The Boss Baby Ultra HD Review

Ralph Potts reviews this DreamWorks Animation comedy about how a new baby’s arrival impacts a family, told from the point of view of a delightfully unreliable narrator — a wildly imaginative 7-year old named Tim.

The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )

Film:

Extras:

Audio/UHD Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )

86

Details:

Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox – 2017
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 97 minutes
Genre: Family

Disc Format: BD-66
Encoding: HEVC
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 2160p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1, English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Alex Baldwin, Lisa Kudrow, Jimmy Kimmel, Tobey Maguire, Steve Buscemi, Miles Bakshi
Directed by: Tom McGrath
Music by: Hans Zimmer and Steve Mazzaro
Written by: Michael McCullers based on the book by Marla Frazee
Region Code: A

Release Date: July 25, 2017

“Cookies are for Closers”



My Take:

Seven-year-old Tim Templeton suddenly finds his share of parental love plummeting when his new baby brother (Alec Baldwin) arrives – wearing a suit and toting a briefcase – and makes it clear to everyone that he’s in charge. But when Tim discovers that Boss Baby is on a secret mission, he reluctantly agrees to team up with his pint-sized sibling for an epic adventure that might just change the world!

The Boss Baby features a decent cast, contemporary themes, pop culture references and an elementary plot aimed at younger viewers. It keeps things simple, and builds upon its familial based elements, while adding a bit of adventure. The dialog feels rather familiar, the production elements are excellent, and there are a few charming moments, but there is nothing here that we haven’t seen before, and quite frankly the laughs were too infrequent. Maybe I was simply hoping for more, but The Boss Baby never really grabbed hold tight enough to keep me engaged throughout. I do think that little ones will get more out of it, so in that light, it may have something tangible to offer.

Replay Value:img]http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/attachment.php?attachmentid=109942&d=1210373647[/img]

Parental Guide:

The rating is for some mild rude humor.

AUDIO/VIDEO – By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**

UHD Presentation: 94
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

 

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  • HDR: Bright Highlights:
  • HDR: Expanded Color & WCG:
  • Resolution: 
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Dolby Atmos Rating: 78
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

 

  • Level of immersion: 
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Ultra HD Blu-ray has finally been released and eager enthusiasts are ready and willing to see what it has to offer. For those not familiar with the details regarding Ultra HD Blu-ray you can refer to my article that includes some pertinent data on the subject. Here is the link:

Ultra HD Blu-ray Has Come to AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

The Boss Baby comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound that has an average bitrate of 4 Mbps.

I wasn’t able to determine whether The Baby Boss was rendered from a 4K or 2K DI for its presentation on Ultra HD Blu-ray. With the limited exposure to Ultra HD either sourced from 2K or 4K Digital Intermediates we are left to judge based upon what we have seen thus far.

In terms of resolution the differences between this and the 1080p version are appreciable as there is a noticeably finer texture in the minutia, especially in the characteristics/physical makeup of the animated characters. This also applied to backgrounds which emphasized depth of field and fine detail. The image has lots of pop as the expanded color gamut and emboldened dynamic range draw out the film’s bright chromatic palate and use of contrast. Whites are gradational and bright and the monochromatic grays, blues and black featured in the sequences with limited lighting, such as those that take place in Francis Francis’ office, or the file room at Puppy Co., are multi-staged and dimensional in appearance.

As good as The Boss Baby looks in 1080p, the Ultra HD rendering, while not heads and shoulders above it, enhances its attributes, making for a visually stimulating and top notch video presentation.

In listening to the Dolby Atmos mix I found it to be of the less aggressive variety, which considering the source material, was a bit disappointing. To be honest, I felt that this soundtrack had the potential for abundant use of elements that would allow for a busier object based mix, especially with respect to atmospherics. In general, its use of audio objects placed above, is limited to occasional panning fills. I would say that where applied it’s done to good effect, and created a fair level of immersion that coincides with the onscreen events. As an enthusiast, I appreciate a well-crafted sound mix that draws me into the onscreen elements, regardless of where the sounds are emanating from. This Atmos mix is fair, but leans toward being at the ear level listening plane more than I would have liked. Overall it got the job done, but failed to thoroughly engage me.

