Jurassic Park 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 232, October 2018

WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
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Intense science fiction terror
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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Steven Spielberg
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DTS:X, DTS HD Lossless 7.1
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Based on the bestseller by Michael Crichton, "Jurassic Park" tells the story, both thrilling and terrifying, about genetically cloned dinosaurs that populate an island amusement park—and escape from their pens. The full-motion dinosaurs were created by Dennis Muren, ASC and the live-action ones by the talented Stan Winston, with the special effects for the creatures by Michael Lantieri. (Gary Reber)

Special features include an all-new documentary with three of six parts on this disc: "Return To Jurassic Park: Dawn Of A New Era" (HD 25:25), "Return To Jurassic Park: Making Prehistory" (HD 20:16) and "Return To Jurassic Park: The Next Step In Evolution" (HD 15:03); the following archival featurettes: "The Making Of Jurassic Park" (SD 49:39), "Original Featurette On The Making Of The Film" (SD 04:50), and "Steven Spielberg Directs Jurassic Park" (SD 09:07); "Behind The Scenes," which includes "Early Pre-Production Meetings" (SD 06:20), "Location Scouting" (SD 01:59), "Phil Tippett Animatics: Raptors In The Kitchen" (SD 03:04), "Animatics: T-Rex Attack" (SD 07:21), "ILM And Jurassic Park: Before And After The Visual Effects" (SD 06:32), "Foley Artists" (SD 01:25); five storyboards; the following under "Production Archives": photographs, design, sketches, and conceptual paintings; the theatrical trailer; D-BOX® Motion Code™; and a Movies Anwhee digital copy is also included

The 1.85:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10 picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed on film using the Panavision Panaflex Platinum camera system 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. Noise and film grain have been de-grained on this new remastered 4K Ultra HD edition, for a pristine picture experience.

"Jurassic Park" was an early example of the use of CGI effects in motion pictures. It paved the way for the success of computer-generated imagery that today is taken for granted. The Blu-ray Disc release, and now the 4K Ultra HD release, takes "Widescreen Review" back in time, over 25 years, when we first reviewed "Jurassic Park" as LaserDisc releases in Issue 11, 23, and 30, all matted at 1.85:1 and THX®-quality assured. In Issue 43, the first anamorphically enhanced 1.85:1 DVD was reviewed. In issue 162 the Blu-ray Disc was reviewed. And now the 4K Ultra HD edition.

The remastered picture exhibits excellent quality, with impressive sharpness and image detail, as well as finely rendered background clarity and definition. The wide color gamut (WCG) is an apparent improvement as the color palette is not only perfectly balanced, exhibiting nicely saturated and rich and vibrant hues and deep, solid blacks, but nuanced and subtle gradations are revealing. Fleshtones are naturally healthy in hue, which enhances vibrancy. The HDR remastering produces striking contrast, black levels and shadow delineation, with excellent visual information in the darker scenes, as well as with regard to bright highlights. Noise and film grain have been de-grained for a pristine picture experience. Resolution reveals fine facial features, hair, clothing, and object texture, including all sorts of foliage and CGI dinosaur skin, scales, and reptilian texture composition. Still the visual effects shots retain some of the edge enhancement in the original source negative or interpositive (IP). Dimensionality is particularly impressive, with imagery exhibiting excellent depth perception. WOW! segment include 0'00:51 to 0:03:24, 01:04:00: to 0:1:6:14, 01:16P42 to 01:1:14, 01:44:38 to 01:45:34, 01:49:23 to 01:52:15, and 01:57:10 to 01:57:45.

The film has never looked better, and enthusiasts should replace the past releases with this 4K Ultra HD edition. (Gary Reber)

During the time "Widescreen Review" first reviewed "Jurassic Park" a series of articles were published about the sound wars between Dolby® Laboratories and DTS®, which continues to the present. With this new DTS:X Immersive Sound/DTS-HD Master Audio™ 7.1-channel soundtrack edition, the soundtrack has been repurposed once more, which results in a more precise dimensional acoustic reality, and in the delineation of sounds and their localization within the soundfield. The repurposed soundtrack takes full advantage of all the ear-level loudspeaker channels at its disposal. Subwoofers that could stand the dynamic pulses of extremely deep subharmonic and powerful bass are required to fully experience the powerful sonics this soundtrack is capable of delivering. Noticeable are refinements in low-frequency resolution and spatial localization within the soundfield. With four surrounds at ear level, the added two channels enhance the dimensional depth and spatial acoustic reality, with the realistic re-creation of space and distance. The surround energy is lively and effects panning is smooth. Ambient effects are perfectly integrated. The dynamics are dramatically engaging and significantly add to the exhilarating excitement. The .1 LFE channel is effectively engaged throughout, with pulse-pounding sub-25 Hz bass that will challenge many home theatre systems. John Williams' orchestral music score is beautifully recorded with a very wide and deep soundstage presence that extends aggressively into the other surround channels. Atmospherics and sound effects are riveting, with superb low-level resolution and dynamics, as well as directionality. Dialogue is remarkably integrated spatially.

The Immersive Sound element is limited but does deliver brief sonics such as a crane sound, a very effective and directionalized dinosaur sound during an eating spree with a bull, rain pouring on the top of Jeeps, a T-Rex roar and growl on the hunt, tree limbs breaking as a Jeep falls, T-Rex roars reverberating and Raptor calls. Minor effort was put to realizing the full height layer potential, as is rather, unfortunately the case in most so-called "Immersive Sound" soundtracks that are object-based, sound-effects focused.

Still, what a WOW! holosonic® ear-level soundtrack experience! (Gary Reber).