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Peter Rabbit (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Just as summer is about to hit, let us look back and recognize that Peter Rabbit is currently one of the Top 5 films at the box office for 2018 (Top 10 worldwide). Assuredly, it won’t even be Top 10 by years end if even by the end of summer. But, it managed to be a popular family/kids film to check out where #Justice4Paddington didn’t seem to catch fire no matter how much the raves came in for the sequel. Something stuck though, with it making solid bank through competition like Black Panther, the continued dominance of Jumanji, A Wrinkle In Time and Sherlock Gnomes coming out. You’ll be able catch the film again or for the first when you’re able to own the film on 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray on May 1st. You can order a copy using the Amazon link below. 

Film 

Peter Rabbit and his three sisters — Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-Tail — enjoy spending their days in Mr. McGregor’s vegetable garden. When one of McGregor’s relatives suddenly moves in, he’s less than thrilled to discover a family of rabbits in his new home. A battle of wills soon breaks out as the new owner hatches scheme after scheme to get rid of Peter — a resourceful rabbit who proves to be a worthy and wily opponent.

If you just took off the trailers for the film, you’d probably expect something much different from Peter Rabbit than what you’re getting. No, its not some complete 180, but it look to be an all out mano y mano of Domhnall Gleeson versus a bunny voiced by James Corden. That is only a part of the film that comes later one. The film is actually much more character focused and builds to what becomes a physical comedy slugfest. There’s more character work than you’d imagine and smaller scale humor bits that don’t involve someone being beaten.

Strangely, this movie actually faced a bit of a controversy and some of that good ol boycott backlash for something in the film. And to be quite honest, I really didn’t see the bother, and if you ACTUALLY watch the film, its not promoting such a harmful act and its taken care of right away. I didn’t see the film until after this vocal displeasure had been made public, so I went in looking for something crazy and really was pretty underwhelmed at what was being taken issue with. And also, as I am majority of the time with a movie; I realized it was just a work of fiction. I wish bunnies could talk, too.

We have a trifecta of Star Wars actors present here in the film. The two live action leads are Rose Byrne and Domhnall Gleeson. While I’m not sure if they share the greatest of chemistry, they both work well on their own and good enough together. Joining them as one of the rabbits is Daisy Ridley. So, the Force is strong with this one. Margot Robbie plays a bunny too. And Sam Neill continues his ReNEILLssaince of late with a brief role in the film’s opening act.

Peter Rabbit is a goofy, fun movie with some solid charm to it. It feels rather quick and swift like its almost over as it feels its getting started. No, its not otherworldly or the film that brought the world together like Paddington 2 (Or those who saw it), but it really works as solid, genuinely entertaining kids/family programming for February or most of spring. Yes, it does skew toward the kid more than the adult, but you may just find yourslf enjoying the kiddy stuff as well.

Video 

Encoding: HEVC / H.265

Resolution: 4K (2160p) HDR10

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

Layers: BD-66

Clarity/Detail:  Peter Rabbit’s transfer comes from a 2K DI for its 4K Ultra-HD Blur-ay debut. This is a pretty nice uptick from the Blu-ray. There is a crispness and finer details to be found in the image. You can especially see it on the fur of the rabbits and other animals. It also comes with better dimensions and colors. Many might not find it to be a huge jump, but its still a jump regardless.

Depth:  One noticeable area of improvement here is the movements which come much smoother and more natural. Foreground and background depth of field is pretty strong in comparison to the standard Blu-ray as well.

Black Levels: Blacks are natural with solid saturation. Dark scenes carry many variances in shade and retains plenty of details. No crushing witnessed.

Color Reproduction: Every solid color on an outfit or whatnot carries a bit more boldness to it. Some of the more pastel-like garments look a bit more natural and pretty too.

Flesh Tones: Skin tones are natural and stay consistent from beginning to end of the film. Facial features like freckles, lip texture, makeup and sweat beads are very distinct and visible from any given distance. Much finer than the Blu-ray.

Noise/Artifacts: Clean

Audio 

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos (English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD compatible), English Audio Descriptive Service, Estonian 5.1 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, French Audio Descriptive Service, Latvian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Lithuanian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Portuguese 5.1 Dolby Digital, Russian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Ukrainian 5.1 Dolby Digital

Subtitles: English, English SDH, Estonian, French, Latvian, Lithuanian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Ukranian

Dynamics: Peter Rabbit comes with a rock solid Dolby Atmos track, that I’m sure your kids are going to appreciate. Haha, I don’t know if they will or not, but its a fun and effective track. Effects work is good, but its not as crisp or layered as it maybe could have been. However, this still delivers the goods. The bombs-away scene in the garden was a nice effective highlight.

Height: There are a lot of fun instances that get the ceiling treatment. It combines for ambiance and music play. There’s a fun instance where there will be loud music that ends up bouncing off and mumbling through as Peter runs through an underground tunnel. Also, during explosions in the garden, dirt can be heard raining down from above.

Low Frequency Extension: Explosions, engines, musical beats and more bump the subwoofer to a good degree of power.

Surround Sound Presentation: There is plenty fun to go around the room. Little noises and such make each speakers contribution unique and every environment fully aware and realized. Sound travel and movement is fluid and rolls through with great fun.

Dialogue Reproduction: Vocals are clear and crisp with the animals and human ADR matching up in terms of loudness and feeling equally within every environment.

Extras 

Peter Rabbit comes with the Blu-ray edition and a digital copy. All bonus materials are found on the Blu-ray edition.

Mini Movie! (HD, 3:55) – “Flopsy Turvy”, a tale about Peter’s three sisters. Not under special features, its found on the main menu bar.

Shake Your Cotton-Tail Dance Along (HD, 2:36) – A video of kids dancing along with characters from the movie to a song.

Mischief In The Making (HD, 7:25) – A pretty general, EPK-like making of featurette. Takes a quick runthrough of the process from story idea through post with fluff interviews from cast and crew.

Summary 

Peter Rabbit is a rock solid family/kids movie that delivers good laughs with a charming little story. Its 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray supplies a terrific video presentation and a fun Dolby Atmos track that’ll give you the full experience when watching it. The extras aren’t much and fluff, but maybe your kids will enjoy them. For a modern family film, you should find this is in the upper tier.

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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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