Underwater appears in an aspect ratio of 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The image offered the expected high quality affair.
Overall sharpness appeared solid. A few slightly soft shots materialized along the way, but they stayed minor and negligible.
The image lacked shimmering or jagged edges, and edge haloes failed to mar the presentation. I also didn’t see any print flaws.
Underwater emphasized the modern palette, with an extremely heavy shift toward teal. Splashes of orange popped up at times as well as some red late in the story, but blue/green remained dominant. The colors didn’t overcome their stylistic restrictions, but they appeared appropriate.
Blacks were deep and dark, while shadows seemed smooth and clear. The movie gave us a strong transfer.
I also felt pleased with the immersive DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack of Underwater, as the audio accentuated the visuals well. It mixed creepy atmosphere with a mix of jolts and “assault moments” from the rear.
In the front, the track showed good stereo music and presented various elements in a logical and natural manner. The elements blended neatly and created a seamless sense of the environment. From the back, aggressive violent components added kick to the proceedings and made the mix more involving.
Audio quality seemed positive. Dialogue consistently appeared natural and crisp, with no edginess or intelligibility issues on display.
Music was clear and dynamic. The score seemed broadly reproduced and complemented the mix nicely.
Effects always were distinctive and concise, and the mix boasted fine clarity for the louder moments. Bass response always seemed rich and firm. This became a pretty terrific track.
A few extras appear here, and we begin with an audio commentary from director William Eubank, associate producer Jared Purrington and contributor Phil Gawthorne. All three sit together for this running, screen-specific discussion of story/characters, cast and performances, sets and production design, creatures, stunts/action, and various effects.
Overall, this becomes a solid discussion of the film. It hits on a nice array of topics and moves quickly to turn into a winning, informative take on the movie.
Seven Extended/Deleted Scenes fill a total of 14 minutes, 48 seconds. Most offer brief additions, and the true new sequences just provide a bit more character play. None of them add up to much.
We can view the scenes with or without commentary from Eubank, Purrington and Gawthorne. They tell us a bit about the sequences as well as why they got cut – sometimes, as we don’t always learn the rationale behind the deletions. Still, the commentary adds some good info.
Next comes Real Bunny Montage, a three-minute, 25-second segment that shows the use of an actual rabbit in the movie. In the released film, the TJ Miller character totes around a stuffed bunny, but the filmmakers originally shot with a real one, and we see those shots here.
“Bunny” also comes with optional commentary from Eubank, Purrington and Gawthorne. They tell us about these aspects of the production – and seem to assume we already heard the feature commentary, as they don’t really explain the use of the real rabbit. Still, they bring a few decent notes.
Making Underwater splits into three domains: “Design” (17:54), “Production” (19:50) and “Creatures & Visual Effects” (19:56). Across these, we hear from Eubank, Purrington, producer Tonia Davis, visual effects supervisors Blair Clark and Axel Bonami, production designer Naaman Marshall, supervising art director Erik Osusky, mechanical department legacy effects Richard Landon, art director Kelly Curley, director of photography Bozan Bazelli, stunt coordinator Mark Raynor, special effects foreman Mark Byers, and actors Kristen Stewart, Jessica Henwick, John Gallagher, Jr., and TJ Miller.
The featurettes look at set design and attempts to shoot “underwater”, various effects, costumes and props, cast and performances, photography, stunts and action, and creatures.
With nearly an hour at its disposal, “Making” gets plenty of room to explore different filmmaking areas, and it does so well. The segments dig into a good mix of topics so they add up to a solid view of the production.
The movie’s trailer completes the disc. No other previews appear.
Little more than a mash-up of Alien and The Abyss, Underwater delivers thin gruel. Underdeveloped and fairly dull, the movie squanders its potential to thrill and scare. The Blu-ray boasts very good visuals, excellent audio and a nice mix of bonus materials. Though not a terrible movie, Underwater fails to click.