Brightburn 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 244, October 2019

WSR Score4
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
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Horror violence/bloody images and language
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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David Yarovesky
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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"Brightburn" raises the proposition: What if a child from another world crash-landed on Earth, but instead of becoming a hero to mankind, he proved to be something far more sinister? (Gary Reber)

Special features include commentary by Director David Yarovesky; the featurettes "Nature vs Nurture––"Creating A New Supervillain" (HD 05:05), "Hero-Horror!––A Radical New Genre" (HD 04:46)) and "Quick Burns––Vignette Special Series" (HD 02:41); upfront previews and a Movies Anywhere digital code.

The 2.39:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10 picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed digitally in anamorphic Panavision® using the Arri Alexa XT and Mini 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 picture, which is often dark or sparsely lit, is clear and sharp throughout. The color palette is naturally hued with good gamut range and depth. Black levels impress, even during night scenes, with colors popping against the blackness. In one scene, there is a red light flash followed by black sequences. Other striking red emanates from the spacecraft in the family's barn as well as with segments with blood and the red ink Brandon uses to draw his Brightburn depictions on white notebook paper. Fleshtones throughout appear natural. Daytime exteriors of the rural farm backdrop are naturally exhibited. The farmhouse's interior is naturally portrayed as well. Resolution is excellent with good detail exhibited in facial features, hair, object textures and environments. HDR contrast maintains good dynamics between black and white levels. WOW! segment are from 32:36 to 36:20 and 01:15:08 to 01:18:46.

This is a well-crafted and effectively squirmy presentation with gore effects throughout. (Gary Reber0

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack delivers solid bass extension, often intense. There are ominous low-end bass beats that build with intensity and play a dominant force in the character of the music and sound effects. Sound effects are directionalized and enhanced with deep bass, at times accentuated with .1 LFE sub-25 Hz energy. in one scene, Brandon unlocks and enters the barn's cellar, responding to the deep, hypnotic, satanic voice commanding him to do evil. Atmospherics, such as chirping birds and winds, create the realism of the farm backdrop. In one scene rainfall and thunder pound the soundfield. Subtle nuanced atmospherics are effectively presented as well. Surrounds throughout are directionalized. The orchestral score is powerful and occupies a wide and deep soundstage that aggressively extends to the surrounds. Clarity and fidelity are excellent throughout. Dialogue is intelligible and generally well integrated spatially.

The Immersive Sound element is comprised of the extension of the orchestral score and other country music plus various sound effects and atmospherics such as howling wind, bird chirps in a farm setting, swirling and whispering alien voices, enveloping alien sounds, a thrown lawnmower, insect night sounds, chickens rustling, thunder and rain, directionalized alien voices and deep growls, a loud flash sound, electrical ceiling fluorescent lightbulb disturbance, a metal door collapse, a man thrown against the garage door, pounding on the roof of a jeep, gunshot disturbance in a forested area, intense swoops, a window glass shattering, house creaking sounds, whistling, loud alien on and off sounds and numerous other frightening and spooky atmospheric sounds.

This is an effectively bass-intense holosonic® spherical surround soundtrack that is compelling and sure to enthrall fans. (Gary Reber)