A few words about…™ Batman/Returns/Forever/Robin — in 4k UHD Blu-ray

With the exception of Batman & Robin, the final film in the non-dark Batman series, there really isn't 4k information to be ferreted. HDR adds a bit of nicety 4 Stars

One cannot say that WB is not being totally transparent with their distribution plans for the 4k 1989-97 Batman series.

They arrive shortly as four separate films, and then, on 17 Sept, as a boxed set.

The difference is in the pricing. Currently a $42 price tag for each title, streeting at $25, with the set listing a $90, which presumably will be discounted.

For those who must have them now, it’s $100 for the set.

But it’s a nice set.

With the exception of Batman & Robin, the final film in the non-dark Batman series, there really isn’t 4k information to be ferreted. HDR adds a bit of nicety. And Dolby Atmos helps with the price of admission, but don’t be expecting to be blown away by a 4k look, as you won’t find it.

What you get for your upgrade dollars, are four films that nicely mimic the appearance of 35mm prints. These are beautifully rendered 4k discs, accurately representing the original look of the films. All shot on fillum, and not digital – what they made is what you get.

And that’s a good thing, with nary a problem in sight.

For fans, and there are more than attempting to collect the complete Dean Martin, the only question should not whether to upgrade, but whether to wait for the boxed set, and a small discount.

Image – 5 (HDR10)

Audio – 5 (Dolby Atmos)

Pass / Fail – Pass

Upgrade from Blu-ray – Yes

Recommended

RAH

Published by

Robert Harris

editor,member

74 Comments

  1. Just checking does BATMAN 89 retain its original theatrical WB Opening logo?

    I read Returns does but for the recent theatrical presentation a viewer felt like the snowy WB shield looked a bit off almost greenish in a way

    thoughts on BATMAN 89 audio?
    Does it contain added / audio sound effects, not meaning the Atmos upgrade but all new effects?

    Sadly on the logo topic recent 4K screenings of Kubricks THE SHINING does not restore the Saul Bass logo. 🙁 Really wish the 4K disc would restore it.

    Fingers crossed when The Exorcist hits 4K it will finally get the Saul Bass Logo restored. It was perfect with the score integrated with that logo.

  2. Robert Harris

    They all morph from a desaturated logo into other items of interest. They look fine.

    I think he means the ones on the first two that go from the regular logo to one against a darkened background.

  3. I wonder if the boxset will ever be as cheap as just buying Batman & Batman Returns, which is what I'm going to do. I suppose I have to buy the 4K to get the remastered Blu-rays, by the time my plasma gives out I could have a little stash of 4K discs ready for the new 4k telly. The last time I looked at the Batman Blu-ray, I can remember thinking that it could really do with a new transfer. I love the first two films, but then (for me anyway) the franchise quickly went down the tubes, & I really don't like the Noland films either.

  4. Michel_Hafner

    Why would the negatives of the first 3 not provide 4K detail but the last one would?

    Not certain that the fourth appears terribly highly resolved. Just more so than the earlier. Just the overall look of the films. Everything isn’t perfectly destined for 4k.

  5. This would be the perfect time and tie-in for the release of "Birdman" on 4K/UHD. Seriously, no joke, I'm not kidding. Meanwhile, with the upcoming releases of "Batman" and "The Shining", its really shaping into a great 4K year for Nicholson's craziest of characters. Now, all that's needed is a UHD of Warner's "The Witches of Eastwick" and the triad will be complete.

  6. Robert – thanks for the review! I intend to pick up the box set later this year!

    I’m very excited about this set and I’m glad it will be one of my first films to buy on UHd!
    As it was for dvd and Blu Ray!

  7. I also intend to pick up the box set later this year as I never got around to getting this box set or even the separate titles on blu-ray! I only have these titles on DVD so for me this is not only a big upgrade but a win win!

  8. Saying there is no 4K information to be found on the first three movies is quite the opposite of just about every other review I’ve read, which all seem to be blown away by, not just the HDR, but the added clarity and detail found in these discs.

