wilson) unexpected detour into personal growth, set against the storied backdrop of Route 66. This narrative, while possibly perceived as less adventurous or groundbreaking compared to Pixar’s earlier triumphs, embodies a heartfelt homage to Americana and a simpler, more engaging time. Despite criticism for ostensibly catering to a younger demographic with its sports-genre leanings, the film undeniably cruises with ample charm and wit. Its thematics of nostalgia, discovery, and community resonate well beyond its surface-level spectacle, making "Cars" a pleasantly cozy ride through memory lane underpinned by Pixar's innovative animations, now further enhanced in 4K UHD clarity.

    The 4K UHD release of "Cars," packaged as a two-disc combo with access to a digital copy in Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos, signifies more than a mere technical upgrade; it represents an invitation to revisit the warmth and wonder of Radiator Springs like never before. Housed in a sleek eco-vortex case with a glossy slipcover, this edition speaks volumes of Disney's commitment to preserving and rejuvenating its treasured cinematic experiences for new generations and loyal fans alike. As viewers navigate through the static menu to embark on Lightning McQueen's pivotal journey, they are guaranteed not just a movie but an immersive expedition into the heart of Pixar's artistry, now brilliantly optimized for the home theater environment.

    Total: 70

    Pixar's "Cars," with its thrilling story and heartwarming messages, cruises onto the 4K UHD Blu-ray scene, showcasing significant enhancements over previous versions. This edition breathes new life into the animated classic, thanks to its superb 4K HDR10 presentation, which brings out the vibrant colors and intricate details of the film’s picturesque landscapes and charismatic characters. The addition of Dolby Atmos sound elevates the viewing experience, enveloping audiences in the film's dynamic soundtracks and the roar of racing engines, creating an immersive audio environment that complements the visual upgrades impeccably.

    Disney's 4K UHD release of "Cars" not only excels in visual and audio presentation but also includes a commendable array of extra content, making it an enticing package for both newcomers and longtime fans of the franchise. The excellent HDR color application enhances the film's visuals, ensuring that each frame pops with life and depth, further cementing "Cars" as one of Pixar’s most beautifully animated films. This release maintains the movie’s original charm and excitement while introducing a level of technical enhancement that enhances the viewing experience, making it a delightful watch for a family movie night.

    In conclusion, this 4K UHD Blu-ray version of "Cars" is highly recommended for anyone looking to experience one of Pixar's most enchanting and visually stunning works. Not only does it deliver a visually spectacular movie with its revamped picture quality and outstanding Dolby Atmos soundtrack, but it also respects the film's legacy by including a rich set of supplements. It provides an all-encompassing motion picture experience that blends nostalgic enjoyment with cutting-edge home cinema technology, making it an indispensable addition to any collection.