The Patriot (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

The Patriot 4K ReviewNot too long after the historic release of Braveheart (see my 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray review of it all here) an oddly similar role and tale came into existence for Mr. Mel Gibson.  I suppose it’s relatively easy to confuse the two tales as we’ll cover in more detail down below they very much share the same DNA in both story and character.  However, Braveheart took place in Scotland within the 1200s and the story we are all gathered here today for, The Patriot, transpires during the 1770s in which the American Revolutionary War went down.  Like Braveheart though The Patriot thrives on a very inspirational leader in a character once again portrayed by Mel Gibson and is ripe for the picking with grand scale epic action and emotional zingers.  It very much moves me in all the same ways in which Braveheart does and for that I can award the film nothing less than a P-E-R-F-E-C-T score.  Keep in mind though like Braveheart is The Patriot is also a long one too, albeit well worth the wait in my opinion. 

The Patriot


The Patriot came out in 2000, which is approximately 5 years from when Braveheart did so this view of Mel Gibson as a war hero was still pretty fresh in most people’s minds.  Unlike Braveheart though this one is directed by Roland Emmerich off a screenplay penned by Robert Rodat.  In addition to Mel The Patriot stars Chris Cooper, Jason Isaacs and one of my favorite roles of his outside of the Joker, Heath Ledger.  It depicts the story a relatively peaceful American colonist, Benjamin Martin (Gibson), who is thwarted into American Revolutionary War in much the same manner as Mel’s character in Braveheart, but I digress for a moment.  This tale is very much that of a fictional one as certain events such as the atrocities depicted within have no corresponding historical or written record.  Also, the character of Benjamin Martin is also that of fiction and is said to be the sum of four factual figures from the American Revolutionary War: Andrew Pickens, Francis Marion, Daniel Morgan and Thomas Sumter.  

Now I keep making direct comparisons between this one and Braveheart so let me put that to bed once and for all in this point.  Here’s the main point I am trying to drive home.  Like the character of William Wallace, which Gibson portrayed in Braveheart some five years earlier, his Benjamin Martin here is a man seeking to live in peace with is family.  He’s ultimately unsuccessful due to the fight being brought to him and the death of an innocent family member.  Once again the enemy here messed with the wrong man’s family.  Benjamin moves heaven and Earth to avenge his family’s losses and in doing so inspires others, non-military in type, to pick up arms, fight alongside and lay down their lives in the belief of freedom from once again…England.  His character is also one of complete awe and inspiration to me in my personal life.  And yes, I understand he’s fictional, but when you dissect the man you should be able to appreciate the empathic leader he is.

So like I did with my 4K review of Braveheart I’m operating under the same assumptions here that you have seen this historic war film and are solely interested in how this looks and sounds on UHD disc.  After all, you have had 18 years in which to do so.  Nonetheless, let this serve as your official written warning here.  The next sentence will start to venture into SPOILER territory.  The interesting about the character of Benjamin Martin is his rich backstory.  As the story of The Patriot unfolds onscreen you’re essentially witnessing him coming to terms that in order to survive and protect his family he must become that man again, which he buried in the past.  I’m talking about him being a veteran of the French and Indian War and all the unspeakable things he did in his former life.  Upon marrying his wife and having seven children together he essentially left that life in the past and buried his memories deep, albeit kept a few treasure pieces that ultimately come into play here.  

As previously mentioned Benjamin gets sucked back into the life of warfare after the unspeakable loss of life his family endures at the hands of the ruthless British Colonel William Tavington.  Benjamin stops at nothing to not only avenge the lives stolen from his family, but also lead mere peasants to take up arms and fight for their independence from the Crown.  It of course comes at great sacrifice for all involved, but under the tutelage, guidance and inspirational leadership of Benjamin Martin we ultimately have a happy ending here unlike that of what we are left with in 1995’s Braveheart.  The adversary showdowns, booth physically and mentally, between Martin and Tavington are worth the price of admission alone here.  However, if you’re like me and enjoy violence in your films, look no further than the use of Mel and his tomahawk.  Holy hell!  What a bloody good time, but I digress.  it’s time to start talking audio and video here folks!  Let’s fire off the cannons and begin.

The Patriot


The below video score and related critique of things here are based solely upon my viewing of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray presentation of Sony’s The Patriot.

  • Encoding: HEVC / H.265
  • Resolution: 4K (2160p)
  • HDR: Yes
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Clarity/Detail: Since this one was shot on film its native 4K presentation is a huge upgrade over its Blu-ray counterpart.  Sharpness and detail are abundantly obvious here everywhere you look.  Skin textures are chiseled with pores, beads of sweat, hair follicles and more clearly on display.  Even more impressive are the fine textures found in not only the costumes and sets, but also backgrounds such as vast open fields, trees, leaves and more.  I also enjoyed the little things that kill like the wood grain patterns in certain things like Martin’s rocking chair he is working on in the film’s beginning or the individual falling snowflakes in a couple of the battle sequences.
  • Depth: I could mention just the swamp scenes or seeming endless fields where battles take place and stop there.  However, I wouldn’t be doing my job here to my truest effectiveness.  Depth of field is every which way you look here with the seemingly vast landscapes that go on forever it appears.
  • Black Levels: Black levels are perfectly even throughout the presentation whether at night, in candlelight, shadows, etc.  That’s what I love most about this one.  It’s a very dark film, but thankfully due in part to the HDR nothing ever gets really lost in all the darkness here.
  • Color Reproduction: Colors are bold and strong in this 4K showcase with bright blue skies, red in the British army’s coats, greens in vegetation and more.  Things looks like a million bucks in the sunlight too.  However, a lot of the film is shrouded in darkness so there are moments of dullness and constraints.  I’m just preparing you for that.
  • Flesh Tones: The skin tones all looked pretty natural to me throughout the 4K presentation.
  • Noise/Artifacts: The beauty of this one is the natural grain is intact throughout, but thankfully so never ever intrusive.  It’s even, cinematic and very beautiful in overall appearance.  With that being said I can totally see a number of grain haters talking smack about this one.  Sigh.