  9. AcesHighStudios

    Saying there is no 4K information to be found on the first three movies is quite the opposite of just about every other review I've read, which all seem to be blown away by, not just the HDR, but the added clarity and detail found in these discs.

    Reviews are personal opinions, based upon a myriad of different factors. My position is not that the new 4k releases do not capture the image properly, but rather that the image may never have had 4k detail.

  10. I would also wager many of today's "reviewers" do not have the length and breadth of experience in the film industry, and knowledge of process and presentation, to comment with authority on such issues. They're basically just saying, "it looks good on my screen," which can be highly variable from one set-up to another.

    IMO, analysis by someone with RAH's years of involvement in the film industry would trump most any other reviews. As he noted, he did not say they looked bad, but likely look the best they can based on the technology in use when they were filmed, and combined with current options for HT presentation.

  11. Malcolm R

    IMO, analysis by someone with RAH's years of involvement in the film industry would trump most any other reviews. As he noted, he did not say they looked bad, but likely look the best they can based on the technology in use when they were filmed, and combined with current options for HT presentation.

    Ordinarily I would agree. In fact, I would say his opinion normally trumps ALL other reviewers, but it's still a personal opinion based on what he is seeing, and it's quite different from literally every other reviewer, who are practically giddy at the final product. Not one other reviewer has even suggested "they look the best they can." Anyway, it was just a curious observation on my part. I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know.

    He also once said The Godfather, Part 2 did not need a restoration, despite the mosquito swarm around Michael Corleone's head in the opening shot, which he personally told me way back then was "fine." He thought differently when HE was offered the job, and the mosquito swarm is now gone.

  12. AcesHighStudios

    Ordinarily I would agree. In fact, I would say his opinion normally trumps ALL other reviewers, but it's still a personal opinion based on what he is seeing, and it's quite different from literally every other reviewer, who are practically giddy at the final product. Not one other reviewer has even suggested "they look the best they can." Anyway, it was just a curious observation on my part. I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know.

    He also once said The Godfather, Part 2 did not need a restoration, despite the mosquito swarm around Michael Corleone's head in the opening shot, which he personally told me way back then was "fine." He thought differently when HE was offered the job, and the mosquito swarm, thankfully, is now gone.

    Please remind me re GF2. What product? What year? New elements were produced c. 1997, and used for the DVD.

  13. AcesHighStudios

    Ordinarily I would agree. In fact, I would say his opinion normally trumps ALL other reviewers, but it's still a personal opinion based on what he is seeing, and it's quite different from literally every other reviewer, who are practically giddy at the final product. Not one other reviewer has even suggested "they look the best they can." Anyway, it was just a curious observation on my part. I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know.

    It's also a personal opinion based upon decades of experience working with film and extensively-researched knowledge about its image capabilities and the methods in which films are shot and finished.

    I have no doubt that the films will look great, but that doesn't change the fact that different film formats and production methods have finite resolution limits and, when it comes to 35mm, the only benefits that are possible on a 4K release are better compression methods, color handling, slightly more visible detail than 1080p, and HDR (depending on how it is handled and if the material warrants it.) You can't create detail that isn't present in the original materials. Theoretically, a good 4K release will allow you to see everything that is on 35mm film elements that were transferred, which is almost always better than what Blu-ray can show you, but not by much. The only 4K releases that have the potential to show a substantial improvement over what is on Blu-ray are the ones for large-format films. The difference between the 1080p and 4K releases of 2001: A Space Odyssey are like night and day because it was shot on 65mm by talented DP's. The differences between the Blu-ray and 4K releases of 35mm films or digital movies finished at 2K are mostly negligible. If done well, there is some visual improvement in the 4K over Blu-ray, but it's minor. That's just a fact. I'm totally fine with most 4K releases of 35mm films as UHD is currently the format that is most-capable of reproducing every bit of visual information from the source. A gallon of water will still be a gallon, however, even if it is poured from a jug into a bathtub. Mr. Harris is absolutely correct in his assessment that these new releases, "look the best they can."

