American Assassin 4K UltraHD

WSR Score
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Lionsgate Home Entertainment
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Strong violence throughout, some torture, language and brief nudiity
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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(Running Time In Minutes):
112 Minutes
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(THX® Digitally Mastered):
Michael Cuesta
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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Based on the novel by Vince Flynn, "American Assassin" follows the rise of Mitch Rapp (O'Brien), a CIA black-ops recruit under the instruction of Cold War veteran Stan Hurley (Keaton). The pair is then enlisted by CIA Deputy Director Irene Kennedy (Lathan) to investigate a wave of apparently random attacks on both military and civilian targets. Together, the three discover a pattern in the violence, leading them to a joint mission with a lethal Turkish agent (Negar) to stop a mysterious operative (Kitsch) intent on settling a personal and professional vendetta that could have cataclysmic results. (Gary Reber)

Special features include five featurettes: "Target Acquired: Creating an American Assassin" (HD 09:54), "Finding Mitch Rapp: Dylan O'Brien" (HD 09:53), "Transfer Of Power: Hurley And Ghost" (HD 13:43), "Weaponized: Training And Stunts" (HD 12:04) and "In The Field: Locations" (HD 09:28); the Alamo Drafthouse Q&A with Dylan O'Brien and Taylor Kitsch (HD 26:05) and an UltraViolet digital copy.

The 2.39:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 4K Ultra HD HDR10 and Dolby Vision picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed digitally with Arri Alexa Mini and XT camera systems at 3.4K and sourced from a 2K (not 4K) master Digital Intermediate format. The picture exhibits a naturally realistic appearance throughout. Dynamic contrast is effective with varied scenes in numerous locations exhibiting bright highlights and dark shadows. Blacks are deep and well defined. Color fidelity is nicely saturated and a bit on the deeper dark side, yet always appearing natural in the varied production design settings and locations. While mostly bland in treatment, some scenes reveal a richer color intensity. Overall, the color treatment is warm with natural fleshtones. Resolution is excellent, with fine detail revealed throughout in location environments and in close-ups of facial features, skin pores, hair, beards and interior furnishings and weapons. The cinematography uses light variances to effectively create dramatic scenes. HDR highlights are never exaggerated, and brighter segments look perfectly natural. A WOW! segment starts at 01:37:06 and ends at 01:39:27. This is a dynamic-looking picture with varied contrast and excellent resolution. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack delivers a strong dynamic presence with strong low-frequency foundation and support from the .1 LFE channel. Atmospherics are well crafted and enhance the sense of realism. Sound effects are often powerful, such as gunfire and explosions, and directionalized in the soundstage and the four surround channels. The orchestral score effectively supports virtually every scene with a wide and deep soundstage that extends aggressively to the surrounds. Dialogue is intelligible throughout with good spatial integration.

The Immersive Sound element is limited to the extension of the music and then mostly subliminal, brief gunfire mayhem in one scene, a very brief Navy rescue helicopter sound, a voice overhead, a siren and extremely brief sound effects and ambience at low SPL. So much overhead support is absent that the result is a strictly ear-level sonic experience. In contrast the Immersive Sound element for the Lions Gate opening credit is really strong and immersive. Still, there is good sense of holosonic® envelopment with effectively active surrounds and strong frontal impact. (Gary Reber)