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post #1 of 20 Old 06-10-2019, 09:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Us Ultra HD Blu-ray Review



From Academy Award-winning visionary Jordan Peele comes another original nightmare. Starring Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke, an endearing American family is pitted against a terrifying and uncanny opponent: doppelgangers of themselves. Check out Ralph Potts’ Ultra HD Blu-ray review of Us.



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

Film:

Extras:

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

93



Details:

Studio and Year: Universal - 2019
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 116 minutes
Genre: Horror/Thriller

Disc Format: BD-100
Encoding: HEVC
Video Aspect: 2.39:1
Resolution: 2160p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1, French Dolby Digital Plus 7.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Lupita Nyong’o Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker
Written & Directed by: Jordon Peele
Music by: Michael Abels
Region Code: A,B,C


Release Date: June 18, 2019


"Watch Yourself"


Synopsis:

“From Academy Award-winning visionary Jordan Peele comes another original nightmare. Starring Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke, an endearing American family is pitted against a terrifying and uncanny opponent: doppelgangers of themselves.” – Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

My Take:

Set along the North California coastline, Adelaide Wilson (Nyong’o) reluctantly returns to her beachside childhood home with her family and finds that she is haunted by unresolved trauma from her past along with a string of eerie coincidences. As darkness falls after a tense day at the beach, the Wilsons discover four figures standing in their driveway. They soon realize this is only the beginning of their troubles as they find that the four figures are terrifying and uncanny opponents: doppelgängers of themselves.

I really like writer/director Jordan Peele’s Get Out and was immediately smitten by the trailer for Us. My wife and I took it in on opening weekend at the theater and walked away from it with mixed feelings. Written and directed by Peele his penchant for uncanny storytelling, thought provoking context and, genre bending themes is definitely on display. I think that based on the trailer I was anticipating something definingly dark with creepier underpinnings. Us dredges up lots of questions, many of which aren’t answered as its air of mystery plays out right through the final moments.

I couldn’t put my finger on what exactly left me wanting after seeing it the first time. I enjoyed the film’s wonderfully dark humor, twisted sense of dread and its conceptually spin. I also thought that the performances by the cast thoroughly complimented the film, especially Lupita Nyong’o. I walked away looking forward to seeing it again on home video, hoping that a second viewing would bear more fruit. Unfortunately, it didn’t. Again, I want to emphasize that I like Us for the reasons previously mentioned but, I simply feel like I must be missing something as it just doesn’t resonate as deeply as I was hoping for. I find Get Out to be a more complete thought than Us.

I will say that it’s clearly evident that Jordan Peele is a visionary with a knack for taking the audience down the rabbit hole and into his world. I like that. I look forward to whatever he has in store next.


Replay Value: 3.5 Stars


Parental Guide:

The rating is for violence/terror 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(HDR-10): 92
(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:



UHD Presentation (Dolby Vision): 92
(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 platform:
  • Entertainment factor:



Us comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound.

For its presentation in Ultra HD Us was derived from a 3.4K source, and rendered from a 2K DI. From a cinematic perspective, this film was shot with a specific visual aesthetic in mind and that comes through in this presentation. At times the image is nearly devoid of color, while at others, has a pleasingly diverse palate, that sets the mood of a scene. Shot digitally the image has a smooth aesthetic, with clean delineation that draws out plenty of detail, in both close-up and wide-angle camera shots. Blacks are deep without compromise to fidelity, as the layers of detail seen with them is readily apparent. Contrast abounds as the richness of the depth seen in grays, whites and mid-tones pops in the film’s variety of low-level sequences. Fleshtones adhere to the film’s visual aesthetic and appear consistent throughout the presentation.

As I alluded to earlier Us isn’t a predominantly colorful film however its cooler chromatic hues, sepia tones and variants of blue/red benefited from UHD's wider color gamut, appearing warmer and pleasing to the eye. There is intermittent use of visual elements that utilize high dynamic range. I wasn't especially impressed with its application although some of that may be owed to the nature of the photography. There were instances where bright elements looked appreciably vibrant but, none really stood out.

This Ultra HD rendering makes the most of the film’s elements, which are excellent. Looking at the 1080p version, which is solid in its own right, the difference is noticeable, but not what I would describe as night and day. That being said, there is no question about which of the two makes for the most engaging viewing experience.


Dolby Vision vs HDR-10:

I utilize the TCL 55P607 UHD Dolby Vision HDR flat panel in my review system to enable me to compare the visual quality of titles that contained the Dolby Vision metadata versus its HDR-10 counterpart on the same disc. All titles are first watched via my JVC front projector. I then select specific scenes which are watched on the TCL, first via HDR-10 then via Dolby Vision. The TCL isn’t among the top tier flat panels with DV, however it came recommended by AVS Senior Editor Mark Henninger, and calibrates/performs extremely well for a set at its price point.