    Don't even get me started on 4K releases of films shot on 16mm. Talk about overkill.

  14. Brian Kidd

    Mr. Harris is absolutely correct in his assessment that these new releases, "look the best they can."

    Of course, they do, but whether "the best they can" is a revelation, as most reviews suggest, or "meh," you do not know if you have not seen them. I find Mr. Harris' review to be rather disappointing, and I suspect it's considerably better than the review suggests. We shall see.

  15. AcesHighStudios

    When it says not to expect 4K from a 35mm that was scanned and finished in 4K, "because you won't find it."

    Possibly, I can explain the point this way.

    I’ll be reviewing the new 4k of The Natural, exquisitely, and occasionally ethereally photographed by Caleb Deschanel. Mr. Crisp, and his team at Columbia, have created a perfect 4k Blu-ray.

    But that doesn’t mean that every shot is filled with high frequency detail. Some is. Much is not. But we end up with an extremely natural, velvety image with perfectly rendered grain, and a beautiful palette of lights and darks.

    The difference, at least to my eye, is that The Natural is basically a practical film, while the Batman productions, as authentic as they are on 4k, have layers of effects, which must be blended into the overall image.

    They’re different.

    HDR aside, the 4k of Natural seems to work better at that resolution, as we’re reading the content of the negative, while the Batman films (again, as nicely as they’ve been handled)seem better suited to a format that allows less peering into the details of the negative.

    As a capture, and playback process, 4k is heaven sent for large chip, 65mm, VVLA, and TLA productions, where it can shine. Most viewers, who are properly set up, can find rapture in the HDR of 4k releases, not based upon large format. But the reality is that the majority of those releases won’t look much different from an HD version of the same film, if HDR were offered, when viewed from a normal seating distance.

    I have no argument with the Batman films, or the way that they have been brought to 4k. The older Blu releases were produced well, for the period in which they were made, but I believe that a new HD image harvest would stand up nicely against 4k, if HDR was available.

    This based upon the amount of high frequency information that I’m seeing.

  16. AcesHighStudios

    When it says not to expect 4K from a 35mm that was scanned and finished in 4K, "because you won't find it."

    SD material is often upscaled to 1080p for Blu-ray. Does that mean that you're suddenly going to see more detail in the image? No. You can scan 35mm in 8K, too. It still won't add any more image detail than is present on the original film.

  17. Thank you, Mr. Harris. I'm still a bit confused I guess. I know that "film" doesn't have a resolution, per se, but if we considered it in terms of resolution, 35mm film contains more information than 4K video, which is a far cry from comparing SD being upgraded to HD (as someone else mentioned). I get that source materials and film stock, lighting, etc., can affect how much information can be captured, but Grease in 4K, as an example, is head and shoulders above a 1080p Blu-ray, and a great deal better than much of what the studios are offering us as "4K," which, of course, often isn't.

  18. AcesHighStudios

    Thank you, Mr. Harris. I'm still a bit confused I guess. I know that "film" doesn't have a resolution, per se, but if we considered it in terms of resolution, 35mm film contains more information than 4K video, which is a far cry from comparing SD being upgraded to HD (as someone else mentioned). I get that source materials and film stock, lighting, etc., can affect how much information can be captured, but Grease in 4K, as an example, is head and shoulders above a 1080p Blu-ray, and a great deal better than much of what the studios are offering us as "4K," which, of course, often isn't.

    35mm, whatever that may be, does not necessarily have a higher resolution than 4k.

    But first, one must define the word 35mm.

  19. Dave Scarpa

    Individual or Box set I'm waiting on a price Drop I don't even have the nolan films yet

    Box set. Pick it up in November. Movies are usually cheapest then.

    This will be the first set of films I watch in UHd in November. I’m planning on upgrading then.
    It’s fantastic that this new set will also include the blu ray discs that have also been updated with the new transfers.

