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UHD Review A Few Words About A few words about...™ Cloverfield (redux) -- in 4k UHD Blu-ray (1 Viewer)

Robert Harris

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An interestingly inventive series of three films based upon a street in LA. Cloverfield is the first in the series. For details please visit the original Few Words.

Paramount seems to be going after the Connolly leather and Wilton carpet crowd with this new special release in honor of the film's 15th anniversary.

Technically, it appears to be the same two discs made available in 4k in the original Cloverfield 4k in 2018. The big deal here is all about packaging, which to many collectors of home video discs is more important than the actual film.

This one is bound to be a collectible. And while I'll not give investment advice, I'm planning on picking up a box to put away until prices on eBay rise to absurdity and over them to fans and make a killing.

I know someone who did this with rare pink Himalayan salt late last year, and brought in six figures in weeks.

Here's what you get in the Collector's Edition.

First, and possibly of greatest importance, it's a Steelbook, with the image on the obverse of a video viewfinder with a horrific creature lurking amongst skyscrapers. You can open it for the full panoramic effect.

But wait. There's more.

The Steelbook comes wrapped in extremely high quality acrylic of some sort, with a reflection of an optic and within, the decapitated Statue of Liberty.

The reverse of the outer layer is kept meticulously clean, with the exception of a simply product code in the lower left corner.

Simple, yet elegant.

As to the quality of the actual disc, and for those who have not read the earlier words, it's an extremely find rendering, presumably based upon the original HDTV data files, which means that the programming will shine on large screens, or at least be very, very acceptable.

No problems. And packaging fit for a king!


Collectors should be warned that there are no stickers holding the out acrylic layer to the inner Steelbook, so that care must be taken when raising it from a resting position. The Steelbook will easily fall out, possibly be dented, lowering its collectibility or worse, leading to hitting one's foot.

In the manner, it reminds me of the beautifully created Twilight Sage boxed set. Pick it up, and everything falls out of the bottom. Apparently the cause of many tween and early teen girls having broken toes. See a limping 20-something today. You'll know the cause.

Exciting times, these...

Image - 5

Audio - 5 - (Dolby TrueHD 5.1)

Pass / Fail - Pass

Upgrade from 4k - No


Plays nicely with projectors - Yes

Makes use of and works well in 4k - 2.5


RAH



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sbjork

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Shot in 1080 on mostly consumer equipment.
Aside from the Panasonic AG-HSC1U used for the flashbacks, that's not quite true. It was all shot at 1080p, yes, but while the interior workhorse Panasonic AG-HVX200 could be described as prosumer, all of the exteriors and effects footage were shot on either a Sony CineAlta F23 or a Thompson Viper FilmStream. They went to a lot of trouble to make all of it look like consumer equipment.
 

sbjork

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It's entirely fair to question the need for a 4K upscale of 1080p source material, but after finally having watched the UHD myself and comparing it to the Blu-ray, it is an upgrade, however miniscule. Not in terms of resolution, but because of the HDR grade, specifically in regards to contrast. (Wide Color Gamut is as pointless here as is the upscale.) The highlights on the Blu-ray are blown out and the detail within them is clipped. That detail is back on the UHD. It's most noticeable in flames or explosions, especially the fireballs at the beginning of the film that launch toward the party. They're featureless globs of orange on the Blu-ray, but they're more detailed on UHD. There's a little more detail to the shadows on the darker end of the spectrum, too.

Does that make it worth upgrading if you already own the Blu-ray? Probably not, no, but by the same token, I'm glad that I finally ended up with the UHD. It all depends how obsessive-compulsive that you are.
 

Robert Crawford

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It's the same disc in Steelbook packaging. Both this one and the 2018 release have Dolby Vision. Since I've got a projector, I only watched in HDR10.
Yeah, I couldn't remember if the 2018 4K release had Dolby Vision or HDR.

1676137077917.png
 

sbjork

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Yeah, I couldn't remember if the 2018 4K release had Dolby Vision or HDR.

View attachment 175617
Definitely both. While I can't watch Dolby Vision, Oppo's information overlay does helpfully confirm that it's present.

But I'd be really, really surprised if there's any practical difference between the two in this particular case.
 

JoshZ

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It's entirely fair to question the need for a 4K upscale of 1080p source material, but after finally having watched the UHD myself and comparing it to the Blu-ray, it is an upgrade, however miniscule. Not in terms of resolution, but because of the HDR grade, specifically in regards to contrast. (Wide Color Gamut is as pointless here as is the upscale.) The highlights on the Blu-ray are blown out and the detail within them is clipped. That detail is back on the UHD. It's most noticeable in flames or explosions, especially the fireballs at the beginning of the film that launch toward the party. They're featureless globs of orange on the Blu-ray, but they're more detailed on UHD. There's a little more detail to the shadows on the darker end of the spectrum, too.

Since the intent of the movie's photography was to look like amateur camcorder footage, wouldn't HDR with improved color and highlights actually undercut the entire premise? Seems like a "better-looking" copy of Cloverfield misses the whole point of the movie.
 

sbjork

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Since the intent of the movie's photography was to look like amateur camcorder footage, wouldn't HDR with improved color and highlights actually undercut the entire premise? Seems like a "better-looking" copy of Cloverfield misses the whole point of the movie.
Not at all. "Better looking" in this case doesn't mean that it looks like Midsommar does in 4K. It still looks like camcorder footage either way. The whole point of the aesthetic is preserved. It's also worth pointing out that not all camcorders look the same. Some do give better picture quality than others. There's nothing wrong with being able to see a bit more details in the flames.

For the record, I never said anything about it being "better looking." My exact words were "miniscule upgrade." That's not exactly a ringing endorsement.
 

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