AdventureDramaFantasyReviewsThe Shape of Water 4k Review

At a top secret research facility in the 1960s, a lonely janitor forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity.
4K Disc Released
March 15, 2018
HDR10 | Dolby Vision
Sound MIx
D-Cinema 48kHz 5.1
Aspect Ratio
1.85 : 1
IMDB Rating
Overall Score
Rating Overview
4K Picture
Audio Quality
Special Features
Rating Summary
The idea of love surpassing standard and traditional values and norms become evident in terms of a core bond which was shared between an individual who does not know how to speak and a scabrous Amphibian with rough skin and sharp teeth, which makes it easier to overlook the flaws.

The Shape of Water got released on the year 2017, which is an American Romantic Dark Fantasy movie, distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures, both produced and directed by Guillermo Del Toro, written by Guillermo himself and Vanessa Taylor. The shooting took place in Ontario, Canada during the end of 2016. The story mainly starts off in Baltimore, Maryland which follows a cleaner who cannot speak at a government laboratory with high-security. The individual ends up falling in love with an amphibian creature who was imprisoned. The budgeted amount was roughly just over $20 Million. The movie was presented in the grand competition section of the 74th Venice International Film Festival and was acknowledged as the “Golden Lion” for best film. The movie ended up with 4 Oscars at the 90th Academy Awards.

Oscar-winning “The Shape of Water” lifts the heights, Del Toro with another masterpiece.

Movie Review:

It’s not precise; if you want a deeper meaning it is more of a fairytale at heart. The film has genuinely seized its talking point. The movie mainly focuses on the roles played by a deaf female janitor, a black female janitor, and an unemployed artist. They are persistently avoided which reflects on the general prejudice during the 1960s. It can be suggested from the play that Del Toro wants his audience to cautious of the depriving an individual of his or her right and are on the same page, not a fresh idea but one which can be repeated and used to find a mutual agreement. Performance by Sally Hawkins is always persistent but still underrated over the years, and while taking up Elisa’s role, she injected a shady, ruthless image and determination. She is resembled as a princess during the opening, but the specific glamorize resemblance is exposed judging by her early morning activities. Jenkins and Spenser made an impressive start as well, Michael Shannon played the role of a state colonel who was in charge of the project to study the asset who access to liberty and dominance starts disappearing as he starts losing control. And last but not the least, Doug Jones’ role as the “Amphibian” who interacts so much with such minimal resources.

The film’s main cast stars Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins, Michael Stuhlbarg, Octavia Spencer and everyone among the crew members made sure they did whatever it took them to make the movie incomparable. Sally Hawkins was specially praised for her epic performance and was nominated at the Academy Awards for Best Actress.

Story Line (Reviewer’s Take):

From my point of view, even though I would consider the storyline to be concluded as “Thoughtless”, the movie’s integrity leads to different experience. Even though I have not watched much of Del Toro’s films, I would say this one has to be the best one till date. The idea of love surpassing standard and traditional values and norms become evident in terms of a core bond which was shared between an individual who does not know how to speak and a scabrous Amphibian with rough skin and sharp teeth, which makes it easier to overlook the flaws. Care, attention, and love has been so heavily injected into filling every corner of the movie that by the end, the movie flourishes in reaching a partial imaginative destination. I remember a moment from the movie, where one of the characters changed the channel as soon as race riots were being broadcasted to a lighter program, a fact about those individuals who wish to isolate themselves from events which are taking place nearby. Del Toro’s direction and story put the limelight on his character’s chemistry and seriousness. The movie’s vision and the subject matter continues to remain with you long after the movie finishes.

The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray

20th Century Fox brings The Shape of Water on 4K UHD Blu-ray in a two-disc combo pack, 4K UHD + Blu-ray + Digital set. The discs are held in an eco-friendly UHD case with an identical slipcover artwork. After startup, the disc is opened to an animated main menu with the old-fashioned navigation options. The available subtitles for the movie are- English SDH, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, Cantonese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Mandarin (Traditional), Norwegian, Polish, Swedish.