  20. AcesHighStudios

    Thank you, Mr. Harris. I'm still a bit confused I guess. I know that "film" doesn't have a resolution, per se, but if we considered it in terms of resolution, 35mm film contains more information than 4K video, which is a far cry from comparing SD being upgraded to HD (as someone else mentioned). I get that source materials and film stock, lighting, etc., can affect how much information can be captured, but Grease in 4K, as an example, is head and shoulders above a 1080p Blu-ray, and a great deal better than much of what the studios are offering us as "4K," which, of course, often isn't.

    While there's no absolute consensus, and it of course varies depending on the film stock, lenses, lighting conditions etc, my understanding is that a 35mm negative has between 3-4K of real image detail, so scanning at 4K should capture everything that's there and then some.

  21. AcesHighStudios

    Oh, OK. Everything else you talk about isn't your "job" either. Hilarious!!!

    The reality is that while none of this is my job.

    I try to be helpful.

    But a serious discussion re the subject above is a multi-day master’s class.

  22. Robert Harris

    The reality is that while none of this is my job.

    I try to be helpful.

    But a serious discussion re the subject above is a multi-day master’s class.

    And we can only be thankful for your insights while trying to do your real job (which we also appreciate).

  23. Robert Harris

    The reality is that while none of this is my job.

    I try to be helpful.

    But a serious discussion re the subject above is a multi-day master’s class.

    OK, I understand that, certainly. Thank you for clarifying. I do always check to see what you have to say about any video before purchasing, and have for many, many years now.

  24. Please keep in mind, while discussing film, that like a DVD, Blu-ray, or 4k disc, it too is merely a bucket to hold information

    Exposure, lighting, optics, flashing, processing, all come together to create an image, which can be rendered in extremely high resolution, or minimal. Flat, contrasty… nothing is written

    Same thing with data.

    There are no absolutes.

  25. Robert Harris

    Please keep in mind, while discussing film, that like a DVD, Blu-ray, or 4k disc, it too is merely a bucket to hold information

    Exposure, lighting, optics, flashing, processing, all come together to create an image, which can be rendered in extremely high resolution, or minimal. Flat, contrasty… nothing is written

    Same thing with data.

    There are no absolutes.

    However we can agree absolutely that Brent Spiner is Data.

    And now back to the Batman discussion…

  26. With the corrected color grading on Alien, I hoped that perhaps Hollywood's obsession with teal revisionism might finally be waning.

    Sigh…

    [GALLERY=media, 5625]Batman-returns by JoshZ posted Jun 3, 2019 at 11:07 AM[/GALLERY]

  27. Powell&Pressburger

    Just checking does BATMAN 89 retain its original theatrical WB Opening logo?

    Sadly on the logo topic recent 4K screenings of Kubricks THE SHINING does not restore the Saul Bass logo. 🙁 Really wish the 4K disc would restore it.

    Fingers crossed when The Exorcist hits 4K it will finally get the Saul Bass Logo restored. It was perfect with the score integrated with that logo.

    I remember that logo you speak of but didn't know what it was called until now (thanks for that!). I always thought it looked cool and I felt a bit gutted when I started buying copies of The Shining with the Warner Bros Family Entertainment logo slapped on the front.

    Barry Lyndon held out for quite a while. The DVD remaster from the early naughties has the Saul Bass logo and preserves the 1:59:1 aspect ratio. The HD upgrade has a more contemporary WB logo and the aspect ratio has been changed to 1:85:1.

  28. English Invader

    I remember that logo you speak of but didn't know what it was called until now (thanks for that!). I always thought it looked cool and I felt a bit gutted when I started buying copies of The Shining with the Warner Bros Family Entertainment logo slapped on the front.

    Barry Lyndon held out for quite a while. The DVD remaster from the early naughties has the Saul Bass logo and preserves the 1:59:1 aspect ratio. The HD upgrade has a more contemporary WB logo and the aspect ratio has been changed to 1:85:1.

