The Batman 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 261, May/June 2022

WSR Score4.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
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Strong violent and disturbing content, drug content, strong language, and some suggestive material
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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Matt Reeves
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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More than a year of stalking the streets as "The Batman" (Robert Patterson), striking fear into the hearts of criminals, has led Bruce Wayne deep into the shadows of Gotham City. With only a few trusted allies –– Alfred (Andy Serkis), Lt. James Gordon (Jeffrey Wright) –– amongst the city's corrupt network of officials and high-profile figures, the lone vigilante has established himself as he sole embodiment of vengeance among his fellow citizens. When a killer targets Gotham's elite with a series of sadistic machinations, a trail of cryptic clues sends the World's Greatest Detective on an investigation into the underworld, where he encounters such characters as Selinsa Kyle (Zoe Kravitz), Oz, aka The Penguin (Colin Farrell), Carmine Falcone (John Turturro) and Edward Nashton, aka The Riddler (Paul Dano). As the evidence begins to lead closer to home and the scale of the perpetrator's plans becomes clear, Batman must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit, and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued Gotham City. (Gary Reber)

Special features include 10 featurettes: "Vengeance In The Making" (HD 53:41), "Vengeance Meets Justice" (HD 08:04), "The Batman: Genesis" (HD 06:09), "Looking For Vengeance" (HD 04:57), "Becoming Catwoman" (HD 08:36), "Anatomy Of The Wing Suit Jump" (HD 06:29), "Anatomy Of The Car Chase" (HD 06:08), "A Transformation: The Penguin" (HD 07:59), "The Batmobile" (HD 10:51) and "Unpacking The Icons" (HD 05:47); two deleted scenes with Director Matt Reeves (HD 07:47) and a Movies Anywhere digital code.

The 2.39:1 1080p AVC 4K Ultra HD Dolby Vision/HDR10 picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, upconverted to 2160p with greater resolution and luminance, was photographed digitally in anamorphic ALFA Scope and J-D-C Scope using the Arri Alexa LF, Arri Alexa Mini LF, and Sony CineAlta Venice 6K camera systems and sourced from a 4K master Digital Intermediate format. For such a dark, shadowy movie, picture quality is excellent. Shadows are the prime focus and backdrop in virtually every scene. As such HDR contrast is excellent, with not only superb shadow delineation but also deep revealing black levels and intense strongly illuminated white levels. Flesh tones are generally natural and realistic. Resolution can be excellent and exhibit good detail in facial features, including hair and complexions, clothing and Batman's attire, as well as object textures, but often it is stylishly soft. Colors are warm and rich and generally favor dark gray and brownish tints, with occasional spots of bright color. To exhibit the full dynamic dark character of this movies requires a display device with superb dynamic range and black levels as well as a dark, preferable black viewing environment. This is a hauntingly dark filmic-looking picture that sets a grim mood. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack is focused at ear level and sounds effectively dynamic, Atmospherics are strong and aggressively enveloping. As well, sound effects enhance the action scenes, supported with deep sub-25 Hz bass extension. Explosions and slams are intense and heighten the dynamics A car chase involving the Batmobile is incredibly intense and exciting sonically with energized soundfield directionality. The end flooding scene is sonically exciting and dynamic. Foley sound effects are perfectly synchronized with picture. The orchestral scores is wide and deep and extensions aggressively to the surrounds for effective envelopment and dynamic impact. Dialogue is intelligible with generally convincing spatial integration.

The Immersive Sound element lacks an extension of the orchestral score and is comprised of various scanty sound effects such as rain, thunder, train pass by, helicopter, atmospheric din, motorcycle, elevator sound, power outage, glass shattering and a few other sounds. All are distantly spaced and very transient sounding. Unfortunately, this is a very unsatisfying height layer and is absent so many instances that sounds could have been extended, including the music.

This is a haunting holosonic® ear-level soundtrack that delivers excellent fidelity and dimensional effectiveness. (Gary Reber)