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Fury (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Seems like forever ago, but director David Ayer actually stocked himself up some well reviewed movies before the back-to-back nosedive of Suicide Squad and Bright. While critical praise isn’t there, Suicide Squad did made oodles of money and Bright was a pretty sizeable success for Netflix. Fury was the film prior to those, that had some buzz and anticipation going for it leading in. The film did okay in America but wound up pulling in over 200 million dollars on the worldwide market. Sony has decided its high time to bring this one to the 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray format already. Pairing it along with the Mel Gibson led film, The Patriot, it will be coming out May 22nd. If you’re a fan, feel free to order yourself a copy from the link at the end of the review. 

Film 

In April 1945, the Allies are making their final push in the European theater. A battle-hardened Army sergeant named Don “Wardaddy” Collier, leading a Sherman tank and a five-man crew, undertakes a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Hopelessly outnumbered, outgunned and saddled with an inexperienced soldier in their midst, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds as they move to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.

Fury is an ugly war story with some really painful and eye opening ugly moments of World War II that we’ve never really seen in a film. Our characters aren’t the best of people or the ones we think to propagandize or think mightily of when one hears the anthem play. This type of war character on film is typically reserved for the Vietnam films as WWII or WWI is the “good ol boys”. What David Ayer shows us in this film is a bit of a brutally honest disagreement with what we’ve seen before. He might push this point a bit too much, but its his to make.

I make no secret that I’m not much a fan of his as a director, but this is one of his better films and maybe his best overall effort. Ayer is pretty patient with the camera in the film and effectively knows how to shoot the tank and action surrounding it. He’s much more patient than we’ve normally seen him. This movie is a far cry from the absolute vanilla, boring and generic sequences that litter the entirety of Suicide Squad and Bright. If you’re only familiar with those, you should take a look at Fury and see the talent he displayed here and why he was given those high profile directing gigs.

Where Fury really lacks and doesn’t work for me is its characters. They’re all a bunch of badasses with the one choir boy among them to be our avatar into the whole “shock of the horrors of war”. Its a played out scenario and the only difference is these guys just keep trying to get more and more despicable to the point where you’re actually not too affected when their safety or well-being is put into jeopardy. From the get-go when Logan Lerman’s character is introduced to the stone cold badass (That we find has some sort of soft spot…surprise) Brad Pitt, we know this movie is either going one of 2 ways; either Lerman is going to sadly be the only one killed by the end crawl or he’ll be the only survivor and carry on their hardened ways. And at over 2 hours, these characters can be a bit tiresome.

The structure and pacing of this movie is one we’ve seen far too often and has no drive. We basically just travel a little, shit goes down, travel a little, shit goes down, repeat until the ultimate shit goes down. There are scenes to chill for a bit and develop the characters, but it does them really no favors. What doe save it is that there are some intense and eye opening action sequences. I almost feel like this movie was mad because Ayer read a couple stories and just wanted to show some f***ed up possibly true war horror accounts in a movie.

While I think End of Watch is Ayer’s best film, his best work at the craft may definitely be Fury. I’m not as big on this movie as many seemed to be when it came out, but it does work fine. Its pretty ruthless and very cold, but it does deliver some really in your face, tough and shocking war action. I had a hard time finding anything to really take in with these characters as they continually try to one up each other in being repulsive. Overall, if you are into war movies, this is a solid watch in terms of curiosity and big action.

Video 

Encoding: HEVC / H.265

Resolution: 4K (2160p) HDR10

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

Layers: BD-66

Clarity/Detail: Fury makes its 4K Utlra-HD Blu-ray debut in a natural 4K appearance (Finished with a 4K DI master). The image is quite sharp, crisp and ripe with plenty of details. Uniforms show sweat and dirt to go along with wrinkles and texture. The tank reveals all sorts of nicks, dents scratches and drips of water on it. Some of the foggier scenes can give it a bit of murky look and this is a darker looking image too. Its void of a lot of color, but HDR does manage to make the right areas pop.

Depth:  When the film has rather nice, longer shots that you can sit an take in the surroundings, it has a nice spacious, deeper look to it. Movements are cinematic and move smoothly with no distortions.