    If it helps, Criterion picked this up. Not sure about the Saul Bass logo but it's 5×3. (Is that the correct term for 1.66?)

  29. The Saul Bass WB Opening Logo on THE EXORCIST is the one that truly guts me that is was replaced, on most recent editions with the WB Shield from CONTACT

    The music over the original logo intro was perfect! Hoping when the 4K for The Exorcist finally is released we get the true theatrical version and color timing NO cgi! And the Saul Bass Logo. 🙂

  30. Powell&Pressburger

    The Saul Bass WB Opening Logo on THE EXORCIST is the one that truly guts me that is was replaced, on most recent editions with the WB Shield from CONTACT

    The music over the original logo intro was perfect! Hoping when the 4K for The Exorcist finally is released we get the true theatrical version and color timing NO cgi! And the Saul Bass Logo. 🙂

    Hope is admirable, but I wouldn't hold your breath. Every time a studio gets bought out, it's much easier to just slap on a modern logo than it is to go back and alter a older design to include whatever corporate behemoth a studio is currently a part of. I'm just glad that 2001 still has the awesome, short-lived blue MGM logo. I totally agree that the red WB logo is a much-more-appropriate logo for The Exorcist, stylistically.

    [​IMG]

  31. mBen989

    If it helps, Criterion picked this up. Not sure about the Saul Bass logo but it's 5×3. (Is that the correct term for 1.66?)

    That is good news. I love the Criterion/Arrow/Masters of Cinema sets and Barry Lyndon is my favourite Kubrick. It's worth it to me just for the bonus features alone as there are none at all on the WB releases (apart from the theatrical trailer). The only snag is that it's a region A and I'm in the UK but if there is a release I want enough to invest in an multi-region player this is it.

    Can anyone tell me if the Criterion discs are region locked or not?

  32. Well, I would like to offer my most humble apologies to Mr. Harris in questioning his review. My 4K Blu-rays of the Burton Batman movies arrived today, and I watched the first 20 minutes or so of the first movie. While it does look excellent — certainly better than it ever has — it does not have the 4K pop, just as Mr. Harris said it didn't. I am sorry, sir.

  33. I watched about 2/3 of BATMAN last night. The opening scene with the muggers had me a little nervous because it appeared like the Great Teal Demon was rearing its ugly head, but that must have just been the way it was shot. The rest of it that I watched looked fabulous. As RAH said, it looks as good as I imagine it can and is certainly the best it has ever looked on home video. The HDR wasn't overdone. It just gave it a very nice image with lots of shadow delineation and rich, though never oversaturated, color. The Atmos mix is top-notch. As someone who saw the film opening day, bought the VHS the day it was released (which was one of the first times that a Hollywood blockbuster got a home video release within months of its theatrical release), and have owned a copy on laserdisc, DVD, and Blu-ray, I have seen the film many, many times in the past 30 years. I would never have realized that many of the foley effects were new. The Elfman soundtrack sounded wonderful and the aural soundstage was wide, robust and enveloping. I know that many folks over on another forum are practically having a coronary that the original sound mix wasn't included (going so far as to try and create their own versions with the Laserdisc or DVD audio in place of the new mix), but unlike other films where foley effects were newly-created (Superman: The Movie), I was never aware of a difference while I was watching it. I'm sure that if I took time to compare scenes back to back with the different sound mixes that I could tell the difference, but I think the whole Internet Outrage over the new mix is a tempest in a teapot.

    It's a wonderful release that really presents the film in the finest way it has ever been released on home video. I look forward to finishing it tonight and moving on to Batman Returns.

  34. In regard to the Atmos mix, during the scene where dollar bills are raining down on the crowd during the parade, I actually thought it was raining outside with drops of raining hitting my skylight overhead. We have had nearly 800 storms, tornadoes, etc., in Oklahoma in the month of May alone, so I thought it was happening again.

