BLU-RAY REVIEW

Spider-Man: Far From Home 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 244, October 2019

Picture4.5
Sound4.5
Immersive3.5
WSR Score3.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
(Studio/Distributor):
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
(Catalog Number):
55779
(MPAA Rating):
PG-13
(Rating Reason):
Sci-fi action violence, some language, and brief suggestive comments
(Retail Price):
$45.99
(Disc Type):
Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
(Widescreen Edition):
Yes
(Full Screen Edition):
(Running Time In Minutes):
129
(Color Type):
Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access):
Yes
(Closed Captioned):
Yes
(Regional Coding):
ABC
(Theatrical Year):
(Theatrical Release):
Yes
(Direct-To-Video Release):
No
(Disc Release Date):
10/1/2019
(THX® Digitally Mastered):
(Director):
Jon Watts
(Screenplay/Written By):
(Story):
(Music):
(Director Of Photography):
(Production Designer):
(Visual Effects):
(Costume Designer):
(Editor):
(Supervising Sound Editors):
(Re-Recording Mixers):
(Executive Producers):
(Co-Producers):
(Producers):
(Academy Awards):
(Principal Photography):
(Theatrical Aspect Ratio):
(Measured Disc Aspect Ratio):
(Disc Soundtrack):
Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
(Theatrical Sound):
(Theatrical Re-Issue Soundtrack):
(DTS Bit Rate):
(Dolby Digital Bit Rate):
(Additional Languages):
(French Language):
(Spanish Language):
(Subtitles):

In "Spider-Man: Far From Home," the friendly neighborhood wall-crawler decides to join his best friends Ned, MJ, and the rest of the gang on a European vacation. However, Peter's (Holland) plans to leave super heroics behind for a few weeks are quickly scrapped when he begrudgingly agrees to help Nick Fury (Jackson) uncover the mystery of several elemental creature attacks. Spider-Man and Mysterio (Gyllenhaal) join forces to fight the havoc unleashed across the continent but all is not as it seems. (Gary Reber)

Special features include a new origiinal short, "Peter's To-Do-List" (HD 03:22); 13 featurettes: "Teachers' Travel Tips" (HD 04:58), "Stepping Up" (HD 03:42), "Suit Up" (HD 04:38), "Far, FAR, Far From Home" (HD 05:14), "It Takes Two" (HD 03:09), "Fury & Hill" (HD 03:29), "The Ginter-Riva effect" (HD 01:32), "Thank You, Mrs Parker" (HD 03:35), "The Brother's Trust" (HD 11:44), "The Jump Up" (HD 06:19), "Now You See Me" (HD 06:30), "Stealthy Easter Eggs" (HD 04:23) and "Select Scene Pre-Vis" (HD 08:20); a gag reel and outtakes (HD 03:35); five never-before-seen alternate and extended scenes (HD 06:07); upfront previews and a Movies Anywhere digital code.

The 2.39:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10/Dolby Vision picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed digitally using the Arri Alexa Mini and RED RANGER 8K VV camera systems 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. The film was released theatrically also in 3D with 3D conversion by Stereo D and Legend 3D, though, no 3D Blu-ray Disc was provided.

The picture exhibits natural imagery sans the CGI visual effects, and is sharp and clear throughout. Resolution is absolutely excellent, with the finest details perfectly resolved. Visible is the finely textured fabric of Spider-Man's powered red and black suits as well as the fabric composition of other clothing worn by other characters. Object detail also is excellent, revealing material compositions and excellent costume resolution. Facial features, skin pores, beards and hair strands, and Nick Fury's eye patch are all finely resolved. As in the previous movie in the collection, hours could be spent on examining the degree of detail in each scene. The color palette exhibits a wide color gamut, with vivid primaries and secondary hues, for an impressively saturated presentation. Fleshtones are also perfectly articulated throughout. One scene takes place in a colorful tulip field in The Netherlands. HDR contrast effectively enhances the range of contrast with bright white highlights, such as car lights and a robe, as well as other more colorful highlights and deep, extended blacks and revealing shadow delineation. This creates a greater sense of realism. The movie is full of CGI visual effects. The fire monster exhibits a sense of real fire, as do other scenes with fire visual effects. The water monster also is effectively rendered. The varied European environments and settings are naturally rendered. Spatial dimensionality is also excellent, further enhancing the sense of realism. WOW! segments are from 49:50 to 55:06, 01:10:30 to 01:11:58, 01:19:20 to 01:20:57, 01:24:46 to 01:25;39, 01:34;36 to 01:36:04, 01:37:32 to 01:38:46 and 01:45:54 to 01:46:50. This is a terrific picture that effectively delivers an exciting visual experience. "Spider-Man" fans will be dazzled by the image quality. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack is dynamic sounding with a crisp presence emanating from the special effects mayhem. Stark Enterprise's mobile robotic drone projectors and Spider-Man antics rip though the soundstage and soundfield. The added two surround channels enhance such directionality. As with the other movies in the collection, these are powerful effects with exciting sonics. Such ear-level sonics are aggressively directional during the virtually non-stop action scenes. The action segments create a terrific holosonic® experience. Atmospherics, which define the soundscapes of various European locals, also are nicely presented, which enhance the realism of the soundscapes depicted on-screen. The music score is reserved to the background generally but is quite active throughout and extends more subtly to the surrounds. Deep bass at times is strong and effectively extended by the .1 LFE channel at sub-25 Hz frequencies during the numerous occurrences of explosions, upheaval and destructive mayhem, such as demolishing London's Tower Bridge, caused by Mysterio and his destruction apparatus. Dialogue is intelligible throughout, though, often sounding forward and wanting in spatial integration due to extensive ADR. Monster growls, a train, Spider-Man's jumps and landings, Mysterio's voice and other sound effects are directionalized. Foley sound effects are natural sounding and in perfect sync. The orchestral score is well recorded with a wide and deep soundstage that extends to the surrounds.

The Immersive Sound element is rather limited. Not even subtle music can be heard or ambience to provide some dimensional spatiality to the locals. Mostly the height layer is comprised of scatter accentuated sound effects such as subtle jet engines panned, an on-board flight announcement and fasten seat-belt bell sounds, subtle airport ambience, construction sounds in Venice, bird chirps, waves pounding, a water monster's growls, screams, laser-type swishes, running footsteps, the tower bell, building debris and crashes, rocket fire, fireworks, carnival ambience, fire monster growls and destructive strikes, Mysterio's ADR voice, drone power downs, Mysterio voicing "WOW!" and other dialogue, a girl's voice, light fixtures swinging, wind, breaking glass, forceful impact sounds, crashing sounds, a jet swoop over a tulip field, a distant high-rise explosion, a water blast effect, a motor scooter beep, the smoke cloud monster's growl, bubbling water, a sea wall collapse, Tower Bridge destruction and debris, Spider-Man's parachute opening, a loud rumbling among projector drones, all manner of swooping sounds, vault door attacks, Spider-Man swinging through New York and European locals and other short-duration sonic accents. So much more could have been achieved with the height layer but instead the sounds are swift and rapid, but essentially brief. No music is extended to the height layer. Generally, the height layer is weak in terms of enhancing the overall immersive experience.

As for the ear-level sonics, this is a terrific dynamic soundtrack that delivers an exciting punch during the action scenes. (Gary Reber)