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post #1 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Bohemian Rhapsody Ultra HD Blu-ray Review



Ralph Potts reviews the Ultra HD Blu-ray release of Bohemian Rhapsody, the story of the legendary rock band Queen and lead singer Freddie Mercury, leading up to their famous performance at Live Aid (1985).



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

Film:

Extras:

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

97



Details:

Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox - 2018
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 135 minutes
Genre: Drama/Biopic

Disc Format: BD-66
Encoding: HEVC
Video Aspect: 2.39:1
Resolution: 2160p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1, English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, French DTS 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Rami Malek, Lucy Boynton, Gwilym Lee, Ben Hardy, Joe Mazello, Aiden Gillen, Tom Hollander, Allen Leech
Directed by: Bryan Singer
Music by: Queen
Written by: Anthony McCarten
Region Code: A


Release Date: February 12, 2019


"Fearless Lives Forever"


Synopsis:

Bohemian Rhapsody is an enthralling celebration of Queen, their music, and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury (Malek), who defied stereotypes and convention to become one of history’s most beloved entertainers. Following Queen’s meteoric rise, their revolutionary sound and Freddie’s solo career, the film also chronicles the band’s reunion, and one of the greatest performances in rock history.” – 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

My Take:

The following was included in the production notes for Bohemian Rhapsody. I found it to be a perfect introduction for my comments on the film and decided to include them:

The iconic intro of “We Will Rock You,” the soaring chorus of “We Are the Champions,” the mesmerizing operatics of “Bohemian Rhapsody”...

Who isn’t moved to sing along when they hear these anthems? Who can’t fail to stamp their feet at such heart-stirring beats? Who can forget that moment the Live Aid concert of 1985 suddenly moved into fifth gear when Freddie Mercury strutted onto the stage and sent the crowd into frenzies of communal singing?

It’s been over 25 years since the death of lead singer and flamboyant front Freddie Mercury, yet the music lives on. Freddie redefined and transcended stereotypes, just as Queen’s music refuses to be slotted into any traditional genre. Perhaps that’s why the band is such a cross-generational, multicultural and global phenomenon.


Growing up in the seventies and eighties I have clear recollections of Queen, their meteoric rise to stardom, their entertaining flair onstage, the popularity of the music they wrote/played and of course, their terrific front man, Freddie Mercury. I can’t say that I was a fan per se but, I liked their music and owned some of their singles. As a fan of Rock and, a former drummer in a rock band, I had an appreciation for just how good they were.

I went to the theater and took in Bohemian Rhapsody and was blown away. Much of this is owed to the performance of Rami Malek in his portrayal of Freddie Mercury but, like a band, this was a group effort. The story predominantly focuses on Mercury, containing bits of his family life, personal relationship with longtime friend Mary Austin, history with the band, and the evolution of his life/career leading up to Queen’s fantastic performance at 1985’s Live Aid concert at Wembly Stadium.

Bohemian Rhapsody is told from a personal perspective which not only includes public facts from private ones, including Mercury’s troubles with his bandmates, the media and storied friendship with Paul Prenter. The film’s pacing is spot on, supporting its thematic tone, allowing a defining connection to the various stages of the story which ultimately culminate on July 13th, 1985 at Wembly. Seeing again proves every bit as engaging and rewarding as I found myself caught up its series of memorable moments. I must once again praise Rami Malek for giving us probably the best performance of 2018. Bohemian Rhapsody is a gem.


Replay Value:


Parental Guide:

The rating is for thematic elements, suggestive material, drug content and language.


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: 100
(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:
  • Soundstage integration:
  • Audio object placement:
  • Effectiveness of Atmos platform:
  • Entertainment factor:



Bohemian Rhapsody 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.

For its presentation in Ultra HD Bohemian Rhapsody was rendered from 6.5K/3.4K sources and from what I can tell appears to have been finished on a 2K DI (although this isn’t something that is apparent when viewing it).

This biopic film is essentially boldly colorful throughout, and this Ultra HD rendering makes the most of its elements. With a discernible increase in detail and emboldened chromatic highlights the image appears sharper and vibrant when compared to the 1080p version. Primary colors are pleasingly rich while whites appear gradational and punchy. The spectrum of secondary colors looks terrific as well. The opening sequence provides a glimpse of what it to come, but it’s the flashback to 1970 that offers the bonus that the presentation’s wide color gamut has to offer. The combination of rich color, sepia, and gradational whites look stunning.

