Phantom Thread appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. While not the most appealing image, I suspect the Blu-ray replicated the source as intended.
This led to a moderate amount of softness. Most of the movie came with nice delineation, but the photography opted for a gauzy, hazy feel at times that could lead to some less-than-defined material.
Still, the majority of the image looked concise, and I saw no signs of jagged edges or moiré effects. Both edge haloes and print flaws remained absent as well.
Thread went with a palette that usually favored a blue impression, though we got some yellows and oranges as well. These tones appeared well-rendered within the production design.
Blacks seemed dark and deep, and shadows came across as largely smooth and clear, though a few low-light shots displayed a bit of murkiness. I felt this turned into a more than acceptable presentation given the photographic choices.
To my surprise, Thread provided a DTS X soundtrack. Downconverted to DTS-HD MA 7.1 on my system, this seemed like an odd choice for multi-directional audio, as the film did little to take advantage of the format’s possibilities.
A quiet character piece, the mix favored music above all else, as the score emanated from the side and rear channels in an appealing way. Effects didn’t get much to do, so they remained fairly passive. Some driving scenes and shots at social gatherings added a bit of involvement, but the track stayed restrained and occasionally felt borderline monaural.
Audio quality worked fine, with speech that seemed natural and distinctive. Though effects lacked much ambition, they felt accurate and tight.
Music worked best, as the score appeared warm and full, with nice dynamic range. No one will buy an elaborate sound system for this film, so expect a low-key mix here.
With that, we head to the set’s extras and a collection of Camera Tests. This reel lasts eight minutes, 42 seconds and can be viewed with or without commentary from writer/director/producer Paul Thomas Anderson.
The “Tests” show different makeup, location, costume, film stock and lighting options. I wouldn’t call these fascinating, but it’s moderately interesting to view various ways the movie could’ve looked, and Anderson gives us useful notes about the choices.
Called “For the Hungry Boy”, we find package of Deleted Scenes. These fill a total of four minutes, 51 seconds and give us a mix of fairly minor extensions to existing scenes or brief snippets. They seem largely inconsequential and not particularly interesting.
Narrated by comedian Adam Buxton, House of Woodcock Fashion Show lasts two minutes, 47 seconds. As we watch the clothes, Buxton narrates in a manner to emulate a 1950s newsreel. This seems mildly entertaining at best.
Finally, we locate a running 11-minute, 56-second compilation of 172 Behind the Scenes Photographs. Shot by Michael Bauman, demo versions of the score accompany the images. These become appealing photos that merit a look.
The disc opens with ads for Tully, Darkest Hour, Thoroughbreds and Molly’s Game. No trailer for Thread appears here.
Professional and well-crafted, Phantom Thread feels like a film that should make an impact – but it doesn’t. The movie comes across as too clinical and it lacks much real drama or involvement. The Blu-ray brings us generally positive picture and audio along with minor supplements. I’ve liked a lot of Paul Thomas Anderson’s work but Thread leaves me cold.