* The cumulative A/V score will still be based upon the HDR-10 rating, with the DV rating serving as informational only for now.*

Comparing the DV and HDR-10 presentations for Us, I found the HDR rendering to essentially be identical. As I alluded to earlier, this film’s elements aren’t consistently lent to bright color and vibrant highlights. When I switched back and forth between the DV and HDR-10 renderings, any minute differences were negligible and not enough to warrant a rating difference. Both looked terrific, leaving me similarly satisfied with what I saw.




Dolby Atmos:

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the active variety that made effective use of the platform. Its use of audio objects placed above is a blend of atmospherics and music. Where this mix excels is in its use of the platform to emphasize/underscore the terrific music score by Michael Abels which is an integral part of the film’s thematic elements. There are many instances that show off the track’s eclectic music and, smaller object sounds that create a wonderfully involving listening experience, that broadens the soundstage. I enjoyed the balance of atmosphere as well as the integration of ambient extension and pointed sound object placement. I think that it complimented the source material and drew me into the film when it mattered most.



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: 96
(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


Us comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound.

This is an excellent high definition rendering that sports plenty of fine detail and crisp definition that provides discerning dimensional perspective. Colors range from warm and vivid to cool, reserved and almost tonally neutral. This is obviously a creative decision that draws definitive visual boundaries and works quite well. Contrast is strong and blacks are deep without compromise to delineation. Shadowy areas exhibit excellent depth of field and visible gradational stages. Framed at 2.39:1 the image has excellent depth, and a stimulating visual aura. I didn’t see any signs of video degrading artifacts or extraneous compression related noise. Us looks great on Blu-ray.

The lossless Dolby True HD 7.1 (Atmos core) soundtrack has good dynamic range, detail rich clarity and makes ample use of the surround platform to drive the film’s elements. The detection of subtle background sounds, off camera cues and spatial dimension within the room’s acoustic environment is notable. Discrete rear channel activity isn’t extensive however the elements of suspense provide an enriching level of immersion which is punctuated by palpable bass. Dialog is firmly planted in the center channel and renders voices and effects with appropriate distinction. This surround mix capably handles the subtle intricacies thrown at by this soundtrack as it augments the thematic tone of this film.


Bonus Features:
  • Disc 1: Us Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Us Blu-ray
    4K/Blu-ray/Digital Exclusive: Scene Explorations - The making of three iconic scenes from the film including the Tyler house massacre, Jason’s abduction and Adelaide’s underground flashback.
    o Seven Second Massacre
    o It's a Trap
    o I Just Want My Little Girl Back

    • The Duality of US - Jordan Peele goes in-depth on some of the key themes and imagery in US – including Doppelgängers, Hands Across America, The Nutcracker dance scene, rabbits and the infamous 11:11 coincidence.
    • The Monsters Within US - Examine how the great cast were able to find their characters, whether they were playing one of the Wilsons or their sinister doppelgängers.
    • Tethered Together: Making US Twice - Making of a movie is hard. Making a movie where all the main cast play dual roles can be downright mind-bending. In this piece, filmmakers, cast, and crew discuss some of the technical challenges to making the film, as well as some of the design choices for the characters.
    • Redefining a Genre: Jordan Peele's Brand of Horror - In the space of two films, Jordan Peele has set himself apart as an invaluable artistic voice. Hear cast and filmmakers highlight what makes him so unique, as well as Jordan's own thoughts on his inspirations and the relationship between horror and comedy.
    • Becoming Red - Using behind-the-scenes footage from between takes, we take a closer look at Lupita Nyong'o's intense and mesmerizing performance as "Red."
    • Deleted Scenes
    o I Am Not Even Near You
    o Rabbit Season
    o That's Badass
    o Driftwood
    o The P is Silent
    o I Wanna Go Home
    • We're All Dying – Hilarious outtakes from the conversation between Winston Duke and Tim Heidecker on the beach.
    • As Above, So Below: Grand Pas de Deux - An extended version of the dance sequence from the film, cutting between adolescent Adelaide at her recital to Red in the Underpass.
  • Digital Copy



Final Thoughts:

Written/directed by Jordan Peele Us succeeds more so on the strengths of its complexities, rather than its ability to deliver a wholly gratifying film experience. It comes to Blu-ray on this Ultra HD Combo Pack from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment featuring excellent overall audio/video quality, including an engaging Dolby Atmos immersive sound mix and a fan friendly supplemental package that includes format exclusives. Wholly gratifying or not Us is recommended viewing for genre fans and deserves a place at the top of your Blu-ray rental queue.











Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews


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Last edited by Ralph Potts; 06-10-2019 at 02:27 PM.
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post #2 of 20 Old 06-10-2019, 09:28 AM
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Glad to hear the A/V quality is good on this. I'm with you Ralph, I liked the movie overall, but something just didn't feel complete and it was not as good imo as Get Out. But I'll still pick it up. I'm curious to see how m perception changes on a second viewing.
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Last edited by Ralph Potts; 06-10-2019 at 09:35 AM. Reason: No Need to Quote the Entire Review
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I watched "Get Out" yesterday for the first time on UHD. Had seen it prior on Bluray.



The 4K was reference material visually. And I liked the film better on the second viewing.

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post #4 of 20 Old 06-10-2019, 07:13 PM
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Thanks for the review Ralph. I found this movie as disturbing (as in makes you think) as 'Get Out'. I like way Peele changes up what you expect, in his style as a director. I'll never look at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk quite the same way again.

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post #5 of 20 Old 06-10-2019, 07:24 PM
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It amazes me review after review, the common thread I see with HDR10 VS Dolby Vision is they always seem to score the same.
You would think if DV was so great the score would be miles apart. There is not much of a debate going on yet, but at this point I think DV is a gimmick. The reason I say this without great knowledge like the experts is just common sense and a little research.
Dolby Vision is a 12 bit technology .Our TV panels are 10 bit. So question begs how can one actually see DV ,true DV.
The answer is you don't see it. This explains why a side by side comparison one would maybe say I don't see a difference.And if the expert mind could be put aside even the expert with a good eye would agree HDR10 and DV look the same. One could say it might be cause of the source ,the studio,the disc and that maybe true. I wonder if the experts sit around and ask the same questions come to their minds. Some tv companies like LG ,Samsung do HDR better than others. But this is a business and reviewers can only go so far or they stand to lose a lot including free products to review. I have read your reviews for years and I find your on the mark with your reviews and reading between the lines that HDR10 vs DV is answered in a roundabout way. Which ok BTW. Now I hear 12 bit panels are in the works and I'm sure when that happens everything will need an upgrade. Meanwhile the truth must be told about not only Dolby Vision but HDR as a whole. Its broken there is no standards and another format war going on. And consumers trusting sites like this for the truth gets hurts in the end if the site is doing the bidding of the manufacturer. But if enough sites start calling out a product when the product quite frankly doesn't work it would force companies to get there stuff together. Sounds like politics I know cause it is. Sorry for the rant.
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post #6 of 20 Old 06-11-2019, 03:39 AM
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DV is not a gimmick, display technology simply hasn't caught up yet to it's full potential.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerkris View Post
Glad to hear the A/V quality is good on this. I'm with you Ralph, I liked the movie overall, but something just didn't feel complete and it was not as good imo as Get Out. But I'll still pick it up. I'm curious to see how m perception changes on a second viewing.
I didn't find it nearly as good as Get Out. In fact, I think that movie will carry him whenever he releases a film. The end basically redeemed the movie, but until that point I was very confused about what I was watching. It felt like it was unsure if it wanted to be a horror movies or something deep with an underlying meaning, it did both just OK IMO. With that said, I have thought about the ending the last few days since watching it, so it must have done something right.

I watched all of the special features, which I think everyone should watch, but it still felt like it wasn't executed as good as it could have been.
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Loved Get Out.


Haven't seen this. Trailer looks good. Reviewers like it.


Preordered. Thanks Ralph!
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DV is not a gimmick, display technology simply hasn't caught up yet to it's full potential.
Maybe when the technology reaches the projector industry with 12bit panels, I'll have actually worn out my new JVC RS1000 rather then succumbing to the chronic disease of up-grade-itis.


Maybe it has in the new Christi, but I don't have wheel barrel fulls of money.
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post #10 of 20 Old 06-12-2019, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomvinelli View Post
It amazes me review after review, the common thread I see with HDR10 VS Dolby Vision is they always seem to score the same.
You would think if DV was so great the score would be miles apart. There is not much of a debate going on yet, but at this point I think DV is a gimmick. The reason I say this without great knowledge like the experts is just common sense and a little research.
Dolby Vision is a 12 bit technology .Our TV panels are 10 bit. So question begs how can one actually see DV ,true DV.
The answer is you don't see it. This explains why a side by side comparison one would maybe say I don't see a difference.And if the expert mind could be put aside even the expert with a good eye would agree HDR10 and DV look the same. One could say it might be cause of the source ,the studio,the disc and that maybe true. I wonder if the experts sit around and ask the same questions come to their minds. Some tv companies like LG ,Samsung do HDR better than others. But this is a business and reviewers can only go so far or they stand to lose a lot including free products to review. I have read your reviews for years and I find your on the mark with your reviews and reading between the lines that HDR10 vs DV is answered in a roundabout way. Which ok BTW. Now I hear 12 bit panels are in the works and I'm sure when that happens everything will need an upgrade. Meanwhile the truth must be told about not only Dolby Vision but HDR as a whole. Its broken there is no standards and another format war going on. And consumers trusting sites like this for the truth gets hurts in the end if the site is doing the bidding of the manufacturer. But if enough sites start calling out a product when the product quite frankly doesn't work it would force companies to get there stuff together. Sounds like politics I know cause it is. Sorry for the rant.
You need to stop trolling threads about the topic of DV. It's time you move on...
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I really liked Get Out but thought the twist in Us was ludicrous. A good movie up until that point. Thanks for the review.
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a real pile steaming poo this was , the entire premise, the acting, screenplay, directing. peele is a real talent less hack who will not be missed at the screen near me!

