Aquaman (4K Blu-ray) (2018)
|Category||Crime Drama||Featurette-Making Of-Loads on Blu-ray only|
|Year Of Production||2018|
|RSDL / Flipper||
Dual Disc Set
|Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||James Wan|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Atmos 7.1
English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 5.1
Italian Dolby Atmos 7.1
Italian DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
French Dolby Digital 5.1
Czech Dolby Digital 5.1
Hindi Dolby Digital 5.1
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||Varies|
|Original Aspect Ratio||Varies||Miscellaneous|
English for the Hearing Impaired
Italian for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
The DC Universe has been struggling along in the shadow of the might of Marvel for some years now, not being able to hit the same heights critically, with fans or at the box office (despite still making loads of money). Aquaman is now the highest grossing film in the DC Comics brand globally, eclipsing The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises with its $1.1 billion+ box office take. Personally, I believe those are both better films than this, although it is clearly a better film than most of the recent DC ones like Batman Vs Superman, Justice League or Suicide Squad. This film succeeds more than mostly due to the humour and personality of its lead character and the actor portraying him, Jason Mamoa. Another important thing going in its favour is that it is visually stunning especially in Dolby Vision 4K.
The story here starts with the usual Superhero origin story, showing Aquaman's origin as the progeny of a man, Tom Curry (Temuera Morrison) and a Princess of the seas, Atlanna (Nicole Kidman). The movie quickly moves past this to focus on two intertwined subplots, his half-brother King Orm's (Patrick Wilson) desire to unite the seven kingdoms of Atlantis and declare war on the surface world; and a pirate, known as Black Manta (Yahya Abdul Mateen II), who wants to exact revenge on Aquaman for the death of his father. Aquaman is coerced into getting involved in the underwater politics by a princess of one of the kingdoms, Mera (Amber Heard) and his half-brother's vizier and his own former mentor, Vulko (Willem Defoe) as they are concerned that Orm will destroy the underwater world due to his drive towards war. Vulko sets him off in search of the legendary Trident of Atlan which he believes will allow Aquaman to defeat Orm. Can Aquaman find the trident, keep Black Manta from killing him, defeat Orm and take his place as the rightful King of Atlantis?
As I mentioned above this film is stunningly beautiful as a spectacle with the underwater sequences especially leaping from the screen in 4K and often in an expanded aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Like a number of films recently this one switches from 2.40:1 to 1.85:1 depending on the scene. The colours explode form the screen in these sequences and look very realistic (within the confines of a completely fantastic world obviously). On the other hand many of the above water sequences look somewhat fake, such as the sequences on the wharf in front of Tom's lighthouse. The colours here don't quite look right to my eyes. This is not a transfer issue but a source material one. Jason Momoa is great (as always in these sort of action roles) as the funny, relaxed and action ready Aquaman leading the cast here with aplomb. Amber Heard also works well as his sarcastic and generally unimpressed companion, Mera. A grizzled Dolph Lundgren also appears as Mera's father, King Nereus. James Wan took on the directorial role here mostly having been known for horror films previously such as Saw and the Conjuring films. He mostly does a fine job, certainly in terms of the visual spectacle, however, I feel that this movie's greatest weakness is its run time. At 143 minutes, it is probably 30 minutes too long and tries to tell too much story. It feels like the Black Manta part of the story could have been kept for the sequel. Even if that was retained there are certainly sequences and other subplots which could have been curtailed to assist with the overall film. This is a consistent problem with the DC films to my mind, lack of tough decision making on runtime. The Marvel films are quite often long but do not drag like this does at times. The production quality is generally very high having mostly been shot in Queensland studios or locations in NSW and Queensland. Costumes are excellent and the underwater effects for scenes shot dry and quite amazing at times.
Recommended and certainly the best of the recent DC Universe series of films.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu features music.
This is a featurette focused on the character of Aquaman, casting Momoa, the significance of a Brown-skinned superhero, physical preparation, rigs, camera tests, shooting challenges, the premiere and Momoa's relationship with Temeura Morrison. Worthwhile.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
This film is available in the US in the same format except for some minor differences in foreign language soundtracks. Buy Local.
The video quality is excellent despite being an upscale to 4K.
The audio quality is excellent.The extras are plentiful but quite samey.
|DVD||Sony UBP-X700 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Player, using HDMI output|
|Display||LG OLEDC8PTA 55”. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 2160p.|
|Audio Decoder||Built into amplifier. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer|