Midway appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this 4K UHD Disc. This became a strong image.
Delineation seemed solid. Virtually no softness marred the presentation, so the flick felt accurate and concise.
No signs of moiré effects or jaggies occurred. The movie also lacked edge haloes or print flaws.
In terms of palette, Midway favored a combination of teal and amber, with an emphasis on the latter. Those choices came as no surprise, and the 4K UHD reproduced them in a satisfactory manner. The disc’s HDR brought a little extra impact to the tones as well.
Blacks showed strong depth, and shadows were good, with nice opacity and clarity. The HDR added vivacity to whites and contrast. All of this was enough for a “A-”.
I felt consistently pleased with the excellent Dolby Atmos soundtrack of Midway. Downconverted to Dolby TrueHD 7.1, the soundscape offered frequent room for information to emanate from the various speakers.
The mix used those chances well. The soundtrack delivered wall-to-wall auditory material that spread out across the speakers in a satisfying manner and that blended together nicely.
This meant an active track in which the surrounds worked as nearly equal partners and kept the mix humming. Plenty of action moments made this a consistently impressive soundfield.
Audio quality also satisfied, as speech was natural and concise, while music sounded peppy and full. Effects turned into the primary factor, and those elements appeared accurate and vivid.
Bass response added real depth and rocked my subwoofer. Expect a top-notch sonic experience here.
How did the 4K UHD compare to the Blu-ray version? Audio remained identical, as both discs came with the same Atmos mix.
On the other hand, the Dolby Vision picture offered improvements, mainly due to the HDR. Colors and contrast looked superior, and the 4K also came with stronger blacks and accuracy. This turned into a nice upgrade.
As we head to extras, we open with an audio commentary from director Roland Emmerich. He provides a running, screen-specific discussion of story/characters, historical elements, cast and performances, music, effects, sets and locations, and connected domains.
Few phrases terrify me as much as “audio commentary from Roland Emmerich”. Over the years, the director has brought us one dull, rambling track after another, each one made worse due to the filmmaker’s verbal tics.
Emmerich’s persistent tendency to pepper comments with “like, kind of, you know” continues to annoy – and Emmerich even acknowledges his lack of verbal fluidity toward the end of the chat. He utters these phrases less often than usual, though, and he compensates with a better than average commentary.
Better than average for Emmerich, so one should still expect dull spots. Nonetheless, Emmerich gives us a fairly informative and invested chat, one that holds up much better than his usual commentaries.
Six featurettes follow, and Getting It Right spans 14 minutes, 16 seconds. It brings notes from Emmerich, screenwriter Wes Tooke, producer Harald Kloser, production designer Kirk Petruccelli, executive producer Carsten HW Lorenz, visual effects supervisor Guillaume Murray, and actors Dennis Quaid, Woody Harrelson, Ed Skrein, Luke Kleintank, Patrick Wilson, Luke Evans, Darren Criss, and Nick Jonas.
“Right” looks at the story’s path to the screen as well as sets and locations, Emmerich’s impact, effects and attempts at realism. Expect a largely fluffy piece without much substance.
The Men of Midway runs 12 minutes, 24 seconds and offers remarks from Kloser, Emmerich, Tooke, Skrein, Harrelson, Quaid, Wilson, Evans, Kleintank, Jonas, Criss, and actor Aaron Eckhart.
We get notes about cast, characters and performances. Like “Right”, this one comes with an awful lot of happy talk and little useful information.
With Man On a Mission, we get a four-minute, 57-second reel that features Emmerich, Tooke, Eckhart, Wilson, Jonas, Kloser, Evans, Harrelson, Criss, and Kleintank.
“Mission” examines Emmerich’s interest in the Battle of Midway and his work on the production. Inevitably, this mainly means praise for the director.
Turning Point goes for 15 minutes and provides comments from historians Timothy Orr, Daqing Yang, Samuel Cox, Elliot Carlson, Liza Mundy, David Jourdan and Craig L. Symonds.
This program offers an overview of the facts behind the Battle of Midway. It becomes a good synopsis and an informative reel.
Next comes Breaking the Japanese Code, a six-minute, 14-second reel with Symonds, Carlson, Orr, Cox and Mundy.
“Code” looks at Joe Rochefort, a codebreaker played in Midway by Brennan Brown. This becomes another useful historical discussion that fleshes out movie elements.
Finally, We Met At Midway fills nine minutes, 29 seconds with info from veterans Ervin Wendt and Charles Monroe. They offer their memories of WWII experiences in this engaging program.
On the included Blu-ray disc, we open with ads for Angel Has Fallen, Knives Out, Rambo: Last Blood, Hacksaw Ridge and Semper Fi. We also get the trailer for Midway.
In real-life, the Battle of Midway acted as a major turning point during World War II. As a film, Midway fails to bring impact or depth to this important tale, as it becomes a dull, perfunctory action flick. The 4K UHD delivers excellent picture and audio along with a reasonable array of bonus materials. This turns into a terrific release for a flawed film.
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