The people of Wakanda fight to protect their home from intervening world powers as they mourn the death of King T'Challa. Ralph Potts reviews the Ultra HD Blu-ray release of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever from Marvel Studios and Disney Home Media Distribution.

Poster Publication Fictional character Games Action film

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



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



Studio and Year: Disney/Marvel - 2022
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 161 minutes
Genre: Fantasy/Action

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

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos7.1.4/TrueHD 7.1, English/Spanish Dolby Digital Plus 7.1, 1080p Blu-ray: DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyongo, Danai Gurira, Dominque Thorne, Martin Freeman, Florence Kasumba, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, Tenoch Huerta Mejia
Directed by: Ryan Coogler
Music by: Ludwig Goransson
Written by: Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole
Region Code: A,B,C

Release Date: February 7, 2023



The people of Wakanda fight to protect their home from intervening world powers as they mourn the death of King T'Challa.

My Take:

Queen Ramonda, Shuri, M’Baku, Okoye and Ayo, fight to protect their nation from intervening world powers in the wake of the death of their beloved King T’Challa. As the Wakandans strive to embrace their next chapter, the heroes must band together with the help of War Dog Nakia and Everett K. Ross if they are to forge a new path for the kingdom of Wakanda.

Here's a quick snippet from my review of Black Panther:

Growing up, I read some of The Black Panther’s exploits in Marvel Comics. I generally enjoyed them but didn’t follow the character with any constancy. I recall liking him and the fact that he was a black superhero but, knew little about his background, powers, and affiliations. His appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe made a big splash, bringing the character to life in spectacular fashion. Giving him his own film was definitely the next step and co-writer/direction Ryan Coogler handled the project with aplomb, telling T’Challa’s story with emphatic cultural underpinnings that felt appropriate and thematically conjunctive.

I wanted to begin with that as a foundation since it embraces what my feelings were when this character was brough into the MCU fold. I loved the late Chadwick Bosman’s handling of T’Challa and truly wondered how things were going to move forward without him. I didn’t take Black Panther: Wakanda Forever in during its theatrical run. I wasn’t certain how I would feel about it, despite hearing positive things, and, just decided to wait for it to come to home video.

Firstly, I liked the handling of the tribute to King T’Challa/Chadwick Bosman. The emotion of it seen through the eyes/reactions of the cast, even within their roles, shone through, which meant something. From there, the narrative is set up and revolves around the world’s desire to get their hands on the precious Vibranium which, as far as everyone knows, can only be found in the confines of Wakanda. With Queen Ramonda making it abundantly clear that under no circumstances will anyone outside of Wakanda be given access to Vibranium, the search begins for locating another resource for it.

When an American mining company, using a newly developed device, locates what they believe to be Vibranium on the ocean floor, they are attacked by denizens of the deep led by a powerful, winged foot, ruler, with a bone to pick with anyone that he deems a threat to his people. Going by the name Namor, he approaches Queen Ramonda and Princess Shuri seeking an alliance between his people and Wakanda, in order to ensure that should a war breakout, that they would stand together. He informed them that if they refused his terms, he would return with his army to wipe Wakanda off of the map.

So, this is the primary plot for the conflict in the story. Comingled is light humor and the drama/melodrama surrounding dealing with the loss of T’Challa, the backstory on Namor, Agent Ross being pulled in two directions and, Shuri’s internal conflict. I generally enjoyed the outlaying of the events and its application within the context of the narrative’s arc. I didn’t much care for the character design of Namor. Being familiar with him from the comics I just didn’t feel that his backstory worked, nor did I feel that Tenoch Huerta was a good choice to portray him, from a physical standpoint.

I can’t help but wonder how this all would have played out if Chadwick Bosman’s untimely death hadn’t happened. I truly missed him and what he brought to the first film. At times, I felt that this film was a bit of a reach and, am still uncertain about how I feel about aspects of the storyline. Having said that, my overall reaction was positive and I remain hopeful for the future of Black Panther.

Replay Value:

Parental Guide:

The rating is for sequences of strong violence, action and some 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: 94
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

    • HDR: Dark Highlights:
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Dolby Atmos Rating: 86
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

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Black Panther: Wakanda Forever comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from Disney Home Media Distribution featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound.

For its presentation in Ultra HD Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was rendered from a 6K/film sources and finished on a 4K DI. This is fantasy/action-based film that is boldly colorful, relying on stylized visuals that employ stark contrast, varying chromatic elements and lots of CGI. As with its predecessor, I found that this Ultra HD rendering primarily makes the most of its elements.

With an appreciable increase in detail the image has a spotless quality that enhances dimension. During the sequence at the funeral ceremony, followed later by the meeting in the Wakandan throne room, the detail in the native costumes, interior/exterior surfaces and physical features of the cast members are pristinely rendered. Close ups reveal ample fine detail and abounding textures. The reds/gold that make up the uniforms worn by the Wakandan guard and the layered stages visible in the blues the comprise their newly designed armor look gorgeous. The beautiful earth toned colors set against the sunny sky in the scenes that take place in Haiti look great as well. Primary are pleasingly rich, while whites and grays appear gradational. Fleshtones are wonderfully natural with enriching tonal delineation that remains consistent throughout the presentation.

