ActionAdventureBiographyDramaHighest RatedReviewsThe Revenant 4K Review

A frontiersman on a fur trading expedition in the 1820s fights for survival after being mauled by a bear and left for dead by members of his own hunting team.
80/100
4K Disc Released
2018
HDR
HDR10 | Dolby Vision
Sound MIx
Dolby Digital | Dolby Atmos | Dolby Surround 7.1
Aspect Ratio
2.39 : 1
IMDB Rating
8.0
Overall Score
Rating Overview
4K Picture
80%
Audio Quality
70%
Special Features
80%
Store
90%
Rating Summary
While exploring uncharted wilderness in 1823, legendary frontiersman Hugh Glass sustains injuries from a brutal bear attack.

It took a year to release the 4k Blu-ray and everything about the release is nothing less than magnificent. It is a semi-biographical film directed by Alejandro G. Inarritu describing frontiersman Hugh Glass’s experiences in 1823. The movie is based in part on Michael Punke’s 2002 novel of the same name. The film was released in December 2015 and was distributed by 20th Century Fox. Other than earning fantastic critical responses, The Revenant did exceptionally well in the box office as well by earning over $500M having spent $135M.

The quest for survival and justice by the frontiersman shown in the movie is undoubtedly a cinematic masterpiece.

Movie Review:

The director of the movie Inarritu did a fantastic job at camera work while he was making ‘Birdman’ and he pulled it off again while making The Revenant. It made the movie more of a virtual experience rather than just another film. The story of the movie may not be extraordinary, it’s the technical beauty of the film that makes the movie memorable. It’s one of those movies that may not be liked by everyone as the movie seems slow at times, but then again the movie needs to experienced rather than enjoyed. The story lacks a conventional assembly as it seamlessly passes from one scene to the next. Inarritu and Emmanuel Lubezki created a series of ineradicable images and a few of the most daring scenes ever to be filmed. Those scenes in the movie will get stuck in the viewers head. For example, the scene of Hugh Glass (Di Caprio) getting viciously attacked by a bear. The technical expertise displayed in filming something like that is astonishing. The director has treated every character with respect and didn’t rush into anything, he explained the characters with patience. His ability to capture every scene, including the ones with brutality is like no one else. The Revenant is certainly a movie that will be remembered and watched by people in the future and will be admired by the next generation as well.

The cast of the movie did a marvelous job. Will Pouter, Domhnall Gleeson and Tom Hardy all ended up with great performances. Leonardo DiCaprio’s performance in the movie finally delivered him the much-awaited Oscar for best actor. It’s a movie that will be in his heart for the rest of his life and he absolutely gave his all for the part. DiCaprio represented the tortured character of Hugh Glass and did an amazing job to signify the personal demons of the character that got gradually revealed throughout the film.

Storyline:

The Revenant is promoted as a revenge flick, but it’s actually much more than that. The movie shows a man who fights against nature in cold blood in order to take his revenge against the ones who betrayed him. The scenes are mainly shot largely on location in remote wilderness areas of Alberta, Canada. Some of them were shot in Montana and the southern tip of Argentina. The scenes were shot utterly in natural light and frequently during the supposed “magic hour” which are before sunrise and after sunset.

During a winter of the 1820s, Hugh Glass along with a group of frontiersman goes West in the employ of Captain Andrew Henry to do some profitable fur trapping. Hugh Glass has brought his son along with him, who happens to be half white man, half native. The situation kind of bothers others in the party, most markedly John Fitzgerald (played by Tom Hardy). After managing to save some pelts, when Hugh Glass was returning to the fort, he suddenly gets attacked by a bear and gets himself badly injured. But phenomenally, he survives the attack, but the ground makes it almost impossible for the other members of the group to carry him back. John is tasked with remaining behind with him to bury him properly when he dies. John kills Hawk and decides to abandon Hugh to his fate. He and the others leave Glass in nature completely alone and unguarded to die. But selfishly leaving him for dead eventually comes back to haunt him as Glass survives. Revenge is what fuels his survival and he decides to hunt all of them.

The 4k Ultra HD Blu-Ray Disc:

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment brings ‘The Revenant’ to 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray as a pack of two-disc combo (1 BD-66, 1 BD-50)with a flyer for a Digital HD Copy. The UHD disc sits comfortably opposite a Region A locked, BD50 disc inside a black, eco-cutout case. The video includes subtitles; English SDH, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, and Swedish. After startup, the disc goes directly to the main menu with full-motion clips and music.

