Stuber Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

Check out Ralph Potts’ Ultra HD Blu-ray review of Stuber, an action/comedy from Fox Home Entertainment about a detective who recruits his Uber driver into an unexpected night of adventure.

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

Film:

Extras:

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

91

Details:

Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox – 2019
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 93 minutes
Genre: Action/Comedy

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: Dave Bautista, Kumail Nanjani, Iko Uwais, Natalie Morales, Betty Gilpin, Jimmy Tatrio, Mira Sorvino, Karen Gillan
Directed by: Michael Dowse
Music by: Joseph Trapanese
Written by: Tripper Clancy
Region Code: A

Release Date: October 15, 2019

“Prepare for the Rideshare of Your Life”

Synopsis:

“When a mild-mannered driver named Stu picks up a passenger who turns out to be a cop hot on the trail of a brutal killer, Stu is thrust into a harrowing ordeal in which he desperately tries to hold onto his wits, his life and his five-star rating.” – 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

My Take:

Stuber is a buddy flick about a quick-tempered cop who’s recovering from eye surgery, that recruits a mild-mannered Uber driver to help him on a series of stops associated with apprehending the heroin dealer who murdered his partner. It isn’t long before the mismatched pair find themselves in for a wild day of antics as they encounter violent criminals through the seedy streets of Los Angeles.

I like both Dave Bautista and Kumail Nanjani, as well as the action/comedy genre, but the trailer for Stuber didn’t give me much hope for a well-rounded popcorn flick. Unfortunately, my initial impressions were correct. The script is unimaginative, featuring a series of cliched situational gags, chases/action set pieces, and a cache of formulaic characters, set to an predominantly inane story that fails to engage. The silly banter/interaction between Bautista and Ninjani provides a few occasional chuckles, although Ninjani’s running off at the mouth became a bit tiresome. I like him “Silicon Valley” and “The Big Sick” is among my favorite films but, I haven’t been impressed with many of his other projects thus far. Mira Sorvino phoned in her small role, and the cameo by Karen Gillan was of no real value.

Stuber felt like a swing and a miss that failed to capitalize on the potential of the pairing between its two leads, resulting in a middling and flat action comedy.

Replay Value:

Parental Guide:

The rating is for violence and language throughout, some sexual references and brief graphic nudity.

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: 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: 90
(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: 

Stuber 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.

Stuber garnered a solid report from me on its video quality in 1080p. Its presentation in Ultra HD, was rendered from a digital source/2K DI and up-converted to 4K. Color reproduction is consistent, with primaries like blue, red, and green appearing richer, even a bit more delineated. Secondary hues look great as well. The increase in resolution is apparent, allowing the detection of minutia, even in wide angle shots, to be appreciable. Close-ups tend to offer better refinement and deeper resolvable textures on surfaces, clothing, and physical features, compared to the Blu-ray.

The same is true when comparing the video’s dynamic range. Exterior sequences offer added punch, especially that take place in the light of day, such as the various exterior sequences in LA, where the sun reflects off of objects etc. The darkened highlights in the film’s low-lit environs, have appreciable dimension and resolvable detail. I didn’t find that the film showcased high dynamic range as there weren’t any defining visual elements that drew upon its strengths but, in general I thought that the image looked excellent. Viewing Stuber in Ultra HD wasn’t a format defining experience however, I think its improvements makes it an easy choice for UHD fans.

Dolby Atmos:

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the moderately active variety that made effective use of the platform. Its use of audio objects placed above is a blend of atmospherics and discrete effects. When applied it creates a tangible level of immersion that coincides with the onscreen events nicely. There are a multitude of set pieces that show off the track’s blend of 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 discrete 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: 94
(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

Stuber 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.

This film looks great on Blu-ray and features excellent video quality that exhibits high level detail, stable sharpness and revealing definition. Close ups are noticeably refined and revealing of the subtlest details within facial features and objects within the frame. Mid-level camera pans are equally enriching and offer excellent depth and dimension. When called for, colors are appreciably delineated with natural rendering and punchy primaries that stand out among the spectrum of secondary hues. Fleshtones are a bit on the bronzy side but don’t appear unnatural. Contrast is boldly applied without overstatement as it enlivens colors and drives brightly lit scenes without whitewashing detail. Blacks are gradational and deep which emboldens sequences containing a mix of light and dark elements. Detail in uneven light and darkened environments reveal visible shapes and structure that enhances depth perception. This is a solid presentation that looked terrific on my big screen.

The 7.1 channel mix does a great job presenting the track’s recorded elements. This soundtrack runs the gamut between passages of spoken dialog and music to active sequences that deliver enriching surround sound. Dialog rendering is terrific as it holds sway over the front soundstage. Dynamic range is excellent as the active elements within the surround mix resound with superior clarity and palpable deep bass transients. Clarity is first rate which brings out the finely articulated nuance of background elements within the mix. Surround use is prevalent and achieves a high level of envelopment that is appreciably involving as effects are seamlessly blended to create a stable and detail rich sound field. Despite not being crazy about the film itself, I had a great time with this soundtrack and appreciated the attention to detail that went into its design.

Bonus Features:

  • Disc 1: Stuber Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Stuber Blu-ray
    • Deleted Scenes
    • Gag Reel
    • Joke-O-Rama
    • Georgia Film Works
    • Audio Commentary by Michael Dowse and Kumail Nanjiani
    • Gallery
    • Theatrical Trailer
    • Sneak Peak
  • Digital Code

Final Thoughts:

Stuber is an uninspired action/comedy that if taken with a grain of salt, or two, has something to offer, especially for fans that enjoy its two stars. It comes to Blu-ray from 20th Century Home Entertainment in this Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo pack that features excellent Ultra HD video, reference quality high definition audio/video, including an entertaining Dolby Atmos immersive surround mix, and a middling supplemental package. Unless you’re already a fan, Stuber is tough to recommend as blind buy, however, if you’re anxious to see and hear what it has to offer, toss it in your rental queue and take it for a ride on Blu-ray.

 

Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS2000 4K Ultra 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 AV7704 Audio/Video Processor
Emotiva XPA-7 Gen 3 Seven Channel Amplifier
Emotiva XPA-11 Gen 3 Amplifier
Panasonic DP-UB820 Ultra HD Blu-ray 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)
Dual SVS PC4000 Cylinder Subwoofers
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) – Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
AC Infinity Aircom T8 Component Cooling Systems