I also enjoyed the implementation of HDR. The added dimension in blacks, and shadows during the low-level scenes, such as the one where Freddie first meets Brian and Roger, is immediately noticeable. There are a host of sequences where the cinematography makes use of shadows, 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 blend of shadow detail/depth of field offset by the presence of light at varying levels, looked very natural.

The film makes frequent use of close up camera angles that show off the superb rendering of detail. The exterior sequences, such as those that take place on the farm where the recording studio is located, have appreciable depth which has an enriching, and eye-catching aesthetic. Bohemian Rhapsody looks superb in Ultra HD and appears to be as faithful to the original source as any I have seen on the format.


Dolby Atmos:

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be a fairly entertaining listening experience that made steady use of the platform. Its use of audio objects placed above is a mix of atmospherics and music. This is done quite well, and where applied, creates a tangible level of immersion that coincides with the onscreen events nicely. I noticed that the front overhead channels were used for adding depth to the soundstage while the rear overhead channels contained more discrete sound objects/effects. In addition to things like overhead pans where sounds move through the soundstage, there are several scenes, such as the second act’s concert medley, that bring everything together. I was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable this Dolby Atmos presentation was, adding a complimentary element that elevated the experience of watching the film

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

Blu-ray Video:


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


  • Resolution/Clarity:
  • Black Level/Shadow Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:
  • Fleshtones:
  • Compression:



Audio: 92
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics:
  • Low frequency effects:
  • Surround Sound presentation:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Dialog Reproduction:
  • DSU/DTS Neural:X Rating * (non-rated element): NA


Bohemian Rhapsody comes to Blu-ray Disc from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound.

Colors are effectively used in this film to help set the tone based upon the mood of the scene. The chroma range is broad and hues can vary from being sullen and inanimate to warm and inviting. Skin tones are beautifully rendered with natural highlights and descriptive variation. Images onscreen are exquisitely detailed and sharp with superb depth of field and visible texture during wide angle shots. Contrast is spot on and blacks are deep with revealing delineation that provides excellent perceptibility during scenes shot at night or in lower lighting. The video has a pristine quality that is free of video related artifacts.

The 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack makes effective use of the surround platform and offers detail rich sonic clarity, and crystalline dialog reproduction. As you’d expect this mix doesn’t bombard you with aggressive surround sound. It applies it when appropriate and combines 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 are 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: Bohemian Rhapsody Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Bohemian Rhapsody Blu-ray
    • The Complete Live Aid Movie Performance Not Seen in Theaters (featured in 4K Ultra HD™ HDR on the 4K Ultra HD™ Disc)
    • Rami Malek: Becoming Freddie
    • The Look and Sound of Queen
    • Recreating Live Aid
  • Digital Copy



Final Thoughts:

Bohemian Rhapsody is an engaging and entertaining biopic that features a sterling cast led by a defining performance by Rami Malek and apt direction from Bryan Singer. It comes to Blu-ray from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring top notch Ultra HD video, engaging lossless surround sound, including a solid Dolby Atmos immersive listening experience and a middling supplemental package. If you’re a fan Bohemian Rhapsody is a must have for your Blu-ray collection.
















Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews


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post #2 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 11:27 AM
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Hi Ralph,

Are you able to confirm that this is an HDR10+ disc?

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post #3 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 12:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeeMoreDigital View Post
Hi Ralph,

Are you able to confirm that this is an HDR10+ disc?
Greetings,

Unfortunately I cannot. Sorry about that..


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post #4 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post
Greetings,

Unfortunately I cannot. Sorry about that..


Regards,
Its hard to see because of the logo, right under the 4k Ultra HD on the left, note the “+”.
Note some who looked at it early were questioning HDR10+ differences compared to static HDR10 performance.



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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnAV View Post
Its hard to see because of the logo, right under the 4k Ultra HD on the left, note the “+”.
Note some who looked at it early were questioning HDR10+ differences compared to static HDR10 performance.


