Abominable 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 246, December 2019

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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Some action and milde rude humor
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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Jill Culton & Todd Wilderman
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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"Abominable" is a heartwarming and humorous story, which follows teenage Yi (Bennet) as she encounters a young Yeti on the roof of her apartment building in China. She and her mischievous friends, Jin (Trainor) and Peng (Tsai), name him "Everest" and embark on an epic quest to reunite the magical creature with his family at the highest point on Earth. But the trio of friends will have to stay one-step ahead of Burnish (Izzard), a wealthy man intent on capturing a Yeti, and zoologist Dr. Zara (Paulson) to help Everest get home. (Gary Reber)

Special features include commentary with Writer/Director Jill Culton, Co-Director Todd Wilderman, Producer Suzanne Buirgy, Producer Peilin Chou, Production Designer Max Boas, Visual Effects Supervisor Mark Edwards and Head of Character Animation John Hill; the DreamWorks short "Marooned" (HD 07:24); a Show And Tell magical show short (HD 02:50); four deleted scenes (HD10:30); 11 featurettes: "Making A Myth (Movie)" (HD 06:58), "Animating Abominable" (HD 05:12), Meet The Cast" (HD 08:22), "Your Yeti Care Guide" (HD 02:28), "Courage To Dream" (HD 03:04), "An Abominable Tour With Chloe Bennet" (HD 04:41), "Everest's Talk Box" (HD 04:35), "Cooking With Nai Nai" (HD 04:03), "How To Abominable" (HD 20:36), "You Can Speak Yeti-ese" (HD 03:47) and "Nai Nai Says" (HD 01:48); upfront previews and a Movies Anywhere digital code.

The 1.85:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10/Dolby Vision picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was animated digitally and sourced from a 4K master Digital Intermediate format. "Abominable" was exhibited theatrically in 3D, but no 3D Blu-ray Disc was provided for review. The animation is superb as well as the image quality throughout. Color fidelity is mesmerizing with a wide color gamut that exhibits an extraordinary range of nuanced hues. Primaries are strong and often pop, for excellent dynamic contrasts, such as a container of red soda pop and a field of exploding blue berries. Textural resolution is amazing with excellent spatial dimension. Resolution is finely resolved with the finest textural detail exhibited in every frame. Such image resolution is absolutely amazing. Everest's long white hair is finely resolved throughout. HDR contrast is superb with subtle shadings in lighting, deep blacks, and shadows that reveal variations in intensity. Everest's white hair and glow transformations brighten the segments he appears in, which is almost always. WOW! segments are in just about every scene, but standouts are from 10:20 to 13:00, 27:46 to 29:03, 33:30 to 34:52, 35:25 to 36:42, 44:08 to 45:20, 56:30 to 58:43, 59:29 to 01:01:14, 01:08:50 to 01:11:40, 01:12:14 to 01:15:30 and 01:17:50 to 01:22:20.

This is a vibrantly colorful picture with amazing animation, fun characters, and incredible imagery that will thrill the entire family. The picture is magnificent and reference quality throughout. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack is dynamic sounding with lots of transient sound effect hits, often supported with bass transients. Of course, the orchestral/choral/singing score is quite active and punchy. The music extends wide and deep with aggressive surround envelopment. Fidelity is superb with excellent instrumental definition, especially when Yeti plays her violin. Even the music is at times enhanced with strong rhythmic scoring. Sound effects are panned dramatically within the soundfield, At times sound effects also aggressively extend to the surrounds and energize the soundfield, such as the thunderous scene on the bridge to the Hemilayes. At times, deep bass extends to sub-25 Hz in the .1 LFE. ADR dialogue is consistently intelligible with amazing synchronization with the movement of animated characters' mouths. And Everest's growls and groans are enhanced with bass. Dialogue also is effectively directionalized.

The Immersive Sound element is comprised of the extension of the music score to the height layer, sans solo violin, as well as few infrequent sound effects such as helicopters, a running scraping sound through bushes, a train movement on tracks, an oxen stampede and powerful thunder strikes. A lot, lot more height channel treatment would have really benefited the spherical surround experience.

Overall, this is a very pleasing and entertaining holosonic® ear-level soundtrack enhanced intermittently with a few sound effects that will thrill all ages. (Gary Reber)