The Irishman appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became an appealing presentation.
Sharpness appeared strong, with a consistently tight, concise image. Any signs of softness appeared miniscule at most.
No issues with moiré effects or jaggies materialized, and I witnessed no signs of edge haloes or source flaws.
Irishman opted for a strong mix of teal, amber and orange, with only occasional instances of other hues. Despite the limitations of these choices, they boasted good vivacity and represented the intended hues.
Blacks seemed dark and dense, while low-light shots offered good smoothness and clarity. Ultimately, the image was outstanding.
In addition, the movie’s Dolby Atmos soundtrack suited the material. Downconverted to Dolby TrueHD 7.1, the mix didn’t excel, but it worked fine.
Though the audio took time to warm up, as much of the movie’s first act showed limited scope. These scenes bordered on monaural at times.
However, the soundfield opened up fairly well as matters progressed. Music filled the spectrum more fully, and effects added involvement.
Much of the flick went with ambience, but violent scenes contributed more active information. Though none of this ever formed a truly impressive soundscape, the track still broadened well as it went.
Audio quality also pleased. The songs/score boasted fine range and impact, though the limitations of the old tunes could hold down these components.
Speech came across as natural and concise, whereas effects seemed accurate and realistic. Nothing here dazzled, but the track worked for the movie.
All of the set’s extras appear on a second disc, and there we open with Making The Irishman, a 36-minute, 10-second documentary. It offers notes from director Martin Scorsese, casting director Ellen Lewis, author Charles Brandt, producers Emma Tillinger Koskoff, Jane Rosenthal and Irwin Winkler, visual effects supervisor Pablo Helman, director of photography Rodrigo Prieto, costume designers Sandy Powell and Christopher Peterson, production designer Bob Shaw, location manager Kip Myers, and actors Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Bobby Cannavale, Ray Romano, Kathrine Narducci, Stephanie Kurtzuba, Anna Paquin and Stephen Graham.
“Making” covers story and characters, cast and performances, Scorsese’s work on the shoot, visual effects and photography, costumes, production design and locations. While not the most thorough “Making of” show I’ve seen, this one covers a good array of bases and becomes a worthwhile piece.
Next comes a Roundtable Conversation with Scorsese, De Niro, Pacino and actor Joe Pesci. It goes for 18 minutes, 59 seconds as they discuss their relationships and their work on the film. We get some decent nuggets here, though the main appeal stems from the interaction of these four legends together at a table.
Gangsters’ Requiem offers a 21-minute, 27-second video essay from critic Farran Smith Nehme. She discusses story and thematic elements as well as interpretation and connections to the Scorsese filmography. Nehme brings a solid take on the flick.
With Anatomy of a Scene, we get a five-minute, five-second reel that takes a closer look at the “Frank Sheeran Appreciation Night” sequence. Scorsese offers commentary that discusses aspects of this segment and offers some good insights.
The Evolution of De-Aging As Seen In The Irishman runs 12 minutes, 55 seconds and brings remarks from Scorsese, Helman, Prieto, Netflix Head of VFX Andy Fowler, ILM head Rob Bredow, ILM associate VFX supervisors Nelson Sepulveda and Leandro Estbecorena, associate VFX supervisor Ivan Busquets, ILM digital character model supervisor Paul Giacoppo, ILM layout supervisor John Levin, ILM texture paint supervisor Jean Bolte, ILM visual effects producer Brian Batlettani, face capture supervisor Stephane Grabli, and ILM executive producer Jill Brooks.
Though the title implies we’ll learn about de-aging effects from over the years, “Evolution” really just discusses those techniques in Irishman. Though the featurette leans a little heavily toward self-praise, it nonetheless provides various useful tidbits.
In addition to two trailers, the disc concludes with two Archival Interviews. We hear from Frank Sheeran (5:48) and Jimmy Hoffa in (17:21),
The first segment shows an elderly Sheeran as he discusses some of his experiences. He reveals a few decent notes but the clip feels interesting more for curiosity value.
A 1963 TV piece from journalist David Brinkley, the Hoffa segment gives us a snapshot from the era, with much of it from one interview between Hoffa and Brinkley. It becomes easily the more compelling of the two.
The set includes a booklet. This provides photos, credits and an essay from film historian Geoffrey O’Brien. It ends matters well.
Given its cast and crew, The Irishman comes with huge expectations, but it can’t live up to those hopes. Too long and too disjointed, the movie disappoints. The Blu-ray offers excellent visuals along with solid audio and an informative set of supplements. Irishman doesn’t connect like it should.