Ralph Potts reviews this contemporary feature film adaptation based on author Beatrix Potter’s classic tale of Peter Rabbit, the mischievous and adventurous hero who has captivated generations of readers.

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

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

81
Details:

Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 2018
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 95 minutes
Genre: Family

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

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1, English, French, Latvian, Estonian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Ukrainian Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Latvian, Estonian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Ukrainian
Starring: James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, Sam Neill, Daisy Ridley, Margot Robbiee, Elizabeth Debicki
Directed by: Will Gluck
Music by: Dominic Lewis
Written by: Rob Lieber, Will Gluck
Region Code: A,B,C


Release Date: May 1, 2018
"Not Your Garden Variety Hero"
My Take:

Peter Rabbit and his three sisters -- Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-Tail -- enjoy spending their days in Mr. McGregor's vegetable garden. When one of McGregor's relatives suddenly moves in, he's less than thrilled to discover a family of rabbits in his new home. A battle of wills soon breaks out as the new owner hatches scheme after scheme to get rid of Peter -- a resourceful rabbit who proves to be a worthy and wily opponent.

As someone who enjoys family-oriented films I went into Peter Rabbit with an open mind having not previously read/heard anything about it. My tolerance for trite storylines is fairly high as long as it has likeable characters and heart. Unfortunately, this film mates a highly conventional plot with bland characters, stale humor and a script that does little to warm the heart. I like Domhnall Gleeson and must admit to feeling almost embarrassed for him in the role of Thomas, a late twenty something searching for his lot in life. He has affable charm but, comedy isn’t his strong suit. I felt that Sam Neill, Daisy Ridley and Margot Robbie were wasted in their roles.

Peter Rabbit isn’t terrible, it’s just flat. Young audiences probably won’t take umbrage with its obvious contrivances, garden variety characters and rehashed humor but, it holds little interest for their parents or those hoping for an engaging bit of family entertainment


Replay Value:
Parental Guide:

The rating is for some rude humor and action.


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: 78
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)



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Dolby Atmos Rating: 84
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)



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Peter Rabbit comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/True HD 7.1 channel sound.

Peter Rabbit garnered a solid report from me on its video quality in 1080p. Its presentation in Ultra HD was rendered from a 2K DI and up-converted to 4K. Color reproduction is consistent, with primaries like green and red appearing richer, even a bit more delineated by comparison. Secondary hues look fine, although not appreciably better. The increase in resolution isn't always on display, especially in wide angle shots, although I believe that this is innate to the photography. Close-ups tend to offer better refinement and deeper resolvable texture on surfaces and physical features compared to the Blu-ray. The improvements are subtle.

The same is true when comparing the video's dynamic range. Exterior sequences offer the slightest hint of added punch, especially those that take place in London, while the darkened highlights in low-lit environs, like the nighttime sequence, have appreciable dimension and resolvable detail. Fleshtones are reproduced on a slightly pale scale, that at times appears unnatural. Viewing Peter Rabbit in Ultra HD didn’t offer any noteworthy visuals, making it a hard sell to discerning videophiles looking for the next title to show off their Ultra HD capable display’s chops.

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the moderately active variety, which played well with the source material. Its use of audio objects placed above is comprised of a mix of atmospherics, acoustic sounds and nearfield effects. This is done well when implemented and creates a fair level of immersion that coincides with the onscreen events well. The music is mixed over the platform so as to add natural depth to its orchestrated elements without drawing attention away from the thematic details of what is transpiring onscreen. This mix eschews constant use of attention grabbing audio object placement but, I found myself involved when it mattered. Overall, I found this to be an enjoyable audio presentation.


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



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Audio: 88
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

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Peter Rabbit comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video and DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound.

This is an excellent video presentation from Sony Pictures. High level detail is present throughout so that images are rendered with pristine quality. Colors are visually pleasing with occasional moments of reserved saturation that proves less eye catching. I wouldn’t define this as a shortcoming but the difference is noticeable and worth mentioning. Flesh tones are naturally rendered with appreciable complexional delineation among the members of the cast. Contrast and black levels are stable with ample depth and perceptible delineation.

The lossless DTS-HD Master Audio presentation renders the source elements with excellent clarity and punchy dynamics. Dialog is delivered with appreciable tonal variation and refinement. The surrounds are active and used to good effect for front/rear channel pans and reproduction of discrete sounds and musical extension. The mix isn’t very aggressive but, does create an enjoyable listening experience that matches the tone of the film.

Bonus Features:
  • Disc 1: Peter Rabbit Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Peter Rabbit Blu-ray
     “Flopsy Turvy” Mini Movie
     Shake Your Cotton-Tail Dance Along
     Mischief In The Making
  • Digital Copy
Final Thoughts:

Peter Rabbit is a formulaic family themed film that mates a highly conventional plot with bland characters, rehashed humor and a script that does little to warm the heart. It comes to Blu-ray in this Ultra HD Combo Pack from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring unremarkable Ultra HD video quality, solid high definition audio/video, a fair Dolby Atmos immersive mix, and a lackluster supplemental package. Peter Rabbit was rather disappointing but, it’s worth consideration as a rental for the kids on a rainy afternoon.
 
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” 16x9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Electronic Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV7704 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)
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