Wide angle shots and the contrasting cinematography, going from brightly lit exteriors to the variety of dark, shadowy sequences, such as those that take place underwater or in environs lit only by firelight, predominantly look great in Ultra HD. I thought that scenes like the ones that took place at night during the street chase on the streets of Cambridge, or on the shoreline near the lake in Wakanda (where Namor emerges and meets with Queen Ramonda and Shuri) looked great.

I wasn’t bowled by the implementation of high dynamic range, finding it to be hit or miss. Specular highlights during the aforementioned scene in the Wakandan throne room and later when Shuri has her vision were the only instance of note. In general, blacks were rich, with good dynamic range which offset the various sequences that incorporated artificial light and brilliant color.

As with the first film, I found that the gap between the Ultra HD and the 1080p version isn't as wide as I'd hoped. This is probably attributable to the extensive use of CGI which softens many of the backgrounds. Of course, the higher resolution makes the seams in live action set against the CGI easier to see. Be that as it may this is a terrific overall presentation that looked great.

Dolby Atmos:

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the reserved variety in its use of pointed sound object that emanate from above. Predominantly speaking its use of sounds in the height plane is limited to music score extension, and supplemental object fills during panning sequences. During the Cambridge chase and bridge battle segment, I was surprised at how uncoupled the sound and events onscreen seemed. The scene sounded fine, but perhaps not as involving as it may have been with better utilization of the elevation channels. During the extended engagements at Wakanda and in the finale, things pick up but, rarely prove thoroughly engaging.

Clearly the design here was based on creative decisions that utilized the object-based platform in a way that, in my opinion, adhered closer to an augmented channel derived listening experience. The depth of the soundstage benefited from object-based placement but, it never rose to truly involving levels. I have to believe that tapping deeper into height channel sound objects would have sweetened the audio experience. The potential here is quite obvious and what we wind up with is a decent but, unremarkable listening experience.

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: 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:
    • DSU/DTS Neural:X Rating * (non-rated element): NA

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever comes to Blu-ray Disc from Marvel/Disney Home Media Distribution 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 detailed and sharp with appreciable depth of field and visible texture during wide angle shots. Contrast is spot on and blacks are defining with revealing shadow detail 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 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. The detection of subtle background sounds, off camera cues and spatial dimension within the room’s acoustic environment is excellent. The low frequency effects channel is active as the subwoofer works in tandem with the rest of the system to convey bass and impact associated with the action-based sequences (see below). Dialog is firmly planted in the center channel and renders voices and effects with appropriate distinction.

** This was an odd track to rate. I generally thought that it presented a cohesive listening experience in its use of the surround platform. I also felt that there were moments where dynamics and bass reproduction were quite good. Conversely, I kept coming back to a discernible lack of sonic punch and stalwart dynamic range that would have taken the track to the next level. The type of level that would be expected from a tentpole release. It would unfair to say that this tracked was disappointing, globally speaking but, if I had my druthers, it would have had face melting dynamism and plaster cracking bass. Definitely need to increase the volume to give it more life.

Bonus Features:
  • Disc 1: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Blu-ray
    Gag Reel
    • Take a look at some of the lighthearted moments on the set of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
    Audio Commentary
    • Listen to Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole, and Autumn Durald Arkapaw discuss the film.
    • Envisioning Two Worlds – Uncover the making of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever through the lens and leadership of co-writer/director Ryan Coogler, production designer Hannah Beachler, and costume designer Ruth Carter.
    • Passing the Mantle – Follow the evolution of the Black Panther through the films. In tracing Shuri, Ramonda, and Riri’s journeys through the film, this featurette explores what legacy ultimately means in Wakanda and how it will resonate with MCU viewers for years to come.
    Deleted Scenes
    • Outside The Scope – Okoye has a shocking standoff with Ayo and the Dora Milaje. Aneka makes a challenging decision.
    • The Upstairs Toilet – Ross infiltrates the NSA in disguise in an attempt to uncover information.
    • Daughter of the Border – After a conversation with her Uncle, Okoye is faced with a daunting choice.
    • Anytime, Anywhere – In Haiti, Shuri and Okoye share a bittersweet moment.
  • Digital Code

Final Thoughts:

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is a bitter sweet fantasy-action adventure that, while not wholly gratifying, succeeds nonetheless, making for a solid addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It comes to Blu-ray from Marvel/Disney in this Cinematic Universe Edition Ultra HD Blu-ray/Blu-ray/Digital release featuring excellent all-around video quality, a fair supplemental package and, decent lossless sound, that with better attention to detail, could have been outstanding. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is deserving of inclusion in the video collections of MCU fans.

Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-NZ7 4K Ultra High-Definition Laser Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman color calibration software and Portrait Displays C6 HDR2000 colorimeter from
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Seymour A/V Center Stage XD 2.35.1 100” Wide Retractable Screen
Marantz AV7706 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
Oppo BDP-203 Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
System Controller: Apple iPad/Roomie Remote V6 Universal Remote Control
SVS Ultra Tower Speakers (Gloss Finish)
SVS Ultra Center Channel (Gloss Finish)
SVS Ultra Surrounds (Gloss Finish in Bipolar Configuration)
Dual SVS PC4000 Cylinder Subwoofers
Niles Audio In-Ceiling/In-Wall Series Speakers
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
AC Infinity Aircom T8 Component Cooling Systems