'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' (4K Ultra HD)
(Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rafe Spall, Justice Smith, Daniella Pineda, et al / 4K Ultra HD + Blu ray + Digital / PG-13 / 2018 / Universal Pictures Home Entertainment)
Overview: It's been three years since theme park and luxury resort, Jurassic World was destroyed by dinosaurs out of containment. Isla Nublar now sits abandoned by humans while the surviving dinosaurs fend for themselves in the jungles.
When the island's dormant volcano begins roaring to life, Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) mount a campaign to rescue the remaining dinosaurs from this extinction-level event.
4K Ultra HD Verdict: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment continues to expand their 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray catalog offerings this September with the release of this quite stunning blockbuster, 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' in the new 4K home video format on September 18th, 2018.
For my money, this 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom: 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 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' 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, Aspect ratio: 2.39:1, and Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1.
Featuring Dolby Vision and HDR10 for brighter, deeper, and way more lifelike colors, as with most all 4K UHD's, everything that we watch features these qualities - but somehow, this film gloriously shines within them all.
Noticeably crisper with the overall clarity receiving an obvious boost here on this release, what's more is that it's enjoyably noticeable. For as well as some new nuances to the somewhat drab palette courtesy of Dolby Vision we also get to witness sudden bright pops of color; like the bright blue markings of Blue, and the gold markings of the new incarnation of predator.
Indeed, the picture enjoys the fruits of the added resolution in terms of bringing out extremely fine facial (although with all the lead character screams and grimacing, maybe that wasn't such a bright idea after all!) and some of the yellow graded material (notably some scenes where the island is about to come under hot molten lava) now have a kind of honeyed amber appearance. Which is interesting, and at least a little different from the 1080p Blu-ray accounting.
As for the audio, well we have: English: DTS:X, English: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit), French: DTS-HD HR 5.1, Spanish: DTS-HD HR 5.1 and Subtitles in English SDH, French, and Spanish.
Overall, this is a very strong 4K HDR 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, let's get the negative out of the way first, shall we. Chris Pratt doesn't bring his A-game, the plot has waaaaay too many holes, and there's waaaaaay too many long, dramatic looks at the camera!
But, if you look at the movie overall, it's a bold entry into the series. Sure, it doesn't follow the same progression as the others, not just in story line, but in the pacing, and the visuals, but it unfolds well (and that's always very important).
We get to see the dinosaurs in new environments (kinda sorta, as most are locked up deep, down in a basement - until their final "break out" scene - and also in a couple of interesting set ups (that make you genuinely curious what will happen next), but come the end it really is same shit, different day for all concerned.
That said, new director J.A. Bayona injects the franchise with a haunted mansion-type setting that dramatically increases the thrills and chills you never knew you would be feeling watching it.
The clear villain in this movie is human greed. To avoid spoilers, I will say that the dinosaurs and other, similarly manufactured beings, give those humans a satisfying kick in the teeth!
Oh, and the stand out scene has to be the one where our "fearless" head hunter goes into the cage of the newly-created (genetically) predator dinosaur (known as the Indoraptor) to remove one of its teeth for his necklace (having tranquilized the beats first), only to quickly discover that the animal is delightfully, and "cutely" playing possum!
It's also stuffed full of some of the most incredible CGI I've ever witnessed. It really doesn't miss a beat and this time out, unlike 2015's movie, spotting the shift to animatronics and back again was almost impossible.
As a long time Jurassic fan, there's an incredible amount of fan service dotted throughout, including countless dialogue moments that are ripped straight out of the original 'Jurassic Park' film.
Indeed, many shots and sequences, from both the original and its sequel, are expertly recreated in ways that are both new yet recognizable.
In closing, 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' is the perfect mix of action, suspense, touching moments, and morality. The perfect summer blockbuster is now in your grasp as a wondrous home entertainment 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray set from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment!
Howard and Pratt are great together, no matter what they were told to do with their faces as dinosaurs, and hunters alike, come close to eating/capturing them. And so, to my mind, and with one more in the trilogy to come, this one is officially much better than the last 'Jurassic World'.
As for a delve into a few of the delicious Special Features, I happen to love 'On Set with Chris & Bryce' (1080p, 3:05). It's a quick, but fun buddy-buddy look at their chemistry on set and between takes and showcases perfectly why they were the perfect choices to play these roles.
Another is 'Aboard the Arcadia' (1080p, 5:53) where we watch along as the crew shoot various scenes on board the ship on a soundstage. Included in this wonderful, and highly intriguing, and very revealing clip, is the crafting of a key scene that J.A. Bayona believes to be the heart of the movie. Along with a look at some dinosaur animatronics re: in the back of some of the trucks, this is one of the stand out Special Features, to my mind.
'Birth of the Indoraptor' (1080p, 4:09) is a closer look at the movie's newest dinosaur addition and one that reveals how it came to be, and how it actually moves in its own special way too! A perfect bookend to that is 'VFX Evolved' (1080p, 7:08) which showcases a rather more detailed exploration of honoring the dinosaurs of past 'Jurassic Park' films; whilst using cutting-edge technology to make them more realistic.
One last one to look out for is 'Chris Pratt's Jurassic Journals' (1080p, 12:08) where Pratt introduces audiences to various individuals who make the movie work. Included in this interesting mix are: Vivian Baker (Makeup Artist); Mary Master (Hair Stylist); Chris Murphy (1st Assistant Sound); Dean Bailey (Stunt Edge Car Driver); Peter Harcourt (Diver); Daniella Pineda and Justice Smith (Actors); Jody Wiltshire (Set PA); Kelly Krieg (Assistant Script Supervisor); J.A. Bayona (Director); James Cox (Stunt Performer); Rachelle Beinart (Stunt Double); and Bryce Dallas Howard (Actor).
This is a Widescreen Presentation (2.39:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs via 1080p and comes with the Special Features of:
Includes a digital copy of 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom'
Chris Pratt's Jurassic Journals
On Set with Chris & Bryce
The Kingdom Evolves
Return to Hawaii
Aboard the Arcadia
Birth of the Indoraptor
Start the Bidding!
Death by Dino
Monster in a Mansion
Fallen Kingdom: The Conversation
A Song for the Kingdom
Jurassic Then and Now - Presented by Barbasol®
'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Trailer