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'Pacific Rim Uprising' [4K Ultra HD]
(John Boyega, Scott Eastwood, Jing Tian, Cailee Spaeny, Rinko Kikuchi, et al / 4K Ultra HD + Blu ray + Digital / NR / 2018 / Universal Pictures Home Entertainment)

Overview: John Boyega (Star Wars series) is the rebellious Jake Pentecost, a once-promising Jaeger pilot whose legendary father gave his life to secure humanity's victory against the monstrous "Kaiju".

Now an even more fearsome alien threat has been unleashed on the world and Jake is called back into action by his former co-pilot, Lambert (Scott Eastwood), and a 15-year-old Jaeger hacker, Amara (Cailee Spaeny).

4K Ultra HD Verdict: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment continues to expand their 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray catalog offerings this June with the release of this quite stunning 'Pacific Rim Uprising' in the new 4K home video format on June 19th, 2018.

For my money, this 'Pacific Rim Uprising: 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital' combo pack's sharpness takes a fairly large step forward from others in their 4K Ultra HD catalog and even comes with HDR (High Dynamic Range) for the complete 4K Ultra HD experience, of course.

So, what we have is 'Pacific Rim Uprising' presented to us as a two-disc combo pack with a sheet for a Digital HD Copy. Other stand out points you should know are: Codec: MPEG-4 AVC; Resolution: 1080p; HDR: HDR10; Aspect ratio: 2.40:1, and Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1.

As with most all 4K UHD's, everything that we watch features a much brighter, deeper, more lifelike set of colors. Noticeably crisper with the overall clarity receiving an obvious boost here on this release, what's more is that it's enjoyably noticeable.

The picture enjoys the fruits of the added resolution in terms of bringing out extremely fine facial and body armor textures within the action scenes, which in comparison leaves the 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation looking almost smooth and flat.

As for the audio, well we have: English: Dolby Atmos; English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit); French (Canada): Dolby Digital 5.1; and Spanish: Dolby Digital Plus 7.1. There are also Subtitles in English SDH, French, Spanish.

Overall, this is a very strong 4K UHD Blu-ray presentation, and, for the most part, the audio track remains fairly similar to its DTS-HD counterpart; with much of the action occupying the surrounds with outstanding directionality and placement where effects flawlessly pan between the sides and rears.

Phew! OK, so, as for the movie itself, well, aside from the fact that the film, in just three days, became the 11th highest grossing film of 2018 (grossing $150.5 million as of March 25th), 'Pacific Rim Uprising' is one of those massively enjoyable popcorn blockbusters that all you have to do is settle into your armchair or sofa for and let the movie do the rest for nearly two hours.

OK, so, let's take this from the beginning, shall we: It's made quite clear in the original 'Pacific Rim' that the Breach was closed. Yet in the trailer, we see Jaegers fighting kaiju. I was concerned about how this sequel would explain that, wondering what the new source of the conflict would be.

Would the filmmakers just cheap out on the plot and basically say, "Huh? Oh, yeah, breach was never really closed. Our bad."? Thankfully, no; what we are given instead is a stunningly imaginative and well-crafted plot which intelligently explains the reappearance of kaiju, while also honoring concepts set up in the first movie.

One thing movie-goers have complained about for several years now is the too-long, too-revealing trailer, the kind which gives away the best jokes, major plot elements, etc. Did the trailer for 'Pacific Rim: Uprising' (PRU) show us Jaegers? Of course it did. Did it show kaiju? Well, explanation for them aside, this is a 'Pacific Rim' sequel, so that's to be expected.

Did we see any familiar faces? Yes, Burn Gorman's Dr. Gottlieb clearly makes an appearance. Yet even with all these, upon reflection I can say that in my opinion the PRU trailer gave nothing away.

Gorman's performance in PRU is quiet enjoyable. And I was impressed with the range shown by John Boyega. I don't mean just the range he showed in this movie; I'm referring also to the range he's capable of from one movie to the next. This young man created a persona for PRU that is strikingly distinct from his Finn of the recent 'Star Wars' sequels.

'Pacific Rim' took the concept of "kaiju vs mecha (the Jaegers)", rarely seen outside of anime, to a new level. With the bar set so high, PRU really had to deliver to be more than just a "more kaiju vs mecha" money-grab.

And deliver it did. I found myself deeply engaged as I watched the plot unfold. The filmmakers clearly put thought and effort into this, and in the end this collection of twists, turns and switchbacks adds up to a richly satisfying movie.

As for some of the special features, well, there's not a whole lot here, sadly, as all we get is a bunch of Deleted Scenes with commentary by Director Steven DeKnight. That said, his take on why they were deleted, but why they had to still be included on this Blu-ray is actually rather interesting. This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.40:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs via 1080p and comes with the Special Features of:

Deleted Scenes with Commentary by Director Steven DeKnight
Hall of Heroes - Bridge to Uprising - The Underworld of Uprising - Becoming Cadets - Unexpected Villain - Next Level Jaegers - I Am Scrapper - Going Mega - Secrets of Shao - Mako Returns
Feature Commentary with Director Steven DeKnight
Includes a digital copy of 'Pacific Rim'
Features High Dynamic Range (HDR) for Brighter, Deeper, More Lifelike Color

Official Purchase Link