Wonder Woman Ultra HD Review

When a pilot crashes and tells of conflict in the outside world, Diana, an Amazonian warrior in training, leaves home to fight a war, discovering her full powers and true destiny.

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

Film:

Extras:

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

95

Details:

Studio and Year: Warner – 2017
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 141 minutes
Genre: Action/Fantasy

Disc Format: BD-66
Encoding: HEVC @ 4000 NITS
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 2160p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Gal Gidot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Danny Huston, David Thewlis, Connie Nielsen, Elena Anaya
Directed by: Patty Jenkins
Music by: Rupert Gregon-Williams
Written by: Allan Heinberg
Region Code: A

Release Date: September 19, 2017

“Power. Grace. Wisdom. Wonder…”



My Take:

Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, when an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers…and her true destiny.

I can’t say that I’ve ever read a Wonder Woman comic. I was more of a Marvel Comic fan growing up, but I did read DC, and followed some of her exploits in The Justice League. I was of course familiar with the character, and watched the various incarnations that came to television etc. After seeing her introduction in Batman v. Superman I was intrigued, finding this iteration of her character, and her potential within the current DC universe, to be much more interesting.

I took in Wonder Woman on its opening night and absolutely loved it. Gal Gadot owns the role, bringing the character to life with strength, poise, beauty and a charismatic toughness that captures the essence of what you would envision Wonder Woman to be. DC has been behind the curve with their film adaptations based upon comic book characters. They have begun making some headway and Wonder Woman is leading the charge. I thoroughly enjoyed the script, which had the perfect balance of action and story. I also appreciated the interwoven levity, superb chemistry between Gadot/Pine, and host of well-drawn characters that supported the narrative.

The production elements are terrific, adding an air of authenticity that underscored the film’s adventure/action. I could wax poetic all day long, but the short of it is that Wonder Woman is a very entertaining film, even for those that may not necessarily be a fan of the genre. My wife, for example, turned to me after we watched it last night, and said, “that was excellent”. I can’t think of higher praise.

I look forward for what lies in store for Wonder Woman and will be first in line to see The Justice League.

Replay Value:

Parental Guide:

The rating is for sequences of violence and action, and some suggestive content.

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: 96
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

 

  • HDR: Dark Highlights:
  • HDR: Bright Highlights:
  • HDR: Expanded Color:
  • Resolution: 
  • Visual Impact: 

 

Dolby Atmos Rating: 94
(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

Wonder Woman comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 64 Mbps, and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound that has an average bitrate of 4.3 Mbps

For its presentation in Ultra HD it was rendered from a mix of digital/film sources and finished on a 2K DI. Wonder Woman is a period based film that isn’t boldly colorful throughout but this Ultra HD rendering makes the most of its elements. With a discernible increase in detail and emboldened chromatic highlights the image appears noticeably sharper and vibrant when compared to the 1080p version. Primary colors, like the blue dress Diana wears to the Nazi dinner party, or the red/green of Ludendorff’s uniform, are pleasingly rich. Whites/grays appear gradational and punchy, and earth tones are reproduced with stark realism. The sequences that takes place on Paradise Island looks superb. The combination of rich color, sepia, and gradational gray tones literally pop off of the screen.

I think what I enjoyed most about the presentation was the implementation of HDR. This isn’t an overtly bright film, and the added dimension in blacks, and shadows during low level scenes that take place in England is immediately noticeable. The cinematography makes use of shadows, cascading/streaming light and a mix of light/dark elements. It’s application here is used very well drawing upon HDR’s ability to create stark contrast between the two. The use of shadows mixed with light looked very natural, and when applied, brilliant light caused me to blink/squint in reaction to it. The highlights for me are the battle at the war’s front, in chapter seven, and the toe to toe standoff in the finale, which looks absolutely marvelous.

The film has a variety of sequences that make use of close up camera angles that show off the superb rendering of detail. At times, the level of minutia is excellent, as even the finest nuance in the physical features, period clothing and interior sets is resolvable. The exterior shots and CGI featured in the story have superb depth which adds an enriching, and eye-catching aesthetic to them.

The difference between viewing Wonder Woman in high definition and Ultra HD isn’t quite night and day but there is no question that it benefitted from the increase in resolution, emboldened color and high dynamic range treatment. I was extremely pleased with this presentation and hope to see more like it.