It took me a while, but for a minute there I thought you were trolling since "under the 4K Ultra HD (logo) on the left", there are technically 2 plus signs
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post #6 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnAV View Post
Its hard to see because of the logo, right under the 4k Ultra HD on the left, note the “+”.
Note some who looked at it early were questioning HDR10+ differences compared to static HDR10 performance.
Greetings,

Thanks John. I was aware of the designation on the jacket. I assumed that the original question was looking for confirmation via playback since sometimes the labels aren't always accurate.


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post #7 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 01:00 PM
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What it's the sound for the live aid concert on the 4k disc? Is it just 2ch?
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post #8 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 01:06 PM
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The full concert is in ATMOS. It's amazing how close to the real thing they emulated it.

Loved this movie. Wasn't expecting it to be as good based on reviews, but exceeded my expectations. Rami Malek is outstanding as Freddie Mercury; hope he wins Best Actor Oscar.

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Seen it in the movies, excellent movie. Couldn't wait for it to come out on BD..Rami Malek WAS Freddie Mercury. From the teeth, the strutting back and forth and the form fitting T-shirts, it was an excellent presentation..Make room for that Oscar Remi!!

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post #10 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 01:36 PM
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Saw this in a theater. Although the music was good, it's not something I would watch again. If I want to listen to their music, I have all their albums on vinyl. That's good enough for me.

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post #11 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 05:22 PM
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I saw thus in IMAX at the theatre, and am looking forward to my disk arriving next week.
From the review it looks like a real gem.

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post #12 of 92 Old 02-09-2019, 09:42 PM
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Im excited to see this. I hope the music on the movie is recorded well and not flat and dynamic-less. I have a friend coming over to watch this in my theater. He is a huge Queen fan and is looking forward to hearing the music on my system. From the scores you gave Ralph it sounds like it will be good.
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Will be picking this up. Enjoyed it at the Theatres.


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Been looking forward to this for some time, glad it’s finally arriving. I remember seeing Rami Malek for the first time on HBO’s “The Pacific” and thinking he was fantastic. Glad to see his talents are taking him places.
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Rami Malek has already won Golden Globe and SAG awards for Best Actor. That should be predictive of him getting the Oscar to round out the big three hat trick. I've seen the full 21 minute Live Aid performance that's a bonus feature on the home video release. It's amazing and that alone, even though it wasn't in the movie itself, merits the Oscar for Malek.
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Thank you, Ralph, high praise indeed.

I'm optimistic that this Blu-ray will be brighter viewing than my dimly-projected theater experience.

Bohemian Rhapsody 4K Blu-ray, Blu-ray reviews and comments will be most interesting to read, in our midst of HDR format wars and wide viewing variances of projection, QLED, OLED, LCD, etc.

One reviewer I read conveyed wide gaps of video quality from Blu-ray to 4K Blu-ray HDR10 to 4K Blu-ray HDR10+. Was he too excited, or is this believable?

Whatever, we're in a reviewing period like no other. Beyond Marshall McLuhan's "The Medium is the Message".

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I'm going to order it today. Didn't had a chance to see it in theather but I know it is amazing movie. Thanks Ralph again for excellent review !!!!!

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It is fun to buy great movie and make movie collection bigger !!!
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The re-creation of the Live Aid performance was worth the watch alone. Having lived through the Live Aid to the death of Freddy in my youth making this a very hard watch personally as this film brought back of lot of memories, good or bad. But this is a good show nevertheless.
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That was some of the greatest acting i have ever seen in my life. I've seen every major movie release over the last 30 years.


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post #20 of 92 Old 02-11-2019, 08:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dustin Windsor View Post
That was some of the greatest acting i have ever seen in my life. I've seen every major movie release over the last 30 years.
If I may nit pick, Malek is much smaller in stature than Freddie so he couldn't convey Freddie's larger than live persona. That's not Malek's fault nevertheless.
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I was so enamored with this movie that I placed my UHD BR preorder while on the ride home from the theater having just seen an opening day matinee. That was a first for me. Glad to hear it made the translation to the "small screen" well. Looking forward to watching this tomorrow!
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post #22 of 92 Old 02-11-2019, 11:36 AM
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This was an engrossing and throughly enjoyable movie, and although I was too young to realize their talent and music at their apex, I enjoyed it later.