  35. AcesHighStudios

    In regard to the Atmos mix, during the scene where dollar bills are raining down on the crowd during the parade, I actually thought it was raining outside with drops of raining hitting my skylight overhead. We have had nearly 800 storms, tornadoes, etc., in Oklahoma in the month of May alone, so I thought it was happening again.

    Atmos adds a certain visceral aspect. I’m a huge Dolby fan. Have worked with them going back to ‘88, and they’ve never let me down. Nor has Lucas.

  36. AcesHighStudios

    Do you feel Atmos is more of a gimmick?

    I know you were directing your question to RAH and I'm interested to hear his opinion as well.

    For me, Atmos is just an evolution of theatrical multichannel sound that has been in development since Fantasound. Since our ears are able to determine the source of natural sounds in three-dimensional space, Atmos' object-based system better allows sound designers and mixers to place sounds that would be heard above us, like a plane or other object flying over our heads, or sounds that would naturally be heard coming from all directions, like rain, etc., in speaker positions that better emulate our natural hearing. Of course, its potential is only really tapped in a well-equipped theater environment, where it's possible to have a large number of speakers, each with its own assigned channel, however even the minimum of 2 ceiling speakers in the home version of Atmos is effective at broadening the soundstage. If you have the big bucks to spend, the 4 ceiling and 2 additional front wide speakers add even more "depth" to the soundfield. (The upfiring "Atmos-enabled" speakers kind of work, if you happen to be in just the right spot for the reflected sound to hit your ears correctly, but they are certainly not equal to having ceiling speakers.)

    Is it a gimmick? It can be "gimmicky," certainly. However, I view the Atmos system as a tool. Whether or not an Atmos mix truly enhances the film being watched depends entirely upon its appropriateness for the material and the skill and effort of the folks who create the Atmos mix. I've heard some Atmos mixes that did very little, if anything, to the overall effect of the film and I've heard some that absolutely add an additional layer of immersiveness to the experience. I think that as Atmos becomes more of a standard in sound mixing, which it seems to have done in the past couple of years, sound mixers and designers will become more comfortable with the tools and capabilities of Atmos and will find ways of doing things with cinematic sound that could not have been imagined 20 years ago. I feel like it's the most exciting development in sound technology since Dolby Stereo in the 1970's.

  37. Brian Kidd

    I know you were directing your question to RAH and I'm interested to hear his opinion as well.

    For me, Atmos is just an evolution of theatrical multichannel sound that has been in development since Fantasound. Since our ears are able to determine the source of natural sounds in three-dimensional space, Atmos' object-based system better allows sound designers and mixers to place sounds that would be heard above us, like a plane or other object flying over our heads, or sounds that would naturally be heard coming from all directions, like rain, etc., in speaker positions that better emulate our natural hearing. Of course, its potential is only really tapped in a well-equipped theater environment, where it's possible to have a large number of speakers, each with its own assigned channel, however even the minimum of 2 ceiling speakers in the home version of Atmos is effective at broadening the soundstage. If you have the big bucks to spend, the 4 ceiling and 2 additional front wide speakers add even more "depth" to the soundfield. (The upfiring "Atmos-enabled" speakers kind of work, if you happen to be in just the right spot for the reflected sound to hit your ears correctly, but they are certainly not equal to having ceiling speakers.)

    Is it a gimmick? It can be "gimmicky," certainly. However, I view the Atmos system as a tool. Whether or not an Atmos mix truly enhances the film being watched depends entirely upon its appropriateness for the material and the skill and effort of the folks who create the Atmos mix. I've heard some Atmos mixes that did very little, if anything, to the overall effect of the film and I've heard some that absolutely add an additional layer of immersiveness to the experience. I think that as Atmos becomes more of a standard in sound mixing, which it seems to have done in the past couple of years, sound mixers and designers will become more comfortable with the tools and capabilities of Atmos and will find ways of doing things with cinematic sound that could not have been imagined 20 years ago. I feel like it's the most exciting development in sound technology since Dolby Stereo in the 1970's.

    Agreed.