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the active variety that makes effective use of the platform. The blend of audio objects placed in the height channels is a mix atmospherics and discrete effects. At times, this creates a tangible level of 3D immersion that coincides with the onscreen events nicely. This primarily adheres to the sequences of action, but mild ambient extension is used to broaden the soundstage, replicating environments etc. There are both large set pieces and smaller/brief sequences/moments, such as Steve’s escape from the Germans, or the sounds of falling bombs off in the distance at the beginning of chapter seven, that show off this well-crafted mix.

Everything comes together during the aforementioned war front and standoff in the finale, as sounds rotate and revolve around the soundstage from both above and at ear level. The music score is mixed over the platform so as to add natural depth to its orchestrated elements. I enjoyed the involving balance of atmosphere, discrete object placement and room energizing bass. I think that it complimented the source material, and made for an entertaining and invigorating listening experience.

Blu-ray Video:

Video: 98
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

 

  • Resolution/Clarity:
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  • Compression:

 

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

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


Wonder Woman comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 23 Mbps and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound that has an average bitrate of 4.3 Mbps.

Having seen Wonder Woman theatrically I found this rendering to faithfully mimic that presentation. The film utilizes a stylized visual design comprised of various elements that represent the differing environs featured in the story. The color range is limited to shades of dark blue, grays and black with splashes of broader colors and muted sepia tones. Warm golden accents are used to break up the monochromatic essence as uneven light and shading are prevalent. Contrast is spot on which empowers whites and grays without washing away detail. Whites are snappy and crisp and grays are multi-staged and layered. Blacks are dynamic and gradational and detail in shadows is just as strong. The large amount of CGI featured in the film softens some of the background elements but, I didn’t find it to be excessive, or distracting, as the quality of the video is high. It isn’t always razor sharp, but it is cleanly rendered with revealing refinement that increases the perception of fine detail.

The Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel audio is demonstration quality and is sure to please those who like to play their systems near reference. This recording has wide dynamic range and boasts superlative clarity and high level detail. Dialog is appreciably lucid through the center channel as it penetrates well into the room. Channel separation and imaging is excellent. This draws out both large and small sound elements and allows their directional correlation based upon the onscreen events to be definable. The mix makes effective and often aggressive use of the surround channels to reproduce the spatial and discrete sounds contained in this soundtrack. Where called upon the listening position is submerged in sound that bombards the senses with a combination of discretely placed, near field, and panning sound effects. Low frequency effects are applied with authority and occasionally provide room shuddering bass. This is an involving and noteworthy audio presentation that is guaranteed to give your home theater a workout.

Bonus Features:

  • Disc 1: Wonder Woman Ultra HD Blu-ray
    Disc 2: Wonder Woman Blu-ray
    • Epilogue: Etta’s Mission – Etta Candy gets the boys back together for a secret mission that could impact humanity’s future.
    • Crafting the Wonder – Wonder Woman finally comes to life in her first, breathtaking solo film. Explore the journey to create an adventure worthy of DC’s greatest warrior.
    • A Director’s Vision: Themyscira: The Hidden Island
    • A Director’s Vision: Beach Battle
    • A Director’s Vision: A Photograph Through Time
    • A Director’s Vision: Diana in the Modern World
    • A Director’s Vision: Wonder Woman at War
    o Join director Patty Jenkins as she takes you on an exclusive journey through “Wonder Woman’s” most pivotal and exciting moments
    • Warriors of Wonder Woman – Witness the creation of the Amazon army as the women of “Wonder Woman” transform emotionally and physically into the world’s most powerful and heroic warriors.
    • The Trinity – Filmmakers and comic book creators explore the legend of Wonder Woman and how she stands shoulder to shoulder with Superman and Batman to create the pillars of the DC Universe.
    • The Wonder Behind the Camera – Meet the women behind the wonder as they welcome a group of aspiring filmmakers on set for an exclusive, once-in-a-lifetime experience.
    • Finding the Wonder Woman Within – Feel the power of Wonder Woman as award-winning poets and inspiring public figures reveal the impact and importance of DC’s greatest heroine.
    • Extended Scenes
    • Blooper Reel
  • Digital HD Copy

Final Thoughts:

Wonder Woman is a winner, plain, and simple. I found its rousing blend of action, story and top-notch production elements to make for a thoroughly entertaining movie experience. It comes to Blu-ray from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment in this Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack featuring reference quality Ultra HD video, superb high definition audio/video, a terrific Dolby Atmos sound mix, and a fan friendly supplemental set. For those that enjoy the genre, Wonder Woman is simply a must have. If you’re equipped for Ultra HD Blu-ray and immersive sound, you’re in for a treat.

 

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
AC Infinity Aircom T8 Component Cooling Systems