Blu-ray Video:

Video: 100
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

 

  • Resolution/Clarity:
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Audio: 88
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics: 
  • Low frequency effects: 
  • Surround Sound presentation: 
  • Clarity/Detail: 
  • Dialog Reproduction: 

 

The Boss Baby comes to Blu-ray Disc from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 33 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 4 Mbps.

This is a reference quality video presentation that boasts vivacious colors that are rich in saturation and bold in depth. Detail is superlative as the video has definitive three-dimensional quality with crisp texture and excellent fine articulation. Contrast is strong and well balanced so that whites are crisp and colors pop without distortion or loss of detail. Blacks are deep with excellent dynamic and enriching gradational highlights. This is a beautiful and pristine quality digital transfer that sparkles on Blu-ray.

The 7.1 Dolby TrueHD (Atmos core – UHD version) and the DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio soundtrack (on the Blu-ray) makes effective use of the surround platform and offers detail rich sonic clarity, and crystalline dialog reproduction. This mix doesn’t bombard you with aggressive surround sound. It applies it when appropriate and combines discretely placed directional cues with supporting ambience that fills the listening area nicely. The front and rear sound field never collide but work in unison to render the soundtrack’s elements. Dynamic range and bass response is appropriate, adding thematic emphasis and resonating punch when called upon. This is a solid audio presentation that mates well with the source material.

Bonus Features:

  • Disc 1: The Boss Baby Ultra HD Blu-ray
    Disc 2: The Boss Baby Blu-ray
    • NEW Mini Adventure: The Boss Baby and Tim’s Treasure Hunt Through Time ¬– Narrated by Wizzie, the magical wizard, join Boss Baby and Tim on their adventure!
    • The Forever Puppy Infomercial – Always playful, always snuggly, and everlastingly cute; The Forever Puppy is destined to win the cuteness competition with babies once and for all.
    • BabyCorp and You – Helpful advice and more for new infants on the job at BabyCorp.
    • Babies vs. Puppies: Who Do YOU Love? – Who has won the hearts of familes once and for all? This “scientific” experiment compares and contrasts factors such as “cuddliness,” “adorability,” and “attention grabbing techniques” used by both demanding competitors.
    • The Boss Baby’s Undercover Team – From Staci, the note taker who can’t read, to Jimbo the huge baby who’ll take a suction cup arrow for the Boss, to the triple-threat of the Triplets, Boss Baby dives deeper into this team of cute corporate board members.
    • Cookies are for Closers: Inside BabyCorp – Go behind the scenes with Director Tom McGrath as he introduces us to BabyCorp, a secret organization of infants united for a common goal in
    THE BOSS BABY.
    • The Great Sibling Competition – A fun, kid-friendly and humorous look at the competition among siblings to win the affection of their parents. Explore conversations with the cast and crew on their competitive sibling relationships and get very special insights from Boss Baby himself: Alec Baldwin.
  • Digital HD Copy

Final Thoughts:

The Boss Baby is a mildly entertaining, formulaic, family adventure, that will appeal more to young viewers, while, aside from a few well-placed pop culture references, will leave their parents rather bored. It comes to Blu-ray in this Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring excellent Ultra HD quality, sparkling high definition video, rewarding lossless surround sound, a fair Dolby Atmos mix, and a fan friendly assortment of extras. The Baby Boss didn’t make for a wholly gratifying family film, but should make for an entertaining evening for the kids, especially on Blu-ray.

 

Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS500 3D/4K Ready High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6-HDR Meter from Spectracal)
Stewart Filmscreen – Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16×9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Electronic Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV8802A 13.2 Channel Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies – 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo UDP-203 Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton “Ergo” and Canton In-Ceiling Series Speakers
SVS Ultra Surrounds (Gloss Finish in Bipolar Configuration)
SVS PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
SVS SB-13 Ultra (Piano Gloss finish)
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) – Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components – CP-CP102 cooling package