'Batman: Hush: 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray + Digital'
(Jason O'Mara, Jennifer Morrison, Stuart Allan, Sachie Alessio, Geoffrey Arend, et al / 4K Ultra HD + Blu ray + Digital / NR / 2019 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: When threads from Batman's past begin to unravel, the race is on for the Dark Knight to crack Hush's deadly game.
Based on the tour de force graphic novel, 'Batman: Hush' ranks as one of the greatest Batman stories ever told.
A virtual who's who of DC - including Superman, Nightwing, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Joker and more - is woven into this twisting tale of murder, mystery and romance that will create strange alliances and reveal shattering secrets when Hush's silence is finally broken.
4K Ultra HD Verdict: Warner Bros. continues to expand their 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray catalog offerings this month with the release of the quite stunning 'Batman: Hush' in this wondrous 4K home video format on August 6th, 2019.
For my money, this 'Batman: Hush: 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 'Batman: Hush' 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: HEVC / H.265, Resolution: Upscaled 4K (2160p), HDR: HDR10 and Original aspect ratio: 1.78:1.
Featuring Dolby Vision and HDR10 for brighter, deeper, and way more lifelike colors, as with most all 4K presentatons, 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 when the bright city lights unveil themselves beneath the Bat and the Cat's running, jumping, swinging bodies high atop the rooftops of Gotham. It just all comes more vividly to life now there in the forest. Which is amazing to see, in truth.
Indeed, the picture enjoys the fruits of the added resolution in terms of bringing out the green hue and vapor trail, for instance, of Poison Ivy when she is asking Catwoman if Batman is her new "boy toy." Furthermore, scenes like this one and whenever there is gun fire or fires are lit now have a kind of honeyed amber appearance. Which is interesting, and at least a little different from the usual appearance on regular Blu-ray presentations.
As for the audio, well we have: English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1.
Additionally, the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack and Blu-ray feature Dolby Atmos® immersive audio mixed specifically for the home, to place and move audio anywhere in the room, including overhead.
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, in truth if you loved the outstanding graphic novel you may not like the liberties the creators of this film have taken!
In many ways this film is like last years 'Batman: Gotham by Gaslight' as in it pulls punches in the story which turn out to be different than the original graphic novel originally brought forth.
'Hush' (inspired by the acclaimed 2002-2003 storyline written by Jeph Loeb, penciled by Jim Lee, inked by Scott Williams, and colored by Alex Sinclair) also elaborates on the Batman/Catwoman romance angle more than previous animated media, which I am actually not against due to the fact that it shows the creators are starting to show as much interest in the Bat/Cat angle as the fans themselves have done over the decades.
So, sure, I get that this new rendition of the villain Hush may seem a bit underwhelming and disappointing to fans of the comic book with the story feeling a wee bit overstuffed with characters and plot twists.
However, if you are a fan of the character and world of Batman, and can separate this from the comic book that inspired it, you should probably have a fun time with it!
The storyline takes place after the events of 'Reign of the Supermen', highlighting the interconnection of these movies. Indeed, having Batman go to Metropolis and meet Superman all in the purpose of showing Clark's relationship with Lois, might be the flare to suggest that 'Batman: Hush' might be a bridge to a greater storyline re: 'Injustice: Gods Among Us'.
Although we don't yet have a strong bromance between the Man of Steel and the Dark Knight (to justify Clark wanting Bruce to be the godfather of his unborn child), this connection will possibly be the object of future films in preparation for the masterpiece that is 'Injustice'.
For now, it is satisfying to see that Clark's relationship with Lois is well established for it to soon bear a child.
Another hint includes two events that happened at different times in the movie: The first is Superman being controlled by Poison Ivy using "Synthetic Kryptonite" and the second is Nightwing being exposed to Scarecrow's fear toxin.
Does this ring any bells? Hint: Kryptonite-laced fear toxin! Also, it is no coincidence to have the Joker, Poison Ivy and Scarecrow all in one place now (Arkham Asylum) following their encounter with Batman or the Bat-family.
Additional clues that suggest this is movie is a buildup for 'Injustice' is having Dick Grayson prevalent throughout the film and briefly featuring Damian Wayne; as both of them play big roles in the Injustice storyline.
Also, it is worth mentioning that Bruce and Selina's relationship is well manifested in 'Injustice', and as aforementioned 'Batman: Hush' makes sure to introduce it in the DCAU once and for all!
Finally, last but definitely not least, the final hint for this direction is Batman's stress on "code" at the end of the movie, something that resonates to the events of 'Injustice'.
As familiarized fans recall, that code is the basis of the entire 'Injustice' storyline.
Regardless, and in closing, it was nice to have a cameo from Batgirl, Night Wing, Damian Wayne, along with classic Batman villains: Bane, Poison Ivy, The Scarecrow, The Riddler and his minions wearing their Riddler costumes, the Penguin, and Clay Face, amongst others.
And the final battle in the warehouse/factory, though a setting that's exhausted at this point, is really well done and exciting here, thankfully.
Some changes are acceptable, like Lex Luthor just being a business man instead of the President (which he was at that time in the comics) and replacing Talia's role of helping Batman find Poison Ivy.
Batgirl replacing Huntress is fine, though the latter's absence is kinda disappointing. Also, having Catwoman jump down to protect Batman from the street thugs is also a welcome addition!
Finally, merging the scenes with Catwoman and Poison Ivy and the scene where Ivy and Hush meet were good, as it shows how cunning and ruthless Hush is. Enjoy!
Produced by Warner Bros. Animation and DC, the feature-length animated film 'Batman: Hush' is available August 6th, 2019 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and Digital.
This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs via 1080p and comes with the aforementioned Special Features of:
Includes 4K UHD, Blu-ray and a digital copy of 'Batman: Hush'
DC Showcase Short - 'Sgt. Rock'
Batman: Love In Time Of War
Audio Commentary With Filmmakers
A Sneak Peak At DC Universe's Next Animated Movie: Wonder Woman: Bloodlines
From The DC Vault: Bonus Cartoon
'Batman: Hush' Trailer
'Batman: Hush' Clip - "Uncovering Hush's Plans"