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I found that watching this in FF was the way to go, so as to avoid having to sift through it for the completely absent plot.
I want my 2 hours back. The so-called "twist" was obvious right from the start of the film, BTW.
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post #14 of 20 Old 06-22-2019, 05:15 PM
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Can't say I saw the twist in advance, but overall I thought the movie was "okay". I love Jordan Peele's comedy and I like the Horror genre somewhat, as well as the tounge in cheekiness here and there, but I can't say I have a desire to see either one again.


I saw "Get Out" a second time just to see it in 4K UHD, and that was reference video quality, but overall, neither film really grabbed me.


On a side note, I live near the Santa Cruz Boardwalk and I thought it was way cool how he used it. The mirror hall attraction is not real at the Boardwalk, but take a walk through The Fright Walk there and you'll get your scare on! We visited the Boardwalk again early in July for our Anniversary, our favorite special occasion restaurant, Shadowbrook, is fifteen minutes away in Capitola, and we both got the willie's walking through it. Not that it's the most technically advanced thing, though it ain't too shabby, but there's enough walking in the dark wondering what's going to happen next, to make you look for the exit about half way through.
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post #15 of 20 Old 06-24-2019, 07:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexanderDelarg View Post
I really liked Get Out but thought the twist in Us was ludicrous. A good movie up until that point. Thanks for the review.
Yeah, ditto. The ending really sucked and did not make sense at all. It was forced or is it "farced"? The entire ending actually ruined the movie. Humor was a bit forced too.
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post #16 of 20 Old 07-03-2019, 05:10 PM
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I checked out this thread hoping to see why this movie was such a critical success; reading through some of the print reviews didn't add any insight as to why it got such high rankings.

I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who was left lacking any feelings at the end of it. As a horror film, I think it failed. While there were a few moments of intensity, they weren't prolonged thorughout the movie, and there were no sustained feelings of dread. There were so many other home-invasion themed moves that did it much better (see The Strangers, for example). As a mystery, while it started with a facinating set-up, the ending denouement just drained any interest in whatever the illogical, and poorly developed premise it may have been trying to develop. As a social comentary, well, let's just leave that one alone.

Ultimately, I had a more enjoyable time watching the family just be a family than I did once their four dopplegangers showed up.

For fantastical horror movie, that's not a good thing. It is a testement to the actors, and much of the banter of the movie, but a poor reflection on the mess of a plot.

Scott
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post #17 of 20 Old 07-03-2019, 08:26 PM
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I enjoyed it actually living in the Bay Area and perhaps it was more excitement to have Santa Cruz featured in a film. I may need to watch a second time but thoughts in spoiler. The mom doppelgänger was awesome. The role was played perfectly. The little double twist at the end was a nice touch.

Spoiler!
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post #18 of 20 Old 07-09-2019, 03:47 AM
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Watched it with my daughter on sunday we both enjoyed it


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post #19 of 20 Old 07-09-2019, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.SoftDome View Post
I enjoyed it actually living in the Bay Area and perhaps it was more excitement to have Santa Cruz featured in a film. I may need to watch a second time but thoughts in spoiler. The mom doppelgänger was awesome. The role was played perfectly. The little double twist at the end was a nice touch.

Spoiler!
I look forward to repeat viewings of this. I really enjoyed it the first time through, but some of the thoughts mentioned in your spoiler also crossed my mind.

One angle I'd like to explore is the possibility of an unreliable narrator. i.e. when the exposition/explanation is given, is this information that the character in question truly "knows" (and if so, how)? Or is it more along the lines of that character's way of rationalizing/trying to make sense of their situation? I haven't gotten around to a second viewing yet, so that question may well fall apart when I do... but if there is room to consider the narrator unreliable here, then things can go back to being more unexplained/mysterious.
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post #20 of 20 Old 07-17-2019, 08:43 PM
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Like others, for the most part I liked it, but there was just something missing for me. I loved the set up - thought it was great. But by the final act, I was very disappointed were it eventually ended up. Some of the scenes were beautifully filmed (not sure if Peele's eye or his director of photography), so that pushed it into the thumbs up category for me.
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