  38. EnricoE

    Kinda sucks that Warner has not included the original mixes. We just get a new Atmos mix, with new SFX in certain scenes. Remixes are fine, but FFS include the original mixes!!!

    It does suck, since there is ample space for it, however I'd say that 99% of viewers won't notice that some foley effects are different. The new mix is very well done. This is an instance where the effects that have been replaced were stock effects, used in other films, with which the director wasn't happy. None of the changes are detrimental to the film in any way.

  39. AcesHighStudios

    I watched "Batman Returns" last night and I must say, it IS a revelation. STUNNING!

    "Returns" is easily the best-looking of the 4 4Ks, but it was also easily the best-looking of the BDs, so that should be no surprise.

    "Forever" and "Robin" are much bigger improvements on their BD counterparts, IMO…

  40. I'm interested in going 4K for the first 3, but no interest in the 4th one. Still, I think I'll wait for the box set and a street price (eventually) of around $40-$45. If the first three individual titles end up dropping down in the $12 range, I'll snatch those up instead.

    Mark

  41. Mark Booth

    I'm interested in going 4K for the first 3, but no interest in the 4th one. Still, I think I'll wait for the box set and a street price (eventually) of around $40-$45. If the first three individual titles end up dropping down in the $12 range, I'll snatch those up instead.

    Mark

    I’m waiting for the box as well.
    November should be a fantastic time to grab this set. It’s hard to wait though!!

  42. Mark Booth

    I'm interested in going 4K for the first 3, but no interest in the 4th one. Still, I think I'll wait for the box set and a street price (eventually) of around $40-$45. If the first three individual titles end up dropping down in the $12 range, I'll snatch those up instead.

    Mark

    Don't be surprised if "Batman Forever" is much, much worse than you remember. And, of course, the least said about "Batman and Robin," the better.

  43. AcesHighStudios

    Don't be surprised if "Batman Forever" is much, much worse than you remember. And, of course, the least said about "Batman and Robin," the better.

    Of the 4, "Forever" has aged the worst. "B&R" seemed mediocre at best to me in 1997, but I actually mostly liked "Forever" back then.

    Now? Not so much. It has a few good moments but every time I watch it, I like it less and less, and I find it more difficult to recall why I enjoyed it in the first place!

  44. I bought the first two last week, and have no use for the second two, in any format. My reaction to 'Batman' during the first 30 minutes or so, was disappointment, and I wondered what some of the rave reviewers on the web were seeing. As a result, I think Mr. Harris's positive but measured reading is appropriate. But…spending a little more time with 'Batman' has turned me toward high praise. Most people (me included) tend to remember garish and dazzling color when thinking back on it…but those colors, like the nearly cartoonish reds, purples and greens, only stand out in contrast to the muddled gray grime of the whole production. The film itself seems slightly desaturated, but people remember cartoonish color because it's set against gray grime. I now think the UHD is spot-on perfect, and past BD's are probably a little bit boosted. I love this new rendition. Everything that should be there, is there, and the grain is perfect.

    Batman Returns is a whole other story. I haven't read about the two filmstocks, but BR does seem finer grain, and color is handled differently, even though the overall setting is largely similar to Batman. I'm guessing that much of people's memory of Batman has been intermingled with their memory of Batman Returns, which throws off more visual spark. I love both of these editions, and think they're both very accurate and worthy of a place on the library shelf.

  45. David Wilkins

    Batman Returns is a whole other story. I haven't read about the two filmstocks, but BR does seem finer grain, and color is handled differently, even though the overall setting is largely similar to Batman.

    Not sure if it would have an effect on the grain (if any) but Batman Returns was shot full frame open matte and Batman '89 was not,

  46. I bought an LG 4K OLED55E8 last summer and have been mostly pleased with the image. However, the 4K UHD discs I've seen since then have presented at least to my eyes only rare and minor instances of truly improved detail, texture and depth that I see so often trumpeted in reviews. Am I missing something? I had my set professionally calibrated by Value Electronics where I bought it (great outfit!) and have a good eye for superior video I think. My question, are all these reviews I read on various sites (DVD Beaver, Blu-ray.com, AVS Forum, etc.) on-line predicated on the viewing of 4K material on TVs 65" or larger? That can only be the answer in my estimation. If such is the case I feel reviewers should make that clearer in their reviews. I'm a little underwhelmed to be blunt in my overall opinion of 4K UHD discs.