Picture Quality: (4 Stars out of 5)

The shape of water was captured at 3.4k and 2.8k and was finished at 2k Digital Intermediate (DI). The disc grants an up-scaled 3840 x 2160p resolution image in the aspect ratio of 1.85:1 widescreen, while using a 10-bit video depth, a Wider Color Gamut (WCG), High Dynamic Range (HDR), and is encoded using the HEVC (H.265) codec HDR10. The HDR10 is the biggest improvement in the 4k UHD compared to the Blu-ray disc.

The movie initiates with an underwater sequence and through its clammy and gloomy in position, the 4K Ultra HD discloses a large sum of information.  While watching the movie, it can be seen that the amount of observation paid to all the flaws of Eliza’s apartment is huge. Every single detail can be easily understood and clearly visible such as textures or even dust on a character’s attire. Skin complexions are well built and close to being natural. Facial expression can be easily spotted such as wrinkles, hairlines are properly engraved. Blacks are vivid and deeper than expected. The level of degree and clearness of black, the abundance and firmness of other colors initiates an attractive and meaningful image. The color contrast and colors which differ are implemented to have a greater impact.

Audio Quality: (3 Stars out of 5)

The movie comes into sight with the same DTS Master HD 5.1. Even though the viewers might feel that they are being robbed, this is not the actual case since extra audio channels are not being placed by the 4K Blu-ray master. It is still a shame that a movie with such prosperous imagery surrounding is not partnered with Dolby Atmos or DTS: X soundtracks. The water dripping sounds in particular would’ve sounded even better had it been delivered in Dolby Atmos. But it was only made for the release with a DTS Master HD 5.1.

The mix was unsatisfactory, sounding plain and precise. There might just be a few coating of mixes, spoken words, and soundtracks at times and the usage of bass is rarely spotted, although it does sound pleasantly neat. The positioning of such audio is practically transported and the precession of the track is top-notch. Dialogues, on the other hand, were converted with clarity, however, it could have been louder. The DTS 5.1 soundtrack might not be extraordinary but it occupies everyone listening to it, and there is a pragmatism that connects well with the theme. The sound field is lush and smooth and atmosphere is quite impressive. But it is slightly difficult to not find yourself wondering what more was needed regarding the film’s soundtracks.

Special Features: (3.5 Stars of 5)

The special features mainly involve a 29-minute documentary which is divided into 4 segments that can either be watched separately or as an entire extension which involves the film’s backend story, subject matter, and construction of the water creature, the entire cast outline, and the results. There are other variables such as the underwater introductory sequence which is covered within this given duration. The dance which is exchanged by Eliza with the Amphibian can also be kept into consideration. These two scenes are definitely worth watching which portray Del Toro’s perception as a producer and a director. Adding more to that, there is an interview which is approximately 5 minutes with the Taiwanese American Visual Artist ” James Jean” where he guides and talks us through a few of his magnificent creations which he made subject to the film. Also, the special features sum up evidence of how occupied Del Toro can be to make the viewers feel that some additional features such as a commentary clip were made but the movie thoroughly lived up to the viewer’s expectations. The theatrical trailer and both the red band trailers for the movie is also added in the special feature.

It is a good collection of extras but sadly none of these extras feature in the 4k UHD disc. These extra are all in HD and are found on the included Blu-ray.

Final Verdict:

Concluding, even though the 4K Blu-ray of “The Shape of Water” did not live up to the viewer’s expectations and does not provide sufficient information either in the images or audio to make it the best. However, the outline of the story is exactly what Del Toro aimed for, a film that moves past obstacles that are impossible to attain but remains a love story which remains uncomplicated. The introduction of HDR to the setup and variety of colors make an already top-notch movie even more substantial and extraordinary and the 5.1 track was an impressive choice. Also, I feel this is more than enough to draw the attention of viewers and motivate to purchase considering how good this movie is.