"The Greatest Showman" is a musical filled with infectious showstopping performances that will bring you to your feet time and time again. Inspired by the story of P.T. Barnum (Jackman), the film follows the visionary who rose from nothing to create a mesmerizing spectacle. (Gary Reber)
Special features include commentary with Director Michael Gracey; the featurettes "The Family Behind The Greatest Showman," "The Songs," and "The Spectacle"; galleries, and a Music Machine with Sing Along.
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 digitally using the Arri Alexa 65 and Arri Alexa Mini camera systems and sourced from a 4K master Digital Intermediate format. The imagery is absolutely gorgeous! Color fidelity is wonderful with a rich and warm, nuanced wide color gamut (WCG). Hues exhibit exceptional shading detail that is stunning. The imagery is nicely saturated and naturally appealing. Fleshtones are absolutely accurate and vibrant. Colors really pop, such as vivid reds. HDR contrast is well balanced and spectacular in its range of dynamic range, from the deep blacks to the intense bright highlights and whites. Shadow delineation is revealed throughout. Production design is spectacular and engaging with mesmerizing visuals. Resolution is incredibly detailed with superb delineation exhibited in facial features, skin pores, hair, beards, clothing, and object texture. The set designs are full of varied texture, and the overall scale of the picture is breathtaking. WOW! segments are so numerous that every scene is one. But the standouts are 00:25:02 to 00:28:15, 00:29:08 to 00:30:30, 00:48:24 to 00:53:12, 00:58:02 to 01:00:14, 01:04:12 to 01:07:33, 01:11:45 to 01:13:23, 01:15:51 to 01:17:24, and 01:32:49 to 01:35:17.
This is a spectacular reference-quality true 4K Ultra HD picture that every enthusiast should own and show off their home theatre system with. The picture is marvelously beautiful! (Gary Reber)
The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel ear-level soundtrack is wonderful and exhibits a full, engaging surround presence with aggressive envelopment. The music is wonderful and the singing is spectacular. The orchestral music spans wide and deep across the soundstage and deep into the surrounds. Atmospherics and sound effects are realistic and well crafted with a dimensional presence. Foley sound effects are realistic sounding as well and often nuanced. Deep bass provides a solid foundation to the soundtrack with at times energized .1 LFE intensity. Directionalized sound effects and atmospherics are mostly subtle but at times distinct and are intense. There is quite a bit of audience applause that effectively envelops the soundfield.
As for the Immersive Sound element, sadly, not all is as effective as the ear-level sonics. The music song and dance production numbers never extend to the height channels. The orchestral music is heard very briefly and then only intermittently. No applause is heard. Why? What were the sound designers thinking? What there is as Immersive Sound elements are a church bell ringing, bird chirps, and pigeons nuanced, orchestra tuning, a low-frequency sound that swells at the conclusion of Jenny Lind's performance, workmen noises, and noises associated with a trapeze apparatus. What missed opportunities.
Still, this is an exceptional ear-level holosnic® experience with superb fidelity and dynamics. The Immersive Sound element could have been an effective spherical surround experience, but sadly it is not. Still, the Dolby TrueHD sonics are reference quality and really ignite the soundfield. (Gary Reber)