  47. Charles_Y

    I bought an LG 4K OLED55E8 last summer and have been mostly pleased with the image. However, the 4K UHD discs I've seen since then have presented at least to my eyes only rare and minor instances of truly improved detail, texture and depth that I see so often trumpeted in reviews. Am I missing something? I had my set professionally calibrated by Value Electronics where I bought it (great outfit!) and have a good eye for superior video I think. My question, are all these reviews I read on various sites (DVD Beaver, Blu-ray.com, AVS Forum, etc.) on-line predicated on the viewing of 4K material on TVs 65" or larger? That can only be the answer in my estimation. If such is the case I feel reviewers should make that clearer in their reviews. I'm a little underwhelmed to be blunt in my overall opinion of 4K UHD discs.

    With 2K sourced material the main difference is the HDR colour grading, better compression and no/less banding. With sources that provide real 4K you also see clearly sharper images with finer detail if you sit close enough to resolve 4K detail on your TV.

  48. Charles_Y

    I bought an LG 4K OLED55E8 last summer and have been mostly pleased with the image. However, the 4K UHD discs I've seen since then have presented at least to my eyes only rare and minor instances of truly improved detail, texture and depth that I see so often trumpeted in reviews. Am I missing something? I had my set professionally calibrated by Value Electronics where I bought it (great outfit!) and have a good eye for superior video I think. My question, are all these reviews I read on various sites (DVD Beaver, Blu-ray.com, AVS Forum, etc.) on-line predicated on the viewing of 4K material on TVs 65" or larger? That can only be the answer in my estimation. If such is the case I feel reviewers should make that clearer in their reviews. I'm a little underwhelmed to be blunt in my overall opinion of 4K UHD discs.

    Chances are that you are not sitting close enough. I would suggest to take the time and sit one screen width away from your screen as that is a good distance to also see subtler differences in resolution.

  49. Charles_Y

    I bought an LG 4K OLED55E8 last summer and have been mostly pleased with the image. However, the 4K UHD discs I've seen since then have presented at least to my eyes only rare and minor instances of truly improved detail, texture and depth that I see so often trumpeted in reviews. Am I missing something? I had my set professionally calibrated by Value Electronics where I bought it (great outfit!) and have a good eye for superior video I think. My question, are all these reviews I read on various sites (DVD Beaver, Blu-ray.com, AVS Forum, etc.) on-line predicated on the viewing of 4K material on TVs 65" or larger? That can only be the answer in my estimation. If such is the case I feel reviewers should make that clearer in their reviews. I'm a little underwhelmed to be blunt in my overall opinion of 4K UHD discs.

    For what it's worth, I can't see the difference between 2K and 4K on a fifty-foot cinema screen, without a direct point of comparison. Several years ago, I saw some test footage shot on 35mm, screened at both 2K and 4K, Sitting in the middle of the theatre, I think I noticed a very subtle difference between the two, but nothing very striking.

  50. Worth

    For what it's worth, I can't see the difference between 2K and 4K on a fifty-foot cinema screen, without a direct point of comparison. Several years ago, I saw some test footage shot on 35mm, screened at both 2K and 4K, Sitting in the middle of the theatre, I think I noticed a very subtle difference between the two, but nothing very striking.

    Difference is seen in large format

  51. Robert, what do you mean by "large format?" I have a 55" set. I presume you refer to much larger projection formats. I would be curious as to what is the low end optimal size to start really noticing the improvements in the image.

    I think sitting "one screen width" away is absurd. That would not work in my current set up at home in any case. Taking that approach I would also have to give up any decent stereo imaging on my R/L Main speakers.

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