The Patriot


Like I mentioned up above in the video section, the below audio score and critical comments of such are based solely upon my viewing of Sony’s 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray presentation of The Patriot.  I do want you to know that the  4K UHD Disc comes armed with a Dolby Atmos surround track while the 1080p Blu-ray comes equipped with a 5.1Dolby TrueHD one.

  • Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos soundtrack (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 compatible), French Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Dynamics: Fidelity is what you expect from this one.  Don’t worry you get that.  However, what you also get and what I didn’t mention up above is a beautiful and engaging John Williams score.  Woohoo!  It infects your channels with the utmost of clarity here and direction.  The Dolby Atmos surround track almost perfectly balances the quiet and highs between the depth and the distance of onscreen events that transpire here.  Once again though it’s the rousing score that’s the winner here.  Amongst all the action moments nothin ever gets lost here.  You have to love that!
  • Height: The Atmos height channels are mostly applicable during the sequences featuring explosions.  There are also other moments such as gunfire into the air and such, but for the most part this track is limited here.
  • Low Frequency Extension: Well, think about it folks.  This is a war film.  Hell yeah the LFE channel gets engaged from just the tiniest of musket shots to the many cannonball explosions hurling right at you.  There’s enough firepower and rumble to recreate the battle sequences right within your viewing room here.  Highlights for me here also including the many drumming parts (aka the battle drums).
  • Surround Sound Presentation: The 4K presentation here immerses you in the middle of the action where discreet channels are utilized to place action within.  Take for example the ambush scene in the woods where Benjamin Martin and two of his sons take out a whole squadron of soldiers.  Think of yourself of one of these unsuspecting soldiers.  They are trying to figure out where the shots/attackers are positioned and/or coming from.  With this surround track you’re right smack dab in the middle of all the ensuing chaos.  How could you ever ask for anything more?  I know!  Of course you’re also subject to your more usual set of rear channel activities like gunshots, ambiance, sounds from behind, cannonballs hurling at you, crowds, voices, dogs, fire, screams, action sequences and more.
  • Dialogue Reproduction: The dialogue levels are always clear, intelligible and prioritized throughout.

The Patriot


This one is a mixed bag of nuts.  Yes you get a redemption code good for the Digital HD version of the field, but what’s the most interesting to me here is how Sony is choosing to put so many extras, albeit previously released ones (on either DVD or Blu-ray), on the 4K UHD disc (as shown below).  As you can see though if you want to watch the Extended version of the film on the 4K Disc, you’re out of luck.  It’s Blu-ray only.  Kind of reminds me of Warner Bros. Suicide Squad 4K release, but I digress.  However, there are more extras on the 4K disc than the previously released Extended Cut of the film on 1080p Blu-ray only as shown below.

  • Special Features on 4K Ultra HD Disc Include:
    • Theatrical Version of the Film (165 minutes)
    • Commentary – Here’s your feature length commentary with the film’s Director, Roland Emmerich, and Producer, Dean Devlin.  I love how they talk about the historical facts here.
    • Deleted Scenes (HD, 13:01) – There are a total of 7 deleted scenes here complete with optional commentary from Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin.
    • Three Featurettes:
      • The Art of War” (HD, 9:45) – This is about how the style of the warfare from back then was recreated on the screen here.
      • The True Patriots” (HD, 9:57) – This one discusses the film’s accuracy in things such as costumes, slavery, etc.
      • Visual Effects Interactive” (HD, 9:20) – I remember this one from the DVD about them showing us how they removed a guy’s head from an oncoming cannonball at it.
    • Conceptual Art to Film Comparisons (4:48) – Here are some sketches for you to compare with actual film shots.
    • Photo Galleries
    • Theatrical Trailer (HD, 2:39)
  • Special Features on Blu-ray Disc Include:
    • Extended Version of the Film (175 minutes)
    • Two Featurettes:
      • The Art of War” (HD, 9:45) – This is about how the style of the warfare from back then was recreated on the screen here.
      • The True Patriots” (HD, 9:57) – This one discusses the film’s accuracy in things such as costumes, slavery, etc.

The Patriot


Well, I know what you’ll be doing this Memorial Day weekend.  Yes, you’ll be seeing Solo, ha ha, but also taking in the newest war releases on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray like this one, The Patriot.  With reference video and near perfect audio presentations this is a Mel Gibson flick worth double or in my case triple dipping on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format.  It’s such a perfect film in my opinion and the fact that it’s now in its finest looking and sounding fashion on the 4K disc format makes it a no-brainer in the “owing” category.  Happy Memorial Day folks.  Women…it’s now time to wear your white pants.  Get them out and ready!


DISCLAIMER: This 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray review was judged and graded using the following 4K certified Ultra HD Premium television set found here and player here.  Make sure to check out all our 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray reviews archived here.


The Patriot

Fights For Our Country’s Freedom

on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray

May 22nd




The Patriot 4K Cover


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

  1. No Comments