"Harry Potter And The Order of The Phoenix" finds the young wizard, Harry (Radcliffe), beginning his fifth year of study at Hogwarts, only to discover that much of the wizarding community has been led to believe that his recent encounter with the evil Lord Voldemort is a lie. To make matters worse, there is a new Defense Against The Dark Arts instructor, who teaches the inferior “Ministry-approved” curriculum, which leaves the young wizards woefully unprepared to defend themselves against the dark forces that threaten them. Will Harry be able to prepare his young wizard friends well enough to weather the extraordinary battle that lies ahead? Based on the novel by J.K. Rowling. (Gary Reber)
Special features include seven featurettes: Creating The World Of Harry Potter Part 5: Evolution (HD 57:16), Behind The Magic (HD 46:46), Building The Magic: The Sets Of Harry Potter (HD 20:22), The Rebellion Begins (HD 23:13), Fulfilling A Prophecy HD 13:02), Trailing Tonks (HD 19:25), and The Magic Of Editing (HD 05:21); nine deleted scenes (HD 10:57); a teaser trailer; the theatrical trailer; and a digital copy.
The 2.40:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10 picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed on 35 mm film stock using Arricam and Arriflex cameras in Super 35 and sourced from a 2K (not 4K) master Digital Intermediate format. As the 2K Digital Intermediate has been upconverted to 2160p, there is no real gain in native resolution. Still, the HDR encoding exhibits a bold color scheme with nicely saturated hues and natural-looking fleshtones, enhanced contrast in the appearance of deep black levels and bright highlights. Shadow delineation is nicely rendered as well. The picture has a convincingly dimensional appearance. The color palette exhibits rich and warm hues with the brightest hues depicting the manifestations of magic. Whites are often well saturated, such as the white owl and the sun-lit white snow. The imagery is a bit darker in appearance overall but at the same time people, clothes, and objects can exhibit more distinct contrast and eye-popping colors. Resolution is excellent with fine detail revealed throughout in facial features, hair, beards, clothing, and object textures, though, at times the imagery is a bit soft. Production design and lighting is also very impressive. A WOW! segment begins at 20:23 and ends at 25:30. Another is at 01:35:56 to 01:37:50, and toward the end from 01:58:27 to 02:00:27. The picture is pristine throughout with no objectonable film grain. This is the best that the film has ever looked, a wonderfully pleasing picture and fans are sure to be enthralled. (Gary Reber)
The treatment for this DTS:X/DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1-channel soundtrack is superb, with an incredibly involving mix that keeps the listening space engaged from start to finish. The soundtrack is clear and articulate, with considerable dynamic range, revealing even the most subtle atmospherics and sound effects discernable in the soundstage. Phantom imaging is incorporated well, helping create a sense of realism. Deep bass is delivered through each of the channels when needed, dropping down below 30 Hz, even in the full-range channels. The use of dimension includes many selective instances in which there is acute directionality, as well as substantial directionalized and aggressive surround activity, laterally and back to front and front to back. The phantom back surround channel provides enhancement of the immersive listening space as do the side channels. Directional pans laterally are effective and often powerful such as in the WOW! segment toward the end from 01:58:27 to 02:00:27, where, in the climactic Department of Mysteries sequence, bass extension is particularly impressive and sound effects such as the shattering of glass seem to come from all directions. The sounds of magical spells and teleporting wizards are nicely scaled and travel with superb specificity through the listening space. Of course, to appreciate this fine dimensionality, one has to be seated in the “sweet spot” to realize the effective phantom imaging effect and holosonic® impressions. Deep bass content for this soundtrack is formidable, with some instances even having the potential to threaten your subwoofer. The .1 LFE channel often delivers intense deep bass. There are also generous doses of very deep bass for the surround channels. Rain and thunder are powerful sounding. Nuanced atmospherics and sound effects are wonderful. The music, as in the other movies, is another of the standouts for this soundtrack, and is an excellent recording, imparting a palpable perception of holosonic envelopment and a deep bass foundation. The presentation of the dialogue, which sounds very natural, delivers excellent spatial integration. The Immersive Sound elements consist of thunderous flying papers, dripping water, whizzing creatures, whizzing wizards on their brooms, a rumbling splitting building, whispering voices, a sliding elevator gate, an encroaching whizzing sound effect, birds chirping in a forest, thunder and lightening, shaking chandeliers, shattering glass, fireworks, wing-flapping flying horses, voice echos, shattering glass globes, fiery whizzes from magic wands, flying shattered glass, other sound effects and atmospherics and an extended, though, very infrequent and subdued orchestral score. Except for the music, Immersive Sound elements are object-based and quiet brief with long lapses apart. And while some carry some SPL weight and are effective with exceptional power and precision, for the most part the perception is subliminal. As with before in this Immersive Sound series, much in the way of soundscape dimension has been ignored by the sound designers. As with the other movies, this is a great upgraded soundtrack and one that adds immeasurably to the experience of this entertaining movie. (Gary Reber)