Just a curious thought or two though:
Spoiler!
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post #23 of 92 Old 02-11-2019, 12:11 PM
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Looking forward to seeing this! Thanks for the great review Ralph.
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post #24 of 92 Old 02-11-2019, 02:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xavier3 View Post
This was an engrossing and throughly enjoyable movie, and although I was too young to realize their talent and music at their apex, I enjoyed it later.



Just a curious thought or two though:

Spoiler!
The teeth were too big, no doubt. And on an actor so much smaller, I suspect it was an attempt to draw attention away from that fact.
One of my few criticisms, I wasn't aware of most of the artistic license used in the movie, just a fan of the music as I listened to it a lot growing up.


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post #25 of 92 Old 02-11-2019, 10:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GekkoSoze View Post
If I may nit pick, Malek is much smaller in stature than Freddie so he couldn't convey Freddie's larger than live persona. That's not Malek's fault nevertheless.
Haven't seen the movie yet.

According to IMDB, Freddie Mercury's height was 5' 9 1/2" (1.77m) . Rami Malek, 5' 9" (1.75m). Comments? Corrections?
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I have to say, I was really disappointed with this movie. I'm not a huge Queen fan, that is to say, I know nothing about the band beyond having heard some songs. I think that's the problem, things were brought up, mentioned, alluded to, but never really explained. So if you already knew the story behind events, I'm sure the movie was great in that it mentions a lot of things. But it never explains why, or how things happened. I feel like after watching the movie, I don't really know anything about Queen besides the music still. Like, they form the band, play one minute of a song, then '1 year later"... it would have been nice to see some development between forming the band and cashing in all their chips to make an album. Like I didn't care that they sold the van, cause i didn't know how important(or not) the van was. Did they have money? were they sleeping in the van? i have no idea if that was a big risk because nobody knew the band, or was it an obvious decision because they had been very successful up to that point?

Basically it felt more like a recap of events than a telling of the story.
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post #27 of 92 Old 02-12-2019, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by fierce_gt View Post
I have to say, I was really disappointed with this movie. I'm not a huge Queen fan, that is to say, I know nothing about the band beyond having heard some songs. I think that's the problem, things were brought up, mentioned, alluded to, but never really explained. So if you already knew the story behind events, I'm sure the movie was great in that it mentions a lot of things. But it never explains why, or how things happened. I feel like after watching the movie, I don't really know anything about Queen besides the music still. Like, they form the band, play one minute of a song, then '1 year later"... it would have been nice to see some development between forming the band and cashing in all their chips to make an album. Like I didn't care that they sold the van, cause i didn't know how important(or not) the van was. Did they have money? were they sleeping in the van? i have no idea if that was a big risk because nobody knew the band, or was it an obvious decision because they had been very successful up to that point?

Basically it felt more like a recap of events than a telling of the story.

Your review about storyline and editing is valid, and generally agrees with professional movie critics. That doesn't mean much to moviegoers, most of which weren't alive during "Queen's reign".

Disc-buying frenzy has begun. I'll wait until intro pricing recedes. Rock on!

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post #28 of 92 Old 02-12-2019, 11:31 AM
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Haven't seen the movie yet.

According to IMDB, Freddie Mercury's height was 5' 9 1/2" (1.77m) . Rami Malek, 5' 9" (1.75m). Comments? Corrections?
Wikipedia has Freddie at 5' 10", and another website, 9 lbs heavier. None too extreme.

Prior to seeing the movie I was interested in reading about Rami Malek's physical preparation. Bulking up, striking poses would be necessary buy-ins. I (and awards voters) think Malek got close enough in both respects.

Noticeable stature difference for me are neck size and sideview.


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post #29 of 92 Old 02-12-2019, 12:16 PM
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@Ralph Potts ,

Another spot on review. Thank you for keeping these splendid reviews coming. Well done Sir!
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post #30 of 92 Old 02-12-2019, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Panson View Post
Wikipedia has Freddie at 5' 10", and another website, 9 lbs heavier. None too extreme.

Prior to seeing the movie I was interested in reading about Rami Malek's physical preparation. Bulking up, striking poses would be necessary buy-ins. I (and awards voters) think Malek got close enough in both respects.

Noticeable stature difference for me are neck size and sideview.

(snip)
"Stature" is synonymous with "height", not bulk. (Not my definition, but the dictionary's.) Does this matter? Not much.

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