Picture Quality: (5 out of 5 stars)

The 4k disc is presented in 10-bit color depth with an HEVC / H.265 encoded 3840 x 2160p transfer in 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The film was shot using a diversity of cameras, including the Arri Alexa XT at a resolution of 3.4K, the RED Epic Dragon with a resolution of 6K and the brand new Arri Alexa 65 at a resolution of 6.5K. It was completed using a 4K Digital Intermediate, which seemingly molded the basis for this Ultra HD Blu-ray release by 20th Century Fox.

The difference between the Blu-Ray and Ultra HD is fascinating. The most seeming distinction between them, and the one that the viewers will possibly appreciate the most is that the producers color graded this presentation so that they could take advantage of the wider color gamut. On the Blu-ray, the video has a kind of bluish, nearly steely cold feel, whereas, in the UHD, the picture has a greenish teal tone. It bluntly gives the photography an additional natural quality while making the environment frighteningly cold. Both the versions have its own qualities but the UHD disc gives a more surreal feel over the Blu-Ray one.

The shakiness in the tops of the trees as the camera panned across them is superb and it shows how remarkable the videos can really seem. The pure impact of the imagery in The Revenant is astonishing and it really has to be experienced in order to fully appreciate what that truly means. It genuinely captures the experience that one would go through in the theatres. It can also be said with confidence that it even looked better than some of the theatres. There is a tiny bit of color banding visible, resulting from the conversion of 16-bit color to 10-bit for this disc, but it did not distract for a second. The polished detail, the massive and elaborate color palette, the glassy-glare of sunlight shimmering off a flowing stream or ice, the profound dark forest shadows are absolutely clear and would impress the viewer as they watch the film.

Some intense scenes wouldn’t look as convincing if the video quality was not at this level. Everything feels so instantaneous and concrete that one would feel like he could reach right out and touch it. The high dynamic range in the UHD Blu-Ray made all the difference from the Blu-Ray version as after one watches the HDR format, they might even get depressed watching the non-HDR format. Every detail is sharp which is why even small ray of lights coming out from the spaces between the leaves can be witnessed at its best. The movie from start to finish did a fantastic job in terms of picture quality, it deserves to be among one of the best video experiences ever.

Audio Quality: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The Revenant’s audio on the 4K disc is an incredibly immersive English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio mix. The sound is so amazing that it entirely surrounds and transfixes the delicate sounds of the primal forest, water, and wind. However, the audio is the same as the Blu-Ray counterpart, which is kind of a disappointment. The movie was released in the theatres with Dolby Digital, Dolby Surround 7.1, IMAX 6-Track, 12-Track Digital Sound and Dolby Atmos. It is somewhat unsatisfactory that the Dolby Atmos track ‘The Revenant’ was released with at some of the theaters did not make it to the disc. But the DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 mix is very capable and extremely competent, so it kind of makes up for it. Some of the great scenes in the movie wouldn’t seem as amazing as it did in the UHD version if the pinpoint accuracy of the sound was not available.

Small details like background wind noise, creaking trees, and leaves, groaning of the forest in the underlying tone of the scenes can be felt quite clearly. The scenes completely surround the viewers and make the movie experience as real as it can be. The dialogues are very clear even the whispers, while the delightful moments of profound, thrumming bass makes everything just perfect. Even with all the accuracy, the only reason the sound quality receives a 4.5 and not a 5 is that we know the soundtrack could’ve been slightly better with the use of Dolby Atmos Mix like in the theatres.

Special Features: 2 out of 5 stars

The special features are kind of a disappointment in the 4k UHD disc as it doesn’t anything. But the disc includes the Blu-Ray version of the film and it includes a fascinating documentary called ‘A World Unseen’ even though it’s the only special features of substance on the disc.

A World Unseen (HD, 44 min) – This behind-the-scenes feature has a certain weight to it. It begins with Iñárritu sitting on a soundstage, being shown pictures from the film and its making to inspire a certain mode of thinking in the filmmaker. He opens up about how challenging it was to make the movie. The feature also includes great interviews from the cast and crew, along with the shooting on locations, and the environmental message of the film. The documentary is detailed and it makes the viewer understand what the makers went through to make the film and their expectations from the movie.

Final Verdict:

Whatever you may hear about the film, the movie is a rare and genuine cinematic experience that is worth watching. With the amazing video and audio quality of the 4k UHD Blu-Ray, the movie feels more real and makes the experience better. Other than the movie itself, the performances of the actors involved in mind-blowing and this will always be the film that finally brought the Oscars home to DiCaprio. Even though the special feature is a little disappointing, the disc will be a valuable addition to the home collection.