HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
HTS Overall Score:84
With “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” coming out on Blu-ray we were BOUND to get a few reissues of the Harry Potter franchise in 4K UHD as well. Interestingly enough there seems to be only the LAST 4 films (ironically also directed by David Yates) instead of releasing all 8, or at least starting in order. My SUSPICION (and this is just conjecture) is that the older masters for the first 4 may need some touch up work, as the masters for the final 4 were done rather recently. Not to mention the fact that Ultimate editions with extended cuts were made of the several as well, meaning something needs to be worked on to bring them to market. Still, I’ve very happy to bring some of the best of the Potter Universe to the giant 2160p arena and with some very sweet artwork as well.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94482[/img]I’m not going to rehash the storyline as Dale had reviewed both the “Deathly Hallows” films back in the day, so for his opinions on the movie itself I will link to his words HERE.
Rated PG-13 for some sequences of intense action violence, frightening images and brief sensuality
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94490[/img]The last several “Harry Potter” films directed all by David Yates share a very unique visual style. Yates loves darkness with splashes of color, coloring within muted grey, and shadows above light. This was evident in both of the “Deathly Hallows” movies and this also translates to the 4K UHD version as well. In fact, I almost think that the movie is DARKER than the Blu-ray by the barest of measurement. With that being said, the 4K UHD version does best the Blu-ray in just about every other respect. Clarity is sharper, and the famous warner banding is pretty much gone too. HDR is effective, but with the muted light levels and blue tinged imagery it doesn’t blow me away like other comparisons have. The advancements are clear and tangible, it’s just that the imagery that Yates filmed “The Deathly Hallows: Part 1” with make them more incremental than jaw dropping in an A/B comparison. The colorful elements of the film show the most improvement, such as the wedding at the Weasley house, or the bursts of color from a wand blast. The Blu-ray was a stellar transfer back 6 years ago, and the increase in quality make it a fantastic looking image on 4K as well.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94498[/img]The Potter films are also getting a kick in the pants in the audio department as well. This time it’s a full DTS:X surround track that takes the 5.1 mix and adds some more intense and visceral qualities to it. The dialog and front sound stage is still impeccably done, but it’s the use of the overheads and rear surrounds in conjunction that make for a wildly immersive experience. Since part 1 is basically a very slow paced setup for the final confrontation in Part 2, we get plenty of moments where there are soft, dialog based front heavy sequences, and then we get some wildly immersive action bits that make the listener feel as if they’re right in the heart of the action. LFE is intense and powerful, adding a much needed low end to an otherwise fairly laid back movie. Dale reviewed the 5.1 mix as a 5/5 rating back in the day, and I would have agreed with him back then. My only reason for downgrading it to a 4.5/5 even with the addition of the DTS:X object based track is that with modern mixing and new Atmos and DTS:X track being added by the day, the weighting on our scoring has to be altered.
• 6 Focus Points
• Sneak Peek: The opening scene of HP and the Deathly Hallows part 2
• Behind the story
• 8 Additional Scenes
• Trailers & Spots – Behind the soundtrack & The wizarding world of Harry Potter promotional tour (Universal Orlando)
It’s nice to see Warner re-issuing the Potter films in 4K (and will probably be released several times over if history is repeated), and the addition of newer audio tracks that benefit from the advancements of home theater make the upgrade all the sweeter. The technical specs are really well done (with some minor issues related to David Yates and his visual styles), but the package doesn’t really come with any extra special features, something I was really hoping would get a boost as well. Still, the audio and visual specs make it a worthy upgrade over the 1080p and 5.1 mixed Blu-rays of yesteryear. Definitely highly recommended.
Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emily Watson, Rupert Grint
Directed by: David Yates
Written by: Steve Kloves (Screenplay), J.K. Rowling
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1 HEVC
Audio: English: DTS:X (DTS-HD MA 7.1 Core), Spanish DD 5.1
Runtime: 146 minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: March 28th 2017
Buy Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 On 4K Blu-ray at Amazon
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