Black Levels: Blacks are natural and really look quite terrific here. You can make out details easily even though its on black hair, a darkened interior or really dark colored surface.

Color Reproduction: The film has some very wiped colors to it, to appear bleak and dreary. Though, there is some good saturation and the colors are quite full and strong. The HDR looks really cool with fire and explosions but also cigarette cherries and the bullets zipping by in an almost green color at times have a solid glow.

Flesh Tones: Skin tones come cold and stay consistent from start to finish of the film. Facial features are incredible as every cut, scar, stubble, wrinkle, dirt, dried blood…you name it, icomes on clear as day from any given distance. Its quite possibly the most impressive aspect of this transfer.

Noise/Artifacts: Clean

Audio 

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos (English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD compatible), French (Canada) 5.1 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, German 5.1 Dolby Digital, Italian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Portuguese 5.1 Dolby Digital, Russian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish (Latin America) 5.1 Dolby Digital, Ukrainian 5.1 Dolby Digital

Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Arabic, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Icelandic, Korean, Norwegian, Russian, Swedish, Ukrainian

Dynamics: I don’t want to be overexaggerative about Fury’s Atmos track, but they really needed to put something crazy on the box like “Your living room becomes the tank!” You really feel like you’re in the damn thing and on the battlefield and just quietly having tea in a dining room. This mix is crazy detailed and well woven, loud and particular about its volume. While in a quiet building or in the tank you can hear shots going off from a long ways away. The effects are so involving and intense here. Its quite an experience to be a part of.

Height: Bullets whiz overhead, debris falls on top of you, dings and rattles come from the tank, voices yell and gunfire echoes all coming from your ceiling speaker.

Low Frequency Extension: Oh yeah, your subwoofer bounces your room to great degrees of impact when a canon fires, grounds explode, buildings collapse and many more loud battle poundings.

Surround Sound Presentation: Every speaker has been set to precisely accurate to onscreen environmental settings as you’ll hear things travel across the room, make an exact sound to where it something should be when offscreen. Volume placement is golden and you just get every little nuance perfectly placed.

Dialogue Reproduction: Vocals are clear and crisp.

Extras 

Fury comes with the standard Blu-ray edition of the film and a digital copy. The UHD disc actually has all new bonus materials. The standard Blu-ray carries over the old ones.

4K Ultra-HD Disc

Tiger 131 (HD, 5:25) – Chronicles  the Allies’ capture of a Tiger tank and using one in the film.

Heart of Fury (HD, 6:36) – Michael Pena hosts as we take a looking inside the tank at the set for the film and the responsibilities of each soldier inside.

Clash of Armor (HD, 6:53) – Compares the pros and cons of Tiger and Sherman tanks in battle and the how each is used to maximum effect during battle.

No Guts, No Glory: The Horrors of Combat (HD, 28:06) – This featurette focuses on making an authentic war movie. And it doesn’t just go over costuming and prop weaponry, but looks into the psyche and traumatic mental toll it takes on a solider.

The Tanks of Fury (HD, 46:02) – Made to look like a genuine documentary, this covers tanks in the second World War and making this movie.

Trailers

  • Theatrical Trailer 1 (HD, 2:32)
  • Theatrical Trailer 2 (HD, 2:15)

Blu-ray Disc

Deleted & Extended Scenes

Blood Brothers (HD, 11:08)

Director’s Combat Journal (HD, 17:32)

Armored Warriors: The Real Men Inside the Shermans (HD, 12:11)

Taming the Beasts: How to Drive, Fire & Shoot Inside a 30 Ton Tank (HD, 12:48)

Photo Gallery

Summary 

Fury is a war film that really prides itself on being a tough badass. Whether that works for you or not is a matter of your own preference. But it is decent. This 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray has a terrific image but an incredible Atmos track that’ll knock your socks off. In a crazy move, this catalog title actually contains brand new extras. So yes, in all aspects this movie is a significant upgrade in quality over its Blu-ray predecessor (Included with this release). Fans shouldn’t hesitate to pick this up.

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

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