Something new has arrived for home theater connoisseurs. The newest format in watching movies called 4K UHD Blu-rays. The public introduction is calling it “ultra-high definition”.
Because I am interested in this new phase of viewing movies at home, I was sent both Sicario and Ender’s Game in 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray. Before I commence with my opinion of the new format, the two different genres are the best way to review this system. Movies like Ender’s Game prove more enjoyable with the screening quality while Sicario special effects were minimal.
The new format is totally about the technical enhancements that make the viewing of the movies far better. Is it important enough to purchase the 4K TV screen, player, and movie?
For some, I am sure it is a status thing while others thrive on a better viewing pleasure. “Hey, come on over to my house. I have the new 4K player and TV Screen. Ender’s Game looks awesome on the new format!”
With that, here is my take on the new format. Sicario‘s HEVC / H.265 encoded 2160p transfer in 2.40:1 clearly shows upgrades in detail, contrast and particularly when it comes to color gradation levels. Like I said earlier, Sicario does not have eye-popping grandeur like Ender’s Game, there are some really vivid differences, though, in the 4K version.
I noticed at the beginning of the movie where facial features in the first SWAT scene are far better in texture. Surprisingly so, after Kate, played by Emily Blunt, is almost shot. Her face is bathed in red, but the fine detail comes through. I could almost feel the textures on each element such as curtains in Kate’s apartment. Before, I wouldn’t even have thought of noticing her curtains, but is that an important part of the movie?
The difference really shines with the dark scenes. The long scene with Kate in the bar where the contrast and tones are so much more improved. Everything looks so much more vibrant and alive. However, I had to mention this but it has come up with other sources. The 4K has recurring rapid shaking in some of the scenes. I noticed it particularly with the pan shots. It is quite noticeable in the tracking across the landscape as the SWAT team drops in on the cartel house.
For Ender’s Game, the new format shows more splendor and richness of the colors. Literally, each color stands out. Particularly, the different shades of blues of spaceship and uniforms. They pop out at you from the screen. The spherical zero-gravity battle room scenes are more fun to watch now with the ultra-high-definition.
I sound like I am repeating myself, but it is true. The new format is all about the colors. Looking at the plants in the background is extraordinary with deep light blues, greens, and browns. Every element is so detailed with textures that I didn’t even notice in the other formats. I have to mention the tattoos on Ben Kingsley’s face. They are so rich and alive, like 3D.
I didn’t notice any shaking on the pan shots compared to Sicario, which is interesting. The panning shots of the rocky terrain are gorgeous. I could go on and on, but you need to see and experience 4K for yourself. All in all, the 4K UHD Blu-ray is an exciting presentation. You just have to spend more money in order to experience.